Blogs

On Volunteers and Victorians

A couple of events over the Bank Holiday weekend set me thinking (which is a novelty). The first was on Sunday, when I attended my second day of training, as a volunteer, to learn how to man the Ticket Office at the Staffordshire Narrow Gauge Railway (SNGR) at Amerton Farm near Stowe-by-Chartley https://amertonrailway.co.uk/ , better known as Amerton Railway. Just before you start thinking 'Two days! Strewth he must be slow on the uptake!',...

Leggings - Harrassment continues...

In store in S..... local supermarket, a man starts shouting about someone having a poor credit history because they (and I did btw) pick up a vanilla gift visa card.... eek! lol! Somewhat surprised I watched the Supermarket Manager grab the offending neo-nazi by the ear and tell him off... I wasn't sure whether to say something or not, only he did seem to be a little below normal, and so I resisted... who wants to get down to their level? A day...

STORY AND POEM OF THE MONTH

Our Story and Poem for the month of April has very kindly been selected by Parson Thru: Poem: Pick of the Month, Di_Hard hits the nail on the head https://www.abctales.com/story/dihard/change-address digging into our attachment to bricks and mortar - spiritual, rather than the more usual financial. Her well-chosen metaphor strikes a chord with many. seafret https://www.abctales.com/story/seafret/platform-remembering produces a crisp piece with a...

Story and Poem of the Week and Inspiration Point

I was going to open this with a complaint about the rain, (for those of you outside the UK it is almost illegal for us not to comment on the weather at least once in any piece of writing) - but the sun has just come out - so things are looking up! Lots of wonderful pieces to choose from this week, as ever, but my personal picks are as follows: Poem of the Week goes to the deeply moving 'Wear and Tear' by london_calling79, and our Story of the...

Matt Haig (2015) Reasons to Stay Alive.

This is a short enough book to read in one, longish, gulp. It begins with an admission Matt Haig makes about 2014. Thirteen years ago I knew this couldn’t happen. I was going to die, you see. Or go mad. There was no way I would still be here. Sometimes I doubted I would even make the next ten minutes… One of the key symptoms of depression is to see no hope. No future. A book about depression need not be depressing. We all nod at the statistics;...

And finally...Cyril!

Continued from Cyril and More Cyril We first encountered Cyril when we kept our pub, The New Talbot. Mum and dad rather collected ‘waifs and strays’ and seemed to have a weakness for odd characters. It was not unusual to have a living room full of people, after closing time on a Saturday night, enjoying an after-hours drink on the house. On these occasions, mum often put on a bit of supper because she was concerned that a number of her ‘...

Happiness is a warm keyboard=I live to and love to write

It was the daisy that held my attention and I’m not sure why…it was buttercup yellow and the sight of it…one lone daisy waving to me in a field of grass…made me sad, it was all alone… and I wanted to plant it a family. Strange musings over my first cup of coffee I thought…but that was the view out my back door and it had captured my imagination regarding flowers and feelings. So I wrote on my grocery list: “buy some plant seeds.” I was going to...

Sally Rooney (2018) Normal People.

I spend more of my life reading than any other activity, but then, promptly, forget everything I’ve read. I’m useless. So, of course, I’m interested in new writers. Unfortunately, I also do a bit of writing. There’s a biblical quote for every circumstance. ‘For where your treasure is, your heart will be also’. Sally Rooney is one of the new big things, Normal People was long-listed for The Man Booker Prize. I never claimed to be normal, but it’s...

More Cyril

Continued from the original article ‘ Cyril ’ My abiding memory of Cyril is inevitably wreathed in smoke. Not by the mists of time but usually via a Players No. 6 Tipped which he held constantly in his mouth. He was one of those people for whom a cigarette was something of a permanent appendage rather than an occasional enjoyment, even to the extent of breathing through his fag as he gave one of his detailed accounts about something you were...

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