…birth of a story

61.Twenty-one years ago a new story was born.  It is a classic story of birth and death, and the coming together of unexpected events. It begins with the news report that Air France Concorde flight 4590 has crashed in Paris, killing all 109 people on board.  Your husband is a newspaper photographer so a fewContinue reading “…birth of a story”

…beginning with rain

60. RainWinter rain puts you in a funk.  You wrap up against it, hat, scarf, raincoat, hating the cold and the low grey sky.  But summer rain is an entirely different creature.  The birds retreat to the shelter of trees but you go out with bare arms and legs, feel the warm drops on yourContinue reading “…beginning with rain”

…camping out for words

Loneliness is solitude with a problem.  from Bluets, by Maggie Nelson 59.Your desire for solitude began at an early age, reading books in your bedroom with the door firmly closed, and then writing down your own stories.  You are not sure if your writing grew from your solitude, or your solitude grew from your writing,Continue reading “…camping out for words”

…on shaping the earth

58. You stand on the seashore feeling the mutability of time.  Under normal circumstances you would gaze at the steady horizon, trying to absorb the enormity of the ever shifting ocean.  Its depth, its strength, its unknowable currents and flavours.  Under normal circumstances you would be awed by the way it has sanded and pebbledContinue reading “…on shaping the earth”

…the last great day of May

57. It is the last day of May and we gather in the garden beneath the high sun, some of us meeting for the first time, some already old friends.  Once we’ve eaten the collected treasures of olives and cheeses and harmonies of chocolate, we untangle ourselves to the drowsy lane, down to where weContinue reading “…the last great day of May”

…the slice of the knife

56. You enjoy the motion of the knife cutting, the smooth sweep of the wide blade as it meets the chopping board, your fingertips curled against the onion’s domed back.  When you are done the dome is transformed into a heap of translucent cubes alongside a stub of woody stem.  Soon the smell of heatedContinue reading “…the slice of the knife”

…mind games

55. Sometimes, you say something to your lover and a moment later he’ll ask you for a number between 1 and 100.  This is because the thing you said was the thing he was thinking, and so now he needs to test this moment of cosmic connection.  Very occasionally you get the number right, butContinue reading “…mind games”

…flying over mountains

54. Sometimes you read a book that you sink into so completely you don’t want it to finish, and when onward time means that you reach that final page, you want to hang it around your neck on a simple strap so you can wear it always against your heart.  So it is with JackContinue reading “…flying over mountains”

…on road trips

53. Some of the best road trips are long-planned and desired, whereas others are best done impulsively, such as driving to the beach on a hot day, or going out looking for one thing and finding another.  But always the best trips are when the unexpected happens.  An unexpected place, an unexpected person, an unexpectedContinue reading “…on road trips”

…on cars

52. The car is a fragile thing.  If it hits another car its bonnet will buckle, its windscreen will shatter, the dashboard will crumble and fall around your legs where you sit in the passenger seat, and you are trapped.  There will be miniscule shards of glass in your hair, scattered like gems across yourContinue reading “…on cars”