IT'S GREAT, isn't it, when people succeed in doing with their lives what they want to do. Most of all, of course, they've got to want to. And I'm not talking here about the big things wanting to be a priest or a millionaire or a statesman.
I'm talking about Robert Gooden from Dorset whom I met last week who wanted to breed butterflies and, by all that flies, succeeded.
First he sold pots and pans for a living and butterflies in his Spare time. Then he started a postal service in eggs, cocoons and moths. Today he has hiw own butterfly farm and his silkworms spun for Princess Diana's wedding dress. It's almost a fairy tale.
He gets lots of visitors to the farm. And, if you've seen
notices in the Zoo that say Don't Feed the Polar Bears, They're Dangerous, you might expect one here saying Don't Feed the Silkworms, They're Not Hungry.
In fact, one breed of silkmoth that eats only at the caterpillar stage and needs nothing thereafter, brought so many complaints of cruelty from visitors that flowers are now put into the enclosures as makebelieve food. The silkworms ignore it but the humans are happy.
The British Airways pilot was superb. David Attenborough or Bellamy couldn't have soothed us more silkily as he pointed out the landmarks and murmured at the wonders of man and nature below us. Finally, "Do hope you're enjoying yourself so far." So far?