Taking a break.

I think I need to retreat from the world, for a while. The more informed I am about world affairs; local and national politics; famine, flooding, fires and earthquakes, and all the horrors that accompany modern warfare, the more depressed I become. And, I don’t want to be depressed. I’m normally a happy optimist. I think I need to switch off the news bulletins and retreat into La-La Land for a while. Just until I get my hope back. Now, I don’t want you all giving me advice on how to trust in God and keep the faith and keep looking up etc. I know. I do. But, there’s so much misery going on right now that I can’t help feeling a little dismayed at the state of things. I’m one of those weird people that think you can have faith and...

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Hollywood makes me nervous.

A couple of books I really love are currently being turned into films. 1. The Book Thief by Markus Zuzak and 2. Divergent by Veronica Roth. I’m very, very nervous about the outcome. Let’s face it; there have been a number of books that have been thoroughly mauled by the film industry. Poor old Stephen King, for example, could only count on one hand the number of his works that have made it through relatively unscathed. Most of his books had me pinned to my seat. Most of the films had me trying to stay awake. (The Green Mile, Shawshank Redemption and Misery were the exceptions. Can anyone suggest any more?) The Book Thief┬áis such a masterpiece of exquisite writing. How will that translate into cinematography? I’ve heard that Death is taking a...

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12 Things I Like About Winter

Twelve things I like about winter: 1. It’s not hot. By the end of summer I’m way over wiping sweat off everything. 2. Here in the driest state of the driest continent, winter means water is in the dams; creeks are running and ducks are happy. 3. Everything is green. For people living in the northern hemisphere, or in snow regions, that sounds strange. You’re used to trees dropping leaves and everything being covered in snow and slush. But, here in South Oz, it means lush green life. 4. Roast dinners. There’s something morally wrong about hot roast dinners in the summer, with the one exception being Christmas Day. However, I confess they’re losing their appeal now that it’s up to me to cook them. 5. Soup. My latest favourite...

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Ah, sweet mystery

When I was diagnosed with breast cancer 20 years ago I had a friend who was very worried about me. (Actually, I had/have a lot of friends, but I’m just… Oh never mind.) I couldn’t reassure her that I would be fine. Then, in the midst of my treatment, she and her husband were driving along a country road and collided with a cow. The beast hit her side of the car and she was seriously hurt. The Old Boy and I visited her in hospital and she was almost unrecognisable. A week later the life-support was turned off and she was gone. Twenty years later I – the one she was so worried about – am still here. A few years ago the Old Boy and I spent a lovely weekend on a friend’s houseboat. It was stinking hot, so I spent a lot of the day...

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*#*@*#* cancer!

I’d like this to go on record: I HATE cancer. (I refuse to dignify it with a capital letter.) I’ve recently been inspired by two young men: Shane Crawford and Samuel Johnson. Shane, a retired footballer, recently rode his bicycle from Melbourne to Perth – the same distance as the tour de France and in less time – to raise funds for breast cancer research. He raised over $1 million. What a champ! Samuel Johnson, an actor, is riding his mono-cycle (the strain on his back must be killing him!) all around Australia, also to raise awareness and funds for breast cancer research. His sister has it and is not going to get better. He’s called his venture: I love my sister. What a guy! The more people I meet in the cancer world, the more...

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