By Martin Gibson: contact: mrtngibs@aol.com

Last Sunday, Easter Day, the Venerable Neil Warwick conducted the service of thanksgiving and administered Holy Communion. Despite the (now regular) early start at 9:30am over 50 members of out congregation and visitors presented themselves.

In his sermon Neil focused on the importance of Christian names and how Jesus, as he arose from his burial place, had addressed Mary by HER name, whereas she had believed him to be the gardener.

My name, said Neil, is Neil Michael Warwick and then added just how few people in the world are known by their first names. He cited Boris, Elvis, Elton and, his personal favourite, Beyonce (not quite sure how he got away with that seeing as his wife was seated only 10 feet away).

Jesus called Mary by her singular Christian name and, said Neil, God knows each one of us by our first name.

The Sunday service in 3 days time will be led by Rev David Moss. It is Holy Communion and starts at 9:30am.

The two most distinctive features of the parish are probably St Mary’s church (the biggest building) and the landmark Corsican pine trees which adorn the Old Down ridge. Indeed, these two form the logo of Olveston Parish Council. You may have read an article 2 months ago in Meeting Point about the pine trees and remember that following the felling of one in a winter gale last year, it had been identified as being around 140 years old. All things come to pass, so it is probable that some, perhaps all, of the pines are reaching the end of their lives – and they take a LONG time to grow. 25 years ago, Mr Bruce Farr, who was then the land owner, planted 9 new firs to join the existing 30 or so established trees. They now stand up to 12 feet high. The current owner, Mrs Louise Powell is well aware of their visual significance and has just planted another 8 trees with a view to continuing the tradition.

The Motorists among you, for I fear the number of cyclists may be very low, will have experienced the frustration of following bike riders up Thornbury Hill towards The Ship. Now it seems, South Gloucs Council is exploring the possibility of creating a cycle path on the inside curve of the Hill. The big problem is that it would involve acquisition, or at least permission, of privately owned land. But at least the council is aware of the issues.

And finally – The True Origins of the Internet:

An old, bearded shepherd with a crooked staff walked up to a stone pulpit and said, “And lo, it came to pass that a trader by the name of Abraham Com did take unto himself a young wife by the name of Dot. And Dot Com was a comely woman, broad of shoulder and long of leg. Indeed, she had been called Amazon Dot Com.

And she said unto Abraham, her husband, “Why doth thou travel far, from town to town, with thy goods when thou can trade without ever leaving thy tent?” And Abraham did look at her as though she were several saddle bags short of a camel load, but simply said, “How, Dear?” And Dot replied, “I will place drums in all the towns and drums in between to send messages saying what you have for sale and they will reply telling you which hath the best price. And the sale can be made on the drums and delivery made by Uriah’s Pony Stable (UPS).”

Abraham thought long and decided he would let Dot have her way with the drums. And the drums rang out and were an immediate success. Abraham sold all the goods he had, at the top price, without ever moving from his tent. But this success did arouse envy. A man named Maccabia did secret himself inside Abraham’s drum and was accused of insider trading. And the young man did take to Dot Com’s trading as doth the greedy horsefly take to camel dung. They were called Nomadic Ecclesiastical Rich Dominican Siderites, or NERDS for short.

And lo, the land was so feverish with joy at the new riches and the deafening sound of drums, that no one noticed that the real riches were going to the drum maker, one Brother William of Gates, who bought up every drum company in the land. And indeed did insist on making drums that would work only if you bought Brother Gates’ drumsticks.

And Dot did say, “Oh, Abraham, what we have started is being taken over by others.” And as Abraham looked out over the Bay of Ezekiel, or as it came to be known “eBay,” he said, “we need a name that reflects what we are.” And Dot replied, “Young Ambitious Hebrew Owner Operators.” “Whoopee!” said Abraham. “No, YAHOO!” said Dot Com………and that is how it all began.