Today’s blog was just supposed to be about St Boswells Fair week and in particular about the Food and Craft fair taking place in the Village hall tomorrow from 9am to 2pm. However events of the last 24 hours has made me think that yet again I am wanting to write about shopping locally and living in a small village in the Scottish Borders. I asked my husband what he thought about this blog and he said call it St Boswells rocks and then write about why you have thought so over the past 24 hours. So that is what this blog is about.
Said husband is about to start with my son a breadathon as he bakes bread for the Food and Craft Fair. St Boswells village week runs from the 4th to the 12th June and is packed full of events and is a great way of celebrating summer and rural life. http://www.stboswells.bordernet.co.uk/news/1128.html This year for the first time we are having a food and craft fair which has been organised by my friend Julia Cunningham a local crafter who makes great handbags, cushions, scarfs and corsages from local textiles. As well as crafters wares and there is such a wealth of talent locally. There will also be fruit and vegetables, cakes by my friends Keith and Angela and a bread stand where my husband will sell his great bread as he says all organic and all local. So if you live in the Scottish Borders and fancy a potter in St Boswells on Saturday do please pop by. We also have a great butcher across the road and of course Mainstreet Trading our wonderful bookshop. A plug also for other events such as the Barn Dance in the village hall tomorrow night tickets available from the friendly team at the post office.
I love village week as it’s a real chance to celebrate being part of a community and it’s great to see the kids as they grow up get more and more involved with the various events that there are throughout the week.
So one reason I love St Boswells is that it’s a strong community which increasingly I feel more and more part of. I am about to pick my son up from School and head to soup club run by the church in the church hall which I have written about before in my blog. We will sit young and old and enjoy a bowl of home-made soup and a freshly baked roll.
I also love the fact that you can shop locally here. As many of you know we have stopped shopping with the big guys and try to source as much locally as we can. On Monday night I discovered just as I was about to start tea that my chicken hadn’t defrosted. The kids were just about to come in starving from swimming. No issue quick dash to the butcher and I was sorted. Last night we were just about to settle down to tea one of my favourites from the butcher rosemary and garlic kebabs when the door rang. As the dog went berserk with the excitement of a visitor I opened the door to find a local farmer who is going to start a milk delivery service in the village. He will deliver on a Monday and Friday and he can deliver up to 6 pints. This is one thing I have missed since giving up big supermarkets as I seem to be constantly at the Co-OP to buy milk. Plus I am well aware how little farmers get from the big supermarkets. So it’s a win/win for me. Bigger milk carton, delivered for free from a local farmer who gets all the profit not the supermarket. How great is that?
So last night I was in a good mood as my husband and I ventured up to Mainstreet Trading. Not only was it a beautiful night but I felt we had ventured further along our journey of shopping locally. So then it hit me the last reason in this blog why I love St Boswells. I love the bookshop as many of you know. Last night’s event was very special and very moving. It was the author Christopher Ward who wrote the book “And the band played on”. It’s about his grandfather Jock who at 21 years of age was one of the band members on the Titanic who played as the ship went down all losing their lives but keeping people calm in such horror. The book is about what happens next to the family Jock left behind including his mother who was born six months later never meeting her father and the cover up of the Silver Star Line. Christopher was fascinating and a wonderful speaker. He is coming to the Border Book Festival and would be worth seeing. What really moved me though was the talented violinist he brought with him who played before the event and then after he had spoken played “Nearer my God to me” which was the hymn that the band played as the ship went down. I had tears rolling down my face as she played and was lost of thoughts of a tragedy in the Atlantic on a cold April night in 1912.
Later my husband and I sat in the garden with a glass of wine and watched the sun go down. And I thought I love living here as it’s made words come alive for me which is the slogan of the Borders Book Festival. I have always loved and devoured books. But with the Book Festival and the bookshop the world of books in a small rural community has enhanced and built upon my love of reading. We had left the bookshop as soon as the event was over to get back to the kids. I wanted a signed copy of the book for my dad but thought I would get one of the stock left over. However on going in today found that there were no signed copies left. But Roz the owner gave me a beaming smile and said not a problem she would get the author to sign one for me dedicated to my dad. And that is why I love St Boswells and shopping locally the service you get!
So in summary wish the Drane household well for our breadathon tonight. Do pop into the Craft and Food Fair in the village hall tomorrow 9am to 2pm. Or come along for other events throughout the week. But whatever you do this weekend try to shop local so we can keep shops and communities together for the future and not just have to relay on the big companies with their featureless shops and mundane service.