Thursday, October 02, 2014
Lord Bonkers' Diary: The Democratic Republic of Rutland
Who among us failed to rejoice when the Iron Curtain was lifted? I shall never forget the day I heard my old friend Mstislav Rostropovich playing Bach amid the ruins of the Berlin Wall – even if he did not wholly appreciate it when I accompanied him on the kazoo.
It would be dishonest, however, to pretend that the integration of the Eastern European economies into those of the West was without its difficulties. Here in Rutland, for instance, we have had to cope with East Rutland (or the “Democratic Republic of Rutland” as it had the immortal rind to call itself), an unlovely tract of land whose economy relied entirely upon the export of pork scratchings – though I will admit that they were splendidly hairy ones.
Wages there were far lower, its currency was not worth the paper it was written on and we had to shell out a fortune to bring the two halves of the county together. On the positive side, the plumbing here at the Hall has never been in a better condition and Rutland now regularly finishes in the upper reaches of the Chess Olympiad.
Lord Bonkers was Liberal MP for Rutland South-West 1906-10.
Previously in Lord Bonkers' Diary...