There are voices which soothe you. There are words which move you. When someone can put a certain voice to certain simple words, it's a joy supreme. It's chillbumps.


I've seen so many lovers cry
Lost love makes me wonder why
I found a love
A once in a lifetime love
Angel on high
From heaven so high above
So I thank God for sending me you


I got a cassette tape of this album when it first came out, and my daughter was just a toddler. I played it over and over and she loved the string of songs which culminates with this one. This one, she would sing every word every time it played. You have to admit, it's a much better way to teach the concept of "numbers" than what Big Bird and the Count were doing. They’ll learn that in school. I've always tried to make it real for her. I wish someone had done that for me when I was little.


I have heard of playing around with numbers
But one is all I need
She can't be beat
She makes me complete
On Quality Street


It's sort of a silly concept, isn't it? This "Quality Street?" But wouldn't that have been a better place for the Muppets to live? The Georgie Fame organ plays during this break. Georgie is a born again Christian. I imagine Van feels the same way, some or most or all of his days. I don't know.


I have lived alone
Until you came along
And you gave me love
And my dream came true
And God gave me you


The constant inclusion of God bothers some folks. I know it does. But what else are you going to call it? Why not break down and admit it. There is no other good word for it. I turned my back on The Big Guy so long ago, and yet I am now willing to admit that I love the concept of God as much as any atheist alive. I almost hope that He's there when I die to shake his finger in my face and say, "You really knew I was here all along, didn't you?"


I see the end of the rainbow now
True love has blessed me somehow
Blessing of love
A once in a lifetime love
Angel on high
From Heaven so high above
So I thank God for sending me you


My daughter is much less vocal in her disbelief than I was at her age. At her age, I was making a point of driving by churches and shouting, "You don't exist!" She has always assumed that this is the case and been quite nonchalant about her thoughts on religion. I will bet you a bag of doughnuts that she turns to Jesus one day, just like Van Morrison has apparently done, and feels right at home, wondering why daddy wanted to ignore what seems obvious to her at that time in her life. But, regardless of whether that is the outcome for the future or not, I can never forget the past that she and I shared with this lovely tune. I see her as a little kid every time it plays.


I have heard of playing around with numbers
But one is all I need
She can't be beat
She makes me complete
On Quality Street

Van Morrison . . . Hymns to the Silence


CST approved

To bring that lovely piece down to hard commercialism, Quality Street is also the world’s biggest-selling brand of boxed chocolates, according to the Nestlé website. Nestlé, which owns the brand, says it sells about GBP 87 million-worth ($130 million) of Quality Street chocolates each year, equating to four million individual sweets per day. Within the UK, Quality Street is the ninth-most valuable chocolate brand, much of it eaten around Christmas.

The brand was launched in 1936, and was named after a 1901 play by Sir James Matthew Barrie (who also wrote Peter Pan). The play was later turned into films (1927, 1937, with Katharine Hepburn), but is rarely performed nowadays, though the script is still in print (ISBN: 1589630025). It is a comedy in which a shop window acts as the door to a special place, called Quality Street, in which residents have a strange confidence and know all about Whimsy cake. The two main characters in the play are depicted on the packaging of the chocolates.

Back to the chocolates. Quality Street is a variety pack. There are 12 different types of chocolate in each pack, and everyone has their favourite. For me, it is the green triangles, and the purple 'Brazil' nuts. Others, however, prefer the hard, buttery toffees (gold shiny wrappers), or the fudge, which comes in red wrapping.

The full listing:

There used to be a nougat, which came in orange foil, and was one of my favourites, but that one appears to have been dropped. Presumably it was unpopular.

The ingredients listed in the side of the pack include:

Any more info on the J M Barrie play gratefully received

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