Dear Big Country

Re: In A Big Country

I had the most awful nightmare some nights ago, Big Country. In it, Chas from Chas 'n' Dave was sandpapering my feet on a tugboat whilst singing one of their ''Rockney Numbers'', although it was not one that I could quite place. Luckily, I awoke to the sound of a rag and bone man driving past my house extremely slowly in a very loud Ford Transit dropside diesel with a blowing exhaust and our cat licking my toes in a bid to be given her third pouch of Felix in as many hours.

You state in the above-mentioned "Celtic Smash"" that in a big country dreams stay with you. Notwithstanding the obvious fact that were I to have had mine in, for example, Berlin or Provence under similar circumstances (with Geraldine having obviously been through quarantine and the tinker in his unserviced van subliminally morphing my tormentors into Serge Gainsborough or the lead singer from Rammstein), your suggestion is clear and yet puzzling. Based on the amount of times that the UK could theoretically be inserted into each country, you are expecting me to believe that my drowsing imagery upon waking could have been dwelled upon for five times and two point seven times longer in Germany and France respectively than if I had been in my own bed at home. Taking your asseveration to its most acute denouement, residents of Vatican City would recall nothing of their snooze reveries upon rousing, whilst all Russians would presumably be inundated by the accumulation of all slumber hallucination recollections throughout life, which could lead to grave concentration lapse-related safety issues whilst driving or operating heavy machinary, especially if the repose fantasy anamnesis absorbed Soviet were to ''look away''. For this reason above all others, if there is ''one great thing'' about your outlandish vast region / figment power of recall assertion, it is its unequivocal dubiousness, especially when expressed as a simile to a paramour igniting the incline of a munro through speech alone.

On the other hand, Big Country, and completely antithetical to to your unwarranted horticultural pessimism, Glandular Cape Marigold, Fiveneedle Pricklyleaf, Sand Verbena, Arizona Lupine, Bristly Nama Sandbell, Miniature Wool Star, Indian Paintbrush, Ocotillo, Mojave Sage (Salvia mohavensis), Globemallow, Tufted Evening Primrose, Basin Phlox, Panguitch Buckwheat, Markaguant Penstemon, Freckled Milkvetch, Palmer's Penstemon, Alfafa, Sacred Datua, Silvery Lupine, amongst many other examples, are all specimens of flora known to thrive in arid conditions, and a worthy topic for an unridiculed panel discussion on Gardener's Question Time.

The paradox therefore of you not expecting to grow flowers in the desert, (which is perfectly feasible), yet categorocally exclaiming that a lover's voice can both fire a mountainside and be directly comparable to differentiations in relaxation-induced cerebral activity reminiscence based on the scale of the region in which the rest occurred (which is not), cannot be escaped.

I am well aware that popstars often embark on "World Tours" in order to play concerts for international enthusiasts, hence would recommend that you perhaps keep a record of how long you are able to call dreams to mind after performing in each country. Until such time as your paradigm can be calibrated I would recommend that the song be performed live as ''In A Big Country (As Well As A Little One)''

"Lang May Yer Lum Reek!!''




Derek Philpott

P.S. I am quite proud to have completed this letter without asking something that has been on my mind for some time now but which I am probably alone in thinking so have kept to myself, namely how you make your guitars sound like bagpipes. Oh Jings!!

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