If we recollect fond memories from a long forgotten toy.
Engaging with our inner child is how we can stay young,
We reconnect with our early days when our life had just begun.
Just this week I had to break up an ongoing argument between two of my students about whether putting a Yorkshire pudding on a pancake and covered with sweet chilli sauce was acceptable – yack!
And then there’s their endless obsession with condiments. Sweet chilli sauce on Nutella sandwiches, mayonnaise on everything and ketchup on bolognese – what?!!
Cheese wrapped around fruit cake and marmite and peanut butter sandwiches. Don’t even get me started on banana toasted sandwiches – I may vomit.
When I was a teenager if you declared your love of marmite you were either cheered or declared a weirdo, but you ate your marmite as was intended, on toast!
I can’t keep up with the weird items of sustenance kids eat these days and I wholeheartedly encourage them to experiment as much as they can. They have more opportunity than I did, although they don’t get the bright colours in their food like I did . You’ve not seen anything until you’ve seen a friend who’s allergic to E numbers bouncing off the walls! So yes, eat your weird food combos and enjoy it. Just do it over there where I can’t see you, I’d really like to hold onto the contents of my stomach, thank you.
A voice is speaking to me, but I can’t make sense of the words.
There are sign posts appearing to direct my way, but I am too confused to read them.
Like a child first learning to read, I can hear the sounds but I can’t link them to the words.
What if? A poem dedicated to all secondary school teachers.
What if the sky isn’t really blue? What if the grass isn’t green?
What if God only meant to make dinosaurs, and is actually really quite mean?
What if we’re all imaginary, and my friend sat beside me isn’t there?
What if nobody can get into heaven? I don’t really think that that’s fair.
What if I don’t want to move class next year? I’d really like to stay right just here,
What if I paid you to teach just me, could you be just my teacher next year?
Even before Zeus had betrayed him Hades was drawn to the dark. It called his name when he slept. He knew it wasn’t normal. None of the others were as fascinated with dark places and dark feelings as he was. He’d tried to resist it. Surrounded by his brothers and their friends, he could go for long stretches of time without dark thoughts or dark moods, but it was getting more difficult now.
Zeus had given him the Underworld as the spoils of ‘war’, after tearing down their parents’ iron fisted rule, but Hades knew it wasn’t his to give. Still, the dark corners of it pulled at him, whispered to him, comforted him. He’d started to feel comfortable there. Days would pass as he sat under a black sky, devoid of stars. But he was lonely. He needed company. All too often his mind would turn to the one thing he craved more than the darkness.
Since they were children he had been enamored with her, but she had shunned him at every turn. He knew though that was darkness within her. He’d seen her in battle when the titans fell. She had a dark instinct and she was drowning it with light.
Hades had spent the last few hours formulating a way to draw Persephone to him and as the darkness had filled his mind, he had formulated a plan. Making his way to the one entrance to the outside world, Hades called to any dark creature that might be near, to come to his aid.
As he reached the rocky opening to the light filled domain of Zeus, a raven settled on the branch of a nearby tree. Hades called it to him and whispered in its ear.
“Collect a blossom for me and bring it here.”
The bird flew on dark and glossy wings, returning quickly with a deep purple flower in its beak. It dropped the delicate bloom into Hades up turned palm and returned to its perch in the tree.
Taking the flower in his left hand, Hades pressed the finger nails of his right hand into his own palm until it drew blood. Holding his hand above the bloom he let one drop of his blood land in the heart of it; sending a small breath of pollen into the air. The blood soaked into the flower’s centre and the bloom darkened in colour. The scent of Hades blood would draw Persephone to him, the way the smell of her enemies blood drew her to the battlefield. He would appeal to her dark instincts and she would be his.
Sensing that its job was not complete, the raven hopped onto Hades’ forearm and stretched its head toward the dark flower. Hades gave up his grip as the bird took it in its beak.
“You know what I want,” he whispered, “take this to her and return to me when it’s done.”
The raven bowed his head and once again took flight. Hades smiled. Persephone would his by night fall and he would no longer be alone.
To be continued…
How can you tell if your cat is out to get you? Sometimes it can be hard to tell. At least I think so. But there are definitely times when my adorable little fuzz ball seems intent on killing me.
Sitting behind me while I put something in the oven, which leads to me tripping over her, or knocking my glass of water all over my laptop while I’m typing. Both of these things give me the idea that she doesn’t like me much, but then she rubs against my legs and hops on to my knee and shows me some affection. I’m so confused.
She’s definitely planning something when she looks at me and pretends to be cute. Maybe she’s just keeping me on my toes or perhaps her small efforts are part of some scheme to gradually annoy me to death, I’m not quite sure.
I don’t think she realises I’m on to her though and I will get my revenge. Just as soon as I’m sure she’s definitely trying to kill me.
Take a seat, get comfortable, grab yourself a drink. We can’t really start our day properly without coffee don’t you think?
Anyway, the reason you’ve been called in today is so we can have chat, your working mood has been dark of late and we simply can’t have that.
The dark and dingy mornings are really out of pace, we’re really an upbeat company with light and air and space.
I think you need to think about how we can help you lift your mood. You know, lighten up a bit, adopt a more cheerful attitude.
I get it, winter’s long and dull, it’s really not quite you, but cheer up old friend it’ll be summer soon!
Anyway, thanks for coming in, I just thought we should touch base. We like to think we run a happy place.
I hope it’s been a help, to chat to me today, you do seem brighter dear, I hope you’ll choose to stay. We really couldn’t do without you, that’s all I have to say.
Just remember though, my door is always open, any time, any day. Let’s make sure we see that smile of yours and hope it stays that way.
The biography my boots could write, about the trails walked and continents explored.Hills scaled, mud tracked, stones nudged and down pours survived.
Pony trekking on Dartmoor, archery in Suffolk, waterfall climbing in the Olympic National Park. Places seen and felt, smelled and remembered. Taking nothing but photographs, leaving nothing but boot prints.
Covered in polish, rubbed until shining, soles glued to keep out the wet. Their journey has almost come to an end. With a little coaxing maybe they can last just one trip more. The protectors of my feet, companions of my adventures, keepers of my outdoor memories.
300g strong bread flour
1tsp instant yeast (1 sachet of easy bake)
1tbsp olive oil
200ml warm water
Cheesy 80s tunes on Spotify (or other music streaming sites)
Mix the dry ingredients together in a big bowl and make a volcano type shape in the middle of it.
Pour the warm water and olive oil in to the volcano spout shape that you’ve made.
Stir with a wooden spoon for a start and then get your hands in there until it all comes together to make a sticky, stretchy dough.
Turn out the dough on to a warm floured board and ask a friend to fiddle with your phone until they can get Spotify to work (you don’t really want a floury mess on your phone). Get them to put on some cheesy 80s tunes and then get working on your dough. Stretch it, pull it, roll it around and dance a bit to the rubbish music. After 5 – 10 minutes you should start to feel better and your dough has had a good kneading. Plonk it on a baking sheet and roll it out into a rough circle. Now cover it over and leave it to rise a bit some where warm.
Sit down and have cup of tea with your friend and moan about how bad the 80s tunes were the first time you heard them.
After an hour uncover your pizza dough dress it in nice stuff and bake it in the oven at gas mark 7 for 20 minutes.
Therapy and a dinner. Bonus!