Monthly Archives: December 2015

“Our unsung Heroes”!

Our unsung heroes they are all around us,

That neighbour who checks on that elderly couple daily,shopping and a smile.

Those who work for the good of the vulnerable in our town,

Manning food banks,wanting no thanks for it.

Those who always try to honest ,trustworthy,and kind,

May it be never difficult for us to find.

Let’s give a shout out for those who care for their animals,

Feeding them,walking them,loving them.

These ordinary things can be lost at times like these,

These ordinary people should never be lost though.

Let’s celebrate those who bring joy to the lives of others who find very little themselves,

Those who man phone lines for the lonely,depressed,or suicidal.

These special ordinary ones may not get a “New years honour”,but boy,where would we be without them,eh.?

They are all heroes to me.All heroes to me.

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“Young people can inspire us older ones”.

That seems to many I’m sure an obvious thing to write.Why young people,or young adults are the future of out world,and,of course,our own country here.Many are involved in issues of wanted the profound issues of global warming to not only be addressed,but solved.As that is entirely understandable given the threat that they observe to their environment ,it’s really encouraging when we hear of younger people becoming involved in grass roots politics from all areas of the political spectrum.

As a main driver,social media plays a vital role in facilitating their activism.So many young people are totally at home in this world of web usage,Twitter and Facebook.As a silver surfer,I can readily admit to still being naive about the protocols of social media usage.Although I use it to voice my own opinion on topical issues of the day,I would doubt wether I can navigate my way around the various platforms as well as young do.With that in mind,I think that when we read posts from young people,we should view them as salient concerns,and as well thought out polemics on our pressing issues that our society face today.

Let’s be honest,the news media in this country now attempts to polarise thoughts into binary political camps.Now teaching young people as I do,I would say that the media arn’t really serving them up any revisionist polemics that they can deal with.For example,bullying in school was,until a few years ago,a massive issue that wasn’t addressed in any constructive way.Now,though so much work done at all levels of the educational spectrum,bullying has greatly diminished.With that in mind,young are demanding that they are respected as they respect their peers in society.So recently,when profound issues have arisen about the bullying tactics of a young political group,and subsequent suicide of a young person because of this issue,we as older silver beings have got to address this.Its one thing to address it in schools,but when these young people go out in society and get involved in politics,they deserved to be treated with dignity and respect,as that is the mark of any grown up society.

As I write this,I’m not thinking of any particular party,as I have no doubt it exists across the spectrum,and is found in the Westminster village as many already know.However,if we really are serious as a society about encouraging young people to enter politics,we,as they say cannot just “talk the talk,we have to walk the walk”.That,in my opinion,isn’t just an aspiration,it is a absolute goal.

As all from my generation grow old,we start to look at what we are leaving behind,it’s only natural.Education teaches critical thinking skills to which young people will develop,but young people are far more tolerant now then at any other time.However,they want to be engaged,they want to play a part,and they don’t want to be treated as fools.Sadly,some politicians have done just that,Mow,maybe that might have been the norm a few years ago,but not now.

As young people not only ask questions of the elected leaders,they are asking the right ones.They are demanding change,in other words,us old Dinosaurs either have to learn to dance,of face extinction.

What I have learnt in my 58 years amongst others things in never to underestimate the youth of this country.What does that mean?This,don’t be Pseudo,be real.If you don’t know something,be honest.Dont make pie crust promises.You will be held to account.Remember Nick Clegg and his promises to students that he couldn’t keep.Not cool,not right.

Today,we the spring term starts in earnest very soon,and as Year 13 pupils start to contemplate higher education,they are our future.We need them more than we have ever needed them.Lets not take them for granted.

This has been my blog post for today.If it appears to be a rant,then I am sorry,it’s just that I along with millions of other silver surfers wanted to give a big shout out to our great young people.

“For the love of that great city of York”!

As I sit here looking out of my kitchen window on this Christmas bank holiday Monday,I see a blue sky with just a hint of a breeze in the air.Cars are passing in a trickle,cyclists are in abundance today,dogs are being walked,people are enjoying this traditional extended holiday.

You would have to be a real moaning old git not to appreciate the goodness of your life,and,for me,at least,the luck in life that you sometimes get.Knowing as we all do that are fellow humans in the North of the country are struggling with some of the worse floods in modern memory,my heart goes out to them.They,just like me,have worked hard during the pre Christmas period,and would have looked forward to this holiday with their family and friends.It must be so tough for them.Whenever a government sends in their army to any situation,then you know that things are serious,and that they could get worse.

When a city with the history dating back as far as York start bracing themselves for a cataclysmic submersion,then you know that disaster beckons.Maybe all we can do in this part of the world is to hold a breathe for them all,and yo just hope that the water levels recedes.It must be very traumatic to have your home completely under water,and sometimes it’s cold comfort when politicians make promises that,in many ways,they caused by reducing funding to the environment agency.Althugh the present administration,or any for that matter,will never admit that their rather short sighted management of this problem has contributed to the profoundly issues that these people now face,there has to be some sort of root and branch work done on the flood defences to our major cities.You just can’t have a city of the stature of York in this mess.

Yes,we don’t,or would doubt the tenacity of our fellow citizens in a time of crisis,as has been shown on numerous occasions in the past,but you have to realise that something disasters need the government to step up and take control of issues,That is,not by use of propaganda type statements,but real measures that are designed to relieve the sufferings of their Tax Paying population.

Those charities that do,and are stepping up to provide help at this time are to be saluted.Volunteer mountain rescue teams have done such an amazing job in the face of great adversity.Many teams have travelled great distances from over the country to lend ther support.As I see firemen yet again at the forefront of these current floods,it’s a great shame that their profound concerns about their working conditions and retirement entitlements are being disputed by the very government that is now trumpeting praise on them.It Truky must be cold comfort these brave people when they hear these things.We need these people,we need their dedication,and their loyalty,and in return,we as a country ought to remunerate thrm in kind.

During the time that I would have written this blog post,people would have been rescued,taken to a place of safety.Coming from an area where the perils of water are all too precedent,I witnessed many rescues.At times,there were those who didn’t make it-those are the realities of coastal storms-but I always remember those brave folk who risked their lives to save others,and I particular the Penlee crew back in the 1980s.We all hope that lives will not be lost during these floods.

As life has a habit of biting us all in one way or another,I hope that things will improve,as I know all my fellow humans would think the same.Tgis is my blog post for today.

“Boxing Day at the turn of the 20th century in Kernow”!

My mind as a child brought up in the Cornish hamlet of Indian Queens was fuelled with stories passed down from generations about “Boxing” day.Using the word story might appear to be unkind,but I never entirely could vouch fr their veracity somehow.However,they were told with sincerity,and that’s the best any of us get in life really.

My Gran told me about her life as a young girl at the turn of the 20th century.Her words were feral to match the environment of the “Goss Moor” at that time.She told stories of isolation,of back breaking work,of sibling loss,of harsh unforgiving weather.As this depressing collage cried out for just a hint of positive colour,she always provided it for me whenever she told of the close communities to which each Hamlets belonged too.Yes,their fusion of adversity,their zeal for survival was a clarion call especially at Christmas.Grans tales of preparing a Christmas Box from her meagre food supplies were,at still remain to me,truly humbling.Her knitting of sleeveless gloves for the coal man,her making of bread to be left out for the milkman,the list went on and on.These little boxes were what we might call tokens of appreciation,but they were,to her,an absolute statement of thanks  in perpetuity.

As I look back on those times from the comfort of my very middle class home that I rent in Dorset,I know that it’s easy to become divorced from your roots.You know that sence of knowing everyone in your community,your close knit circle,your enclave in Kernow.In so many ways,as so many other places testify,Kernow isn’t really like that now.awhy yes,there might be a few pockets of the county that boast an attraction for the old ways,but truly,Kernow has had to change.In many ways,the ruggedness of a place like Goss Moor,along with its far larger counterpart,Bodmin Moor,still has a fascination for many folk.However,when you were living in a cold,damp cottage,with nine others,it wasn’t a picnic,and as previously written,it was,in many ways,a,feral environment.So yes,my Gran could tell a yarn,suck you in to the romance of the time,but if you lived any time in the Winter there,you had to have been profoundly affected by it.

In the round,as the great Russian author said,”What doesn’t kill you,makes you stronger”,and I am grateful for what I have .Nowadays,the words Boxing Day have such a different connotation to me and I dare say,to most people.As we all have memories,we might think of it differently than I have.As is my muse,I wanted to share just one on my blog today.

“The Birds are Singing.”

As the birds sing outside my bedroom window,

Their songs seem so very heartfelt and clear.

Could I imitate their joy if only for one day,or even one week,

These birds make the best of what they have got.

Let’s imitate the birds during this season,

Making the best of life,single night their way through its ups and downs.

Merry X-mas all.

“It’s raining outside”.

With my eyes I can see it,but within these four walls it hasn’t entered my life.It makes me think when it’s rains like this of the plight of my fellow humans around the world who have been victims of floods throughout 2015.Your mind dwells on the sheer enormity of the fact that you are looking at water coming into your home,and basically destroying everything in its path.Also,at some point,you are thinking of your own skin,your neighbours,be they old,sick,or infirm,and you are scared for their safety.This is profoundly serious,and your heart goes out to everyone affected by floods.

When I was a child,you were fearful of the sea,even though you knew someone who earned their living by it,be it by fishing or tourism,you also knew of a family who would have lost a family member at sea,it was what life was like on the Cornish coastline.Fishermen mitigated the risks as best as they could,but even they were afraid of what water could do,and it’s massive shock waves were felt throughout the community.

As I think about communities that have been affected by floods,and sometimes more than on en the space of a few years,I am in awe of those communities and the vibrancy of them.Sometimes,we envy people who live near national parks or places of outstanding natural beauty,but spare a thought for them now in the Cumbrian national park because this weather is truly awful,it is just like a Tsaunami in many ways for them.

So,yes,it’s raining outside,it’s Christmas Eve,it’s slightly inconvenient,but I’m not facing a flood here.Its sounds trite to say that we should count our blessings,but essentially,that is the salient message when many others are truly struggling.Yes,after these terrible events,there will be so much soul searching into why it happened.Hopefully,genuine lessons will be learnt.We will reignite our appreciation for the emergency services.However,let’s hope that we truly appreciate just what they have done for us all,and not be too quick to accept the cuts that constant governments have inflicted upon them.Also,let’s hope that we will all appreciate our neighbours with our support as much as they support us.

We need each other,it’s the life blood of the community.Happy X-mas all.

Dogs Matter,

In all the preparations for the festive season let us remember our wonderful best friends,

They are with us 24/7,365 days of the year.

Our Dogs welcome us when we arrive home from our work or chores,

They are never bored with us,or precious with us,they are our Dogs.

When they are puppies,they play games,and make us laugh,

If we ever fall ill,they are there around us,lending us cheer.

We talk to them when we are elated,we are consoled by them when we are deflated.

They know the real us,what we are about,they just know you know,

They would lay down their life for us,and that’s worth more than a bone at this time of the year.

They live in our home,and they are a massive part of our home,

So happy Christmas to all the wonderful dogs on the earth.

“Flood alert”.

I’m waiting for the rain to stop,

 You see,I forgot ever to mention it,what a flop.

When it rains here,the drains block,the waters rise and rise,

They sometimes don’t stop,so I have to be ready with anything

My melodrama isn’t funny when the water rises,

No surprises,just water coming through every pore.

So I wait,and wait until it abates,keeping score on the downpour.

If t gets worse,I’ll be outside moving my car,fearing the worse,

Floods come to so many each winter,you could say there a curse.

There’s no time to rehearse,no time to converse,no time for church,

You try to do what you can do,you pretend your not worried.

But the older you get,the worse it gets,the shape of things to come isn’t good,

As what we find we learn to a pet because there is Nothng else.

“The Waves are up today”.

As the Wind blowed today  along the Dorset coastline,I am reminded that life can,and is good for most of us who are fortunate to live near the sea.Watching those rollers walking along the beach with my dogs left a lasting mark on me there.You see,most people nowadays live in cities where a trip to the seaside is still something that will take a day to accomplish wth accommodation almost a must.My visit this morning took 20 minutes to arrive at,leaving me with a couple of good hours to enjoy the wonderful hinterland that is Hengisbury head.

My passion  from a child growing up in the vicinity f Newquay in Cornwall,has always t soak up all the seasonal elements that the coastline affords.Today was no exception.There were majestic waves whipped up by the wind.There was sea foam all over the beach,it was quite an atmosphere.Personally,I prefer it like this,and as there weren’t that many on the foreshore,I felt I had the place to myself.

Most of the important decisions that I have ever made have been usually made by the sea,or on top of some cliff somewhere.It has been the backdrop to almost everything that has been important in my life.As the noise levels today were truly epic,it helped me to see that all the other stuff in my life wasn’t that important,that life will go on,that the sun has come up again today,and we are where we are.Yes,granted,I could have made those conclusions at home,or at school,it’s just that being there enhanced that process of clear thinking to me

These sea sounds acted as a focus in many ways.Sometimes the magnetic sound that you get when the wind is up is very unique to me.As I stood there,I thought of these lost at sea in the Penlee Lifeboat,as this day is the anniversary of that terrible disaster.Sometimes the sea is so very,very cruel,as anyone who has been brought up near will honestly tell you.

My relationship with the sea has always been quite bi-polar.One minute it can be so calm,the next it can raise head up,and ,wth a freak wave.destroy any innocent that just happens to be in its way.So my observations haven’t really made me less afraid,just more knowledgable.

These days,I view it from the fore-shore avidly,but I never,never,never.turn my back on it.This of course appears to be over th to to many,but to me it’s all about preservation.

“Just a thought”.

We always say “be careful”!

       Be careful on the roads,

            Be careful on those streets,

                 Be careful with that knife,

                     Public announcements say,”Mind the gap”.
             But!

                    How about being careful with the feelings of others?
                        How about thinking about the homeless?
                            How about feeding the Poor?
                                Just a thought,just a thought,just a thought.