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A Grand Day

Posted on: Wednesday, 1 June 2011

We went to Northumberland County Show on Monday.

Bedders was working, dishing out 1/3 pint bottles of milk to the ecletic crowd that passed the NFU stand.

Barbour-clad farmer....girl in pearls....manky horrible chav.....Barbour-clad farmer....blond Rah in a Joules top...cast member of Geordie Shore (never heard of it? Oh, t'is a treat. Check it out.)

"How much are these like?" (gesturing to milk)
"They're, ah, free."
"Ah divvn't like milk. But ah'll have some. How much are these like?" (gesturing to Mission Milk fridge magnets.
"Err, free."
"Ah'll have one of these n'all." (puts three into pocket).

It was a 'public' event, which I think means raising the profile of farming as opposed to talking to members. The big thang seems to be promoting Mission Milk (y'see, you should buy your milk from a local milkman. Not a supermarket. Supermarkets are basically Milk Bastards. They cream off - excuse the pun - all the profit for themselves and leave poor dairy farmers struggling to make any money at all out of the milk they produce and process. So there. Get a milkman. Here's a link to ThisIsDairyFarming. They're hip, ay? I'm telling you, get a bleedin' milkman.) 

I enjoyed the shearing competitions and the beautification of the sheep the most. Watching a farmer rub a sheep's face with a flannel is a bit surreal, mind. Then it was followed by The Judging:

Showing Sheep

And lots of grabbing of the sheeps' bits. You can tell a lot about a sheep from its bits, apparently.

Yesterday, we had a day of Wedding Craziness. It began with the registrar ("Are you in any way related?"), continued with the priest ("Marriage is a taking off, not a settling down!"), developed with an inpromptu conversation with a baker re: favours (quote not included for the sake of secrecy) and ended with frantic searching online for accommodation in Kerala for the Indian section of the honeymoon.

Gaaaaaaah. Mess. In. My. Head.

Although we were agreed that the meeting with the priest was, well, pretty lovely, actually. He did some 'instruction', which sounds very heavy but wasn't at all. He's a good man, our priest, which kind of sounds like stating the obvious, but when your previous experience of a Leeds priest involves him asking your husband-to-be if he's got you "trained up yet" (I know. I was like, "HOLD ME BACK!"), expectations are low. 

Fr Michael, however, is a gem. I started to write things down like a total religious nerd for fear of forgetting it. Everything just...resonated. Marriage as a taking off, not a settling down, marriage being support and love without confinement or conditions (I loved that), it being like a parents' love for a child, it being a mirror of God's perfect love for us (like Plato's forms), and how humans will ultimately fail to achieve an idealised love but human instinct is always to aspire to that, which is bloody marvellous...

I sound like a bit of a tosser. But it was deep, man. I was a bit overcome.

So yesterday evening we ate lasagne and chose our readings. And t'was lovely.


  1. I have just looked up getting a milkman - in London - and apparently no - just no. Whatthe?!

  2. Nooooo! Seriously?! Have you looked here?



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