Friday, 30 December 2011

One liner

And I had so many plans to write, write, write over the Christmas break, but too much "stuff"  got in the way!
But I'm back on track, starting slowly!

Write On Wednesdays Exercise 13 - A Great One Liner...This week you need to come up with one good line to describe a part of your day. It can be 'real life' or fiction. But it must tell us 'who did what'. It has to be an amazing line, like a tiny little paper plane that must travel a big distance (figuratively speaking) with only a few folds ... Every word in that line must earn its place, or be cut as excess baggage. Let's get thinking about each sentence as though every word counts, like working one group of muscles to show how much weight they can carry.

Caught mid-snarl by the bleep of her i-phone she turned from her tired mother, and reading the message, a glow of delight shone from her gold-blue eyes.

Friday, 16 December 2011

No going back..

I've had the pleasure of doing a written interview for Sarah on her awesome blog in the past week. She talks about "that space in between..." all sorts of things, the space between being a woman with no children and then a mother, the space between lost and gone, and many other thoughtful concepts.
I joined her with my space, one that is on my mind a lot at the moment - the space between me as a mother of semi-dependent children (teens) and the space that will gape as I transition to an empty nester, whenever that ends up being. I wrote this with a gentle sense of melancholy...
Have a look at the post here.

Monday, 12 December 2011


I'm still going with trying to link my pieces into an ongoing story starting with Sacrifice , then Secrets  and next...


She’d  been in labour for 16 hours and had tried her  best to relax and go with the flow, but the agony in her back was unrelenting, even when the contractions relaxed. The knowledgeable ones had stolen concerned glances at the tracings of her baby’s heart beat and with the rustle of a white coat, a decision was made. Nineteen was the last number she remembered counting before she slid under the heavy influence of the anaesthetic, like an exhausted sailor unable to keep himself afloat.  As Ella slowly drifted to the surface of her awareness, she could hear a baby’s snuffle and mewl as she groggily opened her eyes.  She watched her mother next to her, entranced and counting tiny digits, “my darling, she’s so perfect, so just like you”.

photo from

Friday, 9 December 2011

Glorious Luang Prabang

washing day for the monks

I loved reading Jennifer’s post about Elephant riding in Luang Prabang, Laos. This is my favourite place in the world, having discovered it 2 years ago. We had a glorious week there and I long to return. Sadly, the Western World will change it, and as with many Indochinese countries, this will happen quickly. A saving grace for Luang Prabang, though, despite its International airport, is its inclusion on the UNESCO World Heritage protected list .

So, back to the Elephants – we too went elephant riding and whilst I adored the elephants, such sage creatures, I missed out on Jennifer’s joy. My overwhelming emotion was terror, not of interacting with these magnificent creatures, but of being up on top of them. I had an uncontrollable sense that I would fall off (and my son and I were on the big one!). The children, of course, thought this was hysterically funny, which was good really, as it did help me loosen up, except for my arm muscles which were clamped tightly to the seat.

me looking calmer than I felt  - check out the mahout texting as we ride!

The others were brave enough to ride on the neck of the elephant and were charmed by the way it wrapped its ears around their legs to hold them steady when going downhill.

Hang on!
 Another highlight of the stay was the morning procession of monks accepting alms. A very peaceful, gentle morning ritual. As I write this and look through my photos, yet again, I yearn to return.
The morning procession of monks

Ricketty bridge - did I really walk over this?

Utopia - an aptly named cafe/bar/restaurant on bamboo platforms up above the  river

Monday, 5 December 2011


I'm trying to take Gill's good advice from Inkpaperpen and draw out some of my work into longer pieces by running stories together, so here goes - this follows from Sacrifice which you can read here

“They’ll always catch you up”, Ella's Grandma had said. Wiping her hands on her checked apron, she turned and shook her head at the 5 year old licking the mixing spoon – “they’ll always catch you up , secrets and lies”.

She gently smiled at the memory as she considered what to do, to keep it a secret or to tell? No-one really knew, they had their theories of course but no-one knew who the father was, not even him.  For the moment she could hold her knowledge close, it didn’t matter, it had no bearing on today or tomorrow or the next day.