This year, with the massive occasion of the Queen’s Jubilee and now the upcoming Olympics we are inundated with images of the British flag. They are EVERYWHERE, right? Weather you’re doing a bit of shopping, are in a restaurant or walking down your street, there is bunting, flags or Brit memorabilia of some sort somewhere in your eye line. It’s not just accepted it’s expected. It’s patriotic.
This wasn’t always the case though.
My partner (Rob) works in an independent designer menswear shop where they sell top British brand Barbour. Barbour brought out a jacket lined with the british flag. This jacket made a statement – how the brand is proud to be British, and after being around since 1894, Barbour’s classic wax jackets are still manufactured by hand in South Shields.
Rob got to designing a window display, with the jacket being the centrepiece, behind it he had the union jack flag. It was merely days, before somebody came into the shop questioning why there was a British flag displayed so prominently, it was deemed this could be offensive to other people in the city who were not British. Another few days later, there were accusations that the shops staff were ‘nationalist’ and another person asked if staff members were part of the BNP!
The window display was taken down. It seems two years ago it was apparently ‘offensive’ to display a Union Jack, now if your not brandishing your red, white and blues at every opportunity you’re not being supportive to your country.
Let’s be honest, you just can’t win. Can you?
Yesterday, around lunch time, we had a very excitable phone call from the other half saying that he’d found a baby bird (we thought a sparrow, but our bird knowledge extended to ‘it’s not a pigeon or a seagull, so it must be a sparrow’) outside his work. Now, he works in the middle of town, which is no safe for a baby bird that can’t fly very well.
So, after watching it hop about on the busy pavement , Rob being the absolute animal lover he is, picked it up and put it in a little box. He then went to the nearest pet shop where he got some advice on what to do next, and some meal worm for the birdy. So, for the rest of his day in work he was bird-sitting.
On the advice of the pet shop, and a bit of Googling from me, we decided the best thing to do was bring it home and take it up to our near-by woodland and leave it in some bushes or shrubs. As it was fully feathered, it was ready to go off on its own and learn to fly.
Luckily, after a whole day of thunderous rain, it finally cleared up around tea-time. We all got our welly’s on and waited for Daddy to come home. The children were so excited to see a baby bird.
Off we headed up to the woods to find a safe place to set the bird free.
And, off it went….It jumped straight out of the box and hopped off into the undergrowth.
So that was our first foray into animal rescue.
For those of you who have read my blog, you may know that my partner and I used to run our very own baby boutique. We set up at the time I was expecting our third baby, and I chose our stockists based purely on how adorable my newborn would look in their clothes. If I loved the clothes (I am very fussy), I was positive others would as well. Who wouldn’t fall in love with these……