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Sun, Marmalade and Reading

A friend sent me this and I love it! I so miss singing it with my choir. I miss my choir. I’m missing the sun too!

Storm Christoph has begun to batter us and is forecast to be around for the next couple of days. It has, therefore, been an inside day finishing off the marmalade this morning and this afternoon, reading by the fire. I’ve just finished “Where the Crawdads Sing” by Delia Owens, a beautifully written novel celebrating nature, first love and incorporating a mystery that keeps the reader guessing to the last page. If you haven’t read it yet, you have a treat in store. 

 
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Posted by on January 19, 2021 in friendship, music, Postaday2021, singing

 

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Christmas Cafe, Carols and A Gift

We were briefly in Truro this morning to find a particular book for the lovely Mr S (with success) and when finished called in at a well spaced and airy cafe for toast and coffee!

My choirs have been unable to sing together this Christmas but a very tech savvy member of our gang has put together a video of us singing in previous years with some stills. Here it is.

Our first Christmas present was delivered today, a gorgeous bunch of autumnal coloured flowers already in their glass so no chasing around trying to find one. I love the bright red berries in the water too.

 
 

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Squirrel, Earrings and Redruth Wassail

Our squirrel came to investigate his feeder for the first time this morning (photo taken through the window on a very long zoom). We have since propped it open a little to help him as he didn’t manage to get any peanuts this morning.

I found some delightful Angel earrings today for our choir zoom parties next week.

It was such an unexpected  joy to come across the Redruth Wassailers singing The Redruth Wassail in the market this morning. Here is a snippet for you.

 

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Power, Allotment and A Story

A very dear friend sent this to me today, saying that when she heard it, she thought of me and so sent it along. Turn it up loud, sing along and delight, as I do, in the line,  “People have the power, to wrest the world from fools!” Indeed, delight in it all.

We have made more progress on our allotment, beginning to mark out our long, narrow beds. The middle one is a path not a bed!

And I have a story for you that also came my way today.

“My friend told me a story he hadn’t told anyone for years. When he used to tell it years ago people would laugh and say, ‘Who’d believe that? How can that be true? That’s daft.’ So he didn’t tell it again for ages. But for some reason, last night, he knew it would be just the kind of story I would love.
When he was a kid, he said, they didn’t use the word autism, they just said ‘shy’, or ‘isn’t very good at being around strangers or lots of people.’ But that’s what he was, and is, and he doesn’t mind telling anyone. It’s just a matter of fact with him, and sometimes it makes him sound a little and act different, but that’s okay.
Anyway, when he was a kid it was the middle of the 1980s and they were still saying ‘shy’ or ‘withdrawn’ rather than ‘autistic’. He went to London with his mother to see a special screening of a new film he really loved. He must have won a competition or something, I think. Some of the details he can’t quite remember, but he thinks it must have been London they went to, and the film…! Well, the film is one of my all-time favourites, too. It’s a dark, mysterious fantasy movie. Every single frame is crammed with puppets and goblins. There are silly songs and a goblin king who wears clingy silver tights and who kidnaps a baby and this is what kickstarts the whole adventure.
It was ‘Labyrinth’, of course, and the star was David Bowie, and he was there to meet the children who had come to see this special screening.
‘I met David Bowie once,’ was the thing that my friend said, that caught my attention.
‘You did? When was this?’ I was amazed, and surprised, too, at the casual way he brought this revelation out. Almost anyone else I know would have told the tale a million times already.
He seemed surprised I would want to know, and he told me the whole thing, all out of order, and I eked the details out of him.
He told the story as if it was he’d been on an adventure back then, and he wasn’t quite allowed to tell the story. Like there was a pact, or a magic spell surrounding it. As if something profound and peculiar would occur if he broke the confidence.
It was thirty years ago and all us kids who’d loved Labyrinth then, and who still love it now, are all middle-aged. Saddest of all, the Goblin King is dead. Does the magic still exist?
I asked him what happened on his adventure.
‘I was withdrawn, more withdrawn than the other kids. We all got a signed poster. Because I was so shy, they put me in a separate room, to one side, and so I got to meet him alone. He’d heard I was shy and it was his idea. He spent thirty minutes with me.
‘He gave me this mask. This one. Look.
‘He said: ‘This is an invisible mask, you see?
‘He took it off his own face and looked around like he was scared and uncomfortable all of a sudden. He passed me his invisible mask. ‘Put it on,’ he told me. ‘It’s magic.’
‘And so I did.
‘Then he told me, ‘I always feel afraid, just the same as you. But I wear this mask every single day. And it doesn’t take the fear away, but it makes it feel a bit better. I feel brave enough then to face the whole world and all the people. And now you will, too.
‘I sat there in his magic mask, looking through the eyes at David Bowie and it was true, I did feel better.
‘Then I watched as he made another magic mask. He spun it out of thin air, out of nothing at all. He finished it and smiled and then he put it on. And he looked so relieved and pleased. He smiled at me.
‘’Now we’ve both got invisible masks. We can both see through them perfectly well and no one would know we’re even wearing them,’ he said.
‘So, I felt incredibly comfortable. It was the first time I felt safe in my whole life.
‘It was magic. He was a wizard. He was a goblin king, grinning at me.
‘I still keep the mask, of course. This is it, now. Look.’
I kept asking my friend questions, amazed by his story. I loved it and wanted all the details. How many other kids? Did they have puppets from the film there, as well? What was David Bowie wearing? I imagined him in his lilac suit from Live Aid. Or maybe he was dressed as the Goblin King in lacy ruffles and cobwebs and glitter.
What was the last thing he said to you, when you had to say goodbye?
‘David Bowie said, ‘I’m always afraid as well. But this is how you can feel brave in the world.’ And then it was over. I’ve never forgotten it. And years later I cried when I heard he had passed.’
My friend was surprised I was delighted by this tale.
‘The normal reaction is: that’s just a stupid story. Fancy believing in an invisible mask.’
But I do. I really believe in it.
And it’s the best story I’ve heard all year.”
-from Stardust and Snow, by Paul Magrs
Isn’t that just wonderful? I hope you found it as moving as I did, Dear Readers. Today has been a day of people sending me beautiful things – I have two lovely poems to share with you soon.
 
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Posted by on November 10, 2020 in environment, friendship, music, Photography

 

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Moon, Music and Term Starts

We missed the Corn Moon in all its fullness on Wednesday as it was cloudy but last night’s moon was glorious.

I have been feeling somewhat discombobulated of late, as I think many are in these unsettling times. The following piece ‘Farewell to Stromness’ by Sir Peter Maxwell Davies helps to untangle my wires (as does doing the embroidery or weeding!) It is performed here by Adrian Lord – and what a view he has!

Term has started for our family of LiveWires and for many of my ex-colleagues, one of whom sent me the photo below as he thought I might have done this with the door to my room were I still at the comprehensive school with them all.  Yes, I would!  Well done, Miss Robinson.

I have just read the following comment from Adrian Lord
This was filmed at Crear – a wedding and recording venue on the Scottish West coast, with views over to the islands of Jura and Islay. Crear is a very special place. When I first visited in 2015 I knew this was where I would record my music.

 

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Magic, New Cake and Another Sunset Walk

I read a recipe at the weekend that sounded utterly sublime and so I made it today. It tastes as good as I thought it would. It is one of Thomasina Miers’, called Raspberry Meringue Sponge Cake. Her introduction says, “It’s a stunner….  Bake it this weekend and share slices with neighbours,…. Happy cooking.” and we did, with Sue-next-door..

Our sunset walk was lovely this evening, past our favourite old Oak Tree and up the hill for views of Carn Brea and the sea.

 

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Our Special Day and A New Walk

It’s our 53rd Wedding Anniversary today! Three years ago, our four kids made this cd for us having trawled all our friends and family for songs that reminded them of us or us of them and they collected two cds worth including songs from the kids themselves and all with such lovely memories and messages. We’ve been playing them all day and throughout  our special dinner. The picture is from Cornish Bird in the Sticks and was specially commissioned for my 70th birthday and then added to by Kate, the artist, when LiveWires 5 and 6 arrived together.

We would have loved to have gone to St Ives today as that is where we spent our honeymoon 53 years ago but it is too full of visitors this year so we went on a new walk setting off from Gwennap Church, the graveyard that contains the Martin stone that inspired my Dad to write his best known novel, Jeremy Visick. It was such a lovely, peaceful walk with stile after stile to climb over and a long distance view of the cottage on Sunny Corner where Mum and Dad lived for many years and holding so many lovely memories. Join us on along the way.

 

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Sweet Peas, Colour Contrast and A Birthday Video

Our Sweet Peas in one pot are glorious. The other pot is finished. 🙁

Sweet Peas

Serendipity again as the bright orange Montbretia/ Crocosmia has popped up with the purple Tom Thumb Pittosporum hedge.

Montbretia against the dark Tom Thumb Pittosporum

A  couple of months ago , I was asked to take part in a Birthday video for an ex pupil of mine. The idea was to screw up some paper with a Happy Birthday message on it. Have it thrown to you from the left, unscrew it, show the message to the camera and throw it off to the right. It made for a very special and individual birthday present.
It occurred to me that it would be a lovely thing to do for our dear choir leader, Claire, with whom we have been unable to sing in person for 5 months because of the Covid situation. Fortunately we have in one of our choirs a brilliantly talented individual who agreed to put together the 60+ videos valiantly made by our community of choir members! Thanks so much, Kenn! What a success it has been! Here it is for your delectation. The setting is the Penryn River, our view from the rehearsal room and the music is sung by the choirs.

 

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Anniversary, Garden and Singing

Today marks the anniversary of the Great 1913 Women’s Pilgrimage starting in the South West where women walked from Land’s End to Hyde Park demanding their right to vote and to be acknowledged as citizens.

Dreadnought began with this inspirational story of courage and rage, and we marked the centenary of the pilgrimage by touring a new play Oxygen in 2013 to the places the women had stopped and rallied one hundred years earlier. My choir leader, Claire Ingleheart wrote the music for the play, “Oxygen” and many of the choir turned up to sing at Land’s End prior to walking the first few miles of the walk together.

My Suffragette garden has the right colours at the right moment! My regular readers will know that my Great Granny, Mary Wiseman, was a Suffragette,  was force fed in Holloway Prison and received the portcullis brooch from Mrs Pankhurst for her struggles. I am very proud of her, hence my garden and my tattoo.

Here’s a recording of The Ingleheart Singers singing Oxygen in Truro Cathedral. I’m not amongst them  as I was recovering from a replacement hip op but I was able to record it for you.

 

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Bee, More Masks and Greenham Women

The bees are busy, we are glad to see. This one was moving around all the Lavender pots.

Bee on white lavender

Our eldest was due to come from Exeter for a couple of hours this afternoon to fix my Beetle. In exchange I made her a couple of fabric masks. I had not anticipated how hard it would be to see her but not be allowed to hug.

Elastic is running short

My spirits were lifted by a wonderful zoom session this evening, Greenham Women singing songs of the time, all led by my lovely choir leader, Claire. In between singing the songs, people shared their stories of being at the various gates, all given colours and each with a very distinct personality. A couple of the participants had been there with their Mums as very young children. One Mum and daughter were there together from their different parts of the UK; participants came from allover the country and were really inspiring. It was a brilliant session.

Posted with permission from all the participants
 

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