Thursday, 29 December 2016

No Spinning Required

    I decided a few weeks ago that it was time to get rid of my collection of vinyl records. Yes, they are becoming fashionable again, however it's unlikely that I'm going to relive my teenage years and sit crossed-legged in front of a spinning turntable. So, it was time to find them a good home.

    However, looking through the well worn sleeves, there were two that tugged at my heartstrings and I decided the best home that they could have was my own.

    The two I decided to keep hold of were the original, Band Aid single, Do They Know It's Christmas? and the album, Sing It Again Rod, by Rod Stewart.

    I did find a good home for the others and the two I mentioned, now hang proudly on my study wall. Where I can fondly look at them with no cramped legs, or spinning required.

Happy New Year Friends!


Thursday, 22 December 2016

Goodwill to all Men


    The presents are wrapped, the wine rack is groaning and the fridge freezer is bursting at the seams. I believe I am organised for the Sunday. But am I? Who knows. I'll tell you the next time we catch up.

    I have a list written and it's not my wish list for Santa. It's my schedule for the next big event in my household, defrosting and cooking the food. Starting Friday night.

    Christmas, is no longer a religious time for many, however it is a time that we can gather together with friends and family and celebrate humanity. That is if we are blessed to have people around us to do so and of course there are countless people who do not.

    What is humanity? Compassion, kindness, tolerance, benevolence are some of the characteristics. Daily we know that there are many appalling attacks on these. But, while the rest of us can embrace these virtues, it is time to wish, Goodwill to all Men.

    Merry Christmas readers.



Monday, 19 December 2016

Demon's Story (Book Extract)

Demon’s Story

    It’s 7 am, and JoJo transmutes from her serpent appearance into that of her human form. She dresses quickly into her canteen assistant’s uniform and makes her way into the kitchen at the back of her house. The sun is rising, causing the cacti in her backyard to imitate shadowy figures, which move
desultorily across the ground.

    A transient shadow makes her stop what she’s doing. She lifts up the net curtain, to take a second look out of the window. She can’t see anything incongruous and she drops the window covering back into place.

    She goes into the utility room to get her white leather clogs from the shoe rack. An indistinguishable figure flashes across the opaque glass of the door that leads to the yard. JoJo turns the key in the lock clockwise and then opens the door with some caution. There are no obvious visible signs of her having
uninvited company. But nevertheless, she steps out onto the paved path that circles the house and calls out,
    “Hello, is there someone there?”
    Only the crickets chirp a reply. She laughs raucously and turns to go back inside. Bang, the clatter of a garbage can comes from the side of the house. She moves towards the location of the noise gingerly.

    “Grrr, grrr, grrr.” A male black bear appears from around the corner, causing JoJo to jump back in surprise. The bear stands upright on its long hind legs and begins to walk towards JoJo. Its broad skull and large jaws seem disproportionate to its three and a half foot stature. The curved claws of its leathery soled forepaws gouge at the air, forcing JoJo to backtrack her steps speedily.

    She goes back into the utility room, but she has no time to close the door as the bear is close behind. The black omnivore swipes at her, but misses his target. JoJo commences her mutation, but doing so lessens her ability to stay out of the bears reach. He catches hold of her shoulder, she squeals as the
razor-sharp claws dig deep into her flesh.

    She frees herself from his clutches, she has only partially changed into her demon state. The bear aims a blow at JoJo’s twisting serpent like head. His sharp nails meet with their objective once again.
This time tearing at the scaly skin on top of her head.

    The demon is using up all her energy to fight for her existence, meaning that her full metamorphosis is being delayed. The black bear has the upper hand and JoJo’s powers are all but depleted. She has nowhere to go and nowhere to hide. She can only hope that her master can forgive her for her weakness.



Saturday, 17 December 2016

Snow is Falling

The snow continues falling
And Bed is calling
The children's eyes are bright
There is likely to be little sleep tonight 
A carrot, a glass of milk and a pie
A twinkle in the northern sky
The sleigh bells will alert them when he is near
A yo-ho-ho they might even hear
In the silence of the house, the stairs creak
They cannot make any noise, especially speak
With excitement they're filled
Opening the door, the room is warm not chilled
The fire it blazes in the grate
Is there a chance he has been late?
The overfilled stockings on the mantel a sight to be seen
Oh, yes, yes, Santa has been

Wednesday, 14 December 2016

The Cold Moon

As a Full Cold Moon looms
We search for our snow brooms

Astrologers fix their gaze to the night sky
Because in its splendour, the moon will amaze the eye

It can bring irrational feelings and thoughts
Our emotional outbursts causing hurt like ammo from a slingshot

 Coastlines alter as their tide levels rise high
While at this time, myths tell us that fairies cause mischief as they fly

It will be the last of this special moon until next year
The final time, its day side will display itself so clear

Friday, 9 December 2016

Count Down Craziness

    It's been a little crazy at home this last week, similar to millions around the world I've been making preparations for Christmas. For once I'm hoping to get ahead of the game. My plan is that on Christmas Eve all I'll have to do is worry about peeling the Brussels sprouts and stuffing the turkey.

   All going well, the presents will be bought, wrapped and safely tucked away under the tree. I still do have a few more to buy, but Saturday that chapter will be finished. (Cross fingers)

    Talking of chapters I'm also endeavouring to finish a new novel and giving it my best shot to stick to a tight writing schedule. This week I have been successful, I have managed to cram in lots of writing hours and a not so shabby word count.

    Hope your preparations are all going well as countdown has begun! And remember to add my books to your wish list!


Monday, 5 December 2016

When the People Speak

    In the last few years there has been an upsurge in populations all over the world wanting to rightly, rid themselves of dictators and in turn allow democracy to rule.

    For many this has caused turmoil within their country and the backlash we know has caused mass population displacement. With no end at present seeming to be insight.

    As someone who classes Spain and in particular the, Canary Islands, my second homeland; I at times find it hard to comprehend that this same country was ruled once by a dictator.

    In 1936, General Francisco Franco (1892-1975) led a revolt against the, Popular Front Party, from the Canary Islands where he was governor. Later that year he was appointed, Generalissimo of Nationalist Spain and Head of the country.

    His death in 1975 paved the way for a vote on democracy in 1978. Similar to the struggles that are prevailing now in the countries that are going through a great change, some of the Spanish population were intimidated and threatened too.

    But democracy did win and thirty-eight years on it still rules. We can only hope and pray that peace will shine upon all in another thirty-eight years.

Thursday, 1 December 2016

From the Mouth's of Babes

    I flew home to Scotland on Monday, from the Canary Islands, Spain. Flying isn't something I'm crazy about and if I can, I will avoid. However, driving several thousand miles, passing through a minimum of three European countries, not forgetting the two ferry crossings means that flying for five hours wins every time on this journey.

    I was travelling alone and I was not looking forward to it at all. I can only read and write so long, because for some reason when flying I become very sleepy. My head slumped to the side and my mouth wide open I'm sure is not a good look. A look that would most certainly scare any small children that happen to be in my vicinity.

    Occasionally though, you do get someone seated next to you that makes those five hours literally fly by and Monday was one of those times. My two fellow travellers beside me were a woman and her daughter, returning to Scotland following a weeks holiday on the island.

    The girl whom I found out later to be twelve years old, was instructed by her mother to say, " Hello," to me before she slipped into her seat. Seated between her mother and I, the child organised her things, buckled up quickly and within minutes I became aware she was watching me. I could feel her eyes taking in every inch of me. An assessment was being made as to whether I was going to be her friend, or foe on our journey ahead.

    The Captain's flight announcement advised us that the flight was going to be around four hours, thirty minutes because of tail winds and this is where my unforgettable journey began.

    Minutes after take-off my young companion started to question me. The questions included, my nationality, home-town,  marital status and as to whether I was a parent or, not. I realised that her inquisitive mind was still doing an assessment.

   When she began to chat openly about herself I knew I had passed her test. Her concern for my well-being was touching, her words and other kind gestures, suggested that she felt I needed to be taken care of . She found it sad for some reason that I was travelling alone and I can only assume the intermittent strokes of my arm she administered were given to reassure me, that I was not alone.

    Earlier than planned we reached our destination, Edinburgh. But, before we bid our farewells my intriguing little friend told me that she hoped we might meet again. Little does she know that I  hope so too.