Showing posts from August, 2014

51st & Mine

He doesn't like to talk about it. It seemed that the point was moot about taking my Mother out for the afternoon, on the day of her Wedding Anniversary. Her  51st. I had mentioned it over lunch in the tiny red cafe,  with my sister in attendance, and watched as his face changed,  like a hurrying charcoal cloud flitting across  a golden beach. He puts down his cutlery and before he can draw breath  I seamlessly change the subject and move away, move away from the glaringly obvious and onto the subject of dessert,  Ice-cream or shortbread ? And  tea. A great man for the cup of tea. The last anniversary I remember celebrating with my parents properly was their 40th. We hired a Marquee, we children,    And  installed it in the garden,  between the bouncy castle and the trampoline   With   a floor,  after much debate and ominous forecasts  of twisted ankles, amidst much muffled cursing and sibling tantrums  on a roasting August

First to See will Buy

This house be mental. As I appear to be entirely unable to desist from collecting, purchasing, and at times stealing various and sundry items, I have filled the entire space from letter box to down pipe, in an orgy of ridiculous tat and frippery. Goo Gaws abound and proliferate, painted ceramic birds inherited from an Aunt, (that I like to call “ironic kitsch”) struggling for mantel space with fat buddhas, photos and frames, easels, ornaments, ashtrays, hurricane lamps with orange glass globes, foot stools, cushions, silk throws, plants crawling out of pots and up the window panes for a drop of water, childish scribbles and drawings stuck to every available inch of wall (*only some of them from actual children*) And toppling from corners of tables and shelves, cascades of towering books and magazines, which the slightest swing of an Ethiopian toddler’s hip could bring the lot crashing down onto the dusty tiles, and there is so much furniture squashed into each miniscule room,


As humans we tend to spend a lot of time in our heads - or frantically trying to be elsewhere, or striving to achieve, or do, or have, or be, other than we are. Despite years of study and an awareness of the frailty, the fragility, the temporal nature of things, I am as guilty of this as anyone else. The last few days have been ones of solitude and introspection. The metallic skies and oppressive cloud, floating slowly above the charcoal chimneys have matched my mood. When I forget to be "aware" I will find that I have been sitting hunched forward, straining to hear, forgetting to exhale. When I catch myself unawares (literally) I will go through a mental checklist and tick off my worry list. I try to remind myself to stay present and aware and awake and in the NOW . When do we remember the past but in the now? When do we worry about the future but in the now? Now is all we ever have. Part of this mulling and thinking and wishing led me to mentally narra

The Wa Taw in Ma Yaw Ka ..........................

Can I get me holly days Doctor?  Finally I asked the Doctor’s wife for time off to have a holiday and she gave me a shrewd look. Are you coming back this time? I’m going to Majorca , says I. It was to be my first time doing lots of things.  Getting on a plane, burning to a crisp and eating Iceberg lettuce.  In Ireland we only ever had a huge dark green lettuce with a copper spade mark across one leaf,  and on it we placed the following – -        A slice of ham (rolled) -        A slice of corned beef (rolled) -        An egg cut with  an egg slicer with paprika shaken on it -        A spoonful of potato salad from a tin -        A scallion -        Half a tomato -   Childrens Meat -   Salad Cream  -   Beetroot with a bit of black on one ridged slice Irish Salad This was usually followed by a slice of rhubarb tart (from The Star Bakery) with ice-cream. My friends and I had sourced a brochure from a  travel agent