11th of the 11th of the 11th

We paid a flying visit to East Barnet yesterday. Pleasingly, Jonathan was at home and not at work, and we all tucked in to one of Anabel’s afternoon teas of her homemade macaroons and Suzanne’s brownies.

Of the two cake-devouring grandsons, I asked ‘What are you both doing in history at school?’

‘The Black Death,’ said nine-year-old Indio, adding ‘pestilence’ for good measure.

His older brother by three years, TJ, intoned ‘Power.’

I remembered that history subjects these days seem not to be about this or that king or battle, but that our present-day preoccupations are grafted onto the centuries of our ancestors. I compare that with my own schooling which was about what people did, when and occasionally why. The notion of the history theme was not fully invented in the 50s and 60s for which, I think, I am thankful.


Great excitement in this part of Bedfordshire. The government indicates that a train line might be built between Bedford and Cambridge by about 2030, when I hope to be 86. Perhaps by then taxpayers will own the railways that we subside so heavily.


Remembrance Day, sometimes called Poppy Day, is today (distinguished from Remembrance Sunday). I had to be at the physiotherapist for 11 a.m., and mused how I was going to have the traditional two-minutes of silence at that time. Along with several waiting patients, as Big Ben struck 11 on the radio the receptionist bowed her head, and all of us the waiting room joined her. Lovely.

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