The Streets of London

“So how can you tell me you’re lonely,
And say for you that the sun don’t shine?
Let me take you by the hand and lead you through the streets of London
I’ll show you something to make you change your mind “

This is the chorus from Ralph McTell’s song The Streets of London”.  Do you know it.  Click here to hear him sing this song.

This is one of those songs that remind us just how lucky we are.  Oh we all have something about which to complain but unless one is battling a life threatening or terminating illness, put alongside those who are homeless and without any hope that things will improve, they really are minor.

If you follow my blog you will know that, until I came to live with my partner (the Architect), Thursday was always Mary Potter Hospice day.  Once a week I volunteered and helped serve lunch to the patients or should we now call them clients?

All these patients were battling terminal illness but in the years that I volunteered there,  I only met one person who was rude and ungrateful for the care he was receiving from the dedicated staff.  Of course, it was understood by everyone why he was like this at the time.  And his charming wife told us that he was never rude before coming into the Hospice.  Apparently he was a gregarious, lovely fellow who was finding it difficult to come to terms with what was happening to him.

And then recently, I experienced the other side of the service the hospice offers.  My partner, dying from a brain tumour, was transferred to Te Omanga Hospice close to where we live.  And what an amazing place that it.  The love, care and attention showered upon us both was absolutely unbelievable.  Nothing was too much trouble for any of the staff.  Cups of tea in the early hours of the morning, a friendly ear to listen when it all became to much for me, food brought to me even though I didn’t want to eat and in all an outpouring of love to help me when the inevitable time came for the Architect to leave this world.

And when that day came, the love was showered on our families.

So if today in your travels, you come across an abrupt, grumpy person, give them a smile.  We don’t know what demons they are battling in their lives and maybe a smile will help them.

“If you’re reading this…
Congratulations, you’re alive.
If that’s not something to smile about,
then I don’t know what is.”
Chad Sugg, –  Monsters Under Your Head

You Are Beautiful

In Other Words

“Nothing makes a woman more beautiful
than the belief that she is beautiful.”
Sofia Loren

This is the challenge this week from In Other Words

Use the quote or the author as inspiration;
post a story…fiction or non-fiction, a poem, a commentary, opinion or a picture.
Add your post’s link to, In Other Words.
Somewhere in your post add a link back here.
The link is open from Wednesday until the following Tuesday.

Thank you Patricia at patriciasplace  for bringing us this quote as our Wednesday challenge.  The Wednesday challenge is an event open to all fellow bloggers.  Check it out.


“You are beautiful,” he said, holding her gently and kissing her face where her tears fell freely.

“How could this be?” She asked herself. “How could I be this lucky again? To meet somebody when I’m in my 70s and find love again?”

During the years following the death of her husband, she had made a life for herself but had quite convinced herself that she would continue the rest of her life alone. Oh she had plenty of friends with whom to go to the movies, lunch or dinner, the theatre, museums etc but always she went home alone to her small dog sitting on the window seat, waiting patiently for her return.

And now she had reconnected with a man whom she had known many years ago and he thought her beautiful.

Did he have rose coloured spectacles or was it wishful thinking on both their parts? They had enjoyed meeting for lunch and/or dinner over the past couple of months since they reconnected but she thought they were friends. His wife of many years had been dead only a couple of years. But here he was telling her she was beautiful not only to look at but inside too. He loved her and wanted to spend the rest of his life with her. Could this work at their age? Were they each too settled in their particular ways to make room for a new love? And how would they merge the two families? Would their children accept them? So many unanswered questions but the main and most important one was did she love him and could she imagine spending the rest of her life with him?

She didn’t have to ponder the question for long. They had a history together (albeit a working relationship), they liked the same things – music, theatre, old buildings (he was an architect) travel, reading – oh so many interests in common. And they had many friends in common. Although this was the Capital City it was quite small so this was not unexpected. But then she realised that over the past months she had come to love this man. So very different in all ways from her late husband but this was to be expected and she wasn’t looking for somebody to replace him. This was a new and different love. Not the heady love of youth but the mature love of two older people.

He waited for her answer. She gave it to him with a smile on her lips. “Oh yes, I will come and live with you and we will grow old together” she said as he wiped the tears of joy from her face.


Click on the frog to see what people have to say and
add your thoughts in a post of your own.

Time To Move On, Again

I awoke this morning to a lovely spring day; sun shining; birds singing and this view from the bedroom


I then picked up my iPad and wrote this as a stream of consciousness.  No editing.  Just saying –

In three weeks
I shall leave this place
So full of happy memories
of love shared
of laughter and friendship.
But now the house sits empty
of those shared things.
What is a house without sharing
It is but an empty shell.
And so now, once again
the wheels of my life have turned
and again, I face the future alone.
Alone, but now even stronger
Strengthened with the memories
of this late love we shared
for such a very short time.
But length of time is irrelevant
You will live in my heart forever my love.

And then I got up and saw this

IMG_0717 IMG_0721

and just knew how I was going to spend this beautiful Saturday.  Isn’t it amazing how much one gathers in a very short time?

And now another quote from Edna St. VincentMillay

“Time does not bring relief; you all have lied
Who told me time would ease me of my pain!
I miss him in the weeping of the rain;
I want him at the shrinking of the tide”.

But enough of melancholy and feeling sorry for myself.  I can still enjoy this lovely day, the warmth of friendship and the knowledge that I have so much more in my life than many others.

And now because I’m English and I drink tea 


I shall make a pot and think about where I am, where I’ve been and where I’m going.   

toward the sushine

Writing 101: Personality on the Page


One year ago today this was the challenge for Writing 101. And now I have to add that the Architect who was in my life for such a short time died on August 16th.
Now I have to ask myself all the questions I asked when my Dashing Young Scotsman died and make it through to the stage where I can say that I can live my life without the Architect and move on, never forgetting him but making a new life without him.

Originally posted on I choose how I will spend the rest of my life:

Today’s Challenge and I still haven’t caught up but decided I should like to do this one now.

The Challenge is :

“We all have anxieties, worries, and fears. What are you scared of? Address one of your worst fears.

Today’s twist: Write this post in a style distinct from your own.

This looked like a real challenge.  Where to start?

I have breezed through life with very few fears but

  • I have always been afraid that something bad could happen to one of my loved ones
  • I have been anxious about my aged parents on the other side of the world; both now dead
  • I was afraid of cats until I took a course of EFT (Emotional Freedom Technique) or Tapping as it is sometimes known.  Now I am no longer afraid of cats and have even been known to stroke one but
  • My worst fear was realised at…

View original 213 more words

Missing You

A sunny Saturday afternoon here in Wellington, New Zealand, but the sun isn’t shining here in our house.  A black cloud hangs over everything at present and  I cant see through the tears to  tell you all how I feel.  But I found this quote in a book the other day and it say what I can’t.

“Where you used to be, there is a hole in the world,
which I find myself constantly walking around
in the daytime and falling in at night.
I miss you like hell.”
Edna St Vincent Millay
American lyrical poet and playwright.

The book is entitled “Goodbye for Times of Sadness & Loss” by Melanie G Mason.

And now I should like to thank you all for the outpouring of love, kindness and support at the recent tragic event in my life.  But my darling Architect would not have wanted me to fall into that slough of despair where I have been once before.  So I am working on picking myself up, dusting myself off and starting all over again as Jerome Kern exhorted us.

So watch this space.  Who knows what will happen next.  But do all take care and cherish each and every day because tomorrow may never come.

The Inevitable

“There is a land of the living
and a land of the dead,
And the bridge is love.”
from The Bridge of San Luis Rey
by Thornton Wilder

imageRip Jon Alastair Craig
1941 – 2015

It doesn’t seem possible that just 8 weeks ago we were enjoying life and making plans for another trip. But now, what became inevitable, has happened.

After only one round of chemotherapy it became apparent that this invader in the Architect’s head was stronger than any modern medicine.  My darling lived only another five weeks.

Surprisingly, he was in no pain except at the very end. The consultants and staff in Wellington Regional Hospital were fantastic. Initially the consultants thought that this could be fought with large doses of chemotherapy, but it became apparent after only one round that this was not to be.  So that he was not alone I slept at the hospital in his room with him for the 17 nights leading up to the transfer to the hospice.

The last 10 days of his life were spent at Te Omanga Hospice close to home.  What a lovely place, set in beautiful calm grounds and staffed by such an amazing, caring, loving group of people.  Again I stayed with him and I too was cared for by this incredible group of people. I cannot thank them enough.

Then quietly and peacefully on Sunday August 16 the Magic Carpet Ride came to an abrupt end. My second love died.

imageWe had only two years together, but what a fabulous two years.  Thank you thank you for sharing this time with me my love.

And now they are playing our song – Shall we dance?

“To live in lives you leave behind
Is not to die.”
Judith Baxter, Blogger & friend 1938 –

Home Alone


It’s a wet blustery winter night in Wellington.  When I arrived home from the hospital, even though the heating was on and the house was warm, I lit the fire.


Then I lit the candles. 


There, that’s so much better.


Six Word Saturday

If you would like to participate please either click on the picture above or click this link.


Just when everything seems to be going your way, something comes along and hits you smack in the face.  Well a few days ago that’s what happened to me.

My partner (the Architect) was diagnosed with a brain tumour.  He became confused and mixed up 2 weeks ago and was admitted to hospital about 10 days ago.  He has had a biopsy that confirmed the initial diagnosis.

But all is not lost.  He is on steroids which are reducing the swelling and today he was about 85% back to normal.  They propose to continue the steroids and next week we shall see an oncologist to determine whether he will have radiation therapy or chemotherapy.

So that’s where I have been these last few days.

And then tonight I went to check my emails to see that I had 3,765 emails in the Junk folder.  And that’s where all the emails announcing that you have written a new post have landed.  Google or WordPress?  One or other is going mad.

So apologies for not reading or responding to your posts.  Life got in the way.

Five Day Challenge – Day Five

The Five Day Challenge is
Post a photo each day for five consecutive days and attach a story to the photo. It can be fiction or non-fiction, a poem or a short paragraph and each day nominate another blogger for the challenge.



 One year ago we were in San Gimignano in Tuscany in north-central Italy.  This is a small walled medieval hill town known at the Town of Fine Towers it is famous for its medieval architecture and for the preservation of about a dozen of its tower houses.


The town is immediately recognisable  as it sits on a hilltop and the towers on the skyline make it visible for miles around

We spent several happy days wandering around this lovely town and admiring the architecture much to the delight of the Architect.

And once again special thanks to Cat at Catterel for nominating me.  Now I nominate Granny at Granny1947.  Granny lives in South Africa, a place I have never visited, but I love to read Granny’s posts to learn a little about the country.

Five Day Challenge – Day 4

The Five Day Challenge is
Post a photo each day for five consecutive days and attach a story to the photo. It can be fiction or non-fiction, a poem or a short paragraph and each day nominate another blogger for the challenge.


An eight year old has her birthday party at Great Granddad’s.

Rachel is 8 and Grandad is almost 100 years old.  Imagine the excitement of having her birthday party at his house. Twelve little girls, Rachel’s parents and one grandmother, a great uncle and us.

At times the noise reached a pitch that just about drove us out of the house but then the lady with the birds and animals arrived.


All the children loved the fact that they were allowed to hold the bunnies, the guinea pigs and the chickens.  Granddad, who had been a farmer for many years, delighted in seeing the animals, holding a chicken and seeing the delight on the children’s faces.

A day to remember.

And once again special thanks to Cat at Catterel for nominating me.  Now I nominate Patricia at Patricia’s Place.  Hers is a blog well worth reading.