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'Like a night in a forest...'

Simon Mayo | 09:29 UK time, Monday, 3 October 2011

Good morning to bloggers all, old and new, young and old, those who grumble about Fridays and those that don't.
Listening to Clare Balding (on with Jon Holmes and Miranda Hart this morning who seem to think I have a tiger from somewhere) and memories of last night came flooding back. There I was innocently passing the time waiting for the weekly Spooks vs Downton Abbey fight to scar the weekend, when, for reasons I can't remember, I put on a John Denver CD. I think I have 2 actually, and this was a 'Best Of' volume 2, featuring Annie's Song, Perhaps Love (with Placido Domingo) and Back Home Again. I must have been in a rather hopeless Sunday washing up mode but was singing along in a mumbly 'I-know-I'm-on-my-own-here' way when 'Grandma's Feather Bed' came on. It so happens that Clare Balding was tweeting the other week about her love for this song and I have to say I joined in. It is a bit lame and very cheesy but appears to contain the unique number 'forty -leven' to describe the number of geese that the titular berth needed to fill it up with comfyness. So we used to tut and shake our heads as John sang of this made-up number. Americans! Huh! Don't they know anything? You know the kind of thing. And then it turns out that these are actually geese from Loch Leven and John Denver knew more about indigenous UK wildlife than me. Ho hum.
Today sees the Radio 2 Bookclub and Barbara Taylor Bradford live from New York. Her first novel 'A Woman of Substance' has become one of the all-time top 10 best-sellers. There have been 25 others and she has sold more than 85 million copies worldwide. You're getting the picture. Her latest is 'Letter From a Stranger' and you can an extract here. BTBOBE (as I call her) live from 6.
And oldies please on THOMAS THE TANK ENGINE. A Christmas episode is being criticised for calling a Christmas tree 'a special tree' for the 'winter holidays'. You know the kind of thing. We don't want Christmas tunes just yet but THOMAS, GORDON and JAMES will do nicely. ENGINES, FAT CONTROLLERS, SIDINGS and SHUNTING etc Have a balanced and energised Monday, see you after 5

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