We live in an under rated and vitually undiscovered village that tends to be perceived as a place people drive through to get to Windsor or Staines. There is this really horrible straight road that is really quite sad looking. But if you stray on to either side of this road you find loads of wonderful places and a village teaming with life.
Our village was recently awarded some funding from the government to help us with some village renewal projects. Marc, along with our neighbour, Gill, is on the village committee for evaluating and allocating these funds to the various proposed projects. The trouble is Marc is easily the youngest member of the committee (probably by almost 20 years). Demographically, our village is skewed towards the older generation as over 60% of the population is over 60 but I just don't understand why more people with young families don't want to get involved. If I appeal to the greedy side of us, any estate agent will tell you the most important component of the value of your home is location, location, location. Isn't in your best interest to make your village the best it can be? I truly don't understand why more young families don't get involved. I know everyone has time demands on them but there are few other items that could possibly take a higher priority than your community and involvement in it. Or maybe I'm just a freak (entirely possible).
A pedestrian area was recently built next to some shops. Traffic has been routed around the area and yet on any given night you will see citizens (young and old) of the village ignoring the pedestrian warning signs and driving hell bent for leather right through the centre of our new pedestrian area. Why? Well, it might save them 4 seconds on their journey. Or they might kill a child crossing the road.
Next weekend is our Village Fair. There will be a donkey derby and fireworks on Friday night. The donkey derby is hysterically funny. On Saturday morning there will be a parade which Abigail's Preschool will take part in. She will be sitting on a float. I have to dress her up as a nursery rhyme character. Any ideas? What does Little Miss Muffet wear?
We go to the corner shop for a pint of milk and we know people. We wave. We chat. We complain about the weather. We have a bobby on the beat (police officer), Nick. We know him by name. He knows us. He knows our children. We made a point of it. That way, if he sees anything suspicious he can come to us....well, that's my reasoning any way. Windsor didn't have that feel to it. It was full of young commuters who got up in the morning at 5 am to commute into London and didn't return home until 7 pm. They were away on the weekends and didn't have gardens to work in anyway. So we never met them.
I love my village. And I'm glad we are involved in shaping its future. What have you done for your community lately?