EDitorial ± 21-Aug-2012

Aldeburgh Beer Can Debacle

First up: it's not really called the Aldeburgh Festival Of Lights. That's what yon fella & family down the road call it. We're talking the Aldeburgh Carnival, one of the picturesque highlights of the Suffolk summer, and now into its 70th year, apparently. Sadly they don't hold the "greasy pole competition" anymore. Curse you, health and safety.

Sun's still out -- as it has been all summer long, narf -- as we follow the stewards into our £8 parking spot on Kings Field. Laden with lanterns and encumbered with coolbag, we amble down to the beach. En route, an incident occurs: let's come back to that in a sec.

Posh picnic on the pebbles. It'd be great to pretend that everything we ate began with the letter P, but that would be a Big Fat Lie. There was pre-sliced pork pie, certainly. And some quiche, which begins with a Q, which comes straight after P. I've lost my thread. Food was fab, though obviously required a walk to the nearby vans since The Boy Must Have Chips.

Later, that fat old sun pretty much done, we pack up to head into town. Not for the badger parade, alas, but the main event, the Chinese lantern procession. All lit up, we join the multicoloured throng (magical moment the first), bearing our lamps and bearing right into Victoria Road, then back onto the beach. Travel rug down, lanterns anchored in the stones, we await the fireworks. Meantime there's hundreds of paper lanterns being sent into the sky (magical moment the second). Fireworks are wonderful too. Part of the day which requires the patience of Steve Jobs is the long wait to get out of the car park. This requires some Zen mastery and a leftover chicken thigh or two.

So, back to That Incident. Strolling into town, I'd spotted a discarded beer can rolling around on the pavement. Doing my civic duty, I picked it up and saw a bunch of wheelie bins. As I was lifting the lid, a woman called out from a nearby garden: "Just to let you know, those bins aren't for use by the general public." In that situation, what would YOU do?