Wednesday, November 11, 2015

What would we sing today ?

Mornings with PONs are rarely quiet. Today is no exception. Sophie makes it plain to Bob that a pre-breakfast game of 'savage my sister' is not on the cards.

The mayor shows up at the front gate. '' Can I borrow your ladder ? I have to put the flags on the war memorial ". Angus watches while the mayor clambers up and arranges the tricolore for the Armistice Day ceremony. The old linen flags have been replaced by very lustrous nylon ones. Try as he might the mayor can't get the shield to hang straight. It leans slightly to the left. Two chrysanthemum plants are placed on the plinth.

Sophie stands on her hind legs observing events from The Rickety Old Farmhouses front gate. She yelps with frustration that things are being done without her involvement.

The Very Old Farmers son has started to clear out the house and burn papers. This strikes us as being somewhat 'gauche' considering the Very Old Farmer is still in residence.

In an old family diary the surprising discovery that on November 11th 1918 the crowds in George Street, Edinburgh marked the Armistice by singing the doxology. A spontaneous response to the kirk bells signalling the end of carnage. As the streets were filled with kilted Canadian, New Zealand and Scottish troops I'd assumed that the 11th hour would have been met with a riot of debauchery. Interesting that everyone knew the words. What would people sing today ? Difficult to find the doxology on You Tube but here's a very descanty Benjamin Britten arrangement - a snippet kicks in at the 4.34 mark :


  1. Faced with a Christmas holiday spent clearing out my mother's house, and wishing we had acted earlier, I must confess to feeling a wee bit of sympathy for the Very Old Farmer's son…
    Cheers, Gail.

  2. Roxy must be part PON--the noisy morning part.

  3. And Leah, she's just been singing(!) at me to pick her up

  4. Lots of lovely roses in November.

  5. What a truly splendid nose Sophie has. It certainly looks as though she's telling Bob exactly what she thinks, so let's hope he takes notice ! Though to be honest, we are always surprised that it isn't Sophie who does the savaging...

  6. I find it very touching that in 1918 a crowd of exhausted people, surrounded by a nightmare, in the 11th hour, would sing the doxology. This beckons back to their youth deep within them. A tune they had heard and sung countless times, never realizing at that time the comfort it brought them. May it comforted them in that moment.

  7. Gauche? That son of an old farmer is absolutely the limit!
    I shudder to think what people would sing today. Obviously something unpleasant.