Monday, 1 November 2010

Un-Hallowed traditions? Innes National Park. Sean Connery.

All Hallows Eve came and went. Today is Monday 1st November - the day of All Hallows (All Saints). Such days of significance or festival were once, more than they are now, a part of the religious or spiritual life. While it is quite sad to see any tradition debased to silliness -  the nonsense of  "trick or treat" for example - it is often better than an earlier too-serious superstitious dread, often accompanied by vilification of those standing aside from the mainstream dominant belief-system.

Enjoyed a walk on Saturday - the rain stayed away - along the Thompson-Pfitzner Trail down at Innes National Park, scene of the gypsum operations in the early part of the 20th century. The trail follows the former track of the wagons which carried the gypsum to Stenhouse Bay for loading at the  jetty. The wagons were originally horse-drawn on wooden rail-like tracks but the termites ate 'em. Then metal rails were laid, and eventually the horses were turned to other duties when small locomotives took over the pulling. Seems the whole area was cleared in the name of woodcutting for fuel, and the present dense scrub is all regrowth. Met a world-travelling surfer who was out for exercise; currently staying at Marion Bay, but, he said, recently doing the surfing thing in Mexico and South America. And I thought it was all just in books - I read Tim Winton's novel Breath earlier this year, which has a couple of globetrotting surfer characters.

This week our singers do one of the monthly nursing-home performances (which always last for one hour). That leaves, I think, three other special performances in various places between now and the end of the year. Since we are strictly unpaid volunteers, the standing joke is that we should demand double - or triple - pay. Big fat  zero, whichever way you calculate. We wouldn't want it any other way.

I am reading John Hunter's (1993) biography of Sir Sean Connery, who was knighted in 2000. Now THERE was a performer. Still around, and he turned 80 on 25 August this year.

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