Headline of despair

There’s a lot of sand around us here in Farnham. All our regular walks (apart from the park) have an abundance of sand. Well, they used to. I think a lot of it was in Max up until today.

Max has to go for his MOT tomorrow, so I figured I should clean him inside. A number of sand dunes later, he was looking a bit more like a car and a lot less like Cronulla.

Of course that was after my ritual shop and walk in and out. For the ‘out’ today, I came via Brightwells. I figured I was due an update on the progress of this monstrous waste of time and money. Also, I had to go to Smith’s to post a return for Mirinda so it was just a case of continuing in a straight line rather than climbing up to the park.

It has come along apace since lockdown ended and the workers were able to return. Unfortunately. That’s on one side of the street; on the other, the Woolmead remains an empty plot full of rubble, and one, lonely wall.

Given the way this country feels perfectly fine about destroying the economy, none of it will matter because it’ll be many years before the shops are used.

But, in happier news, we went round to visit Sue this evening. We had a lovely cup of tea (well, I did, I can’t vouch for the weird thing that Mirinda drank) and chat and were roundly entertained by the wonderful Maud.

Maud is a puppy; the one puppy Sue kept from Jem’s litter (last seen here on July 9). She is young and eager and wants to play with everyone. This is something Emma has a major problem with. Emma thinks she’s above all that sort of thing, after all.

To be fair, it was quite weird for Emma; going to see Sue and discovering Maud there. There was a lot of bouncing around (Maud) and hiding under the table (Emma). Also, Freya turned a few gremlin growls on Maud more than once. But, on the whole, Freya was friendlier.

All in all, we had a lovely visit with Sue. She also, quite handily, gave Mirinda some advice on stretching exercises to help with her back, which has been playing up since the weekend.

All the time, Pippa roamed around, a bit undecided about what to do. Age is beginning to show on poor Pip.

Meanwhile, from the Yahoo newsfeed.

How does anyone think that is helpful?

From the person who said it to the person who wrote it to the person who decided the British public needed to read it. Each and every one of them is about as low as you can get. There’s the gradual drip, drip, drip of propaganda then there’s this sort of horror.

They all need to go and take a long hard look at themselves. Then spit at the reflection.

As I’ve said before, why don’t they devote as much time and effort to sorting out Climate Change as they do the virus. After all, the death toll will be much, much higher and it’s much, much easier to fix.

Today, this happened

October 12, 1492 was the day that the Spanish invasion force first set eyes on the coast of America. I assume they were all very happy about it. Obviously, no-one knows how the natives felt, watching a load of wooden ships, sails billowing, heading straight for them. Possibly some of them were thinking that America would never be great again.

Chris landed at a place called Guanahani but, not liking that name, called it San Salvador instead and set up a colony.

The native, Taíno, people had lived there for quite a while and were probably a bit confused when a bunch of over-dressed, sword wielding, incomprehensible invaders stuck a big flag in the sand and said it was their beach now.

The Taíno didn’t just live on Guanahani. They were all over the islands from present day Cuba to Puerto Rico. The name ‘Cuba’, incidentally, is thought to come from the Taíno language. I guess the Spanish felt that Cuba was okay for a name.

The story of the Taíno doesn’t really have a beginning. Some think they moved to the islands from the Amazonian Basin while others think they came from the Andes. Naturally, there’s a lot more information about Columbus than there is of the first people he found.

In fact, Christopher’s appraisal of the natives was, “They were very well built, with very handsome bodies and very good faces. They do not carry arms or know them. They should be good servants.

Eventually, these ‘servants’ became slaves because it’s obviously a cheaper option, and they become an asset. Though this didn’t include Native Americans. The Spanish very quickly excluded Native Americans from the slavery list. This was even though some Native American tribes also dealt in slaves.

The Taíno, however, did become slaves. They were moved from their home islands and placed in the Spanish colonies in order to work sugar cane plantations in order to bring even greater wealth to their conquerors. Nice one.

So, while white invaders may see today as a great one, it is not the best day for the Taíno.

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