Nice Weather for Ducks? (Apparently Not)
In July, students from SOAS (School of Oriental and African Studies, London) were on site here at Slaughterbridge. While they were out planning the garden mosaic down by the River Camel the skies opened. Opened more than almost anyone had seen before. It was not quite as heavy as the disastrous flood which damaged the nearby village of Boscastle, but it was looking like it may go that way. All took shelter under the gazebo right opposite the river level gauge. This then hit the national news “Slaughterbridge” was on the today programme on Radio 4. They were all rescued by the mini-bus and returned to the safety of the base camp. So we all sat in front of the TV waiting to see the report about our storm. But then it returned. Lightening struck the national electricity grid pylon and the power was lost (lucky for us the barbeque did not rely on electricity). Oh, and one of us observed a duck taking shelter from the storm in a barn, peering out with a grumpy expression. It was too wet even for ducks! (PS - It didn’t rain all week.)
After the storm moral boosting was much needed. So after a huge barbeque and just a little drinkie, we performed a Mummers Play especially adapted for the occasion (traditional rough British folk drama, best performed when not entirely sober). Much hilarity was caused by this larking about. In particular having a German cast as St. George saying “I am St. George, that noble knight. I lost my blood in England’s’ fight! I know this drowned soggy rat, my head he would step on; That’s why I carry this bloody weapon… En Garde!”, and the Doctor saying “If you were to bring me an old woman, Seven years dead, eight years buried, nine years laid in her grave; If she’s got one umpum scrumpum jack-toothe left in her head, I’ll have her up and eating hot apple dumplings Before you can say Petrie’s Seriation Nagada III”(a reference to a pottery lecture earlier in the day). This now looks set to become a tradition.