Mapping out our exit with mint tea and purple ink

You know what’s starting to bug me most about this whole Brexit thing? It’s being lectured on social media about what life was like in the 1970s, by people who clearly weren’t there. Being told how good we all had it, how the ‘old folk’ are selfishly depriving young people of their futures. That all…

Canadian adventure: chalky snow and warming huts

Long haul economy. Gotta love it. For the last few years now, no longer prepared to knowingly contort myself into a pretzel for even a two-hour flight, I either book extra leg room myself or harangue the Gremlin till he does it for me (the rule of thumb being: he/she who books the trip also…

My how a ski trip flies with the flu

So much for the ‘First Defence’ squirted regularly and inelegantly up both nostrils as we travelled towards France, and so much for the frenzied scrubbing of every suspect surface between Cumbria and Les Trois Vallées with anti-bacterial wipes. So much for the constant hand washing, a travel-inspired obsessive compulsive aversion to making contact with anything…

Christmas Kitchen Bingo, battered blossoms and a Happy #2019 to you!

I knew things weren’t quite as they should be the moment it happened. ‘Won’t be a minute,’ I trilled through the kitchen door, on the other side of which the Gremlin stood patiently waiting, shopping bags and car keys in hand. ‘Just putting on my socks and boots.’ Only then remembering my socks had actually…

Confessions of a bad yogi

Last week, in London… Overheard en route to the OM Yoga Show – on the bus to Ally Pally – one yogi to another, waxing really, really, REALLY enthusiastic about a favourite eatery which, despite really clear signage on the matter, really has trouble persuading people it’s ‘really vegan fish and chips…’ And, in case…

A fish without bones, a pea on a fork and a door to possibilities

Overheard while waiting at the gate at Aktion airport, en route home from Vassiliki: a woman impressing her neighbour with all the new-fangled food she’d tried out in Greece. Like tuna. Which (and this may come as some surprise to members of the tuna family) she referred to as a ‘fish with no bones in’….

Getting grumpy in Vassiliki

It’s the little things that trip you up isn’t it? I mean here I am in Greece, all zenned out with yoga and sunshine, and something is really buggin’ me. Quite apart fom the actual bugs. It’s the people next door. In the next room. They keep nicking our chairs. All the rooms have two….

Counting our blessings on the highways to Hell

We should ‘try living in the real world’, said our detractor, via the Letters page of the Cockermouth Times and Star, winding up for his punchline. ‘In a city!’ Clearly it was heart-felt. And aimed full square at me and my co-contributor of many a letter to our local paper, regarding our on-going concerns about…

Stormtroopers and sandbags

Our newish neighbours, across the way in what used to be loosely called ‘the view’ from our living room window — essentially wild green verge, hedgerow, field and cows, in that order — last week erected what appeared to be an eight-foot stormtrooper in their front bay window. As in shiny white-panelled foot soldier of…

Make up tips for old ladies

It’s official. I’ve crossed a line. Stepped into a twilight zone which may last mere moments-long but may also stretch way off into some distant demented good night. Given the choice, I’ll go for the burning and raving at close of day, raging long and hard against the dying of the light. So damn Mr…

Nothing quite so irritating as a migrating mite

I’ve been fascinated by Anne Treneman’s continuing tales in The Times of the lovey-dovey visitors to the yew tree outside her husband’s ‘man cave’ window. I can still recall, only too creepily, my own similar story. Back at the old house, before I moved north to Cumbria, I too had a pair of amorous collared…