I had a visitor this morning who spent half an hour trying to get information out of me. I am safe in writing this as I know she doesn't either tweet or face or even have a computer!
Most of what I know can be repeated but bits of what I know can't. She always assumes that not only do I know everything but that I am prepared to share it if she pushes hard enough!
Over the years I have become adept at changing the subject, throwing the odd red herring into the mix and dancing around it whilst contributing nothing. What makes this difficult is that I gain alot of knowledge from her so it feels bad to withhold stuff .
The time is coming however when I shall have to dramatically point to the dog collar and say." I really can't discuss that." Trouble is that she would then know for certain that she was on the right track.
Villages are wonderful things, full of rumor, counter rumor and gossip.
This is how I get most of the information which is invaluable to me in this job. But I can't be thought of as a gossip so there is a fine line to tread here.
People trust us with the most amazing secrets. They are never under the seal of confession but it is a sacred trust which I take seriously.
To break a confidence which has been passed along in the sure knowledge that it will never repeated would be deplorable.
My old friend , a retired priest who had been the vicar here used to tell an interesting story. He had decided one day to run a little test by telling two people something very unlikely. It had taken just half an hour for it to get back to him. To know who will broadcast gossip is just as important as knowing who you can't trust.
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