Pictorial blethers

By blethers

Excellent women?*

Well may you wonder - unless you are an aficionado of the works of Barbara Pym - what the connection might be between a pair of undeniably scaly, if shiny, brass feet and the title of this blip. The feet belong to the brass eagle lectern in Holy Trinity Church, Dunoon, and this month brings around my turn at church cleaning. I am not a great fan of domesticity of this nature, so it was with relief that I let a compadre from the congregation - an excellent woman if ever there was one - take over the vacuuming and leave me to tackle the brass. 

And that is the connection. I feel sure that in at least one of Pym's social comedies around the Church of England there will be a wee woman who obsesses about the brass in her church, and in Holy T that wee woman is me. I've even arrived at the stage where I note neglected eagles in places of worship, feel the urge to turn up secretly with a tin of Brasso wadding ... And I laugh at myself. That it should come to this ...

Footnote on brass cleaning: I know there is the polish of ages darkening the indentations of the feet, as there is outlining every shining feather on our eagle's wings. I fear it would take a disproportionate amount of effort to dislodge it, and it might scratch the brass. I also realise the difficulty of shining said brass in a damp atmosphere, let alone with a damp duster. Next week, I shall bring a clean, dry yellow duster specially.

Normal service may be resumed when the rain stops ...

*Excellent Women is the title of one of Pym's best-known books

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