Sunday, January 23, 2005

A Slow Process.....

Looking out of my 3rd Floor office window one afternoon I saw them arrive. It wasn't quite time for me to go home but I was at that stage of the day when it was time to start tidying up the loose ends and try to look busy till home time, so it was with interest that part of my attention drifted to the protestors setting up acrosss the road while I shuffled the papers on my desk.

It is hard to miss the arrival, a large green Range Rover loaded with all sorts turns up and the occupants proceed to set up the placrds and banners by the side of the main road. I must have been bored because I made a mental note of the time they started this weekly task. My finishing time arrived but curiuosity got the better of me and I stayed on , watching, watching and watching. I was fascinated by the dedication of the 2 women who appeared to be doing all the fetching, carrying and setting while the young lad just did what he always does, he stood by the roadside with his hood up doing very little while trying to look busy.

Eventually after about 45 minutes the 2 women seemed satisfied with their hard work, the side of the road was festooned with placards and banners advertising their cause and they took their rightfull place at the side of the road near to the young lad who had been there all along, together with a couple of other late comers.

As I got up from my desk a colleague commented that I was late leaving so I mentioned my observations. He laughed and said that almost exactly the same happens when they pack up, ( he works differant hours to me) the 2 women carefully dismantle the banners, placards etc and pack them away taking up to another 45 minutes to do so, then the youth joins them and they drive away to wherever. We chatted some more and worked out that for the 2 women a typical event may consist of about 90 minutes of set up / break down time with as little as 60 minutes or as much as 90 minutes protest time.

Monday, January 03, 2005

New Year ....... New View

Why am I doing this blog?

To be honest I'm not sure, it may run or it may crash and burn.

The intent is to comment on ( but not judge) the protests which occur on a regular basis near my place of work. The people who work in the establishment concerned are apparently strongly discouraged from engaging in any dialogue with the protestors or making any public comments on the protests. As I work close by it is impossible not to notice some of the tactics used in these protests so I thought that I would post my observations, hopefully in a clear, factual manner.

It has to be said that the vast majority of the few people who turn out on these protests conduct themselves in a calm dignified manner. Unfortunately, as always, a few bad apples spoil the barrel and because of these few people I will not be publishing this blog under my own name, if I did, past events tell me that I would be regarded as a legitimate target for harrassement by certain elements of the wider protest group.