We are into the final phase of sabotaging Brexit, and the fight is really on. Lots of work to do, but I’m also having to re-learn a lesson I was taught nearly 30 years ago: “Never think it all depends on you, or you’ll burn out.”
That was in Liverpool in 1989 when we were being trained as part of the bereavement counselling team after the Hillsborough disaster. The Brexit disaster has a similar but much greater urgency. But we need to occasionally stand back from the front line and relax. We work as a team. The Remain team is quite massive in many organisations, and it is a great privilege to be part of the battle. That 700,000 strong march in London on 20th October was an inspiration to all of us.
On a relaxing Saturday afternoon off at the Fira de Cocentaina (province of Alicante), I went into the Catholic church with friends Cait and Carl. There was a lovely statue of a shoemaker saint. I sent the photo by WhatsApp to my daughter and she checked him out. It was Saint Crispin, patron saint of shoemakers.
The field of Agincourt on the feast of Saint Crispin immediately came to mind, and Shakespeare’s speech of Henry V to his men before the battle. Quoted in the World War Two period film of Henry V by Lawrence Olivier and marvellously rendered by Kenneth Branagh in the later version, Henry’s speech is about ordinary English people standing up to be counted. Oh perfect, and on the feast of a shoemaker saint, an ordinary craftsman, the work of whose hands provided charity for the poor.
I think Saint Crispin should be the saint of the Battle of Remain in EU. And we won’t burn out for we have already burnt out the opposition and we only have to make one final push. But do take time out to walk around the tents on the battlefield and chat in a friendly way with the troops, encouraging with words of kindness, for victory doesn’t just depend on you, but on all the army.