Sunday, April 27, 2008

It's Sunday morning, the day after...

... I could use that title to launch into a detailed analysis of yesterday's 2-2 draw with Liverpool, but the only thing I will say is that Blues found a new way to pique my interest before reverting to type by going 2-0 up before throwing away their last realistic chance of making things interesting over the next two weeks. My decision to decline an invitation to attend the last match in return for a shirt presentation hasn't been affected - at £56, I can't justify the train fare, and perhaps that says more than anything else.

But enough of them, yesterday was also the day I finished the excellent Private Battles, four people's account of the Second World War through the diary entries they provided for Mass Observation. I've learned a lot from the book - most notably that attitudes haven't changed all that much in the intervening period. It's interesting to read about how unpopular Churchill was at the time, but while there are so many great diary entries, one stood out right at the end as the UK recoiled from discovering the true horror about the concentration camps. It came from Maggie Joy Blunt. She wrote:

"As to the whole German race bearing the blame - maybe they should and must, but as M said, when your loved ones are threatened what can you do? Would you be brave if your husband, mother, child might be whisked away from you if you didn't submit to the authorities? I suppose the fault is in being so ignorant and disinterested in 'politics' as to let the State grow to such power. This seems to me the moral - the lesson we have to learn from the story of the German concentration camps - and it should be broadcast and brought home to everyone."

Sadly, it seems that lesson has been forgotten already in parts of the world, and the way in which we've allowed this Labour government to systematically erode civil rights and liberties in the name of "security" suggests we're one of the guilty parties.

And more pertitently to our own family, last night was the first time that Harriet slept in her own room, aged five months and 12 days. It was traumatic for all involved - well, everyone except Harriet, who - aside from a small bout of crying at around 10pm, which we carefully ignored for the requisite few minutes until she either calmed down (which she did) or we had to go into her - slept through the night. In fact, she slept through until around 8am, and only appeared to wake after I'd drawn the curtains to let some light in half an hour earlier. When I eventually went back in to check on her again, I found her awake and happily looking at her mobile. For the record, I might have got between four and five hours sleep myself - so much for thinking it would be easy!

Today Toni and I are volunteering down at the Wildlife Trust centre at Abberton - our first bout since goodness knows when. The weather might not be as bad as we feared, and we're indebted to mum and dad for babysitting her ladyship this morning, as we were to Toni's mum and dad who babysat Friday evening while we went to a pub quiz in Chelmsford where our team won by two points. Clearly when it comes to quizzes we can hold our nerve - shame about my football team's nerve, eh?

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