Thursday, 19 February 2015

                       You are the future, the red sky before sunrise over the fields of time.....

                            -Rainer Maria Rilke-

Saturday, 24 January 2015

It's actually sunny today.  A weak winter sunshine but damp and cold .  In the suburbs the roads and roofs still wet, glisten, and drivers scrabble overhead to pull down sun-visors against dazzling beams slanting low in the sky.  Saturday afternoon is quiet here, apart from the dog living next door who barks in his boredom, having been left behind.  The postman delivered his letters and the dog hates the postman.  If I look through the side windows of our house I can just see into the bay of the semi next door.  There sits the dog on the sofa neatly pushed into the recess of the window, his shiny black nose pushed up against the glass and the offending letter lately delivered lies crumpled on the back of the window ledge, I hope they discover it.
The radio plays in our sunny conservatory here, Beethoven's, Fur Elize.

I was 23 when my Dad died.  He was five years younger than I am now, 42 years have gone by I think of him nearly every day, I have a photograph of him next to me here, by the computer.  When I was very small my Nannie, Dad's mother lived in a house about an hour away in a different Northern town.  I think I mentioned before somewhere she was a teacher and the house was full of books. There were soft carpets and oak doors with brass handles, a big clock that chimed the hours and a piano.  One afternoon I was allowed to sit on the piano stool and tinkle-plonk the keys.  There had been a piano at home, in the big house, but when we moved to a smaller terraced property following the collapse of my Grand-dad's business there wasn't any room for it, so it was hacked to pieces and the beautiful wood made into a bookcase.  There was only me and my Dad in the room that afternoon, the others were busy in the kitchen from whence came delicious smells, my Nannie probably basting the leg of lamb for dinner.  He sat quietly reading the paper, a broadsheet.  Always a broadsheet, so big that he had to hold his arms high to read it.
"Can you play the piano properly Daddie?"
The newspaper rustled and cracked as he neatly folded it down, and he looked across at me and smiled.  Rising he moved to sit beside me on the stool and softly began to play ever so quietly Fur Elize.  No music sheet, he must have memorized it.
Painting: Poul Friis Nybo  (1869-1929)  Danish painter studied at the Royal Danish Academy of Fine Arts, Copenhagen.

Monday, 29 December 2014

Photo found on:  '

Wishing my lovely blogging friends, all of whom are VERY dear to me, a Very Happy Christmas and just the BEST EVER New Year!!

Much love to you all.
Jane xx

Tuesday, 2 September 2014

Me again mes amies.....

I can tell Autumn is slowly arriving now.  The sunlight, even at mid-day is softer where we are in the North.

 I do hope you are all still there, way out there across the miles and continents?

 I always get to this point in the year and try to decide, do I like Autumn best...or Spring?  Not a hope of deciding outright, but I still spare a thought each year.  The birds outside are singing beautifully today, did I simply not hear them before this September morning?  Were they there yesterday or was it that I simply hadn't tuned in enough?  Tuning out sometimes has to be a necessity when you have M.E. when even the sound of a cup being placed upon a table sounds as loud as a clap of thunder.

My son was married during the Bank holiday just gone, they had a wonderful day in spite of the clouds and rain threatening, and I managed to be there after several unexpected episodes designed to throw spanners and clogs in the works.  The burglar alarm started to blare just as we were getting dressed, which was definitely was switched off!  So by the time that was sorted out we were over half an hour late setting off to the venue.  Then we got lost.  Twice.  When we finally found our way to the entrance of  the stately-mansion and found a parking place it was spot-on the time for the wedding to begin, at which point I was faced with a very long steep driveway to climb.  A drive that must have been a 1 in 8 incline and stepped.  I got almost half way up and my legs refused to do any more.  By this time I was more than mildly distressed as you can imagine.  My husband telephoned the cavalry. Two daughters dressed to the nines arrived one either side to yank (crank...more like!) me up the rest of the drive.  Thankfully the bride, as is the custom was delayed and I fortified with a brandy was safely placed in my seat for the ceremony which went off without a hitch and was liberally sprinkled with tears all round.
 'The Register' by Edmund Blair Leighton.  1852-1922.
Painting held in The Bristol Museum and Art Gallery.

Friday, 11 July 2014

Thank you so much for leaving me lovely words all of you, they mean a huge amount to me.
Back as soon as I can, I hope you won't forget me!
Illustration from Pinterest, via - Sandy Sauter.      Called 'Hugs', attributed to -

Thursday, 26 June 2014

So sorry everyone......

Normal service will most certainly be resumed soon...ish.  Not been at all well recently, M.E. and migraine etc.

'Being happy doesn't mean everything is perfect.  It means you have decided to look beyond the imperfections.'     -Unknown-

Tuesday, 8 April 2014

We finally arrived....

After many wrong turns we finally arrived in the small town of Litvinov in the north-west of Czechoslovakia.  My memory tugs and jostles me to a modern 1975 style building of apartments run by the state,  facing the tram terminus and opposite a supermarket shop.  Every hour of the day and night the thrumming sound of the trams setting off or coming to a stop accompanied our days, they would ring their bell each time, presumably to warn folk to get out of the way.  The tinkling sound became to be part of our lives along with the loudspeaker broadcasts blaring around the town several times a day.  As we didn't speak Czech we had no way of knowing what the speaker's were saying although each time the anthem was played so consequently we guessed that the words were meant to be encouraging the Czech workers.  Everywhere there flew long red flags.  Massive, 8-10 feet tall but narrow, not like the usual rectangular flag shape and solid bright bright red, catching the wind flapping and snatching and no doubt once more intended to remind the lovely Czech people of the Soviet presence.
On the ground floor of the apartments in the foyer was an old desk behind which sat a large portly woman dressed in an apron of washed-out material that crossed over her ample bosom and fastened at the back.  To say she was unwelcoming would be a gross understatement, her manner was strict, curt and harsh, demanding our papers by signing and one or two words of English, we came to recognise her as simply,'the Pani'.  She was presumably a loyal party member, possibly even secret-police.  Her power within this building was severe and absolute.  We eventually found our allotted flat on the third floor, along a wide empty corridor with tall windows either end the key echoed in the lock resounding off the bare walls and concrete floor, there was no-one else around.  The door swung open into a tiny hall.  To the right a cramped toilet, a separate bathroom with a door either end one from the hall the other leading into a cupboard-like kitchen with no windows in any of the spaces. One wall of the hall was a cupboard and opposite a door led into a small bedroom containing a flat bench with three cushions as a mattress, nothing else. The last opening showed into the living-room, containing two more flat cushioned benches a kind of cheap dresser and a really old television.  All the partitions were grey-mottled plastic coated metal, but the saving grace was a balcony that looked out over a square grassed and flowered area towards the supermarket and a building that later turned out to be a pub.
We were still standing out on the balcony when a key went into the door and the Pani pushed inside without knocking.  She carried a pile of linen which she threw down onto one of the benches speaking Czech she lifted one of cushions to reveal a duvet stowed beneath and gesturing she indicated she had brought covers for our bedding.  With that she slewed her slippered feet out of the door leaving it standing wide.
The kitchen had two gas rings and a minute oven, the tiny fridge was empty.  All in all it seemed exceedingly stark and drab.
(Still more to follow should you find this of interest)