Category Archives: Odds & Ends

Ash Wednesday

Miserere mei, Deus: secundum magnam misericordiam tuam. Et secundum multitudinem miserationum tuarum, dele iniquitatem meam. Amplius lava me ab iniquitate mea: et a peccato meo munda me. The voices gently rise to the stone vaults and fill the 12th-century church, … Continue reading

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A Writers’ Social

The Scene: A bar. The Players: Novelists, children’s writers, academics, translators, journalists, biographers, and other assorted literary intellectuals. * “Hi! Nice to see you! Which way did you come?” “Oh, it was bloody awful.  I drove down the [name of … Continue reading

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A New Focus for the New Year?

I am just wondering if a shift of focus might help. Practice makes perfect, so the more you repeat an action or even a thought, the more likely is that action or thought to become consolidated.  After all, wherever we … Continue reading

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Qi Gong

It’s the same every morning.  I negotiate my way out of bed and, eventually, brave the steep Munchkin stairs and stagger into the kitchen.  I put the kettle on, wait for the first crackling sound and switch it off.  I … Continue reading

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Yellow

I need yellow in my life. Its unadulterated joy.  Its sunshine.  For me, joy is most definitely yellow.  Not lemony, with a green undertone.  Not a darker shade with a injection of mustard.  Not the distinguished, pale, almost ivory variety.  … Continue reading

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A Piece of Italy – I Mean Naples – in Notting Hill

Pasquale places cutlery next to my sfogliatella.  Pointedly.  “You Northerners probably eat it with a knife and fork,” he says, deadpan, and strolls to look out of the front door, his hands behind his back. He says Northerner to me, … Continue reading

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Idle Thoughts about Bank Holidays

I love Bank Holiday Mondays.  Even though I now work from home, so weekends and Bank Holidays are of little consequence to my timetable, I nevertheless get out of bed with a sense of anticipation, of mild excitement, at the … Continue reading

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