Too long to take in the whole film in one sitting, I watched Avengers: Endgamewith my nephews last week over two nights. I watched while working on my computer. It’s a self-defeating talent in which I sometimes indulge: training an ear in one direction and an eye in the other. Self-defeating as I end up … Continue reading All The Difference
I don't know what age children are when they start asking, ‘But why?’ Are they three-years old? Four? And when does the, ‘But why?’ battery wear out? I going to guess it wears out sometime around sixteen; the age at which the questions evaporate because they (kid-ults) know the answer to everything. From such secure … Continue reading But Why?
Choice: it is, perhaps, the single, most important determinant in how our lives turn out; in how we plough a furrow through this world. Yes, some people, often through fate of birth, are born to a life of enhanced opportunity with an array of choices before them, whilst others are born into a ready-made obstacle … Continue reading I May, I Might, I Must
A.’s car wouldn’t start this morning. It might have been the cold. When we were small, five Hail Marys got our car going when the temperature dropped and the engine hacked like a 30-a-day smoker and refused to budge – it worked every time. Its clogged up mechanical throat cleared and it spluttered to life … Continue reading Prayer Push
‘The old dog for the long road.’ D. taught me that one when I was much younger, when I had more give in my knees. Back then I got the gist of it, though I can't say I fully grasped its depth of meaning. It is one of those sayings to which you nod when … Continue reading Be Still And Wait
I was in Blackness Castle on the shores of West Lothian this week. It is built in the shape of an unsinkable ship facing out onto the Firth of Forth towards the Rosyth dockyard across the water in Fife. The tide was low and all of the small yachts moored in the bay were fully exposed, … Continue reading Nearly
“When we lose that sense of the possible, we lose it fast.” Joan Didion, Blue Nights. I understand what she’s saying. For me it’s like the tide coming in on a sandcastle: one minute it is standing firm and the next its foundations have been eaten away and down it goes in one a lurching collapse. … Continue reading Possibility
Is it just me, or did you wake up this morning wondering what day it was? All this snow disruption: days off work, shops shut, no public transport, schools closed, snow day bleeding into snow day. It is confusing and disorientating. After the initial excitement over loads of white stuff falling from the sky in … Continue reading What Day Is It?
Back in my student days P. would be the go to friend for advice. He was wise, for a young man, and had a great way with words, speaking in a stream of local idioms that made him sound like a fairground fortune-teller. Unlike the fairground fortune-teller, much of what he said did come to … Continue reading Broken Hearts Mended
This is the time of year for pruning apples trees; making sure they are not too leggy or spindly, lessening their susceptibility to disease. Had I been feeling more like myself last week, I’d have had a go at the big tree at home, it has too many limbs! Apparently you can prune them on … Continue reading Pruning