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Signs And Portents

I collect fans (alas, only the folding hand-held type). And scarves. And photographs of signs.

Weird and wonderful signs pop up in the most surprising places. The crying room sign, for example, is in St Matthew’s Anglican church in Windsor, New South Wales, a couple of blocks down the road from where I grew up. Is the room a place to take fractious babies during a service, or somewhere to have a good sob after a chat with an understanding vicar? It’s an ancient church, designed by convict architect Francis Greenway at the instigation of Governor Macquarie, so a place visited off and on through my childhood on school excursions. But I’d never noticed the sign before a visit last year, so it must be a relatively recent installation.

The other sign? Well, that’s a new Houldsworth installation. Has it worked? No! God botherers, electricity and solar heating sales people still knock on the door. They can’t miss the sign about canvassers not being welcome, with the neon mouse on top.

So, I despair. It’s more than ignorance about the meaning of the word “canvasser”, which one of my helpful FB friends thought might be an excuse. Obviously, many people can’t read. After all, how many times do you see shoppers laden with a trolley full of groceries in the supermarket express lane? Though they could be innumerate!

Then there are all those signs with misplaced apostrophes. Our writing group will tell you I’m the apostrophe maven! Several times an errant apostrophe has been placed by someone (not me!) in the title of my book, The Heart Has Its Reasons. Urgh!

I worry. Could we writers eventually find ourselves with nobody able to read our books?

Meanwhile, I’ll keep collecting signs. An upcoming trip to Hong Kong will definitely replenish supplies!

The Heart Has Its Reasons is available for ORDER by clicking this link



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