Life goes on …

17576-Life-Goes-OnMonday 20th March, First day of Spring 2017

Spring …. the ambient temperature has dropped to a low and mizzle confronts my vision across the bay, the property opposite me suffers yet more scaffolding, it never stops, for a new build, it really is piss poor quality.

I seem to have let my home get into a disorganised category recently, to be honest, I am disgusted with myself, this is so unlike me. I have been easily distracted and with so many other things going on in front of us it would appear that shit has happened underfoot and only now I can see just how much there is, this is NOT good.

My health has taken on a new spin, not for the good either, breathlessness, water retention, malaise and given every chance I could sleep on a knife-edge for days. My GP suggested specialist blood tests to check my engine is running correctly and there are no drops in pressure in any of my cylinders, diagnostics reveal that there is a problem. Hence my appointment on Thursday for an echocardiogram, basically a scan. Inherently I already have a condition called AF (Arterial fibrillation) where my heart misses a beat (often) and has a mind of its own, even though its full of love, it appears to be not pumping the love enough!

I always thought that swollen feet, ankles and legs only happened to old people, suddenly, I am one of those old people …. You tend to forget just how lucky we may have been not to have started failing earlier, many of my contemporaries and school friends have long passed by. Suddenly this old vehicle is showing severe signs of breaking down, a few auxiliaries have been repaired, a titanium brace inserted, the fuel that runs around my arteries gets a daily top up of additives and now the bodywork is showing severe signs of wear, the gearbox is still active, but sadly the engine is failing, and fast.

Beginning of this year, I set upon a ten-year plan, just like a business plan, I have every intentions of keeping the doors open during that period, there may be a few days where I have to close early but unless bankruptcy comes quick without warning, aim and purpose will be to keep on trading .

I have a duty to be here for my bestie whilst he takes his own rugged path of recovery and better health, as much as I would love to, sadly I cannot commit to a new puppy or a rescue dog to add to our small canine family at the moment, but, never say never, ever.

Anyway, I cannot sit here maudling anymore, I have housework and shit to sort out.

Summer is around the corner ….. bring it on !

Playing “The best of” by LeAnn Rimes this morning.

No rest for the wicked !

Heres a short resume of this mornings activities ….

With full grumpy mode I pull the duvet back over my head and start to play hide & seek with Willow and Jack, they are NOT going to give up, fed up with my nonsense they start getting narky, a brief peek at the clock, the little hand points to nine and the big hand at a position twenty-five past, both canines know that this is not acceptable, breakfast for them has normally been consumed by the time nine a.m. has struck.

No sign of life from the master bedroom, just a gentle snore emanating from between the solid pine block and the architrave of the door frame, I shout out “GOOD MORNING” as I start the day with a vengeance, If, im up, then so is everyone else, flicking on the display cabinet light and the table lamp in the hall with as much noise as possible.

There are still dishes on the drainer from last eve, surprising just how cathartic it can be by putting away dried cutlery, as I aim each precision hewn item into its designated slot in the draw tidy, a sleepy friend puts his head around the kitchen door and grunts …. “feck off” and laughs as he heads to ablution central situated at the far end of the South wing, yet another crazy day at Rockhaven has begun. Even though it’s the weekend, and a once often routine of being sat face to television by ten o’clock for a live edition of Saturday Kitchen does not happen anymore, not ever since the format has changed, instead, we endure another hour of “The Big Bang Theory” which gets us laughing within seconds, even though most episodes have been seen by us often more than once.

Three dogs are now protesting with invisible banners and chanting obscenities under the guise of dog breath, by the smell, it must be the full unabridged works of satan. Risking life and limb I lower the bowls of doggy deliciousness into an area of no return and within less than a countdown half-minute, two of them finish on the dot together albeit a nanosecond apart.

Two freshly brewed individual coffee drippers are steeping, each with a pinch of sea-salt and our own personal gram measurements stand behind the warming mugs for five minutes like guards either side of a gateway. The microwave clock displays 09:55, by my timing and poured refreshment, we have exactly 90 seconds to get our asses in our seats …. “where’s my croissants” I shout, HURRY UP!!

The Hungryhouse advert appears on the television screen, its Ten a.m. and with a swift move of my forefinger I press the ‘pause’ button on the remote ….. surely you dont think im that callous by watching it without my bestie? ….. shame on you !


Who put the cannabis in the font.

(a small composition I had tucked away for a rainy day)

Just exactly, who placed the cannabis leaves in the font?

For quite sometime there has been a sweet smell emanating from the area of the baptismal font, of course the majority of people associated in this environment had no idea or had even noticed that there was a pungency loitering.

Were we, as such fine connoisseurs on this matter being paranoid? I don’t think so, but it would always seem strange that when the flower ladies are en masses just how bright and cheerful this hardy team of florists seem to be when creating their designs.

Are they responsible for this action, is it a sign from the great above or are they finally having a coffee and just chilling out in good company? Mind you, the contract cleaners are here often on their own, normally early, perhaps it is they?

I have visions of adult Brownies and Guides sat in a circle, cross-legged and passing a joint around. Each one telling a story they have all wanted to share but had never dare in ages, tightly slip lipping in hard, the burning of the leaves almost blistering their windpipe. Not wishing to exhale until the last possible moment and then only with a stream of fine thin smoke with the ecstatic volume of relief. Almost an oral and brain orgasm. A slight choke, the yearn to catch the reefer when it travels back around, each pair of buzzed eyes yearning for the head rush and euphoria that would make their body shudder and slightly convulse.

Who dares to whisper the aged mantra? ….. “Holy shit, this shit is good shit”

Being such super sleuths and very busy and nosey parkers we did a bit of digging, and the only viable thing we could come up with, was that a few weeks previous we had a HUGE christening, with quite a few dubious characters attending. Perhaps “they” had pangs of guilt and the only option available apart from being struck by lightning was to dispose of the remnants.

I am not pointing any fingers ….. but !


Wilder Minds


One of the main staples in my life is that of music, and as I have probably told you many times before, it will remain so. However, recently my listening spectrum has broadened and I now find myself enjoying a new genre.

Having never been into heavy rock music before, suddenly I am up to my neck in what is now known as Folk rock, Alternative rock, Art rock and Neofolk                                                 …. and guess what, I AM loving it.

I cannot wait until next month when we take delivery of our new car and able to blast out Mumford & Sons on the swanky upgraded sound system whilst I push “Brabinger” to his limits along a certain favoured stretch of the A38 near Plymouth. Goodness knows how im going to cope with an eight speed gearbox, all I can say is that I will be leaving that up to the mechanics of the beast whilst I keep my eyes peeled for the stray ecilops who patrol vigilantly like vermin along a sewer pipe.

Not being one to flount the law, but being honest, temptation is often only a fools decision away and in the perfunctory madness that I find myself being “ever so naughty”  I try to keep it brief. Infact it gives me great pleasure after an event to drop into a conversation when a certain someone else is driving …. “you will never guess what happened recently” OR “Parker was ever so naughty the other day”

A shifty, slightly miffed answer is replied, with implications of “Oh really, I wonder why that was”?

Not being one to ever kiss and tell I keep schtum!

Today is one of those days where I wish I had taken Parker and driven to the North coast to visit my specialist instead of relying on public transport. Why? you might ask!

I’m on the 9:12 to Exmouth, before my connection to Barnstaple, there are four carriages, it is not busy, my carriage was empty until a young lad boarded the train at Torre, he made a bee-line towards me and made a point of sitting directly in front, he was obviously up to no good and started to smoke dope.

Bit of a moral dilemma here me thinks, a) he really shouldn’t be smoking on board, b) he was obviously underage and c) he had that wild look which might invoke a situation. So, not wanting to be both Mr & Mrs Buzzkill at the same time and mention anything I decided to stay quiet, sit put and gently move away in a few minutes time.

I became so engrossed in the beauty of the landscape and the way the waves were crashing onto the shore that I became completely unaware how passive smoking can alter ones outlook on life on a grim day. …. 😝

Downside, trains are erratic and smell funny!   Upside, they are now using cannabis or something similar as air fresheners.

I may be home late!

Never forget ….

It feels almost like a lifetime since I last put my dearest ‘pen to paper’ as I was in mid-flight telling you about our holidays in Mallorca, way back in September. During my daily bulletins, somewhere written in the background, was a vignette, a short distract from the main event, so to speak.

However, this is a vignette to my life story, regrettably, this is true.

Returning from our break we were sadly dropped into a black hole, everything we were used to, including our three homes, our aging puppies and our daily routines were up-ended and to quote a well-known and often used phrase …. ‘all hell literally broke loose’

I guess we are both lucky to be where we are in life, as many of our dear contemporaries have already expired at an early age and we too are not that far off of our own sell by dates.

There is no doubting that the ‘elephant in the room’ cannot be ignored, its onslaught and mass destruction is never-ending, wondering how that person is going to wake up in the morning, be it as normal as once used to be, a frightened child after a nightmare or something angry and confused. Trying to reassure is as easy as not wanting to walk on ice or hot coals, and almost as bad as treading on egg shells or sticking ones head in the lions mouth without something kicking off. The terrible fact is that, this disorder is uncontrollable, no medication can halt or suppress its continued progress of destruction at this point, nor can it be cured, well, not yet at least.

This behaviour is not classified as a disease in medical terms, although not contagious, or even proved hereditary it wraps its invisible cloak like a spider does with its black web over all involved, taking away every scrap of dignity with it, removing all souvenirs just like an eraser whilst lacrimation continues to erode our cheeks like dried up rivers, draining all emotions, memories, words and senses with each tear as they fall into oblivion and beyond, never to be retrieved.

Every single part of us, every atom of life as once known, and all who are being consumed, unable to escape the gravity which this loathsome sink hole of life has become. It tags the carer and everyone else who supports within. This situation is volatile and busy, often in a way that we find very unpleasant, confusing and annoying, annoying to the point that we cannot do a damned thing about it …. One can only hope that during this rancid destruction, ones own soul has the sense to free itself before it’s too late.

We are asked to believe at an early age, and although belief and faith can be strong elements, recently I am seriously beginning to doubt, however I am not giving up.

Dementia, In one word  …. SUCKS.


Its been a while !

The last published item from myself was in September after returning from Mallorca celebrating my sixtieth birthday with my best mate, Chris.

Now, three plus months after that event I am back with a story, a fable, a tale and an excerpt from my daily life, sadly, my holiday story has not been completed yet, but, in time, that will happen, believe me, it has to.

So, its now four days after Christmas huh! Has your internal spirit now shelved the incongruous episode of gift giving, being nice to people and stuffing ones own face ever, with the sin that is known as excess?

This continued repetition performed annually with personal rituals being handed down from generation to generation have to be fulfilled. The same person decides when the tree is coming down from the glory hole, or from under the stairs or any vacant space once available, or it is the usual family outing to go to a christmas tree farm, choices of all kinds of evergreens whether they be organic or force grown, whichever, everyone returns home smiling just like Red Rum had won the Grand National, yet again.

At this point has the spirit of Christmas really arrived or has the true meaning of the Christs birth sadly been taken for granted? Doing this ritual every year, might briefly remind us what it is all about.
Sadly the run up to the main event as its often referred to each year will start when I hear Jona Lewie’s ‘Cavalry’ played on the radio. Normally I’m in overdrive by now and would have printed all my ‘to do lists’. Ready and eager the tree is pulled out of its duvet cover, as most of you probably know, keeping an artificial tree under control is like fighting an octopus, branches popping out everywhere. Please note:- The unabridged version of the Queensbury rules apply here.

No. At least, Instead, I decide that I want a real tree this year, criteria dictate it has to be at least ten foot tall and perfectly proportioned. Ive picked a few trees over the years, and if its not right, and it has to be, then its onto the next exhibit. Upon arriving at the farm at the small village alongside the ring road, I drove into the establishment carefully in four wheel drive, steadily along the winding and bumpy track, many of the trees had been artificially snowed upon and quite a few beauties had been ear marked with red bands, it was getting late into the afternoon and weather wise quite nippy, almost like the deep midwinter. Suddenly I had the most terrible sweeping feeling of déjà vu completely encompassing and devouring me, I shook and started to sob uncontrollably, there was a slight drizzle in the air and as I parked up, against my strong will, reluctantly, I just broke, I could see and hear my daughter in the rear view mirror laughing with excitement at the thought we were going to capture our tree, just the two of us, late on many a Christmas Eve,  but of course, reality in fact, was that that was 21 years ago and of course everyone knows the Christmas law that two persons have to be present no matter how big or small to purchase a tree.

I couldn’t physically move, eventually, and hastily I sped out of the rough cambered car park like I was a demented rally driver. Of course, the change of plan now meant old faithful would have to be dragged out and erected and then only in a time honoured fashion and in meticulous order I started to assemble. Recently I had purchased via the internet new sets of fine copper lights, each set of ten metres, each with four hundred warm lights had to be draped, place and secured around this gargantuan effigy, not only once, but three sodding times, actually, the third set was repositioned twice, I hate writing profanities, but the air was blue, but perfection is all I seek, too much to ask for? I don’t think so!!

Only then does the next inexhorable stage begin, more branches from another tree stored in boxes, no vacant spaces on this monster, this year it would be stuffed to the gunnels. Im not a one for baubles and tinsel, I tend to purchase large displays and rip them apart and just stuff branches with berries and frosted fruits and plastic ivy alongside leaves and tassels and black feather fluffies. Grape bunches, Berries, Cherries, I call the tree the fruits of winter, there are three animals, one hedgehog who stays down near the lower branches, two squidganinnies (squirrels) half  way up and a yellow bird high up in the top branches. Of course, there then has to be the topping out ceremony, always having the turmoil myself of being torn between a star or a fairy, I have always opted for the star, and as a fairy myself, a large piece of noble fir rammed up my backside would not be what I would want, so, the star it is, glass of wine in hand, I step back and admire, wiping a drop of joy away from my tear filled eyes.

Of course, during this erection, all furniture has moved and the house looks like a disaster area, piling cut logs around the metal base merely defracts and authenticates-says it is a false tree. I have had to move my dear office area out of the bay window to accommodate this gargantuan masterpiece and this has really thrown my literary works and ideas into a pot called “for gods sake take the fucking tree down as soon as possible and get on with it”

I was going to leave the dismantling until after New Year, say 5th January, always remember that as it was my parents wedding anniversary. The main reason I’m getting my chopper out and felling it tomorrow is that I have been introduced to the works of Allen Bennett over the holidays and this has given me impetus to get back to my prose, rants and of course, contact with my dear followers.

Conclusion …. A Christmas tree is not for life, just perhaps a few days more than is reasonably necessary.

May ‘your’ God bless you and I too wish you all a very happy New Year. Xx

Hoy estoy sesenta!

Jueves, el 8 Septiembre 2016, 07:20, Suite 103.

…… and here I am wide awake, I am stood almost as naked as the actual moment I was born as I bear witness to the most beautiful sunrise that delivers my sixtieth year.

Slowly, the sun emerges from behind the Cap de Formentor, its sudden heat blasts away the slight chill of the early morn, the tiny birds and cicadas stir and the pine tree which gently nudges our balcony emits its fragrance. As the aged Señor from the Municipio de Pollença sweeps his broom along the paseo maritimo I listen to the rhythm which started quietly, steadily getting louder and louder, then calmingly quietens, as he passes on below. 

My eyes are closed, I can hear and feel this daily phenomenon happening, a gentle rumble from behind the slight ajar door indicates that the small kettle on the hospitality tray is boiling. Mmmm, a tea bag on a string with a yellow tag attached bearing the name ‘Liptons’, desperately awaits its own infusion.

Feliz cumpleaños para mi !

Today, espeially, I have to have a bubble bath, (its the law) infact almost everyday its the law, although, sometimes I break it!. After my careful physiognomy routine with cream and other paraphernalia (because im worth it) I open my cards, loads of them, Its hard to pick my top four for display as there is not a lot of space available, I am humbled indeed.

Got my outfit ready for the day and as we have already made a joint decision, considering that as yesterday was so exhausting we would meander slowly down to the ‘Illa d’or’ after breakfast for an early Mocktail (cocktail before midday)

Further down the pinewalk the path way gets rather treacherous, the aging trees have disrupted the paving and the roots have now had other ideas, they wish to be above ground instead of below. We joke how we are going to manage in a few years time with the wheelchair and exactly who will be pushing who, Lou and Andy spring to mind and bad impressions consisting of “I dont like it” and “I wanna go helsinki” are proferred. Unstubbed toes are not negotiable, decent footwear is paramount, I should know.

We reach our favoured property, a detached villa set back in pine scrub, of course, there is room for a pool, that would be the frst thing to be installed once our lottery balls have come forth, and the space for a small outhouse for the housekeeper to be built. Exactly opposite is our family tree, a name we have given this old evergreen, both strinking and undeniably strong, its main torso is now held up by building blocks as it hangs over the path and touches the warm blue waters. This sempervirens has seen many many thousand people walk past, a vast majority have aslo sat on its trunk and been the main composition that has been imortalised in many impressive family photographs, like ours taken in 2008.img_3298

Now, picture this as Sophia Petrillio would say …. A ‘white party in Florida’ sunbaked wealthy aged people sitting at white tables under white parasols on white painted wicker cane chairs wearing white baseball caps playing cards, sipping at tall cool drinks with straws. The bar tenders in white aprons and the once aging bar-hut now stark white, all far too sterile, now devoid of character, this is new style of the once beautiful waterside bar area of the famous Illa d’or, we find a seat under shade and make ourselves less conspicuous, it would appear ages sixty and less are definately frowned upon.

I had promised myself a famed Bloody Mary, it arrives, vastly overpriced. Sometimes trying to recreate a once upon a time doesnt always work, the drink was sallow and the overall bar atmosphere dull, it had changed since our last visit, certainly not for the better either, we might as well have been the invisible men, so we decided to drink up and disappear, but not before taking an opportunity to capture the moment. This was the point where we decided that the Polaroid had to go, trying to recapture the past was now infact, past.p1020126-2

….. to be continued …