The Longest Day

It is the longest day of the year, and that is not necessarily a good thing. There is a film starring John Wayne, Richard Burton, Robert Michum, Henry Fonda and half-a-million extras called The Longest Day, and it is about the D-Day landings on the 6th June. The movie  is heavy on portent and machine-gun fire, and tends to drag a bit.

We don’t have any pillboxes to contend with today (unless you think of a classroom as a pillbox to be stormed, which I can’t imagine anyone does), but we do have the tedium of the EU referendum campaigns reaching a plane of transcendent stasis. The campaigning period has been pock-marked with moments of fun (Nigel Farage on the radio saying he hadn’t said anything in the least bit ‘inciteful’, for instance) but on the whole the country has been experiencing an incessant grinding of mental gears. I am amazed there are people who are still undecided; you would decide, you think, if only out of self-preservation.

So, a long day of ‘campaigning’ ahead. And a long day of rain. We have had more rain these last two weeks than ever before, it seems. And I don’t just mean since records began. The middle of June should not be such a long, indoors type of day. There are slugs in the garden, campaigning furiously to remain, and snails assaulting the beaches.

A long day, then. But there will be compensations. My students can expect an EU-Referendum-free zone of calm and industry. Some dry weather is predicted (but not promised). And when the short night eventually falls we can begin our long slow slide towards winter, with its forgetful blankets of endless night.

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