Today I feel inspired to talk about one of my super heroes, the one and only David Attenborough. What triggered this is that he was this morning’s guest on Radio 4′s Desert Island Discs. The BBC chose well today for who better to mark the 70th anniversary of a classic British institution than another classic British institution? In my opinion, the description “very special” applies to him in every sense.
A few years ago I had the honour of attending a talk at the Royal Geographic Society where Mr Attenborough was the guest speaker. Due to the high demand, the application for tickets was placed in a ballot well ahead of the event. His popularity is no secret. Wasn’t I lucky? What struck me more than anything about his talk (all about the Birds of Paradise) was the utter stillness in the auditorium throughout the evening. Whilst he was speaking one would almost definitely have found the sound of a pin drop an intrusion – so gifted a storyteller is he as well as being a complete master and walking encyclopaedia of his subject matter We were all spellbound and I remember the talk well.
If I were ever stuck on a desert island, this man would be top of my list of ideal companions. I can think of nobody else I would most want to be there with (apart from my loved ones of course). Not only would we befriend all manner of wild life for sure but I know that I would learn how to survive life in the wild. Without the stimuli of other people, books, films or the media, I would have THE master storyteller with me. What bliss! I am sure there would never be a dull moment – for his massive back catalogue is beyond compare.
During the show this morning David Attenborough talked about aspects of his life, he shared some of his choices of music with us, he was a true gentleman as always but do you know what struck me more than anything? It was his gratitude. His gratitude for simply everything, as well as all his other gifts, he is a truly humble man whom I admire greatly and respect and I feel grateful that he is still working and entertaining us. Long may it continue!