November 17, 2016 by Whispering Smith
Whispering Smith Column published in the Littlehampton Gazette November 3rd 2016
A favourite pastime is taking a morning break in the Harbour Lights Cafe, not the best filter coffee in the world but a lovely setting. Sunlight on the green river, the swans, the noisy gulls and the little fishing boats chugging upriver to safe moorings. Sit awhile, close your eyes and listen to the broken disjointed, noisy babel of voices, snippets of conversations, isolated comments stand out completely unrelated to others in the jumble of words. Some profound, some simply idle chit chat between couples. A man sharing a Danish with his wheelchair bound wife evokes a sad memory but the sadness is driven away by the humour of passing moments, brief windows into the lives of others. ’She had him put down…’ Husband or pet? ‘A latte and an Eccles cake was all he gave her…’ What was that all about?
SADLY another BBC Autumnwatch is over and I must confess, although it is still one of my favourite programmes, something was amiss this time around. Too many off piste films, no red ‘plus’ button and the threat of a new presenter with the side lining of the popular Martin Hughes-Games, a move which appears to be a clumsy BBC cockup that really pleases no one. I don’t believe any of the current presenters should be dropped although I do believe the delightful Michaela Strachan tries a wee bit too hard to be funny. If it isn’t broke don’t fix it is a mantra which the BBC commissioner should adhere to. Great to see Chris Packham safely back and on such great form, we need more of Packham not less.
HAPPY to say that the rumour going around that this year’s bonfire is likely to be the last is just that, a rumour. I am reliably informed that plans for next year’s event are well under way. It will have to go some to beat this year’s splendid parade, bonfire and fireworks, thank you all.
Photograph: Our bonfire on the green, a roaring success.