Monthly Archives: November 2017

One Day!

Under the cliffs at Lusty Glaze beach,the sound trap holds you in a basin of sound that sets your mind on edge through the signals from your ears.Oh Lusty,my joy aboundeth as I soak up your waves energy,encased in the caves with jutting spikes ,contoured by the Atlantic,and washed in its spray of pure white foam.

We stand in awe of its spendour it’s Ardour,it’s tidal conversations with our soul.If the tides were each an individual word,what would they be?If each waves were as words too,then what would they say:Dream,Fantasy,Mermaid,Pirate,surf,body board,sand-castle,frisby,knotted handkerchief,windbreak,ice -cream.So,my quirky view of the waves might not be yours,and that isn’t the point.What is the point is that the waves are magical,they take us away to something far less than the banal,something altogether more more more fulfilling,

Hiding behind the glaze hotel,a new addition to me since my immigration to Dorsetshire,I spied the wire supports for the cliffs to the top of the beach towards Porth,again,new to me,and the product of potential cliff falls ,or just the potential of falls.When I was younger,I would attempt to climb up these.These dangers never struck me too much,but nowadays I guess they were and the lifegauards ,If on patrol,would quickly disperse any would be Chris Bonnington from attempting such an ascent.But then,especially in November,Newquay was quiet, very sparsely populated,with the tail wind of hardy visitors all but a distant memory,dwindling from the August bank holiday,If I thought about it back then,you could walk ,when the tide was out from Pentire,across Fisty ,to the Harbour,then Tolcarne,and Towan and eventually to Lusty without meeting a soul,with out communing with another human,

Last week,even in the cold of November winds,there were people ,fresh faced young people,with their surfing garb and warm smiles,and it lifted my mood ,my yearning for yesterday year,those days of “Raining days and Mondays”.Why these young people,making lattes and special cocktails dressed Lusty in human splendour.If you didn’t know what the high tides could do,you might think that it never floods,but it does,and always will do,but the Hotel takes it all on the chin,serves up another latter,and lives on.Yes,the old place lives on,now with the Atlantic battering luxury flats where the hotel Riviera once stood,where I played the piano for the visitors,now,the private domain of private flats with glorious views of mother Atlantic.Triple glazed apparently,it will need to be ,or they won’t hear their tales in the winter storms.

Dwelling on that day a little after my visit to the chapel of rest,I wondered why uswe

put such stock on being Cornish.After all,there aren’t too many of us ,and we have our quirky ways,but somehow we “get on”,we make do,we mend ,we fish,we make music,we draw,we paint,we eat and make pasties,cream teas,and the like.We know what poverty is like,but it’s Poverty with a view ,the best sort.

Driving back to my nieces home near Eden ,maybe East of Eden,I’m reminded of how Cornwall has changed since when I moved away in 1988.Back then ,tourism in Cornwall was important,but not on the scale to which it is now.As I drove to St Austell,I was reminded of the redundant Goss moor,the plain of desolation from Indian Queens to Roche,the rock ,and the clay villages of St Dennis ,Nanpean,Foxhole,and St Stephen.Now,the A30 carries the visitors to the depths of the county,allowing coverage of the compass points with ease.Why,gone are the days when a holiday to Cornwall would mean two days travelling as the A30 now links you to the M5 and further to the north,or the M4 to Wales or London.We forget,or should I say,I forget,that 30 years ago,the A30 was still “conjestion paradise”.Now,it is Cornwall’s savour,just one road can make such a difference.

One day can have a profound affect on the way we process things,and I feel that I must record that Monday a couple of weeks ago.As a boy,the roads seemed so quiet,as my weird hobby,popular at the time ,especially amongst young boys in Cornwall,of collecting license numbers in a book would be impossible now as the sheer volume of transport has proliferated to such a degree.

Cornwall has a way of embracing change that other more sophisticated areas and their environmental lobbies resist with an enviable robustness.As i observe the wind turbines driving from the top of Mitchell heading towards Truro,I realise that the county ,rich in mineral deposits,still gives up so much of its beauty to further the economy.Im not aware of the u employment figures in the county anymore,but I knew at one point in the early eighties that they were twice the National average.These figures are one thing,but living them is another thing altogether.

From my own family there,I thought how education and opportunities for young people are still a problem,with some schools faring well,but others struggling in their wake to deliver the education that these young ones desperately need.

Thinking of my sisters,of their industry,that they all left school without basic qualifications that are entry level now,and yet,they worked so very very hard ,and they are a credit to themselves.

My leaving the county was,to me,vital,and from Indian Queens I took with me the feelings of a Celt,the arrogance of insecurity,and the will Power of the miner,mixed it all up,and out I popped.That Pasty of dreams,,that filling of marvels,that pastry of hope .

Yes,That day, fought it all back .

Thank you.



To observe the little emotional lights!

As the week progresses,this never ending propulsion,I dwell on the past acts of love and kindness from my memories of others in that crystal maze that is my imagination,my consciousness,my mental enclosure,Finding time to reflect on the good that has been done me is a form of emotional battery charge,as it equips me to live ,what I might term,a better life.That life,with all its emotional terrains is made so much more palatable by the numerous acts of kindness and care that have been afforded me in my sojourn on this Earth,my own bit of Terra Firma as it were.

Focusing intensely on the important things isn’t a fantasy,it isn’t ignoring the sadness that we all can feel,but it is giving due weight to the value f each day of life,and how just to savour it for what it is.As has often been said ,it isn’t necessarily the pursuit of a good day as such,it’s the finding something that is positive in it.Its the Autumn colours,that optic feast ,that free light show these past few days.Its that sheer zest for life that my dogs show every morning ,that “What are we having for breakfast thing they do”.

Yes,although we all carry that potential of negativity within each of us,we can,as such,harness the good in others,their support,their kindness,their empathy in ways that energise us ,keeping a perspective in our lives that we so desperately need to carry on .

Living of itself can be a challenge for many,but after numerous observations critically ill people in hospitals from Cornwall to London it has always made an imprint on my mind that their desire to overcome,to fight ,to grapple,to give it a go this thing called life,is an extremely wonderful thing to observe.So,I make this plea to myself today,and maybe it might help your day go slightly better,I’m choosing to look for small things every few hours to lift me,be it ,in my environment,an animal,the sounds that I hear,the hints of happiness that we sometimes observe as a soft smile from a pleasing text message is read,or a greeting ,or an emoji of support,I’m going to notice,yes,to silently feed of that positive life emotion to recharge my beating life batteries.

Thank you for your attention to my muse today.


Telling Stories.

It’s another day ,another clean slate as it were,or ,to use the same mineral metaphor,another chance to wipe the slate clean.When I was a child,my uncle would talk about this memories of schooling in the coy villages of Cornwall,and he would talk about his mother using a slate at school.Recently,while on a visit to Cornwall,I paid a visit to the slate quarry that I worked in during my school holidays as a teenager ,and it crossed my mind what prominence slate used to have in the lives of people back then.Now,in the 21 st century ,when alternatives are used ,when there isn’t a need for cold rooms with their slate shelf’s ,it all seems a bye gone age,but the phrase “wiping the slate clea” has survived .

Maybe,when more generations pass on,more and more of these life phrases will too,but I hope that they don’t ,and I hope they survive.Maybe,just maybe,when someòne dies,people might start to forget them,but I would like to think that we don’t,that we treasure their humanity ,their characters ,their inner ness,Yes,I really would like to think that.As the lessons that my uncle taught  me still echo in my mind,I was so grateful that he talked to me ,that he wasn’t taciturn,that he told me about what it was like to pass the grammar test ,only to be told that he couldn’t attend it because they were poor.

As we approach rememberance Sunday,let us never forget what people did for us,how they taught us how to live with few means ,but with big hearts.

Sometimes,stories keep us going ,like the bear  in Michael bonds book,who needed a story every night to settle down.Let us continue to retell the stories of òur family members ,so that they live on in our memories.Oral stories are a wonderful way to excite and love children,and it’s not expensive. It is the price of our time though .

If you have children or gran children ,read to them,spend time with them ,and if you haven’t ,wipe the slate clean with them and write another life story with them again .

My Week.

Travelled to Cornwall,to Kernowsmith,the pride of the Southwest,

Said goodbye to my sister Donna,and one and all stood tall ,

Meditated on the fragility of life,

Felt the need to take stock ,

Took an emotional stock check,

Tried to learn from the past,but not to be defined by it,

Kept my routine of exercise forwards ,

Looked to the tunes and pictures to blast my senses,

Smiled at my mistakes,realised that I’m not all that,

Checked that my heart still beats,

Said hello to the waves of Fistral,Lusty and Co,

Walked up to Eden and beyond,

Sang a hymn or two in concert with Diapason,

Returned my sister to the bowels of the Earth,

Got back home to Dorset ,to my pupils,with their glow,

That was my week,my life,my sparks,my imprints n the sand of existence.

Farewell to my mermaid of the North coast!

When on Monday I returned to Fistral bay because of a family bereavement,I felt that the place had gone “up market”.Not that is wasn’t before time,don’t get me wrong,but it just always had that time warp thing in my head as a younger man like it would always be Fisty!Well,everything changes,that is accept the very thing that I looked and listened at,the Atlantic.Why,that hadn’t changed at all,it had that essence,that Poseidon ,that roar from its bowels ,that come to me ,if you dare.

Walking out to the cribber,the old lifeboat station ,the place where the launch was a leap of faith self,I had a mental explosion of sea faring memories,the tides dicing with my synopsis ,playing poker with my feelings tossing my Waldorf salad of emotions through the ringer of my tears. It,do know,it did me oh so much good,that roar,that rush of tidal energy,that cocktail of foam Cointreau with a dash of lemon and sea salt ice.

So,I returned from the funeral home and left a memory of my sister with the “mermaids of Great Western,and the slopes of Lusty glaze ,nestling in her bosom of hope and finery”

Fairwell my lady ,my mermaid of the North coast.

To Rest.

It’s not the done thing ,you know,to Rest,

Why ,there is always oh so much to do,

Beds to makes,heads to shake,minds to inflate,

No,no time to rest,no time to desist to slumber,

For in the life moment,nothing should own industry,

To be active,to rush,to flourish,to pursue,why ,such noble pursuits,

No,that kind act,that visit to the sick,the squeeze of the infirms hand can wait,

Wait,I say,wait,………until ,it’s too late,until the diary is closed,until our mortal coil breaks,

Then,and only then,does the rest beckon,the industry stops,all lines become dead,

Rest awaits us all,but ,now,in this life,in this moment,can be,are we ,at peace with ourselves,our fellowman?

Oh,we talk to ourselves,convince ourselves that we are cool,that we have all the emotional intelligence,

But,but ,but………What have we given today?What good have we done?

When true rest comes,we make peace with our fellowman,our kinsfolk,

For by their peace,their security,we can rest,we can :Rest ourselves.