A pheasant in Detroit

Did you read that feature in yesterday’s Observer about  the proposed  and actual regeneration of Detroit?  It’s quite a story.  I’m not so sure about the city hall/commercial plan to move people out of the more sparsely-populated neighbourhoods, but what an inspired and exciting idea; to return to urban farming.  I love the fact that the community gardens’ produce is free, and that the movement was started by ordinary (though I think the people interviewed seem pretty extraordinary) people who wanted to do something to improve their own and their neighbours’ lot.

The bit that sticks in my head is this last paragraph by Paul Harris.  He is in the car with a beekeeper, being taken to see the beehives:

As he drives to his hives, he disturbs a wild pheasant with his car and it bursts into the sky in an explosion of feathers – a scene common to rural America but rarely associated with an inner city. “We get pheasants around here all the time,” he says.

(Paul Harris, in The Observer Magazine, Sunday 11th July, 2010, pp. 44-49.)

After a weekend filled with the news of Raoul Moat’s desperate, violent last weeks and his despairing last hour – and the Dutch footballer De Jong’s astounding karate kick to his opponent’s chest (Did you see it? What did he think he was doing? Some kind of innovative, new, martial arts inspired piece of skill???), here are a bunch of men (and women, no doubt, but the men got interviewed) who are newsworthy for doing something constructive, creative and hopeful.


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