Jaqui's Daily Blog

Conversations Over Coffee

As everyone who knows me is well aware, I do enjoy a cup of coffee.

I am quite content to sip my cuppa on my own, savouring its recuperative qualities of which I am much in need at present as I try to shake off a chest infection. There is, however, nothing like a cup of coffee in the company of friends.

This morning I took myself to choir, even though I knew I would be croaking away and generally not adding anything to the general tunefulness. Regular readers will recall that I sit in the second row of the Alto (aka Failed Sopranos) section where we are often berated by our conductor, the Redoubtable Muriel, for lacking in confidence and failing to sing out. We - as in my friends Sue 1, Sue 2 and I - have long felt that our failure is not completely down to our vocal deficiencies but also to our lack of numbers compared with the sopranos. Today, amazingly, proved our point. For some reason unbeknownst to me, there were lots of empty chairs in the soprano section while the alto section was all but full. It really made a difference. Indeed, the Redoubtable Muriel actually took the sopranos to task at one point. This has never happened before. We Altos sang out smugly. For once.

However today was the international Day of Kindness, Muriel reminded us. Eric's face (Eric sits in the corner) was a perfect mixture of scorn and disbelief. I guessed he wasn't planning any acts of random kindness any time soon.

In the community centre's Café where the Bacon Bap Brigade gathered as usual after our Singing Session, our conversation turned to The War. No, I can't remember how on earth we arrived at that particular topic but it was truly fascinating to hear Rita relate her experience of being evacuated and seeing her first corpse (the elderly parent of the couple she was living with.) There is nothing like a Touch of the Macabre, I've found, to liven up a discussion.

I told everyone about the book I was given for Christmas about a school at war - the school in question being the one where two of my granddaughters have been pupils. The picture on the front of the book, drawn by the school's art teacher during the war, shows a girl crouched under a desk scribbling in an exercise book. An explanatory note inside tells the reader that the pupil was actually taking an exam at the time. I do hope she passed. One of our group reminisced how she, too, took her exams in an air raid shelter with bombs falling overhead. I have promised to lend her my book when I see her next week.

I had completely forgotten that I also had a date this afternoon for coffee with friends Sue and Eleanor. But, hey, why meet up once for Coffee in Company when you can meet twice in the same day. Mr B was most forbearing when I told him of my plans - he would not want to come between me and my coffee, you could tell.

Eleanor is just back from three months in New Zealand and Other Places so we had so much to catch up on. Sue and I particularly wanted to hear all about the albatrosses she saw, wheeling above her boat. Did you know that when the albatross flies long distances it locks its wings and turns off half its brain? Like an aerial form of Cruise Control if you like. Plus it feeds at night on ocean squid which helpfully (if you are an albatross, that is, though less so if you are a squid) are fluorescent in the moonlight. No sightings of the Ancient Mariner but then you can't have everything, can you?

You catch my drift, I'm sure. How else would I have learnt so much of interest in just one day?


Anyone for coffee?


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Latest comments

23.04 | 20:15

lovely and heartwarming - an inspiration to us all x

09.03 | 12:07

Love this story told as ever beautifully.x

10.11 | 21:31

What a super account of a special event. I loved meeting you last night and seeing your creation come together. I’m so pleased you got so much from the activity

07.09 | 13:17

I have broad shoulders x

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