Monthly Archives: March 2019

Under the Tuscan Sun

On turning the calendar card I was confronted with this –

 

The wording on the card reads –

“The Italian enthusiasm for cycling come to the fore every spring during the Giro d’Italia, a three-week-long road race across some of the peninsula’s most challenging terrain. Thrills, hills, and spills aside, two-wheeled vehicles are an integral part of Italian culture and an uplifting fixture of daily life”

I was immediately transported back to my brief sojourn in Florence in 2013. Can it really be six years ago?

On October 23, 2013, I recorded Day 16 in Florence and noted that the World Road Cycling Championship had just been raced in and around Florence. Cycling memorabilia was on display and for sale everywhere one looked. I succumbed and purchased two little battery operated bicycles with pedalling cyclists whizzing around the footpaths. If you are interested, click here for that post.

Oh, how I enjoyed my short time alone in that wonderful city. I did go back the following year with the Architect, my late love, but somehow just wandering wherever fancy took me, and on my own was really very special. Those few weeks will remain n my memory until my memory fades. I am so glad that I took the chance, made the decision and had the adventure.

Note – I thought after the gloom and despondency of the last two blogs, it was time to lighten things up. I hope I have done so.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Sunday, 17 March 2019

“Never take life for granted.
Savour every sunrise because no one is promised tomorrow
or even the rest of today.”
Eleanor Brownn, American Speaker, writer, coach

We are still reeling from Friday’s horrific events; looking for a reason and finding none. It’s all anybody speaks about. If you meet someone on the street this is the first thing they mention. It’s seemingly overwhelming. How do we combat it?

We are always told that time heals’. But will it? Certainly not for those worshippers who were caught in the middle of it, and those who will never come home.

What could possibly cause someone to act in the way in which this perpetrator and his cohorts did on Friday? As a nation, we mourn with those affected and my reaction as an individual is to heap love and friendship on all I meet in the coming weeks and months. Their hatred will not overpower us.

And a reminder – Most people who died on Friday had plans for today.

 

End of today’s rant.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Christchurch, 15 March 2019

It’s Saturday morning here in New Zealand and we are waking up to the fact that our little corner of the world is no longer immune to terrorism and terrorist attacks.

As one, we reeled at the unfolding news yesterday and asked the question – how can this be. Yes, we had foolishly convinced ourselves that as we are so far away from what happens in the rest of the world, terrorists wouldn’t invade our peaceful and peace-loving country.

We commend the quick action of the police in arresting four people within hours of the shootings and we mourn for those forty-nine worshippers who lost their lives.

Today, as flags hang at half-mast on all public buildings in New Zealand, we realise that we are no longer protected by our distance from the rest of the world.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Because You Are Different …

I saw this post from Caterel this morning. It is very apt at present with all the wars and fights over religion, colour, ethnicity.

I was brought up in a home in a small enclave of Christians in a mostly Jewish neighbourhood. And in our home, Mother was from a Jewish family, Father was a Methodist and we three girls were brought up in the Church of England.
In our school, there were no people of a different colour and it wasn’t until the late 1950s when we had an influx of Jamaicans into Britain, that I saw people of a different colour.

To this day, it matters not to me what your religion is, your ethnicity or colour. Are you a good person is what matters to me.

catterel

I grew up in a white working-class area of the English Midlands in the middle of the twentieth century, and didn’t meet anyone who wasn’t white till I went to university in Liverpool in 1959. In my hall of residence, among others, there was a jolly Jamaican making delicious dishes in our shared kitchen, a sweet Chinese girl who played the piano like a professional, and a beautiful Indian girl with long hair down to her ankles. We also had a black Jamaican President of the Students’ Union in the early sixties. So my primary reaction was Wow! Awe and admiration! These were amazing, talented and exotic people, interesting to talk to and be with.

My first personal encounter with racism came a couple of years later in France, where my landlady was most upset because her niece was set on marrying an Algerian. I was studying in an international…

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Even More to Think About

Those of you who have followed my blog know that I was fortunate to be brought up in a a caring, loving family where domestic violence wasn’t even hinted at. In fact, it wasn’t until I started to post on my blog that I found so many of my followers/readers hadn’t been so lucky.

And in reading others’ blogs and the daily news reports I know that domestic violence is prevalent in our society, and to my mind, more of a threat than even terrorism.

Some years ago, visiting one of my mother’s many aunts, she told us of her daughter who was stabbed by her husband, and left to die, alone on the kitchen floor. So in some way, it does impinge on all of us.

Today I received the advance copy of Charlie Gallagher’s latest Book –

He Will Kill You.

I haven’t started to read it, but with Charlie’s agreement, I am posting his author’s note here.

“There is a strong theme of domestic violence throughout this book. Some scenes describe actions that are brutal, inexcusable and shocking, and may be harrowing or traumatic to read.

They are based on unequivocal fact. Two out of three murder victims in the UK are killed by an intimate partner. Most victims of domestic violence take years to seek help, if at all.

This book carries a message; if you recognise even a small part of your situation or yourself in these pages, any part of it, then know that you don’t have to suffer it; you don’t have to live it. You’re worth so much more.

Tell someone. Tell the police or a mate or one of the many domestic violence charities that can be found on the internet, or whoever you can.

Get yourself safe.”

Charlie is a serving, front-line police detective. He obviously, comes into contact with victims of domestic violence more often than most of us. He doesn’t appear to have a website but tells a little about himself – https://www.femalefirst.co.uk/books/charlie-gallagher-bodily-harm-1027718.html.

Apologies. I’m now told by Charlie that he has a website – http://www.writercharliegallagher.com.

The book – He Will Kill You will be published on March 15 and is currently available to preorder on Amazon .

Look out for my review in the next couple of days on my other site – https://booksandmorebooks2017.wordpress.com