Namaste. We hope you’re enjoying the spring edition of Vale Life. After all the turmoil of Brexit, we thought life would get a little less fraught. But life, as I’m sure you’ll agree, has a habit of not going exactly to plan.
As I’m writing this, the country is enduring, what appears to be, one of its greatest challenges for several decades with many lives sadly already lost and thousands of families mourning their loved ones. Coronavirus, or Covid-19 as it’s called, has landed and it’s not going away any time soon. The fear and uncertainty that this is creating is understandable and, for most Vale residents, hopefully we will exit the pandemic relatively unscathed. We can but wash our hands (thoroughly), socially distance, stay in, keep calm and carry on.
The situation will inevitably cause disruption and for the Vale of Glamorgan’s small, independent businesses, it will mean huge challenges. However, there are benefits from using small shops: there would be less crowds (less people, less chance of contact with anyone carrying the virus). Large supermarkets would create, potentially, a greater chance of catching the virus although they are working incredibly hard to mitigate the risks. Economically, we have little idea what the future holds for many of us.
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Perhaps this is the time that, by changing our behaviour by shopping at your local butcher, greengrocer and fruiterer, we can all make the change to a more environmentally friendly way of living. It was interesting that when I was at (you could insert any big supermarket name here) the shelves were stripped bare of toilet roll, paracetamol and sanitizer, while at our local small shop, supplies were relatively plentiful.
I was chatting to Rhoose butcher Mathew Barratt about his thoughts on sustainability and how, by shopping more locally, we could create an economy and supply system that can weather this kind of situation more effectively in the future. Let’s hope, for our independent businesses sake, that we don’t forget how they have stepped up and continue to support them going forward.
Talking about sustainability and with the environment very much in mind, we have several features in this edition which touch on it. Davies & Jones have introduced a new brand (Sea2See) which are made entirely of recovered and recycled ocean plastic. You’ll find that feature on pages 38 and 39.
On page 12 and 13 we have our regular spread about Happy Days Vintage. Happy Days is the epitome of the reclaim, recycle and reuse ethos. It’s a lovely place and you should certainly pay them a visit.
We hope we will all come through this and wish you the very best, brightest and healthiest spring. Stay safe, keep healthy and be kind.
See you, hopefully, in the summer. Namaste.
Jennifer was photographed at Fonmon Castle near Rhoose. The beautiful Fonmon Castle is also featured in the spring edition. Image copyright Mark Roberts.
Namaste. What does it mean?
Namaste is usually spoken with a slight bow and hands pressed together, palms touching and fingers pointing upwards, thumbs close to the chest. It is used both for greeting and leave-taking.
Many people have adopted this rather than shaking hands, kissing or hugging. This gesture is called Añjali Mudrā; the standing posture incorporating it is Pranamasan. In Hinduism, it means “I bow to the divine in you”. It may also be spoken without the gesture, or the gesture may be performed wordlessly.