Saturday, 2 June 2012
Bunting Love and why Jubilee parties are a good thing
Come hell or high water we will be enjoying Monday - and most of us are turning our eyes skywards as we speak and PRAYING to whatever God we may believe in (Pagan, Christian, Muslim or the little green man with the huge watering can in the sky - there is after all a hosepipe ban) to please smile kindly on our particular corner of this green and pleasant land and NOT ALLOW IT TO RAIN.
We have sold 500 tickets to our street party. We have singers and a band travelling down from Nottingham I believe (or somewhere similar). We booked the church tables at least 6 months ago and have paid a small fortune for insurance. We have ordered mugs to commemorate the event and to raise more funds for a local charity.
We have had numerous meetings since last November to organise said party - and on the strength of the one we had two years ago this will be well attended and memorable. We have cleared COSTCO shelves of burgers and sausages as we will be feeding 500. And we have all, just like so many other friends and neighbours up and down the country, filled fridges with beer and wine, cut sandwiches, bought salads and made cakes.
I don't really care whether the Queen has reigned for 10, 20 or 50 years if I'm honest. I don't care for the idea of monarchy in itself but then I don't like the idea of a President either - can't think of one (especially in Europe) that has been worth the public vote. But I do like a party, and I particularly like a reason to get everyone out of their houses and out onto the street to celebrate. We don't do this enough and given the experience of our aforementioned street party of two years ago the benefits are huge. I know a lot more people on my street to say hello to. I am more tolerant of those people - we may not believe in the same things, have the same interests but, given that we know one another's first names it is easier to live alongside one another.
I feel safer - weird but I do feel there are lots more people I could turn to if I needed them.
It's nice to get the generations together - all our meetings have included young new families, the middle aged like me and a lot of the older generation - and grandchildren, teenagers, grandparents will all mingle and have fun together, we really don't do this often enough and it really is important for society to come together. You will do this more if you have young children at school or are active members of a church, synagogue or mosque, but, if like me you are a practicing nothing then these opportunities are not to be shunned.
I actually like flags and colours for teams and countries. I like the many designs for football teams and supporting your country nationally is no different from supporting a football team. I think the Union Flag is one of the most eye catching in the world. It's a shame it has in recent decades been hijacked by the far right (well I felt it was when I was growing up in the '70's). I'm glad it's been reclaimed...
So cheers to all you kill joys who would quite like it to rain on Monday and rain on our parade. Whatever the weather we will be donning our raincoats, putting up umbrellas over the barbecues, and getting out onto the streets to celebrate the fact that we can! Queen? What Queen?