July 2021

July 27th 2021

How do you define memories? Is it by a thought? A song? A note? An item, person  or a place? Maybe you have other ways of thinking about memories. This last month, I have been revisiting my storage facility. My possessions have been in there since September last year and let’s face it, if I haven’t used it by now…will I? So, off I went, ready to be ruthless.

First thing back was DVDs. Anyone that knows Mark and I know that we were film buffs. Loved movies, live revisiting tv series we loved and loved watching music concerts. If I said, we had a lot of DVDs it would be an understatement.  I sorted them out, removed anything that I wouldn’t watch and they’re all away now ready to be watched again.  Old classics such as Porridge and Open all Hours. Monty Python, The West Wing and Auf Wiederschen Pet, to name just a  few.

Then came glassware. I had visions of finding boxes of the stuff, given the amount of glasses that were in our old sideboard. Turns out I had been more ruthless when packing than I had given myself credit for!! Ive been ruthless again. Some glasses have been binned. Some are going through the dishwasher and will go in the cupboard. Three Broncos glasses are being saved for a relative. One extremely large Stella Artois glass is being saved for my brother.

What else has come out of the storage cupboard?? You want to know, I know you do!! I can tell you, it’s like Christmas. You tend to forget what’s you’ve packed and where sometimes. When you’re packing alone and  as a widow, your brain simply does not comprehend things. You tend to pack everything and think you’ll sort it later.

So, I have come across….candle holders and African figures from a holiday of mum and dads over 20 years ago! There is a ornamental gecko that I bought with money from my Nan Beckham. I have a glass chessboard and two hurricane lamps. One clear glass and one blue one. Add into that two trivets for the new glass table on the patio. I also saved three mugs. One is my beloved marmite jar mug….if you know me, you know my love of marmite! And I also found two mugs, one red and one white. Souvenirs of the Nurburgring trip with Mark, Lee and Clare.

Everyone of these invokes a memory. I look at the marmite mug and remember that Lee bought it for me. Nurburgring mugs…..amazing few days fulfilling a bucket list wish to go round the ring with Lee. Hurricane lamps…bought for me by Mark. The gecko ornament…it was my nans last Christmas. See what I mean about memories? Objects bring memories. These memories make you think of people.

 

I’m one of those people that has musical memories too. Let me explain. If I said “Neil Diamond – Hello again” most people wouldn’t bat an eyelid. To me, it’s my first dance at my wedding. Here’s a few more musical memories!

  • Dire Straits – Romeo & Juliet: it was a special favourite of Mark and I.
  • When the going gets tough – Billy Ocean: soundtrack of The Jewel of the Nile, a film I watched (a lot!) with my brother.
  • Kate Bush – reminds me of my dad.
  • Madness – reminds me of my late aunty Sally. She introduced me to their music.

Memories are important in life. They shape who you are and can influence who you become. We all get one shot on this earth, one go at this called life. Your memories are a valuable part of that. They make up your life.

July 22nd 2021

There are many places that I have seen on the earth that I love, none more than the picture I have shared with you on the left. The Glasshouse Mountains. These were one of the first places we visited when we came to Australia way back in 2005 and we fell in love with the area. 

Roll forward 16 years and here I am, living closer to the mountains than ever but as a party of one, not two. I don’t know what it was about this area but we love it. Marks ashes were scattered there and I suppose the fact that there is a beautiful cafe too with a nice lookout does help. 

Its one of those places that we take anyone that comes to Australia. Who am I kidding? We take everyone. Lots of memories spring to mind. The first time we took my brother there. Taking my uncle and his wife there for breakfast. Taking my mother in law and all her sons there together. Breakfasts that were just Mark and I and of course afterwards, those that were just me. 

Of all the breakfasts, there is a tribe that Mark and I took there. In fact in the 6 days they were there twice, including the day they flew home. When friends fly around the world for 6 days, they are friends. When they spend their time with you helping you around the house, that’s friends. When they  want time with you and nothing else, that’s friends.Thats where these guys below come in!

These guys flew from UK to Australia for 6 days and if I said we crammed a lot in, boy would that be an understatement. They loved the Glasshouse Lookout Cafe. We took them there twice and shared many laughs. 

So as you can see, the Glasshouse Mountains holds many memories for me. Laughs, smiles, thoughts, tears, they’re all there. But the best memory……friendship. 

July 15th 2021

Since the last entry Dad and I have been going out for as much exercise as we can. Trying to get a few km a day regularly. We’ve been to a variety of places. The picture to your left was taken at Ewan Maddock Dam. 

I have also in the last week had my first COVID vaccination. One hell of a sore arm after jab number one but nothing else. Ive been forewarned to expect more on number 2. 

Ive also purchased myself a couple of things. One of which I had been looking for, for a very long time. The necklace in the middle is my indulgence “I want” gift to myself.  I once saw a lady with a similar thing with her late husbands initials and have never been able to source it until now. The good old internet (Thank you Instagram) sent me to a company that put it together for me. Its custom made for me and is being done now. Of course, I don’t need to tell you what the J and M are for!!!  The T-shirts I just could not resist!    

There will be a book review coming soon. I highly recommend “The Coffin Confessor” by William Edgar. Wow! Was this a good read and what an enlightening life this guy has had! I heard a rumour that Hollywood are making a movie from his book. The author reckons Ryan Reynolds should play him……..If you ever read the book and know Ryan Reynolds from the Deadpool movies……you`ll agree it is a perfect fit!

July 9th 2021

July sees us settling into the second month of winter. For some reason, this year seems colder than all other years since I arrived in Australia way back in 2005. My conclusion is that I am either acclimatising more or getting old and feeling the cold. As someone delicately told me  “its both you know!”

That same someone you can see here sitting inside a coffee shop, snuggled up in a tracksuit jacket and still cold. Im finding myself reaching for the long trousers and socks daily now. Usually I would sit in shorts but today for example the temp is a cool 18.7 degrees. 

The cloudy and cool days are becoming more and more. Even the crisp blue skies (while lovely) bring that winter chill with them too. I know that my friends and family in the UK would love some of our weather but let me reassure you…its cold right now! 

Dad and I have been out taking pictures. It doesn’t matter, whatever the weather for that. Wind, rain, hail or shoe..we`d still go out. Some of the best pictures can be got from nice scenery, raindrops and low lying mist. If I said that Dad was photographing raindrops on a metal seat this morning….Thats just one example. Those that know him well will not be surprised!

So, what else do I have to tell you? There is news about Bruce and potential media that may be helping get the word out! I have a school reading and a radio interview for “My Adventures with Bruce”. The other thing I am thinking about is whether I start a YouTube channel. Put the audio visual poetry up.  Shoot some video footage if I am out and get inspired (It happened this morning!) and maybe do snippets of both books.  Who knows ? Something to think about….

July 3rd 2021

So, the biggest thing to happen to me in the last week was a visit to the tax office! Nah, just kidding! It was the delivery and release of “My adventures with Bruce”. My first foray into children’s books. 

I am incredibly proud of this one. The story came easily. The characters obvious and the plot was fun to write. I even have the outline done for my sequel. 

Its available now – click the book cover on my home page. 

What else is new?

A conscious decision has been made to not go away again until the weather clears up. We are today, in the middle of a massive rain event that is blanketing the country. Three months rain in one day is expected! The joys of the tropics!

I visited the tax office this week. Here in Australia you file your own yearly tax return. Because I have the investment property (my old house) it makes things a little more complicated for me. Why stress when someone can look after it for you?

Other than that this week, both my covid jabs have been booked. Medical advice states no Astra Zeneca for under 60s so I am not having that one. The reality of the situation is. that in the future I would like to get on a plane and go places. This is something I need to get done. 

I have also been reading. I make time for myself every day. Even if it just to finish a book chapter. Usually its just before I go to bed, but that time is about switching off and reading,. 

I have a few more books to sign this week too. The life of an author.