Saturday, 25 August 2018


Six years ago I got two cats from a litter of my friend’s aunt. To catch the mice we were having trouble eradicating (didn’t take them long to do the job). There was Philomena, and her brother Leopold. He was fluffy tabby and a little podgy when he was younger. Recently he suffered with anaemia, weight loss, overheating, dehydration and last week we had to have him put down. I feel guilty that we couldn’t keep him healthy. And we miss him.

Monday, 16 July 2018

Reading Murder Mysteries

So reading murder mysteries seems to make me notice the odder things in the daily commute - a woman who had her dress on inside out - labels on the outside, a woman with a beard, extra tall possible basketball player in lime green. Perhaps it’s time for some romantic fiction to change the mood.

Wednesday, 21 March 2018

Playing people tessellation on the tube

Crammed in

Pressed up against the last man in’s backpack. Two people force their way on behind me. Small woman who can’t stand still and fidgets in the curve of my back on the right. And a large older man who I feel trying to stifle chesty coughs through his barber jacket

At Paddington lots get off. Shuffle around. Sharing the pole with a pole hogging American who doesn’t seem to mind that her breast is pressed against my hand and her warm hand is cupping the top of mine. Plenty of room for everyone if someone isn’t leaning all round it

Tourists fuddle the smooth transition across hall at the top of the escalators at kings cross, standing still or heading cross trajectories.

At the Piccadilly line platform a crowd round the open door is an obstacle to getting on the remaining space.

Tuesday, 13 March 2018

Monkeys in Chapel Street Market

A long time ago, the '70s, we used to live in Myddleton Square and shop for veg and fruit in Chapel Street Market. There used to be a man who took pictures while you held a monkey. The monkey scared my sister but not me. The other man I have fond memories of is the one outside Madame Toussauds (same era) who had huge wavy balloons that were about four feet tall (my mother would never buy us one because she said the ones that weren't blown up were always stuck with pins - methinks she just didn't fancy having to blow it up). Oh and the  multi-colour hair men who lived in  a squat behind the sorting office on our way to nursery school ('73) pre-punk one with red hair, one with green, one blue, one yellow. And then there was the promise of a visit to the revolving restaurant in the Post Office tower when I was five (that would have been 1975) but they shut it before then when the IRA tried to blow it up. The 1970s - fond memories from simpler times.

Fast forward to 2018, we live in Tottenham, we were having a cup of tea with my neighbour and were talking about her photographs (one on display of her as a young mum in the 80s with that big permed 80's hair). She showed us a picture of her holding a monkey when she was a child. I have one almost exactly the same as that I said. And nipped back home to get a photograph album. Her photo reminded me of one of my own, in memory it felt like an almost exact replica. We talked about the likelihood of it being in Chapel Street - she thought yes. We compared pictures,

That is Christine on the left - she remembers vividly that she is wearing her red fur coat and red mittens. And me on the right - turquoise and white velour dungarees. Honestly we believe the monkey is the same - same outfit he is wearing, very similar face and tail. Massive coincidence.

Friday, 2 March 2018

Siberian Winter

Blanket of snow
Sunshine through snow
Blue sky
Sun melts snow on south facing
Icicles form off the shed roof
Footprints in snow
Wake up
Heating broken
Frozen pipes opened
Heating working
Snow storm blows in
Flakes swirling across the window
Yesterday’s indentations re-covered
Five wintering thrushes sitting in the tree
Grey sky