TODAY, Wednesday, August 29, is the feast day for the beheading of John the Baptist, but I dont suppose youll be celebrating. I certainly wont.
I remember seeing graphic depictions of this when I was young the tousled head on a silver platter. I just knew his startled eyes were staring straight at me.
Between the ages of seven and 11, my parents shunted me off to Sunday school at a nearby Baptist church.
There, unknown to them, I was persuaded to join the Band of Hope, where I signed the pledge that I would never drink alcohol. This was a contract that I greatly enjoyed breaking when I hit my teens.
After the Sunday service, the Baptist minister would launch into hellfire preaching from the church steps, but most scary of all were the full-immersion baptisms.
Organ music played as white-robed men and women were dunked into a huge, adult-sized font at the front of the church which had been filled with water.
I only had to see the sinister minister appear in his big waders, to start shaking at the knees. I didnt realise that the people who were baptised were volunteers, so I always made myself inconspicuous just in case.
On a recent trip to Galilee, we were surprised to see people still being baptised in the River Jordan. This time, I wasnt scared but rather moved by the ceremony.
It was also nice to think this was the spot where John the Baptist did his early work long before his head ended up on a platter.
TALKING of platters, Ive just read about the 10 top dishes that people find hard to get right, such as souffls.
My worst disaster was a stuffed breast of lamb which morphed into a load of sloppy fat, leaving our dinner guests with just a plate of vegetables.
Fisher Junior is famous for her lime potatoes, after cooking the Christmas roasties in cordial, thinking it was vegetable oil.
WELL done to parents fighting the closure of the three day centres for disabled adults in Hillingdon.
The three families have won the right to a full consultation after taking the matter to the High Court.
Now thats People Power.