Wednesday, May 02, 2007

The Buddha's of Berwickshire

Yesterday I may have sustained the first injury of this election campaign while delivering leaflets for the Borders Party. Unforgiving letterboxes skinned the circled knuckle; mostly I have to say in Coldstream. I had no idea that letterboxes could inflict such a level of hurt. Even allowing for the fact that I'm a man, according to my wife we have a much lower pain threshold (something about that's why men'll never have children), it BLOODY hurts. I have a new respect for Posties. Do they wear special gloves that protect the knuckles or do they just become more used to it? Maybe they're just tougher than me.

I found myself grading letterboxes. Those at the bottom of the door, with a spring mechanism flap and an inner set of draft excluding brushes with a spring loaded back flap are the devil's work. Houses with no letterboxes are a challenge (that includes our own house) and houses with white tin boxes, with 'Postes' on the front, that are attached to a wall, as well as a letter box are equally confusing. Where do you stick your flyer? Does anyone actually unlock the box on a daily basis?

I only met one grumpy person; he was sitting in his garden as I approached. "Yes?"
"I have a leaflet for the Borders Party."
"Don't bother leaving it."
He was English. I felt like saying why don't you shove off back to England with your snooty manners. I can say this because with a name like Havers I'm clearly English too. I've always had this theory that English people who come to Scotland and complain about anti-English feeling are the sort of people who would find life difficult even if they moved to Moreton-in-the-Marsh or Chipping Sodbury.

Walking around Coldstream, Swinton (a decent lunch at the Wheatsheaf revived us), Leitholm, Eccles and Birgham was mostly lovely. The weather perked up around lunchtime and the smell of the blossom on the trees in both Eccles and Birgham was at times almost overpowering. I hardly saw a badly kept front garden, although I was shocked at the amount of aggregates that are employed as a ground cover. One garden had so many ornaments, statues and such that it looked like the Last Emperor meets Bambi. Added to which in the borders stone Buddha’s appear to be the new garden gnomes.

Do leaflets do any good? Who really knows? It's one of those better to be doing something than nothing kind of things. In life I'm a great believer in positive energy really does make things happen. The worst thing of all is to say after the event - if only.

1 comment:

r morris said...

I admire your activism and idealism in this election, Richard. It's been years since I've done any leaflet-dropping during an election. Did it a little in college. Idaho is basically a one-party state. If the Republican candidate was a slow-learning aardvark, he/she would still win.
Not much to say about politics in the United States these days. It's all too embarrassing for words.