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Author Archives: A wander through the mind

Reflections 2018 w28

This week I found out the story of the man of whom I did not know existed until six months ago.

That man is called Philip Astley – Creator of the Modern Circus, who lived a couple of streets down from me, and has just had his 250th anniversary, of his creation, of the modern circus.

The fact that he has had no fanfare or real recognition prior to this year by Newcastle under Lyme council, shows more about the shift towards art and culture being put forefront, amidst the usual “pfft. It’s all a waist of money” brigade, than to anything else.

The story was told by  The New Vic Theatre done in a most fantastical way.

Theatre, Art, Circus acts, both real and reinvented to suit the stage, Comedy and some Panto-esq performances, off stage as well as on, seemed to flow seamlessly one scene to another. I sat in the upper floor seats, which I prefer to be honest, and was torn as to watching the action on the stage or the tremendous amount of work that is done , unnoticed by nearly all, in the framework above it or in the mission control booth off to one side, I presume all the effects are controlled from there.

The pace was fast, only to slow down as much for the actors to catch breath one would think, as to tell the story, even this was done cleverly. At this point one does not know whether one will be writing a blog on the plays seen, but if this is the case, I will leave the publishing of those blogs until after the performances have stopped – I could say too much and put out al lot of spoilers – unlikely, it would be for someone to read it before going, but it would be sods law if I did.

I left the theatre feeling a sense of wonderment, a wonderment I have not felt at a circus nor play for decades. It has been their most ambitious play so far, to be honest I cannot see how it could be beaten and still be a play. They defiantly cannot have more circus style acts than what they had, there is not the room. No, one thinks it could only be matched. This play has set the bar, and it has set it high!

The last play that left me with a sense of wonderment?

It was at The (Old) Victoria Theatre, back when I was in middle school. The play was…Treasure Island.

One can still see the actors swinging in the rigging ropes suspended from the ships mast even now.

www.awanderthroughthemind.co.uk/reflections-2018

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I Don’t Want To Go Outside …#Poetry#Prose#Poem

I Don’t Want, To Go Outside

 

I don’t want to go,

exposed outside.

But behind this door,

remain and hide.

What is it, out there,

I fear, to face?

Nought but the monster

in my own head space.

The door is where

the line is drawn.

Even though my mind’s,

where the monster’s born.

The fears in the fog,

where the shadows will hide.

Upon gusts of the wind,

will the monster ride.

The rain its tears,

as it passes overhead.

In the suns long shadows,

it will hide instead.

The ice its skin,

as it slithers under foot.

Its cold, cold hand,

on exposed skin put.

Hear the dogs a barking,

to scare it away.

Movement in the trees

and the branches will sway.

The birds are disturbed,

take flight with a shrill.

as the frost of its breath,

in my lungs will chill.

No there’s nothing out there,

but what’s in my mind.

And my mind’s made up;

We’re not going out.

 

A § M 

18/05/18

Once Upon a Time…#Poetry#Prose#Poem

Once Upon a Time

 

There once was a time that you did tear,

When ride me you told was your last year.

On a pier I’m quite quaint,

But I’m loosing my paint,

n you’ve still not returned me my left ear.

 

A § M 

19/05/2018

Reflections 2018 w27

Spot is not having a good week.

Her back legs/hips are stiff, and it could be for a number of reasons.

  1. On Monday she tried to wrap my legs and stick with her lead, this lead to a near trip, which resulted in her letting out a high pitched squeal, what it was I did to her I do not know, but it could be the cause.
  2. She has been suffering in this heat, even with all the tricks I’ve been using. One will be buying a cooling mat next week to add to the temperature defences.
  3. She is stubbornly not drinking enough in the day, instead leaving it till late afternoon/early evening to get her fill. Even when dehydrated. Water melon has been a godsend in combatting this, but it is not enough. She is not impressed with iced water either.
  4. She also started the week off being slightly blocked up, again connected with the dehydration, and licking my sisters dog – a walking furball dispenser.
  5. She misjudged a jump over a board in the garden – this resulted in a thud to the inner thighs of the back legs, she will allow massage nearly all day.

But it has changed how I am looking at days out with her, as at 9.5yrs she is not getting any younger and arthritis in Jack Russel dogs is common, but I do not want to leave her behind one what is ‘our’ days out, even in the future.

So one has to look at alternative ways to cope – just in case she cannot walk any further – half way round.

A couple of ideas look promising,  but the one I like the most, and the one that will allow greater distance walks (potentially) with her, is also the most expensive.

One now has to work out what to sell in order to buy it; but I may try one of the cheaper alternatives for the shorter walks.

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Reflections 2018 w26

The problem with an allotment, especially where the soil is of the clay variety, is holidays.

And this holiday turned out to be perfectly timed with a heat wave.

One had the next plot over to water for me whilst we were away,  but my dads method of gardening is 1970’s style, a style I for one will not be doing when I get my own plot. The method is to dig in compost to “improve the soil”, this particular plot has had this done for 25 years+ by dad, and it is no better now than it was 15 years ago, and is a battle to stop it from baking hard and cracking. There are other ways, and it will be several on trial on mine to work out which works in the area one lives.

This baking of soil was what the neighbour had to deal with while I was away.

Because of the heat and dryness I was expecting a lot of items to have bolted, but only a few things have. The sweetcorn has decided, at 2ft tall to call it a day on ground clearance and grow tassels. The baby corn looks stronger thought much taller. My purple peas are ready to pick, they are that tasty even I can eat them raw, the plant however looks in poor health.

Strawberry plants are sending out runners, raspberry’s have ripened, gone past it, dried  up and yellowing. The rhubarb has stalled, so none to go down the food-bank in the morning. One did however pick my first yellow baby courgettes for lunch tomorrow.

Everything else seems ok, the greenhouses are in so much shade from the trees next door that they have been protected, luckily. But the weeds have gone berserk, there is more growth on them than anything else.

So this week will be spent trying to tidy up the plot whilst avoiding one individual and the sun/heat.

I will also be looking over a short story written for a Stoke on Trent last year, but was finished too late, adjusting it if need be, there is a 100 more words that could be used this time round, and sending it off.

If it reads the same as last year it’s a competition winner.

www.awanderthroughthemind.co.uk/reflections-2018

Reflections 2018 w25

One thinks that one can, at times, have an almost romantic view of the nature that is around me.

Only for nature to give me a quick, sharp, jab of reality.

I had in mind this week to actually take my sketch book, along with my watercolour set, outdoors! A big step for me.

The setting – a small stream flowing around several bends, long grass atop of sandy banks, small islands of pebbles scattered along the shallower parts. Serine indeed, with the soundtrack of trickling water to relax with.

The plan was for Spot and myself to nestle in on a lower part of a bank, away from the sight of passing dog walkers, and just relax. My artwork not on show, thus reducing the anxiety of publicly sketching and painting, snacks and a flask of fruity green tea to hand.

One thought it may be prudent to goto the location today – pre sunset – just to have an idea as to where one would like to be situated. Armed with my trusty Tilly hat, covered in the most repugnant anti-mosquito spray I have, just in case, one took Spot for a little walk.

The air was still and warm from the days earlier summer temperatures, the stream was low, much lower than what one remembered it from last time, but this served only to make the pebble islands have greater character, a real bonus for the artwork to come in the following week. The long grass brushed gently against bare skin of my lower legs, parting ways in front as Spot pushed through, for her, a towering forest of green. Her white tail wagging all the while.

Yes, this was a pleasant walk.

A spot was found that would be suitable for the later excursion, secluded, and a flat area large enough that a seat could be placed on the ground for Spot and myself to share, whilst being able to place the art materials around in an orderly fashion. Yes this was the spot.

We sat for a while admiring the view, then the gnats must have gotten used to the smell of the repellent, and I became a viable option for lunch, vowing to wear much more next time I stood up.

The low angle of the sun, now setting, made the gnats shine as they flew around. They shone like the droplets of water that makes up the mist, swirling in a thick mass – at head height. And yet my head height was only level with the top of the bank, I had yet to climb up into that swirling mass of glistening white, currently starting to obscure the view of the surroundings, I had no other exit. One just hoped that the stinky repellent was enough to get clear of the area – quickly! Without all exposed areas of skin bitten. One has never seen so many gnats as one did today.

The sketching trip I think will be changed to a quick visit for photo’s, as I do not think that even if the entire bottle of spray was to be used, it would be enough. Even as the memory is recalled it is making me itch.

So far I am lucky not to have bites starting to develop.

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Reflections 2018 w24

Insanity is defined as doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result.

Am I insane?

I trust in the doctors and psychological teams, over and over – being told the same thing over and over…There is no magic pill, it’s the therapy that will be best treatment, and it will be hard.

I accepted that, and it made sense. After-all it took a lifetime to break my mind, logic dictates it will take the rest of it to become better. But how is one supposed to carry on trusting when therapies are blocked/denied/not accessible, even when it has been part of a diagnosis and treatment plan by a doctor? Because one is on medication it is classed as being treated – opposite of what one was told originally – that the therapies would be the treatment long term not the medication, and I quote the doctor “the medication is just a band aid”.

I wish that there was a treatment plan of an alternative direction, more natural than chemical manipulation, recognised as treatment. One would give it a try, because the medications one is on now are just coincidental to the symptoms of known side effects – which are making me less well.

And my trust is beginning to fade.

Today, as I once again caused a lot of pain to my body chasing my son around the play centre, a little girl stopped me and asked why I was wearing headphones – the big over ear ones – I like that in children, the curiosity to question and the courage to ask them, so I told her. I told her it was to block out a lot of the noises around me in busy places, because if I have a lot of noises to listen too, my head hurts. Kinda the truth, I did not want to tell her what my anxiety manifests and give her nightmares. She listened, digested the answer, and decided it would be fun if I chased her and her friend around the play area. I called my son over to see if he was interested in chasing them, and then being chased, but he was having non of it, today was daddy day only.

This in part I think was because his best friends Dad died this week, and he wanted to have the comfort of having his dad play with him. I think that this is the second father, defiantly the second parent, that has died in the last 18 months, of one of his school friends. This year his sleepover happens to be on fathers day eve, one thinks tomorrow will be an extra cuddly day. I have got the cuddle films at the ready.

I don’t think it unreasonable to ask for a treatment to get better, if only to ease any worries he may have – toward a dad he has never seen well.

 

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