“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
Ireland has three patron saints: Patrick, Columcille, and one woman, Brigid. Today, February 1st, is Brigid’s feast day and it also traditionally marks (in Ireland at any rate) the first day of spring. There are many legends surrounding Brigid: she had a reputation as an expert dairywoman and brewer, with the enviable reputation of being … Continue reading Saint Brigid
I’ve been away for one day and I’ve found my walking route: a breezy seafront path with the choppy Atlantic Ocean on one side and a hedge of bougainvillea providing privacy for the ocean front hotels and villas on the other. Its papery flowers are in bloom: confetti showers in pink, purple and orange sections. … Continue reading Bloom Where You’re Planted
What are you afraid of? Spiders? Flying? Snakes? Heights? Caterpillars? Needles? I once worked with someone in Dublin who had a fear of buttons. I thought she was making it up, but it turned out to be real (for her) and all her clothes had to be button-proof; it was zips and velcro all the … Continue reading Fear
The Bayeux Tapestry is coming to the British Museum in 2020 on loan from the French. It might seem to be too early to be talking about it, but two years is a blink of the eye when you consider that it hasn't left France for 950 years. The museum in Bayeux, Northern France, where … Continue reading May I Borrow It?
Ask someone about the super power they would most like to have, and apparently the top answer is: the ability to read other people’s minds. Wow - that might be the end of a few marriages! I can’t think of anything worse. I was mulling it over as I was sitting in the silence of … Continue reading Super Powers
‘Faint heart never won fair lady.’ Remember the old-fashioned saying? Literally or figuratively, it expounds that timidity will prevent you from achieving your objective, be it throwing yourself with gusto at a job interview or with similar gusto at the man or lady of your dreams. It goes hand in hand with its twin saying, … Continue reading Searchlights