From time to time I ponder the need to know when to act. When to throw caution to the wind and do something to change a situation which isn't really my problem. Every now and then I hear a story about a situation where someone has acted and made a difference. My recent favourite was a friend of my grandmother's who was 60-odd and on the tube in London. Two men were getting into a fight, and so (being a good quaker) she eventually got up and walked down the carriage and (in her rather sweet way, and with her very bad stutter) she offered them a sweet from a small bag of sweets she had. Somehow she did it in such a way that the two men politely refused the sweets and got themselves out of the fight and peacefully sat down.
I wish I had both that inspiration and the personality to pull that sort of thing off. Generally I'm not very good at it. I tend to miss the moment where I could make a difference because I'm surprised by it and just generally too contemplative and woolly to get on with making a difference. I think, for me, it's one of those learned skills which takes regular practice to get used to.
So I have some sympathy for the various people who failed to stop the abuse of children in catholic church-run facilities in Ireland, and thus enabled it to go on for decades. But it's a really, really, tiny amount.
Band practice tonight was very good. But now Ain't Never Loved a Man is grinding itself a track in my head. I would mind less if it was the whole song. These three lines are not enough.
I feel like I've read a fair few blogs recently where the blogger has been caught up with other things. Well, that includes me. My grandmother died on April 2nd. She's my mum's mum, and while I owe all sorts of excellent qualities and considerable cultural factors to other relatives, my granny is the one I feel gave me the deepest and best lessons. She showed me very well that you can live a simple life which honours beauty and achieves considerable ethical standards without constantly harrying yourself. She was wise, gracious, funny and loving and I feel very lucky to have had her as not only one of my grandparents, but also as the grandparent I saw most often.
As my mum said just before her funeral, I think I'll find more and more to be grateful for in her influence in my life as I get older. So, Haere ra princess, haere ra. God bless you and keep you safe.