‘Important to ponder the quiet turns of the screw’ - town crier column

PUBLISHED: 12:00 02 October 2020

Town Crier Roger Bourgein at the Steve Gazzard organ donor sign up event that has resulted in over 6000 donor registrations. Ref exe 36 19TI 9289. Picture: Terry Ife

Town Crier Roger Bourgein at the Steve Gazzard organ donor sign up event that has resulted in over 6000 donor registrations. Ref exe 36 19TI 9289. Picture: Terry Ife

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Exmouth Town Crier Roger Bourgein ponders the ‘quiet turn of the screw of life’ in his latest column

Greetings, citizens and visitors to Exmouth, this jewel set midst Devon’s red cliffs, green hills and silver seas!

As society has slowed, I’ve speeded up, and like the man in the railway carriage staring through his window into the carriage of the train alongside, as one begins to move I’ve no idea which one is doing the moving.

Is it me, is it him, for a second or two my unshakeable world view of me, where I am, who I am, is stretched.

That feeling is following me.

Like a bad dream made real, I am having to consciously focus on ‘real’ objects, the shine of rain on the wet Victorian cast iron railings, the creak of pedal as the old lady cycles by, the smell from the slabs of fudge being heated, twisted and beaten into shiny submission.

Though my brain has no intent on deception, as an animal, my senses work in harmony, which is a relief.

I have time to ponder such quiet turns of the screw of life, sadly mid Covid-19 many are given neither chance nor opportunity.

I write these words sitting in the last of the day’s sunshine, in the small Dutch town of Sandtpoort Nord, on the coast not far from Amsterdam.

I came here to get married!

For seven years Aline and I have known each other, enjoying each other’s company and watching in quiet almost unbelievable surprise as we’ve grown to want to live as one for the rest of the years we are to be given!

But suddenly dark news arrives, I learn my younger brother Toby has died, from throat cancer!

Though I knew Toby was ill, we were estranged and had not spoken for 20 years.

But when I was lying in my tiny hospital bed, seemingly dying from Covid-19, Toby rang me, his only words:- ‘remember the good times Rog’!!


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