Monthly Archives: November 2014


I grew up with a Mum who thought all meals come with dessert. In face, the quality of her table was amazing. And one of my most treasured possessions is the Good Housekeeping cookbook of hers that I have. It is full of the type of elementary information that so many of us wouldn’t know how to ask, these days; from how to skin the chicken to how to melt the suet, and so on. It has these ornate colour plate photos in them, beautifully stylised, showing the most perfect and unrealistic food for a woman with six uncultured hungry kids. Fish chowders. Souffles.

Any way, one other thing she did was collect and gather recipe leaflets, those Bord Bia or whatever people that gave out recipes for yule logs or turkeys or what have you. One of them was a Cadbury’s Bourville leaflet, that gave out chocolate recipes, that I loved. I was never able to find it after she died, but I remember Saturday afternoons making something called a ‘Hot Milk Chocolate Cake’. The description of it was really evocative, and conveyed a tone from the writer like something from the Ascendancy; “I first recall making this cake on an old wooden stove in Kenya. Its richness defies description”.

I’d love to have that leaflet again, just to remind myself of the boring Saturday afternoons of my teenage life that I tried to fill up with stuff, having to get the kitchen cleaned before dinner would start and my sisters would want to watch Blind Date. I even contacted Cadbury’s, asking them about it, but they couldn’t locate it. ¬†Ah well. All good things.

Some random Tuesday…

Hey! Yeah, it’s early, but only in sane people’s timelines. Me, I’ve been awake since four am. No, not coming home at that hour, hair messed up and holding a pair of high heel shoes that I should have known better than to think would be a good idea cos lets face it, heels and me don’t mix, no matter what the magazines might say, Anna Wintour can get stuffed if she thinks I’m falling for that one again, no, but the black dress was a winner and everyone said so, even the taxi driver on the way home so go me, I rock and in a good way, No! No, I was woken at 4am, woken by my beloved child who thinks that our house is not our house, but is Fossett’s circus to play and laugh and thump and thump some more and oh my God I am so tired.

Still easier than a two year old.

Coffee only does so much, and I have stomach aches that let me think the acidity in that cup of joe is not doing me any favours. And it seems so dark when you’re tired, I’m growing more convinced that my eyes just strike at the idea of work, so my surroundings seem Gothic and dim these days. It’s just part of the price of living on this island at this far north on the planet, when sunlight becomes optional and all you can do is hunker down to the old myths and methods of dealing with the dark.

Doesn’t matter who you are, it helps, doesn’t it?

Anyway, I’ll keep on keeping on. Talk to you soon!


Gatekeeping the nasty stuff…

As the last two weeks were so busy, I wasn’t on social media at all. And I mean at all, I didn’t look at Twitter until Saturday, which was when I discovered about’s getting the four ECB letters received. One thing I did find when I wasn’t on the Internet was the silence regarding bad news. Nothing, not a thing, did I hear that made me sad or upset.

I was on Twitter at lunchtime for about half an hour, when someone happily put up pictures of a man being hanged in Iran; they weren’t in the feed of a news organisation but instead were being retweeted by an author I follow. The pictures showed him waving to his daughter as he was about to be hanged, followed by his dead, lank body on a rope. No warning, not hidden, just there when I clicked into twitter. What am I to do with that image, sitting at my desk at lunchtime as I am? I have no effect on Iran, immediate or otherwise. I can’t do anything. All I can do is be sickened to my stomach by an image that gets no immediate context around it, and then try to get on with my day.

I’m obviously out of Twitter now, but it keeps throwing these images at me. There are no gatekeepers on Twitter, thankfully, that is what keeps it relevant. But there are no gatekeepers on Twitter, unfortunately, and it is that which keeps me wary. A modern problem.

Things to think about.

Something horrible has happened to someone I know; something that is a parent’s nightmare, in that they found their little boy had passed away in the night. He was two years old.

There is nothing wrong with my life in the slightest, despite the constant whining I think I must generate.

I am now going home to count my blessings.