Wednesday, 26 October 2011

Dancing your Words

I watched a TV show years ago about dance at the beat of cultural music. It showed how people really DANCING - totally letting go of their inhibitions and reverted right back to their ancient genetic dance styles. They even showed clips of modern partying dancers and their cultural dances side by side and the similarities were quite amazing.

When people really 'let their hair down' and dance to the music without thinking... they returned to their ancestral heartbeat.

It made me wonder... do writers do this? Or, even more interesting, is this why writers sometimes struggle to write, because they try to follow writing styles that aren't from their ancient cultural heartbeat?

What would happen if we tried to write to our ancient heartbeats?

So here's the challenge I'm setting - find some music from your racial/cultural ancestry, something that really resonates with you heart and soul. Find the music that makes your heart dance and... write to it.

don't think - don't try for a theme - don't worry if it's a paragraph or a poem,just write to your ancestral heartbeat...

and then let your words dance.

Here's mine...

I'll let you know if I write anything worth sharing, when I get the time to try out my own challenge. ;-)

Monday, 24 October 2011

How Heavy is a Glass of Water?

From an email..

The Lecturer walked around the room while explaining stress management to an audience with a raised glass of water.

"How heavy is this glass of water?" she inquired with a smile.

Answers called out ranged from 8 oz. to 20 oz.

She replied, "The absolute weight doesn't matter. It depends on how long I hold it.
If I hold it for a minute, that's not a problem.
If I hold it for an hour, I'll have an ache in my right arm.
If I hold it for a day, you'll have to call an ambulance.
In each case it's the same weight, but the longer I hold it, the heavier it becomes."

She continued, "That's the way it is with stress. If we carry our burdens all the time, sooner or later, as the burden becomes increasingly heavy, we won't be able to carry on.

As with the glass of water, you have to put it down for a while and rest before holding it again. When we're refreshed, we can carry on with the burden - holding stress longer and better each time practiced.

So, as early in the evening as you can, put all your burdens down. Don't carry them through the evening and into the night... Pick them up tomorrow."

Friday, 21 October 2011

Music for Friday

I love Owl City and this video is great fun too.
Have a wonderful weekend. :-)

Tuesday, 18 October 2011

My Peace Globe - the Grand Unveiling

Not much time left before Blogblast for Peace on Nov 4th. I'm still refining what I'm going to say on the day, but my Peace Globe is ready. I'm just on my way to post it off to Mimi, but thought I'd pop it up here first.


Monday, 17 October 2011

Folded into Wings

UNODA (UN Office for Disarmament Affairs) is running a Poetry for Peace contest this October. The theme is the "hibakusha" of Hiroshima and Nagasaki...
This poetry contest is a platform to share your thoughts and feelings about the hibakusha testimonies. In their own voices, hibakusha have recorded their testimonies for you and future generations to hear.
I listened to two YouTube testimonies:

Kayano Tsutsui, who was a child in Nagasaki, and
Isano Tanabe, who was a mother with children in Hiroshima.

Their stories are worth hearing. What happened to these people is beyond words - what Nuclear weapons do to people is beyond words.

How do you write such horror into a poem for peace? How do you bring hope out of the ashes of Hell? All I could think of as a ray of hope was another victim of Hiroshima, Sadako Sasaki, who left behind a new Peace symbol for the world - the origami crane. (My Peace Thimble post 80 - "1,000 paper Cranes")

Here's the haiku poem I finally submitted, in her honour:

angels, doves and cranes -
our only hope for peace lies
folded into wings.

You can see it on the UNODA site at:

Finalists will be selected from those with the most "LIKE" clicks. So, if you are on Facebook, please consider giving my poem a LIKE, as long as you really like it! ;-) And do check the other poems out too, there are others worth liking.

Most interesting Video of the Year

...for me anyway.

And if that struck a chord with you too... do check out their website.

Sunday, 16 October 2011

It's Been a Crazy Week..

I know I haven't blogged in ages. Typing still hurts my fingers so I'm using them sparingly. Thank goodness I had the sense to get my 100 Thimbles of Peace done early, since I was worried my fingers might get worse. I've also taken time out to read the UNODA Peace Poem entries. You can find my poem here.

It's a haiku I wrote in honour of Sadako.

I have been keeping busy, but the real reason I haven't updated on this blog because I was waiting for things to calm down a bit - the last two weeks have been really crazy. I've been bouncing between doctors and other specialists trying to sort out where my hand-arm pain is coming from. It's been coming and going, trying all sorts of medications, and then last Saturday.. everything exploded

This arm-hand pain wakes me up regularly during the night.Then I sit up on the edge of the bed, dangle my arms down and wait for pain to ease. So... last Saturday I wake up groggy with bad pain. I sit up, dangle arms... and the world exploded. MASSIVE pain.

I know I stood up because I remember thinking I mustn't move again, or sit down - too much fear of causing more pain. Hubby got out of bed so somewhere I woke him. I remember yelling, "DON'T TOUCH ME" at him, I was so scared of more pain. but then the pain got worse anyway and I started to hyperventilate, wanted to faint, thought it was me going...

so hubby phoned for an ambulance. I scared the life out of him. My parents woke up to hear him freaking out and so they were scared too... human panic dominoes!

The ambulance medics took me in sitting up, as I didn't want to move, draped in a blanket as any touch or movement hurt, but by then the pain was easing-increasing in waves.

LONG story short - I saw three doctors, was there for ages and the pain wore off naturally, but they gave me strong pain killers to take home. I saw my doctor and I have lots of people dashing about trying to sort out more tests for me.

In the meantime the pain medication hasn't helped. I have had two pain-explosion mornings since then, but I'm coping better. Knowing I wasn't going to die (lol) I stayed calm and it was weird. The pain gets HUGE at the worst stage, but by staying calm and I could watch it and see where it came from. It radiates out from my left hand, middle finger. How amazing. I never knew watching pain could be beautiful and yet so damn unbearable.

While sorting out tests and stuff at the doctors I was given a stronger pain med to try. mmm.... what can I say?

It never helped the pain, but it did make me groggy and more sleepy. So sleepy that some nights I kept falling asleep upright on edge of bed when I sat up to ease the pain. That was scary, so I sat in a chair on Friday morning and woke up pukey, very dizzy, and my dreams were on fast forward. I mean that literally! My dreams, each time I woke up, were zooming by at top speed like when you zoom the TV maybe 6x speed. surreal!!

I now know strong pain meds are not the answer. It’s taken 48 hours for the dizzy-groggy to wear off, with help of dizzy meds that… make me sleepy! I have slept everywhere!

I stopped the pain medication and the pain is no worse, but my groggy-dizzy is MUCH better. No more of the strong stuff for me!

I'm still feeling more upbeat, because I have doctors trying to sort it out and I'm learning to fix things myself - by staying calm, taking naps and trying some stretching exercises the chiropractor gave me that definitely are helping. It's not fast or easy, but I can see improvements. I'm more hopeful than I was this time last month, which is really good.

Thursday, 6 October 2011

Monday, 3 October 2011

Show me your Shops!

I was browsing a friend's blog, Kerry of the Jade Gryphon's Tavern. I reached his post on photos of shops from around the world and recognised one from Edinburgh instantly. The rest were all strange and "exotic" to me. That got me thinking... when I first arrived here every Scottish shop seemed exotic and it was similar for my husband when he came to Africa and saw typical African shops.

So, here is my challenge, my meme, if you will:

show me your shops!
1. Show me where you buy your everyday goods - groceries, etc.

2. Show me your unique shops - the ones special to your area or country.

3. Show me your quaint or quirky - the shops that are one of a kind.

Here are my choices (click on photos for bigger views):

1. Yes, This is a post office, but it also sells some very nice baked goods and it has some lovely cards and gifts crammed into that small space too. Plus there's the window for local messages/adverts and the bus stop.

2. A Kilt shop - can't get more Scottish than that!

3. For Quirky I'm picking a true gem - a shop of Automata. No idea what that means? Go check their website here. You will be enchanted!

Editing to add in participants:
#1. Dawn with some brilliant shop fronts.

Saturday, 1 October 2011

Five on Friday.. Late on Saturday! ;-)

Travis runs a fun Friday idea that I ALWAYS forget. So I'm giving up and just cheating and using it for a fun weekend blog post.

1. Grab the banner, make your post title Five on Friday, and be sure to link back here.
2. Go to to make your Set of five songs. You may choose a particular theme to share with us, or post random tunes if that's your vibe for the day. You can simply post the Set, or you can add a little summary about what you are sharing.
2a. Don't feel restricted by the tracks listed on And don't be discouraged if the Embed code won't work. You're welcome to use any type of media to share your Sets.
3. Be sure to sign Mr Linky so everyone can visit your Set.
4. No tags, but feel free to invite your friends to play along if they need a post topic on a Friday.

Trav's theme this Friday is water and that set my brain straight back to a favourite song from my teenage years... and that led to another... and another...

So.. here are my five water songs, from my "youth". ;-)

A frighteningly young Rod Stewart for my first teenage memory...

Next - Styx "Boat on the River"... I must have been about 14? I remember singing this to myself on the river edge (family picnics), sitting doing embroidery and writing long melodramatic poems about doomed love, magic and dragons. (I'd just discovered The Lady of Shallot and La Belle Dame Sans Merci)

ahhh, last year of school and 'the' fashion statement was Tropical Paradise. My best friend had this gorgeous tropical print dress and I had a skirt with big tropical flowers on the border. Even the boys were wearing tropical shirts and seashell necklaces.

The ultimate magical water video, for me... Enya!

... and finally, one of my favourite musicians as a teen and still one of my favourite singers - John Denver.