This is the BBC World Service

The village’s one o’clock Sound of Music Through The Square Window is being heard far and wide. Farther than ever, thanks to the coverage on our local BBC station, Spotlight, at the end of last night’s show, as well as Radio 5 Live this morning and the Newsday programme on the BBC World Service.

You can catch me on the latter at about 1801 here.

I was really made up by being interviewed by The World Service. I remember going into the heart of Rampisham Trasmitting Station before those idiots demolished the masts without planning permission. They were like giants rising up from the landscape, speaking to the world.

(I think there are only two masts now left on the site. They could be seen for miles, even at sea. Maybe some considered them a blot on the landscape but I thought them beautiful.)

It was stunning to go inside the vast hall to hear a Tower of Babel voicescape coming through the machinery.

I recorded some audio as part of a project about the Wessex Ridgeway and would have included the link , but there don’t appear to be any on Dorset’s Council’s website.

Anyway, as usual, just like Ronnie Corbett, I digress.

The Through The Square Window request show and the publicity around it has somewhat taken up my time of late and I shall be following it up with new, associated developments. But I don’t mind, it’s keeping me focused and I love coming up with off-the-wall ideas. I especially like all kinds of music and the spoken word.

Radio is probably my favourite medium. So if you want an internet broadcaster please get in touch!

In other news, the village phone box could well be taken over by the community after BT picked up the story on my blog a few weeks ago.

The red kiosk in the middle of the square has become a temporary book exchange. I’m loving all the titles I’ve been reading – and giving away. I’m currently nearing the end of Middle England, which I’m going to post to my big sister when I’ve finished it.

I’ve parcelled up five other books I now want to pass on. I’m sending them to relatives and friends so they get a nice surprise during lockdown. It will also give a small bit of business to our now once-a-week post office in the village hall, which is doing a brilliant job despite social distancing.

I’m still having vivid dreams and will be compiling some of the brilliant ones you’ve so kindly sent me for my new Dreamcatcher page, which will be going live soon.

In the meantime, stay well and safe and happy in difficult times.

That’s about it.

Love Maddie x

Seeking sanctuary in times of strife

It’s good to get out. It’s only once a day, this outside exercise we’re allowed to have during the lockdown. And who knows how long it’s going to last?

The pubs’s stopped doing takeaways, the church is closed even for private prayer and the shop is dealing with one customer at a time.

I’m making the most of my exercise while I still can, up bright and early with the dogs to a place where ancient Britons sought sanctuary in times of strife. Luckily, it’s within walking distance, even though the National Trust say it’s the remotest spot in Dorset.

For the first time in days, I saw vapour trails in the sky above the hill. But also, reassuringly, an angel’s wing.

Yesterday, I saw a small boy, aged about five, with his mother in a field, sword fighting an invisible enemy. This morning he was wearing a storm trooper outfit. From six feet away, I could see the Force was strong with this one.

Listening to the news is limited to just once a day for me, as well as spending less time on social media. It’s great to share love and understanding with friends on Facebook and video message the family on WhatsApp. But I’m fed up with ridiculous conspiracy theories and crackpot suggestions on how to combat this terrible virus.

Although I do admit to wearing my Star Wars T-shirt as a form of talisman, topped by a Bristol City hoodie, even though I can’t stand football.

During my once-a-day visit to Facebook yesterday, I saw some wonderful 3D images of tigers and pandas in friends’ front rooms. Having a go with this technology, I spirited up a huge wolf in The Shed of Dreams.

It sprang up on the chair and stared out the window, obviously looking for Mr Grigg who had come in the day before and rearranged my writer’s adjective board because he was bored.

Never fiddle beneath. That’s his new motto.

That’s about it.

Love Maddie x

The bare necessities

Good news stories are emerging bit by bit within communities as the newspapers and websites peddle a never-ending story of doom.

On Bothenhampton’s main street, they’re all doing The One O’clock Wave. At the allotted hour, residents pop out of their front doors, waving and calling to each other as far as they can see along the high pavement and across the road.

Joyous and full of long-distance love, according to my self-isolating friend.

Meanwhile, as the schools and colleges close, younger people are stepping up to the plate to help their communities.

Like many community shops, ours relies on its volunteers. But more and more are having to self-isolate, classed as vulnerable because of their age or underlying health conditions. It could lead to the shop closing, or at least operating fewer hours.

One local teenager has already come into the shop asking how she can help. As she’s over eighteen, she’s being trained next week. She’ll be a huge asset, especially if she can persuade others of a similar age and enthusiasm to join her.

At a time when swarms of panic buyers are depleting the supermarket shelves of stock (such as this Where’s Wally in fully kitted out in hazmat suit and gas mask operating in stores in neighbouring towns), the hunt goes on for supplies for our little village shop. Never has there been a time when the shop is needed more.

Some 76 ordered items were not in the latest delivery from wholesalers Bookers.

If only people would buy just what they need, then there would be something for everyone. The Bare Necessities. On that note, here’s something cheerful for the weekend. I’ll be teaching Mr Grigg the words so he can sing it behind the till at the shop.

That’s about it.

Love Maddie x