The things I have most enjoyed spending money on have been joining the British Trust for Ornithology, and taking the neighbours kids out on treats.

Being broke inevitably involves picking and choosing. Yes, you can certainly have something – but not everything. So if you have (as I undoubtedly do) one expensive hobby, then pursuing other interests is probably Not On. But I have been able to indulge in some small pleasures.

I am developing my interest in birds. Here I have only a few in the winter, but they are most exciting … an over wintering kestrel, a visiting barn owl (the local bird man tells me he is a male owl). Also, if getting involved in a local society, wise people join something where they are in the happy position of being a beginner who can admire the knowledge and skills of others – and not sit there thinking: ‘That is very nearly right, you know.’

And the company of children is a licence to do things you know you will enjoy but can hardly do off your own bat. Next weekend I am hoping to join a leaf hunt. To do it without a child chaperone would of course be very difficult – and like the BTO it is not in absolute terms at all expensive (petrol and a cafe lunch, I think – picnic if fine). But it is all money. God be thanked for this licence to enjoy the real riches of the world.


3 responses to “Riches

  1. Are you planning something with them for Halloween? As the wise sage Janet Jackson once monged for three and a half minutes: the best things in life are free.

  2. Halloween is fun but hardly free

  3. My two sentences are not connected.

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