Saturday, 18 June 2011
Connection thymed out.
Emotional and intellectual connection to the soil is far closer to the surface here in France. The term "Terroir" with regard to wine reflects a deep affection for the very life giving particles which mother the roots of the vines. It is almost like the cow in Hinduism - not sacred but looked up to as a giver of life. It is as if the soil has personality and this concept extends to stones and the shape of the land itself. Deep down I believe this is what the francophile Anglais detect here - a sense of connection and belonging to a past and also a future. This is not a dressed up arty farty middle class eco connection. (I had my own shameful phase of attacking folk with rainbow righteousness). It is a matter of fact, accepted and simply lived.
In my childhood the soil was known as dirt and represented an area where family males propped up Herbies for some mechanical repairs. However, these days I find myself afflicted with a condition known as "La main verte", which the English call "green fingers." Now, to me gardening is a completely counter-intuitive concept. When you are young you have time ahead to plant saplings and hope to see trees. Yet, it is only when you get old and cannot hope to achieve much that one starts to surf the green wave. Having pondered all this and the influence of subjective ideas, I have come to the view that one of the principal differences between social groups is the perception of time. Young folk with advantaged and happy lives with encouraging families see time as shorter and therefore academic success etc will seed a flowering life that is within grasp. Kids who are told they are crap and live miserable lives expecting to be kicked up the ass by superiors see time as long and any better future just too far away to be reached. Therefore as you age and a year seems like a month, it is never long to wait for Spring, even on the 1st of June.