Memories of the early seventies – Arguments and a giant chair

It was December 1972 and Pappy was ill. He’d caught a cold from me, a cold I’d brought home from school and, as always, it had gone to his chest. He only had one lung after all. For days he’d been coughing and wheezing. My own cold had turned into a chest infection and I was off school myself which was almost unheard of. Mother made me go to school no matter how sick I was but they’d promptly packed me off home when they saw my feverish face and I’d been sent to the doctor for some penicillin. The little capsules proved impossible to swallow  so Pappy opened them up and I had to take the bitter tasting powder on a teaspoon. Continue reading Memories of the early seventies – Arguments and a giant chair

Memories of the early 70’s – a dismal kind of year

1970

When 1970 dawned, it marked the beginning of the second decade of my life. If the 1960’s had seemed filled with possibilities, music, flowers and love, this new decade seemed filled with sadness, at least in our house. My lovely Dad was dead and life would never be the same for us. Money, which had never been of any concern to me, suddenly became a big issue, mostly because we didn’t have enough of it. Mother got something called a Widow’s Pension, but it wasn’t enough to pay the mortgage and feed and clothe us. She still had to go to work and, when I wasn’t at school, I was left in the care of Pappy, who was desolate at the loss of his eldest son.  Continue reading Memories of the early 70’s – a dismal kind of year

The good the bad and the shed – first published 19 August 2014

Things don’t always go to plan. At least not in my world. No matter how much I tell myself I will do better next time or how many hours I spend plotting things out, there is always something to throw a spanner in the works. August 2014 was a lesson in going with the flow and working round problems.  Continue reading The good the bad and the shed – first published 19 August 2014

Sunshine, showers and a cloud of moths in my head – first published 10 August 2014

Moth Swarm by Carlos Amorales

My Dad said he never dreamed. Maybe I have his share because I almost always do. When I wake some of them stay with me and others fade, leaving just a jumbled essence that I can’t quite grasp in the light of day. There is no doubt in my mind they mean something, though not in the dream interpretation book kind of way. To me the answers come from within and the symbols are personal. It isn’t always easy to work out what they are trying to tell me. Continue reading Sunshine, showers and a cloud of moths in my head – first published 10 August 2014

Orphan Cygnets – first published 1 August 2014

Sleep had not come easily and, despite being tired during the day, I’d been waking early in the morning. Tuesday 1 August 2014 was no exception. We had an appointment with the undertakers in the afternoon and Commando suggested, rather strongly, that I go out for a walk beforehand.
“It’ll cheer you up,” he said. Continue reading Orphan Cygnets – first published 1 August 2014

Bright Islands in a dark sea – first published 31 July 2014

The week after we lost Commando Senior was difficult to say the least. For a start there was the task of letting people know. This was hard enough with the family members we speak to regularly but Commando Senior had so many friends outside of the family circle and these were mostly people we didn’t know. We also didn’t have contact details for all of them. After some discussion on Friday night we decided we would have to go to the house and see if we could find an address book or contact list. Continue reading Bright Islands in a dark sea – first published 31 July 2014

Albert Keates, a celebration – first published 28 July 2014

28 July 2014

The glorious sunset that made me smile on my way home from work on Thursday night was Commando Senior’s last. I’d like to think he looked out of his window and smiled at it too. At some point during the night or the early hours of Friday the world became a poorer place. We knew we’d have to let him go but we’d wanted to be there holding his hand as he set off on that final journey. In typical fashion he had other ideas, or Mother Nature did. Continue reading Albert Keates, a celebration – first published 28 July 2014

Memories of the late 1960’s – numbers, a Moon landing, loss and grief

1969

My second year at junior school began with another horrible teacher. Her name was Mrs Thomas and I seem to remember her having long blonde hair and a fondness for velvet alice bands, although this may well be misremembered. She was very friendly with Miss Please and seemed to have taken discipline tips from her. There were raps across the knuckles with rulers, hair pulling and general cruelty. She was one of those, find a weakness and pick on it, kinds of teachers and public humiliation was her favourite weapon. Continue reading Memories of the late 1960’s – numbers, a Moon landing, loss and grief

smog on the water – first published 3 April 2014

img_4181

April 3 2014 and, for some reason I couldn’t work out what day it was when I woke up. Maybe the Saharan sand smog that had hung over the city for the previous few days had got into my brain. When I woke up I thought it was Tuesday. Then I remembered the day before had definitely not been Monday so I thought perhaps it was Wednesday. It wasn’t until I was eating my granola and opened my iPad to catch up on a blog or two that I saw the date in the corner telling me it was Thursday. How did that happen? Continue reading smog on the water – first published 3 April 2014

Goodbye to fluffy the cat – first published 2 April 2014

img_4171

If March 2014 was the month of new beginnings, with a new job for me, April was a month for endings. On 1 April the lovely little black and white cat who thought she belonged to us even though she didn’t, was run over. Sadly, she died. She may not have actually been ours but we were all devastated. Continue reading Goodbye to fluffy the cat – first published 2 April 2014