Those of you who read or watch the news might have picked up that unusual weather has affected people in several countries all over the globe. Not wishing to hog the limelight, I must just add that I, Countingducks, am on the very edge of one of the areas being drowned by an over inflated River Thames. As I write the water is tickling at the gate, and with more rain forecast, may well make an uninvited entrance into the gardens, and hopefully not worse than that.
Already I have seen a couple of industrious moorhens swimming over what used to be the river-side path and investigating these gardens for possibly holiday sites. Who can blame them: plenty of bushes and properties full of people willing to chuck some bread in their direction. Needless to say, the situation does have concerning implications and here, and elsewhere in the country, politicians have been spotted, looking grave and reflective while their eyes search the drowning horizon for some inspiration. Politicians I have found, are often more the masters of a phrase than a situation so the adopted pose may be a vital tool for maintaining credibility as nature disregards the planning laws.
The well dressed statesman, with shoes polished to a level of battle readiness seldom seen in Whitehall announces, “A state of emergency has been declared for this area”, and round him reporters and members of the public nod. Some twelve year old, unschooled in the nuances of public announcements asks him, “What does that actually mean sir”. The politician looks as lofty as the gusting winds allow and repeats, but in a slightly deeper voice, “A state of emergency has been declared” and his eyes sweep the horizon in a manner which indicates to all that he alone has a telling vision of the future.
An aid leans forward towards the boy and, in an effort to cheer him up, tells him, “The British army,” recently cut back, ” Is in its Jeep and will be setting off shortly after they manage to find a new tyre for the front wheel. “What about the navy” asks the impertinent youngster, uncowed by the imposing sobriety of the civil servant, “The navy has been alerted to the situation and may well be rowing to this location later in the day, weather permitting” . “What else can we do?” says the young boy, suddenly alarmed, and the government official, wising up to the situation, pulls himself to his full height and repeats, “A state of emergency has been declared and we is getting the hell outta here”. The Mazda Bongo Friendee, now utilised as a car of state, waits with engines running to whisk important personages only from the scene.
A light luncheon awaits them in Whitehall: as a mark of respect to those experiencing difficulties, no cheese course will be served.