My husband used to say, “we are all ethnic somewhere.” It is a true and wise leveller. Another favourite line of his, in response to someone asking him, “Where is that accent from?” was to bounce back in his soft, mellifluous Canadian tones, “What accent? I don't have an accent, you’re the one with the … Continue reading Everyone Has An Accent
I’m down in Bristol for the weekend, ‘the West Country’, as it is known. It’s a big region, taking in Cornwall, Devon, Dorset, Somerset, Wiltshire, the city of Bristol and Gloucestershire. That area associated with farming, clotted cream teas, apple orchards, cider and slow moving men in gumboots saying, ‘Ooh arr, me lover,’ in cartoon-like, … Continue reading Pardon Me?
It’s a big week for Scotland. Burns Night falls this week, on Thursday, when many Scots will serve up the traditional Burns Supper and celebrate the life and poetry of Robert Burns, who famously wrote in the Scots dialect. The suppers are normally held on or near the poet's birthday, 25 January, but events will … Continue reading As Others See Us
Trains are a great place for inspiration. Trains are where writers watch, listen and drink in ideas. Take Paula Hawkins’ best-selling, ‘Girl on a Train’, Agatha Christie’s ‘Murder on the Orient Express’, or Albert Camus’ ‘L’Étranger’ - they must all have been inspired, one way or another, from journeys they’d made by train. I’m not … Continue reading Forms
I’m back in Yorkshire for a few days. Mostly I’ve been in York itself, town of snickets and ginnels, inviting little passageways that you might call an alley, close, entry or vennel, depending upon where you come from. Last time I was down here was December and I could barely move through the narrow streets, … Continue reading Yorkshire