Beverage

Reading time: 3 mins

I’m on my way to work. I step off the bus and head for the same location as I have these past four years. As I enter, if she’s working, Alice says hi and takes my precious travel mug from me, and starts to prepare my … wait for it, large skinny, sugar-free vanilla, latte….

Smells

Reading time: 2 mins

“In the greenhouse, my grandfather and me. Smells of summer.” – Martin Stephenson. Is it the gentle aroma you get after a warm summer shower on dry soil? (Also known as Petrichor). Is it the subtle waft of a perfume from a passerby that transports you to forgotten time and place? Is it the smell…

Childhood

Reading time: < 1 min

A blue desk, with a flip up lid, painted red in a later life, sitting there looking out through warbled glass. The smell of a warm wet dog from the back of the car. Sitting at the top of the stairs whilst my parents and friends talked and laughed late into the night. My blanket,…

Book

Reading time: 3 mins

A couple of years ago I sat down at my desk. It was the first day of a dark November and my intention was to write 50,000 words of a new novel, my first. Having written posts for this blog for several years, and increasingly looked to improve the quality of the writing it was…

Television

Reading time: 4 mins

I grew up in a house that always had the TV on. My Mum knitted, professionally, and the TV was the back drop to that. As she was working, she preferred things that she maybe didn’t have to pay close attention to, so Saturday afternoon movies became a staple, as did cricket and Formula One,…

Technology

Reading time: 3 mins

10 PRINT “Hello World!” I can’t remember if it was a birthday present or a present from Santa, or if it was from an Aunt or Uncle, but I can still remember the first time I used it and the mild awe I experienced when I got it working. The present was an electronics starter…

Work

Reading time: 3 mins

Amongst the many internet trends – the commercialisation of happiness, the quasi-religion of productivity approaches – there is one phrase that makes my toes curl and my blood start to simmer. “Do what you love.” It’s a distillation of a thought first offered by Confucius “Choose a job you love, and you will never have…

Family

Reading time: 2 mins

A couple of months ago, in the midst of my sisters wedding, I looked around the room and took in all the faces there. I saw many familiar faces, some of whom had been at my own wedding, many years ago, and I saw too the gaps of those no longer with us. It’s been…

Nature

Reading time: 2 mins

The air is cool as it moves around us. Under foot, crimson leaves lie fallen, their work done, and far above our heads the empty branches whisper in the wind. Decades of stories are whispered back and forth, as we stand below them, looking up as they sway and talk, telling their tales in a…

Food

Reading time: 3 mins

It took ten minutes of chopping – carrot, celery, onion – plus a bag of yellow split peas and some vegetarian stock, add salt and pepper, some more water and, after slow cooking for several hours the kitchen was filled with the wonderful aroma of split pea soup. Thick, creamy, utterly deliciously. I’ve written about…

Failing

Reading time: 3 mins

Do, or do not, there is no try. The challenge was to get from the outdoor centre to a specified point a few hills away, and back, before anyone else. Four teams were assembled, all going to different points on the map that only they knew, and we all set out at the same time….

Trying

Reading time: 3 mins

A Saturday morning alarm set for 6.45am. I try to fight the urge to hit SNOOZE. I succeed (!) and rise from the warmth of my bed. I have a plan. Once ready, I head downstairs, eat a slice of toast and rouse Dave, one of our dogs, from his slumber. As ever he gets…

Recollection

Reading time: 3 mins

It’s probably set in the kitchen in my parents old house. Habitat (?) wallpaper, and a wall mounted set of scales with a dark blue bowl. I think that’s where it’s from, or it’s entirely possible that old photos have further blurred my increasingly bad memory. I can remember one Christmas morning, before my sister…

Pay no attention

Reading time: 9 mins

I can still remember the nerves as I sat there, front row, at the school assembly. The main school hall was in the middle of the building, with classrooms off to each side and for assembly it was laid out with row upon row of plastic seats, ready for every pupil in the school to…

Poo emoji distractions

Reading time: 10 mins

A thought experiment/rambling thoughts of the current state of the world and my space in it. Seriously, I’m not even sure why I’m posting this. My name is Gordon and I am a contradiction. Like many of you I am aware of the world around me through the media that I survey. I believe climate…