Bad news first but fleetingly only I promise.

The corona virus has resulted in  the UK having the 2nd more deaths in the world but there were still more than 300 yesterday. Lock down is now easing but that is because Boris Johnson is making political decisions rather than scientific reasons. He is so concerned about getting the economy moving the number of deaths diminishing is now deemed acceptable. Unfortunately deaths are being counted in numbers rather individuals , somebodies mother, father, sister etc. Just making a point.

I am now in my seventies and having a bit more time to think during lock down I have been reading my short stories and poems. In fact re-reading them! I must write down in words incidents and memories of what I would consider a reasonably interesting and eventful life. I have traveled a lot in the UK and abroad both for my career and personally. In the UK alone I estimate I have driven more than 1.3 million miles. In a way this leads to my first trip abroad. I was 19 , in 1964, and lived in a small industrial town called Blyth. Most people worked down the mines or ship yards. They have all long since gone. Blyth is located on the Northumbrian coast in North-East England. Very industrrial but has as a contrast beautiful beaches! I hadn’t long left school and my friend and I decided on our first holiday abroad. When you realise we flew from Newcastle airport, which then consisted of two green corrugated iron “Nissan” huts and is now a substantial international things have changed somewhat!. We flew in a dull evening in September and rising above the clouds was this stunningly beautiful sunny white desert . I was captivated and i still am after flying hundreds of time since. More was to come that evening, we flew down to Heath Row and as the sun had set by then flew over  central  London with its bright city lights. A  magic scene! Much more was to come.  We departed later that evening and flew over central Paris seeing the unforgettable vista .   The seven days in Paris was a whirlwind. We visited the normal sightseeing places, Versailles and Malmaison, obviously the Louvre, strolled down the Champs-Elysees  climbed the Eiffel Tower and Arc de Triomphe.  But also remember we were 19 so the real eye openers were in Montmartre where we stayed, the Follies Bergere, the Moulin Rouge and the Lido. We had never seen topless women before. Paris was my first ever trip abroad and it is still my favourite city. I have been many times since but there is an ambience, an atmosphere a romance about the city and the people. I have travelled all over the world and been to many wonderful places but I’m always drawn back to Paris. I suppose that first memory is special and it certainly was for a boy from Blyth!

HUMOUR-Prisoners from Alcatraz prison always had showers so they did not get acclimatised to cold water and try to escape by swimming!

In 2002 the US military developed a sandwich which stays fresh for 3 years. Who tried it out after the 3 years I wonder?

Japan has as many bank holidays as the UK, including “Greenary Day” and “Respect for the Aged” Wonder if Boris Johnson knows this?

Grapples are apples that taste like grapes.

Ancient Romans ate puppies.


Pettish– Cross or petulant.

Midden– Rubbish dump.

Middy– 1/2 pint of beer.

Miff– Sulk, go in the huff.

Mike– Skulk, or avoid hard work.

Faff– To dither, be flustered.



Fret– sea mist.

Gandie– A look.

Ganzie– Jumper.

Hefty– Large

Hoppings– a fair.

Just a footnote. fotr several weeks now I have vehemently criticised the UK Health Secretary, Matt Hancock for his performance during the corona virus. I am a supporter of, in fact a season ticket holder of Newcastle Utd football team. I have just discovered he is an ardent fan , does that mean I have to like him?

SHORT STORY. rather a poem this week.



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