Archive for August, 2007

When I met Lady Baden Powell

August 12, 2007

When I met Lady Baden Powell
The recent Scout celebrations prompted me to remember when I met Lady Baden Powell in a similar celebration in Tasmania, many years ago.
I was a very young Brownie in those days and there were many preparations to greet the wife of the founder of the Scout Movement. A special costume was prepared weeks before and I was to be a duck-billed platypus. I was to lie on the ground with my plump little body covered in the costume and I was to stretch my hand forward to slip a letter of greeting through the bill of the platypus to present it to the good Lady.
The whole township was agog and the day finally arrived. I lay on the ground, my costume carefully pulled over me so that I was completely hidden. I waited patiently.I squinted through a little gap between the costume and me and could just see the steady approach of the feet of the Lady. When her sturdy shoes reached me, I pushed the letter through the bill. Mission accomplished and the costume still held in position. I was relieved.
The kind Lady laughed took the letter then, to my child’s mind, ruined it all by lifting the costume right up and exposing me in my Brownie Uniform lying flat out on the ground. Did I smile and say how pleased I was to meet her? Not me – I insisted on pulling the costume back into place saying crossly “I am a platypus!”
In spite of this rather dodgy start, I remained a Brownie and enjoyed many years a as Guide to learn survival techniques in the bush, making safe fires, finding and eating witchetty grubs under the bark of trees, learning how to deal with snake bite, finding south using the Southern Cross constellation of stars in the sky and ‘the usual’ activities of the Scouting and Guiding meetings that have continued to take place since.


I have a complaint

August 12, 2007

Thank goodness for the opportunity to express one’s thoughts on this website. A great place to sound off – especially when the issue seems to be very relevant. I think you’ve got it by now – I want to be a writer, a working, paid writer. I have been trying to be a writer for some time now. I managed to get a job writing for a small publication – I was paid ‘the going rate’ for my reviews. All was well. Then there was a change of editor. I send reviews regularly – most are ignored. I complained for the people who took part were peeved that they were ‘reported but not published’. I complained to the editor, the editor’s boss and the editor’s boss’s boss. Stone cold indifference.

I was delighted when my photos and a review were finally published. The sum total of payment for the job – £5!

On the other side of the coin a friend who is a writer complains she has too much writing work to do – writing marketing type articles for companies. Are we now a nation of advertisers advertising advertisers with nothing to show for it? Are our businesses reduced to being mere parasites on each other, not really contributing anything concrete or important? Is the media determined to stifle those of us who try to write and report events that really happen?