I am moved by Lady Percy 's expression of love. CLICK HERE - see if you agree.
Otherwise my novels, short stories, verse, family, music, memories, vulgar interests, detestations,
responses, apologies. I hold posts to 300 words* having found less is better than more.
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* One exception: short stories.

Thursday, 28 November 2013

With, but not of, the shooters

 When the bus reaches Llanarmon Dyffryn Ceiriog (destination indicator justifiably shortened to Llanarmon DC) it turns round and goes back. In fact it has no option whereas we did. Guided by satnav we came in by ten miles of cart-track high up on the ridge, barely a cars-width, dodging suicidal pheasants.

But then we were there because LDC is remote, even by rural Hereford standards. Did I mention LDC is in Wales? - Pays de Galles sauvage. It is.

The village is tiny yet has two outstanding pubs: we dined and bedded at The West Arms but it's traditional to have a pint or two across the "square" at The Hand Inn. Gradually the bar filled up with men there to shoot the pheasants we'd so carefully avoided. Some in knee breeches, some wearing shoes that may have been made by Lobb of St James. I asked one how many birds he reckoned he'd killed and he was strangely evasive. The landlord of The West Arms explained: "He probably thought you were Animal Rights activists, there to set fire to his Range Rover." I was thrilled to be thought a subversive.

The shooters began cracking very poor jokes which were marked by braying laughter. A disturbing sound and we left them to it. Another group had booked dinner at The West Arms but we ate separately, their maleness inaudible behind sixteenth-century walls. I ate Welsh crab and lamb-shanks, VR had brill. Wales does have some vineyards but there are limits to my ecumenicism. The bottle of CdP had solid worth.

WIP Second Hand (No progress; just blogging)
“The magazine was an anachronism. It dealt with general engineering whereas titles now tend to be more specialised. Its glory days were pre-war, plus a little bump of enthusiasm up to the early sixties. When I took over it had been in decline for more than two decades. Living on the echoes of its past.”

1 comment:

Sir Hugh said...

After an acrimonious exchange last week on my blog between one of my commenters and an anonymous country guy, arising from a year old post on the subject of grouse shootimg, I was forced into deeper consideration. The partakers are in two groups: the ones you describe who do the shooting, and the countryfolk who earn their living supporting all this. The second group I have some sympathy with, and I can imagine them in the taproom of their local having a pop at the Hooray Henrys they have been tending to during the day.

My basic objection is that the Paisley scarf and breeches brigade, inexplicably ENJOY killing animals, and that I can never forgive. My walking friend Pete is scornful at their propensity to “dress up” for the occasion, and cites in particular the brightly coloured garter tabs as worn by boy scouts protruding from the top of their long stockings.