What do essential oils mean to Gray Summers?

Aromatherapy is both Sister Sun.

And the Tin Moon.

And the ability to create limbic memories as opposed to episodic memories.

It’s seeing Moonbeams as the Midnight Sun.

It’s catching Shadows and Smoke. And holding each One.

Oils Connect. Are……..Connecting………..Aromatherapy is individualism. The Strength of Each One. Akin to how strong we are as Individuals. Aromatherapy is synergy. Synergy of oils that blend well together. Akin to how we interact as family, friends and upon first meeting of strangers. How we ‘blend well with’…..or, sadly, the how we do ‘not blend well with’ opposite.

Oils that fade over different given periods. A beautiful heartfelt embrace. Never in a blink of an eye, but lasting in the memory……for life. Generosity in specific given time. Disappear into the air like a Will ‘o’ the W(h)isp… Or linger like Old Friends. Spoil you with the gift of a quick ‘Hello!’. Or sit in deep Conversation.

Oils in light greens, ochres and ambers. Oils in deep and dark brownish blacks. Oils in airy lightness. Oils in sticky resinous. Oils that are Base Notes, Middle Notes, Top Notes. Oils that are Night. Oils that are Day. Oils that are Spring. Summer. Autumn. Winter….. inherent Nature of Mother Nature.

Oils bring Smiles. Bring Euphoria. Bring Serenity. Bring Ambition. Bring Life and Contentment. Bring Thoughtful Reflection. Bring Hope for a Brighter Future. Appease the Rankled Senses. Bring Well-Being. Bring Love and Friendship. Essential oils valued properties? Just like ourselves as unique individuals. It involves fleeting or lifelong friendships/relationships that carve themselves into our hearts.

New Nurse role on the Horizon?

I’m seriously thinking of starting a Podcast/Wordpress marriage blog endeavour sometime next year. Calling it ‘Nurse in a VeeDub Bus’ or ‘Nursing from a VeeDub Bus’. It will involve my local West Coast Mid Wales surroundings initially and then maybe move a little further afield to other Welsh locations. Meeting up and talking with people. Theme? Complimentary and Holistic Therapy and all it’s inclusions. Complementary in the nature of seeking well being through:

Art/craft therapy (photography, pottery, painting, etc.).

Complementary therapies (biologically based-aromatherapy, herbal, homeopathy, foods and nutrition, etc.).

Energy and Biofield therapies (healing touch, reiki, massage, exercise, etc.).

Self healing body and mind therapies (music, yoga, meditation, prayer, writing a journal, animal friendship, etc.).

Holistic in how in simple pleasures and pastimes we achieve a better outcome for well being.

There has to be a quirky undertone in all of this alongside the serious aspect of how to keep well and sane. Talking and discussion. Chatting and reflection? It cannot, in all reality, ultimately enlighten. It can only open up possibilities and ideas for others to go and explore and search for answers themselves. Receiving information from others does not heal. Experience itself heals.

Chatting to people involved in what makes they themselves feel well holistically is a good starter. A positive vibe. Hence my title re: ‘Nurse in a VeeDub Bus’….or ‘Nursing from a VeeDub Bus’. The VeeDub Bus is the most basic healing therapy to go to in my life. It and all it’s inclusions. Guitar, Djembe drum, books, aromatherapy, music, film SLR camera, ability to make a few basic meals, sitting mindfully at a lake, river, woodland/forest space and beach/dune visits. Gathering flotsam and jetsam to make art with. The 1972 iconic VeeDub bus (also known as a campervan) that I own and treasure. It is central to the storyline. In the past, simply parking the VeeDub brings people to her. (Yes, the Bus is a female called Billie). Extended chats after the ‘Ooohs and Aaaahs’ when they look at the VeeDub. They sometimes extend to directional chat concerning health matters once they find out that I am a Staff Nurse. Talking to people I steer them into finding their own answers and skills.

(Billie Bud the 1972 Type 2 Crossover Bay)


Because when I studied Chronic Illness Management in Swansea for 3 years, the ultimate aim was not the term ‘A Patient’s Self Management…..’. But as ‘A Person’s Self Management of Long Term Health Conditions’. To become what we know as The Expert Patients Programme to go from Patient to Person’. So chatting to people? Can they reflect, chat positives that arose out of the negatives and ultimately, pass successes as well as the fights and tribulations on to others? Therapy? It can come from anywhere. And linked to radio listening and holistic blog writing? I can but dream of successful outcomes.

So. I’d love to record conversation and music with intent and direction (sound). And write, draw, photograph the imagery (sight). Smooth out these two of the senses. You’ll have to pour yourself a beer, spirit, coffee or suitable tea for smell, taste and touch). But that’s the first step just there. Mindfully drink a cuppa or bake a cake.

Appointments? Ad hoc or arranged beforehand with purpose in itself and it’s agenda. To achieve? A Radio Blog, a photograph supported WordPress written blog. YouTube? Nah! My moniker is not one to put out there really. Scare too many people into switching off. I prefer the mind’s workings anyhow. The settling back and listening to voices over airwaves. Radio 4 style imagery always made me feel relaxed and comfortable. Alongside photos and words. This project? It would feel nice to try. An aim. A purpose. I’m keen to start an aromatherapy advanced practitioner course. My Nursing degree has given me the understanding of Anatomy, Physiology and Pathology. These three are the basis (actually, whole content) of the aromatherapy diploma level. So I feel safe in going straight into Advanced Aromatherapy, which is where the essential oils and all the ‘considerations and what to avoids’ begin to get taught.

And so. How to get a Radio blog started. Buy machinery for decent voice/music recording. Not one jot of an idea yet. And. To plan and seek out interested parties. Machynlleth has many unique characters. Many unique endeavours. Hopefully, 2021 may afford a better Covid avoidance situation. But………safety in all thinking things through. So may not be January. Or months after that. But could well start off very low key………

Picture Artwork after the title above inspired by the VeeDub that is Billie… Jonathan Gross.

From the poetry book ‘Off Road to Everywhere’ by Philip Gross. His Dad.

Synergy and Holism.

In short? After the year we have all had and all it’s problematics, it has seriously challenged my role as a Health Professional. Some of you may think ‘Oh! Here he goes again!’. But, I don’t believe I’m doing my full potential. I don’t feel I’ve made or making a difference nowadays. And…I live in a marvellous environment here in Machynlleth and surrounding countryside area. We, as a community, are one of ‘inquisitive analysts and triers’. So. I want to re-study aromatherapy again…but more professionally. My Staff Nurse training alongside a new adventure. Attempt to understand the deeper foundations of alleviating anxiety, stress, worrisome thoughts, catastrophizing, pain, uncertainty.

Am I keen? Well…These are a very small sample of my books regarding Complementary Therapies in order to provide evidence for my Master’s essays on 8 different subjects re: Holistic Approaches in Chronic Conditions. And a bit of the writings I put down to get information into my old little grey cell diminished brain. So. It will be really nice to revisit these old friends again. Haven’t opened them in years. I used to read them in a quiet spot in the old VeeDub campervan and write notes and sip coffee and Earl Grey tea. Then a gentle stroll in the dunes, forest, woods, riverside. Just building an image again to give myself impetus.

Why think about this now? Considering my time a fair few years back studying Chronic Illness Management for 3 years in Swansea, I began to remember gentler times and the normality of study. My main focus was on Pain Management with considerations to Complementary Therapies and holism of the Biopsychosocial make up of us human beings. During and after the course, myself and two other nurse colleagues went through a 3 year period of teaching a twice a year 4 week course based in Mindfulness to the local Machynlleth community. So. It is accepted by the NHS. Now we are Worldwide suffering a great deal of stress/anxieties in the 2020 situation we have found and still finding ourselves in. I’m seeking answers to alleviate my own claustrophobia. Both in isolation and in frustration at working in an environment I keep questioning. I can imagine, four/five years down the line thinking ‘How on Earth did we consider those approaches to have been the true answers to all we went through’. Good fortune all.


What has the holiday break brought? Well. No 13 hour day shifts with consistent use of a face mask, adopting possibly 2 to 3 dozen plastic aprons which make you sweat profusely. As do the single use gloves, again each pair worn by the multiple dozens and when taken off after a long intervention come off with a few teaspoon fulls of sweat inside.

I’ve read a fair bit of research, comments, reflections by ‘experts’ over the months since February/March time. Very confusing to be honest. And sometimes askew and barking up the wrong tree it feels. So now? I am beginning to reflect on both myself and my colleagues symptoms and general well being after all these months. Symptoms are an insight to reality. Research is a two headed monster. And the math re: numbers of positives, number of deaths, number of cases, number of asymptomatic/symptomatic resulting positive/false negatives or false positives and %s of anything considered relevant to push at the masses are politically led, skewed or misconstrued. We are amongst so many different ‘germs’ on the ward that our immune systems are working like a hamster in it’s wheel. And exhaustion lowers immune responses. So. Slippery slope scenario.

So my symptoms now? Especially after 9 days mask free. A reflective study of actually escaped or experienced and overcome.

Comparison. At work? Headaches, dry/itchy throat, voice box scratchy sounding or deep, rich and a possible ‘use it as a voice over and make dollars’ level, short tempered and, sometimes downright angry, focus fluctuation, feverish sweats overnight, and absolute exhaustion and tiredness on my days off work. Sleeping during the day for hours. A 4 hour overnight overall sleeping experience with consistent waking. Through anxiety? Dreams? Little spikes in my immune system trying to combat the days acquired fungal, bacterial, viral monsters? Who knows. But my dreams are vivid vicious monsters. Something has crossed my blood/brain barrier and caused havoc!

I have always expounded that a higher content of carbon dioxide breathed back in (and faster and deeper breaths to get more oxygen down into my lovely lungs) brings in more of those ‘germs’ alongside CO2 also. Why? Because they both sit there, germs and CO2, in my masks. The risk of hypercapnia and it’s presence having a destructive nature by floating in it’s toxic acidic nature in my bloodstream and creating havoc to my lovely cells, tissues, organs ability to fight off the world and it’s weapons of mass destruction. The masks, although giving ‘who knows’ what time period of efficacy, protect my patients more than myself. So very important. The surgeons who have worn these masks for decades don’t wear them to specifically stop the patient on the table infecting them. It’s to also stop the surgeon possibly infecting the patient. Ergo. Wear them. Just change them regularly. Very regularly in fact when on the ward.

Now, after 9 days mask free? All the biological, psychological symptoms have quelled. You could also say sociological because I am in a different environment. Now? Normality in a deep breath as a procedure is to just do it because ‘Hey! I can!’ Yogic, not lifesaving needful. No restrictive mask which makes me breathe in deeply because ‘Hey! I must!’ As an aside regarding psychological affects with symptoms? Pain is a symptom. I remember when I had hernia pain for 2 years and my mood levels associated with the consistent gnawing in the muscle/abdomen region. I was, again, short tempered. A real blast to be with…….NOT. Also, depression reared it’s ugly head. No escape was there from the Pain Beast? Symptoms of an overwhelming negative nature do indeed destroy well being. Psychologically at the moment I feel calmer. My breathing is much improved. I have walked without deep breathlessness up steep hills, steps, inclines. Yes! My muscles ask me ‘What’s going on?’ But generally, my body is tapping me on the shoulder and saying ‘Thanks for giving me a break! My little cells, tissues, organs needed it quite badly.

But…….please still wear a mask out there in the presence of strangers who think up close and personal is not a problem…….it is! And always, always think good practice through. Wash your hands, don’t touch your face/eyes/hair and safe distance.

Bob and Paul.


The above? ……… essential watch.

Whitehouse and Mortimer? Gone Fishing. Watched this lovely series since first episode. Loved each and every one. Sit, relax and simply chuckle. Love the word chuckle. Tonight. I watched the first 2 of series 3 episodes. They tell me, through genius humour, that I’m relevant still. It’s ok to be an older crabby everything wrong yet oh so right, a hung up but wondering why ‘losing what once was’ involving my skin sagging and shitty hair loss version of my former self? They speak of feeling comfortable in your years. Despite heart attacks. And, as I’ve felt for a few years now, I actually don’t give a second thought glance because I’ve lived a life I’m happy with. I’m a son, brother, husband, father, grancher, musician, potter, photographer, artist, etc. until now……a staff nurse (Terrible job but…..hey!) and now? Awaiting one year down the line pensioner. My wonderful aim. Was a bit more ambitious creation. In reality? I want a small vegetable garden, an end of day sit with whiskey and pipe of tobacco whilst looking at universal stars, reading a decent book and listening to amazing music. Alongside playing guitar, banging out a few rhythms on my djembe, cooking up a decent meal. Essentially…..My beautiful VeeDub comforts with basic realisations. Most important?…….being alongside Angie and her unique loveliness. And when this Covid thing gets shafted to oblivion. All our family and friends back on track. Cue beach party whilst dancing under the sun, moon and stars with a wild burning log fire blazing. Sparks rising in the dark and laughter floating in the breeze quiet hushed tones. That is a scenario to die for. So. Back to Bob and Paul….Thank you for fishing for life’s answers Paul and Bob. The simple laughs and p*ss takes about yourselves equate as the simple pleasures that make life worthwhile.

As Paul and Bob say ‘You‘re very lucky to be here’ Ain’t that the truth.

Apples. Press. Cider?

Right! A blog. A first really. I typed a bit on Facebook after a couple of strong bottles of local cider. Drank a third and got all…..this subject of cider? Very much deserves a blog. So. Here I am typing stuff. Not sure of what is to develop here. So Cut and Paste the Facebook stuff and start adding. Hunt inside the Facebook words and, as said, add, add, add. By the end of this? Who knows. Could have changed my Last Will and Testament and given it all back to myself. 😉

Well. If you follow my drinking faves then the God given Jack Daniels, as you know, is King in my life. But. Way back when, in the 1970/1980s, when we first came to holiday in Wales in a static home type caravan chained down on a farm near Kington, was a traditional visit to Dunkertons Cider makers near Pembridge. We bought gallon sized demijohns of Kingston Black and got more than squiffy sitting outside under the stars. As the sun disappeared? At times warm in retrospect. But at times in spring or autumn. Cold as cold. Despite grabbed blankies or woollen cardies topped off with duffel coats. Glorious days. P****d and not bothered. Wake up in the later morning…..actually….very bothered. That’s what our heads told us!

I have drunk cider from time to time since. But it’s been those ciders everyone knows. Cheap supermarket varieties. So…. a few days off from work and I asked Angie to get me some local cider from her shop. So glad I did. First up. They’re strangely strong in % value. Drank first tonight at about 5.30 after a stir fry. Don’t know why I mention a stir fry. Could have been a cheese and chip sandwich. Doesn’t matter really. The Dunkertons first? Probably because of past history knowing the brand attached. I went back to the 1970s/1980s in a flash. Smiled and thought ‘If the others are as good as this? I’ll be pretty chuffed’.

Followed up with the Berriew. Like a Scrumpy I drank back in Butlins when I was very young and got very p****d on a half pint. Mum was mortified. Dad just smiled. The Berriew was smooth, a large bottle and tasted perfect. Just started on the Old Crow. Deeper, a little more sour, but lovely nature. So. Three local ciders and thumbs up to them all. Going to try some more of our Welsh ciders. May even try to make some from our apple trees in the garden. That would be fun.

One thought! Does Jack Daniels and local cider mix?

Strength values. 6.8% Berriew medium. 7.4% Old Crow. Dunkertons 6.8%. Great choice % wise Angie.

By the way! I’m looking at the Berriew label in this pic below and know it is skeewiff…………or is it?

So. After these bottled nectars? I thought. I got a ton of apples on the 9 ancient apple trees from 100 year plus old trees in my garden. So? Now I’ve been ‘apple press’ Google searching/looking. Why? Every year it’s the same old same old. Promise to pick them. Even got one of those metal 3 length, strap them together apple picker thingies that grab the apples that are up top of the trees. They’re the best. Closer to the sky, heaven and God. No grubby little beasties dare get inside the apple skins and turn them into a mess of whirly badness. And. Every year of going late into the garden. Same feelings. Fed up with yearly drops onto the grass in the garden, bruised and battered joyous Adam and Eve oldest fruit mentioned and the snake equivalent of wasps having a field day.

So after tonight’s Cider exuberance? Been singing that Wurzel song all night and making up my own words 😳 ’Oi am a Soider drinker, Oil drink it all night long. Oi am a Soider drinker, coz it makes me break into song. Doo ra doo R’s day doo ra doo Rs hey. So? I reckon…..I’ll make my own this year…..maybe. Got no idea what’s involved cost wise. Check it out tomorrow. On a nurses wages? May just have to collect them, shove ‘em in a big old bucket and jump up and down on the Granny Smiths equivalent Victorian varieties in wellies. Can I afford wellies?

Stay alert

Humour? It’s a strange phenomenon. If you didn’t laugh, you’d cry. I put the following post on Facebook and immediately deleted it.

First they sold out of toilet rolls. Next. There’s been a rush on boxes of matches………

Why did I delete it? Because in isolation it feels like you’re taking a very serious subject matter and adopting a callous response that is shallow and demeaning. Like I don’t actually care. However. In reality, it is simply ‘Gallows Humour’. It is adopted by many in my area of work as a nurse. It seems to be a coping mechanism. Something to relieve tension in enormously tense situations. And of course. There is a point that you cannot go beyond. This example is actually suggesting ‘irony’. It does not address the situation that people are dying. It does not address the situation that lack of adequate Personal Protection Equipment can kill people. It does not address the fact that over the years of my nursing experiences I have sat alongside very many patients who are dying or have died in my presence. The families that are subsequently heartbroken.

PPE? I could have put a photograph of toilet paper around a person’s face and stated ‘Look at what the Government or NHS have given us to protect us now’. Seemingly this is ‘humour appreciation’ in the irony of the situation we, as Health Professionals, find ourselves in. No! It’s not appreciation. Inherent response nature of this scenario is not actually that I find it funny, laugh out loud. It’s a release valve. It is based on reaction to a depressing situation. I see irony in the latest ‘Stay Alert’ advice. Again. In humour response…..My limits are actually ‘Irony’. It is the said pressure valve being released.

There can never be any aggression or offence to people in my seeking to provide a light hearted response to situations we all find ourselves in. It’s based in dissatisfaction, anxiety and depression. But presenting something in isolation makes me feel that others may deem my attitude to be inappropriate, callous, spiteful. Therefore a single uploaded Facebook observation seems like Trolling. Nothing could be further from the truth. The truth is that this humour links to desperation. And at the moment I, as many others possibly do, feel pretty desperate.


When I was younger? As above. I was fresh faced and innocent. I had a guitar and a pocketful of dreams. I started writing songs, poetry and dreamed of Bohemia. Surrounding me were a bunch of similar fresh faced innocents who drove each other. We all contributed. The ARTS. Music, pottery, photography, poetry. Didn’t matter if it was good or ridiculous. Mistakes weren’t laughed at. It was called ‘experimentation’. We had individual ambition and wore it openly. I loved my life back then.

So talking of then. Then had a turning point. So…..Then? Supporting other people. Their needs and my following them in their own lives trying to hopefully help liaise, work alongside and change those lives for the dreams they envisaged and therefore for the better. Five years training as an interpreter for the Deaf. Resulting in? Either as a supporter for the Deaf community or Deaf students working in Further or Higher Education. Helping their communication needs as an interpreter. Or teaching other hearing adults at College level to realise qualifications in British Sign Language to support Deaf students themselves. Or as a Staff Nurse. Qualified after 3 years nursing qualification and all it entails to get people/patients through illness and trauma.

Now? No longer fresh faced an innocent, but a yearning to drop supporting others. Why? Because it is draining. Unfortunately, I have no more to give. I am a shell. But. Deep inside I am still, so very, very much that innocent. I still play guitar and write songs. I have my camera and want to capture the unimaginable on film. I have a pen ready and waiting to catch flimsy, whimsical stories and poetry. And I have a kiln to pottery clay bake my mythical creations.

Done with the agenda of others sucking the life out of my bones. Done with people who care not a jot that I have an artist’s dream. Done with others who don’t give a damn who I actually am inherently. Done with others’ self centred thinking. I want my own artist self centred thinking back. Thank you very much. LOOK. You’ve had 30 plus years of my life of giving to others. It’s impossible to share the giving with the taking. The enormity of caring for others is profound and relentless. And actually? It damn near kills you in spirit, body and mind. Now I want to give myself to myself again. So. My life will change again back to the arts. Selfish? No. I’ve now paid my dues to others. I am going to begin to write, reflect and capture back my failures as an artist. Don’t mind if I fail again. But at least I’ll die happier.

To die happy! Is that too much to ask?

Sister Sun, Shifting Stars and the Tin Moon.

A long time ago, in the 1970s, I dreamed of owning a mythological craft shop here in Wales. I wanted to call it ‘Sister Sun and the Tin Moon’. It would have a few tables out back for people to drink coffee, read books, listen to poetry on vinyl and generally chill. Inside? The crafts from a plethora of friends I’d met over the years at Craft Shows and worked alongside in my Exhibitions. I was busy being both a musician and a potter at the time.

Recently? Whilst looking for people on YouTube who went on road trips in their VeeDubs. There were a few who simply showed their holiday experiences. But, knowing of people who gave up their whole lifestyle of 9 to 5 job work experience, I found others that went on these permanent life changing trips. I’ve spoken about marrying my love of life’s experiences regarding my times as musician, potter, photographer, writer, aromatherapy and complementary therapy treatments champion and vegetarian. Writing a book, drawing simplistic pencil drawings and including photographs.

Recent isolation times for my family and friends and work experience for myself and my wife and my work colleagues on the hospital ward have caused us all anxieties that can break your spirit if you allow it to. I will admit. My spirit is officially broken to ‘almost’ beyond belief. This morning I have been seeking synergy through anti stress essential oils. 4 drops each of clary sage, lavender, sweet marjoram, petitgrain and ylang ylang. Additional 2 drops of Neroli Absolute. Initially I thought of Sweet Orange. But Neroli is king. Powerful and heady.

I have many books on Aromatherapy and their effect on the limbic system is profound. So, apart from working on the biological systems due to their inherent chemical make up. Their effect on emotional needs is mind blowing.

So….back to current Covid 19 reality. Myself and many others I know? Anxieties inherent beyond a simple repair now. Essential oils change effectively. But longer planned measures have to be considered. Life has to be reconsidered. I have realised now…..I NO LONGER WISH TO BE A STAFF NURSE. Capital letters because that will be my decision after all this current nightmare. The fact is. I don’t feel safe for my own well being in my role as a nurse because for years upon years the Government and Health Boards have let us down. They think short staffing, laughing and cheering when we have wage rise considerations refused, never think of acuity and the enormity of us looking after ‘more than we can physically and mentally cope with’ patients with high dependency needs. Also…lack of training or ignoring our own paid for it myself chased Masters level training to improve my knowledge extensively and recognise this admirable seeking to expand skills far and beyond in accrued evaluation to maybe pay a little bit more! They give no consideration whatsoever to ambitions to learn at higher levels. They don’t even give consideration to giving you a few days to actually apply to that learning. Do it in your own time. So ‘Chronic illness/disease management 3 year part time course is negligee to my nursing skills? Oh. But they’re happy enough to use my knowledge within their system. ‘Become a Mentor for student nurses’ they said. 10 days training. We will pay you for 5 and the rest you have to do in your own time. Oh! And you have to travel to the training with a 122 miles round trip. But that’s not part of your pay. And travel in your own time. Across country roads that take an age to transverse. And no recognition of any kind concerning input overtime. You should better time manage your shift. Even though there were/are many times where it felt like you were/are doing the job of two people. And different examples aplenty folks. I’m done with injustice. Change career? I’ve done it many times in my life. Left my jobs to head down a completely different road.

So? It’ll take Billie Budd the beautiful VeeDub I’ve had since 2009 to link down to the very foundations of my life and provide holistic healing. It will be her journey and I’m sure she’ll share her splendour that exudes both calmness and the ability to provide myself with euphoric laughter. My bus is currently with the local Guru known as Paul. He is working on her engine to get her running smoothly. Great bloke. Very knowledgeable and an oasis in a desert.

The dreamers YouTube and website links? In blue below.

I love this couples‘ phrase “Orange is Optimism”. Their web site is

and well worth a visit. 

Also. These 2 dreamers who have made it happen for themselves? Go check out their beautiful 3 minute videos below.

Wales is an extremely beautiful country. I can begin my blog and intentional book writings by driving out to local beauty and mystical spots whilst chatting to people and sharing with them our individual dreams and hoped fors. What people have done to provide their own dreams of Nirvana.

My future tag? A brand new Web/blog site? And it’s name? Well….maybe…..since I’ve had it in my mind’s thought dreams since the 1970s………

“Days and Nights under Sister Sun, Shifting Stars and the Tin Moon“. 

Corona. Was once a soft drink. Now? 🖕🏻

I’m a Staff Nurse. I am so far ok. But. I have been face to face, up close and personal, with this little b*****d C19 virus. It doesn’t even deserve a name. It deserves to be called🖕🏻. Huge middle finger expressed with silence and F**k you with accompanying facial contempt.

Me? I have to……Face them in the eyes. If those little microbe 🖕🏻 get in my throat and eventually down in to my lungs. Then it’s toss a coin time. A doctor once told me that if we bottled our doctors’ and nurses’ immune juices, we’d have an amazing resistance potion. This little 🖕🏻 proves he was maybe wrong about the extent of warfare that lurks in hidden areas which could be considered as Earth’s hell. But then again. In the past, before all this, I’ve been spat at, coughed at, vomited over, sputum in the eye, abscess from a pylonidal sinus wound whacked me in the eye, diarrhoea and vomiting splashed, again in the eye (The left eye. Always the left. Maybe it’s my bad side that I always present towards a camera lens. Why I don’t like my photo taken. It’s results in my squint result!), Oh! And MRSA, C-diff, the majority of Staph bacteria down my throat, handled horrendous wound infections of various nature, like pemphigoid and microbes odour sniffed up my nose (not the Geranium/Clary Sage/Sweet Marjoram essential oil aromatherapy I’m usually fond of) , which seeps through bandages, and the nasty list goes etc, etc, etc,. ad infinitum.

PERSONAL PROTECTIVE EQUIPMENT. PPE. We have poor availability’s. That is simply because of poorly managed Conservative Government decisions. Well. Lack of decisions. I didn’t vote for them. That is my saving grace mentally. There are also the decisions of hierarchical NHS management who are following the inanity of Government decision making, and in their own words spout ‘you will all follow what the advice is’ AND THEN tell us it will be our fault if we succumb to the virus if we are seeking further protective equipment to keep us safer. By further protective equipment? Our communities are trying to make full length sleeves, gowns to cover our uniforms, visors, scrub caps. Scrub caps are not needed. It can’t contaminate your hair. Full length gowns/arm covers are not needed. You can wash your arms. The virus does not cling to scrubs material. You can walk back onto the ward in them…….safely! We wash assiduously every single intervention. After interventions we wash at least 5 times in taking down our thin plastic apron, our fluid only face masks that have gaps around them, and our wrist length rubber gloves.

Present PPE? Not the type we need for this. It’s such a Worldwide known entity now, we all know about sending us in to battle like lambs to slaughter. I may as well shove a feather up my a**e to sweep away their debris. Or. Brush them away with the back of my hand for protective effectiveness. I can’t laugh. I have no emotional capability of smile endorphins left. My hair is getting thinner from emotional stress. My brain has small bullet explosions at night time rest. And I sleep as badly as if I were sleeping in hell. I sweat, I imagine symptoms and I worry for everyone involved in my life.

Look. I am a staff nurse and I will empasise and sympathise with every single patient I nurse. The Covid 19 patients obviously also. It isn’t the patient who is our enemy. It’s the bacterias, viruses and acute and chronic illnesses of this Hellish Earth which are our enemy. Environment entering our beautiful DNA and human divine nature. But. Please remember. It is also poor lifestyle choices which are also our enemy. Like the current ‘well meaning and please, please listen’ advice of social distancing and isolation advice. Do not ignore, beat your chest and think I am invincible. No….you are not. And you are a danger to every other human being. Controlling your own environments is an impossible aim. But it has to be attempted.

But our whole life of decision making? Whether self inflicted. Or inflicted upon us because we cannot escape social placing or social injustices is a difficult endeavour and aim. We are essentially humans with frailty and fragility. Or born with a silver spoon in the mouth. Or…..simply have luck on our sides.

So if this little 🖕🏻shows up……I’m rolling up my sleeves. And if it beats me?

I’ll say ‘F**K YOU 🖕🏻. You didn’t beat me. I’ve left a survived and living family and friends legacy. And they are part of me and they, those beautiful souls, HAVE beaten you’.

Walt Whitman. Genius.

Studying the work of Walt Whitman has been on the periphery of my intentions for many a decade. A fair few months ago I was perusing ‘Breaking Bad’ (BB) because I was mesmerised when watching the series on Netflix. So, when seeking in Google land investigations re: BB… Walt Whitman’s name came up as part of the deeper analysis of the story. I hunted for books. Paperbacks aplenty on Amazon at 1p. Ignored. Needed vintage authenticity. So I bought a 1900 uncut edition of his ‘Leaves of Grass’ masterpiece off eBay. A beautiful book in my hand where the pages ‘slapped’ as you let them collectively tumble against each other. Such a wonderful sound. Real wood pulp. None of your modern flimsy paper.

Having finished my long day shift I needed something to take my mind off the recent work experiences as a nurse. Something to switch my mind from the nagging anxieties. There are now, in reality, expectations that both myself and my amazing fellow nurse and Multi Disciplinary Team colleagues will face an oncoming onslaught in the very near future regarding the current crisis. We can only imagine what we are definitely going to face.

So. Back to Walt. I read the first page. The first poem? ‘One’s self I sing’.

One’s-Self I sing, a simple separate person,

Yet utter the word Democratic, the word En-Masse.

Of physiology from top to toe I sing,

Not physiognomy alone nor brain alone is worthy for the Muse, I say the Form

complete is worthier far,

The Female equally with the Male I sing.

Of Life immense in passion, pulse, and power,

Cheerful, for freest action form’d under the laws divine,

The Modern Man I sing.

One’s-self I sing…….Profound. I have amateurishly analysed in my own mind. Thoughts chasing thoughts. But, in my amateur individuality, I understand his meaning involved in the complexity of linking the ego of myself to the Global mass fragility or strength of others in a Democratic/En Masse gender equality. Physiological weaknesses that burden my nurse’s mind when trying to understand what we are facing. Physiognomy and it’s facial ethnic individuality of recognition which perhaps separates us all…..but in actuality Does Not (we can ALL Die…or…Live) and in fact, no individuality…..we are all, simply, human beings. And immense. Fighting the equally immense? No. A ‘lesser so’ immense. Is there predictability in this existing nightmare? Or do we deny predictability and fight and hope? And whilst fighting we are seeking divine intervention. Our seeking a higher entity, whatever the faith or religion, to help solve this nightmare. But we are ourselves also simply divine.

The second poem, ‘As I Ponder’d in Silence’.

As I ponder’d in silence,

Returning upon my poems, considering, lingering long,

A Phantom arose before me with distrustful aspect,

Terrible in beauty, age, and power,

The genius of poets of old lands,

As to me directing like flame its eyes,

With finger pointing to many immortal songs,

And menacing voice,

What singest thou? it said,

Know’st thou not there is but one theme for ever-enduring


And this is the theme of War, the fortune of battles,

The making of perfect soldiers.

Be it so, then I answer’d,

I too haughty Shade also sing war, and a longer and greater one

than any,

Waged in my book with varying fortune, with flight, advance

and retreat, victory deferr’d and wavering,

(Yet methinks certain, or as good as certain, at the last,) the field

the world,

For life and death, for the Body and for the eternal Soul.

Lo, I too am come, chanting the chant of battles,

I above all promote brave soldiers.

In the photograph above? My Briton Button (Strong and Durable) bookmark/page finder. For the first time in my life…..I want myself and all others to be the equivalent of a simple Button. With the intention of working in harmony alongside other simple Buttons. Standing in a line, attaching ourselves in many ways to the task of closing our protective clothing. And having locked up our coat fronts are no longer exposed to a bitter wind that bites.

I never really appreciated the beauty of a simple button. The history and thoughts regarding origins. And the love or profound distaste for a simple used everyday object.

Koumpounophobia? ……….an introductory link to a synopsis concerning buttons below.

The 2nd poem? It is simply read and understood…….it is the current primary enemy that has become the pandemic. We are at war………

The beautiful Solway Barbour.



Arrived back home after the last of 3 long day shifts on the hospital ward. Very anxious and worriesome shifts recently. But essential to get up and bite the bullet and drive to work alongside my wife Angie, who owns a Wholefood shop. Our local Machynlleth community are avid supporters. Her shop is busier than ever, and with rules of stay outside the shop and distancing whilst her staff shop for the customers? Ordering supplies and taking orders over the telephone, email or social media? Result is her working an 80 hour week. Buying food in this situation becomes an emotional roller coaster of both inherent community spirit alongside anxieties that are quite profound.


But! From the photograph above. My joy filled moment of ‘IT’S ARRIVED’. Not the repair kit. But an actual Solway Barbour. So. Story. Back in the 1970s when myself and Angie were invited to the Brecon Beacons in Wales to stay in a tiny caravan with our two very good friends, I began the first yearnings for the Solway Barbour coat. We grew up as Coventry city teenagers. The countryside was very much in our blood. Realised in a fair few jaunts around Berkswell, Knowle, other Warwick beautiful hot spots, the Cotswolds. Either walking by following a walker’s map and realising the circuits of 5 to 15 miles. Or jumping on our bikes and cycling to Warwick or Kenilworth for a picnic or a coffee and cake in the countryside or beautiful cafes or garden centres. Of course. Now we’ve lived in Wales, near the sea, for the past 26 years.



Back to the stay in the tiny caravan. It belonged to our two friends’ parents. Firstly, we went horse riding for a week. Ouch! Pain I never dreamed of. So….The second week involved walking around the beautiful Welsh countryside. The others recovered quickly. Me? A bit bandy legged and in pain for days after a week on the slowest, ‘refuse to gallop’ and ‘plod off into the distance on his lonesome’ horse that ever lived. The instructor said they choose the horse to suit the rider’s personality and temperament. Cheers for that. Scarred me for life that character description of my personality.


Anyways. I bought the above repair kit in the 1980’s from a shop in Kington. ‘Yeh! But you don’t own a Barbour’, said a few. ‘I can dream can’t I?’ I said. I wanted to be that bloke on the metal tin. And live in that tiny cottage in the picture. The price of a Barbour though. On a wage of £10 to eventual £25 a week in the 1970’s and then my musician stint living on porridge and bread and milk. Never could afford one. Cheap wax jackets arrived, but….no comparison. I wanted the Solway. Obsessed with the Solway. And here it is. After nearly 50 years of waiting. second hand for £10 off eBay. Bargain. They’re upwards of £80 to £150 second hand. A hood for them? £100 on eBay. So. My coat. I know! I’ve bought someone else’s history, but will now give it my future history. Firstly disappointed because the zip was stuck, thought broken, and wouldn’t undo, meaning my initial experience of putting on a Barbour was to climb into it and pull it up. But glorious YouTube. A bloke showed me how to fix the temperamental stuck fast Solway double zip by taking off the top brass zip stoppers, take the zip pullers right up to the top, realign the actual zip, left sided zip on top as you look at it, reintroduce the pullers, always get the 2 pullers to interlock and Hey Presto, the zipper worked. Technical isn’t it?


So the Solway alongside my baggy Holt Renfrew pleated cord trousers, my Timberland dark brown oiled walking boots, an Abercrombie and Fitch army shirt and my lovely 45 year old, badly repaired by myself with old wool, bought for approximately £1.00 from Oxfam in the early 1970s, Arran knitted jumper below? The dream that we will all once again tramp outside in a free manner. Oh! Forgot to say. Angie has adopted the Arran jumper as her go to ‘Gumph’ (comfort) jumper. In reality I have to borrow my own jumper back for a few days at a time!



For myself. My mind today has separated from anxieties and anguish and adopted past thoughts/memories of good times. Happy times. Well…. for a few short hours. Happy thoughts……..well……until next weeks staff nurse role in work arrives again. Shift pattern? 5 long days in 7. 13 hour days of constant monitoring and checking and not putting a finger tip wrong. And all this with insufficient Personal Protective Equipment. Very dangerous times.


Difficult times for all of us. Whether in isolation, work considerations, family dynamics of separation and worrying about long term illnesses and vulnerability regarding the virus.


Now? Look at the photos below. I’m now able to put on that Barbour. And smile for,  hopefully, a very long time in it’s presence.

Lifeline……Those!Audio Tapes.

me too printed paper wall decor
Photo by on

The photograph above? It’s one of 5 choices from the WordPress free photograph library that I can access and use in my blogs. The other 4? 3 females and a person self harming. No male victim! Oh! I only typed in the word ‘abuse’ as a search term. So, then I tried ‘male abuse’. Oh!……Nothing. ‘Men being abused’? Nope….nothing. 

So……..Johnny Depp. After my earlier blogs about JD? Recent updates in the news.

Expected and hoped fors for many years. But no joy in listening and reading. Just sadness really. A guy going through a tumultuous time, over a fair few years, and experiencing so much grief and heartache of which I can only guess at how it would feel. No! I’ll change that. I could have NO idea what you would feel. But what I do admire? His gentleness. Exasperated in some replies in the recent audios of conversations between himself and Amber Heard, he is still willing to seek a solution that would benefit the ‘significant other’ in this situation. And, one last observation. Audio tapes……bring a whole different dynamic to reading the transcript of those tapes. You can hear the voices and glean reality of what is going on here. 

La La make believe land is truly confirmed with the ongoing events re: Johnny Depp/Amber Heard. Recent audio tapes on YouTube from the source that is the Daily Mail. 

So……How do you, as a female abuser, get out of the guilty history regarding audio self confessed abuse in this situation? Over the years? Maybe, after the abuse has happened for the first time and then on subsequent occasions? It’s then you know, deep down, it’s going to all come to light in the end. So! Lie in bed at night, plan imagined film script scenarios in your head of what you’re going to say, record, garner false evidence and build a great big rocket that will protect you, change the actual story and dream of the public support that will project to ‘stardom’. When the time is right. Or the game is up. When push comes to shove…..shout the planned abuse claims out as reality. But hey. Ironically, reality, when seen in the light of day, actually bites. The person you have been gaslighting? They don’t respond angrily. They respond by saying ’I love you’. He wants to future protect you. He wants to play in a neutral zone and adopt the pretence scenario of…’We’ll say we both contributed’. He’s magnanimous. He proffers choice. He wants her to go forward and carry on with her ambitions. He wants to throw down a lifeline. But the buttons just ‘kept on being pushed’ until……..‘You know? I give up! Let’s go to court and we’ll see the actual TRUTH. And I’ll be standing on the right side of the roaring rapids’.

There is an awful lot of Johnny Depp supporters out there in the world and they’ve witnessed the guy’s true character over many, many decades presenting himself…….well, as Johnny does. With humility and respect to other human beings. And those supporters have been relentless in pursuit of the truth. 

They are the people out there who abhor injustice. They gave me hope. They were truly….brave and pro-active. Doug Stanhope, Marilyn Manson, Vanessa Paradis, Lily Rose, and many more celebrities. And then there were the general public. Autumn on Venus, That Brian Fella, Mandy @queenbpip on YouTube and social media. Their presentations gave me goosebumps. Alongside all of the actors, writers, artists, musicians? They also knew who the real Johnny Depp was.  People of strength, insight and tenacity. My contribution? WordPress blogs of a cathartic nature. I’m no activist. But I am a nurse who has ethics in searching for well being and the protection of human beings. And I abhor bullying and injustice.

What really happens though, as truth and enlightenment develop? The abuse campaign was, and still is, so relentless in its ambition, you still hunt down for answers/clues within the information framework to throw another spark of relief to quell your squirmy gut feelings. What’s it like? It’s like…….You’ve been at the theatre and watched an unbelievably gruelling and tense psychological chiller production. Johnny has played his part and comes to sit at the back of the theatre to watch the rest of the cast. It’s ends, but……There is no ‘Final Curtain’. It’s encore, after encore, after encore. Brazen faced encores. You’re stuck in the theatre and you, and Johnny too, just all want it to end so you can finally go home. To safety. 

And the opposite party and the lawyers. They’ve created and jumped on their own Mystery Train. Do they actually believe in their journey? It’s like made up pretended envisaged reality in the past to promote perceived reality in the future. It became Mind games versus Reality. Little, and larger, media bomb drops at particular times. Information dropped about where the train was heading. Arriving at unknown stations that stank of the surreal. And all this bizarreness? Adding to Johnny Depp’s isolation, alienation and loneliness. I can’t begin to explain how frustrating it felt, and still feels.

It’s not fair, ethically wrong, extremely unjust and has, at the heart of it, a persistence in supporting something so deserving of censure and condemnation. Of how it is both received and then reported gives me a sense of betrayal. I feel betrayed by so called journalists. I feel betrayed by cosmetic and film companies. I am witnessing an agenda that wreaks of something rotten. It’s the bare faced ‘carry on regardless’ tenacity of ‘We will not back down’. And over the months and years. It’s a rollercoaster ride of emotions. Reprehensible. And then? Those wonderfully insightful tapes. The saving grace in all the years of constant belittling to our compassions for seeing someone falsely accused.

But, No! Even with these tapes it just carries on. A constant barrage of lies with the results of not being able to disengage from our frustrations. The patience required in all of this terrible journey that simply chips away at you. Wears you down. Over and over. Johnny Depp, at the centre of it all, deserves every respect for dealing with this. When he presents the truth with words on these tapes? They still try to blow away every presentation and simply attack and attack. They swoop aside the evidence, like it never existed and, in doing so, make themselves look like sinister. As said. There is something distinctly rotten about all of this.

I’d just read Murakami’s 1Q84 book and ‘the town of cats’ theme in the book hit resonated in my mind. Powerful stuff and extremely claustrophobic. 

‘The young man knows that he is irretrievably lost. This is no town of cats, he finally realises. It is the place where he is meant to be lost. It is another world, which has been prepared especially for him. And never again, for all eternity, will the train stop at this station to take him back to the world he came from.’

Haruki Murakami ~~ Town of Cats

Again. Breathe in deeply once again and…..Focus on positives. They thought there would be only one winner. But the Johnny Depp supporters knew his history. The actual person that he is. And that’s where the wheels will fall off the Mystery train. I wasn’t on a mystery train. I was on a straight up truth seeking journey. I’d already bought my own train ticket. London to Manchester. Reality to Truth. I knew I would get on in London and off at Manchester. Somewhere in this obvious journey, rationalisation and eventual reality had to surface. It’s what you cling to in your belief. But you don’t expect the absolute garbage ride it becomes. Looking out the windows on this journey seeing garbage alongside the tracks. And it is still happening. Myself and my fellow passengers are still not at Manchester yet.

Make believe? It is. Trying to make believe this is real. It is presented by flipping the victim coin and ‘Hey! You know what? I’m the one abused here!’ Abuse mentally on top of abuse physically. An attempt to make you believe in a false story.

But…..It involves treading onto a tight rope wire stretched across a deep hole that contains a whirlpool of madness. Panic. Irrationality, and thinking fast. In order to build a story for self survival. Fantasy land. Hollywood plastic presentation and watching too many movies where the ending is ‘going to be perfect’. A flawed scenario will always be just that. And it will get found out. As I said before. I wrote a song with the lyric ‘One truth beats a million lies……..every time’.  

You know? Johnny Depp is right. Don’t watch your own performances back in your films. I can’t imagine why. Maybe he either doesn’t like watching himself on a huge screen (shyness personified). Or maybe he knows his work is the best he could wish for (the thinker, the analysis, study and belief that the character he is about to present will turn out ok). Or, again, maybe he doesn’t want to watch because he may pick his performances apart and wish he’d done things differently (the reflector in what reality, when witnessed, does present). Like hearing your voice on a tape or a recent photograph and saying or thinking ‘That’s not what I thought I would sound or look like!’ We are our own worst critics of ourselves. Those audio tapes? Listening back by both parties. What would or could go through their minds? He kept going back into the situation, trying to repair her I feel. Didn’t want to give up. A humanitarian who seeks a better outcome for all. 

Outcome? This is the most important part in all of this. Because it is going to court. And until a verdict is found? You can never say “Guilty” or “Not guilty”. Opinion and inherently believing in “this is how it truly went” is still that. Opinion. The law is the law. So, we have to wait for the final curtain. And hope for no encores.

These audio tapes of private conversations are heartbreaking. There is a relentless battering of verbal diarrhoea. It’s destruction. The strength and will to argue what is actually reality? It can’t be rationalised, grasped and nailed to the mast. It’s a circle of chaos surrounding him. It’s like catching smoke. He’s drowning. And when I’m reading, listening to all this over the years Harry Nilsson’s song ‘Lifeline’ keeps playing in my head……..over and over.

These first of, probably, very many audio tapes. The sitting down exchanging conversation to sort out the marriage? He sounds exhausted. Numb. It’s a barrage of Me, me me. And ‘You run away….it’s always your fault!’ The second? He’s away from the situation and yet, still, the fantasy persists. It truly is heartbreaking. And yet, as said, he still wants to help heal. Then there must come a time when you do want to just get out and split…….permanently. Fantasy land in someone’s brain was seen to be a long train running. And that final flip of the coin in totally bringing a ‘You abused me Johnny’ got that response of ‘My God!’ That’s when it just came crashing down and he gave up. 

“You don’t want to make f**king nice nice? I’m trying. I’m trying. 
But you know what? I loved you for so many f**king years but you know what? You didn’t exist. You don’t exist. You’re not there. You’re not there. You are a f**king made up thing in my head. And I can’t believe you are doing this to me”.  

It’s the audio tapes that really have hit home. They truly have affected many of us. 

Wordzzzzzz…..of click bait and trolling nature.

Wordzzzzzzzzzzzz………….of click bait and trolling nature.

My blogs are read by extremely few people. Anything up to 10 people. Mostly family or friends. But my intention is very specific. My intentions for my blogs are basically ‘cathartic’ in nature. I write them to make sense of either; my own existence or; what is happening out there in the world and gives me interest. I’ve written 4 blogs on Johnny Depp’s experience over the last 4 to 5 years. And all inclusions on my site? They are my journal. My diary of thoughts. And here! I hope I view this one down the years from now and see a gentler internet. Maybe not!

Reflecting on my Johnny Depp reading over the last four years. I have followed Johnny Depp for a very, very long time over the decades. It was a massive bombshell when the accusations of abuse arose. No way! That was my first response, followed by a haze of searching for truth of innocence within the news items that surfaced in the early days. I had this very weird conundrum. My unquestionable belief in the knowledge that this was not the guy I followed. He would never do this! But where is the evidence to innocence. Doug Stanhope, Marilyn Manson and Vanessa Paradis were the first ones which made me breathe a sigh of ‘Thank God! The voices of reason!’ With these? All the reflections historically from many, many actors, producers, musicians, etc were inherent from what I’d read over the decades of Depp interest. However, the Doug Stanhope problem when he was then threatened with a lawsuit. Vanessa responses of destroying her character. Troll one liners laughing at his daughter and son. It was jaw dropping stuff. What a terrible ride it’s been. The searching for positives, found, then knocked back with incessant accusing and belittling still. And then? Everything came into play. No holds barred. The taking down and destroying of a person. It was heartbreaking. And…..The photographs of an obviously changed man in Johnny Depp. As a nurse, I suppose I have an instinct of when someone looks in ill health and haunted in their presentation.

So, this is my take on one phenomenon that took me by surprise in all of this. Call me naive, but I was totally in the dark to the nature of what trolling and click bait was actually about. I knew journalism always took sides politically. Or, the old adage, build them (people) up and to then purposefully drag them down. But not so entrenched in destroying someone in the way I was witnessing. There is a distinct opposite to internet content nowadays on social sites.

Firstly. The negative. So many Fiff Faff nonsense collective internet words with questionable non thought-out content and pure vitriol attached to slander and belittle. Click bait one liners or trolls answering in, what they believe to be, smart and clever response. It is clever. Why? It’s relentless in its technique of making you rise to their cruel baiting. Usually through the word equivalent of sneering at you. Demanding response.

Secondly. The positive philosophical, rationalising, studying, ethical thought out promotional of good investigative practice and structure that exist out there. Don’t need to expand on this one. It’s a simple technique of being essentially and inherently a decent human being in nature. Discussion, presentation of gentle nature. Strong in views, but democratic and respectful of others.

When you access the internet arena of blog or reply sites or, in reality, reactionary sites. Usually? ‘Inarticulate’ and ‘fly over your head and disappear into the ether in a heartbeat’ statements that bleat and bleat and bleat. Remember the string together comments from people who exist in a ‘drunken’ or, even worse, self indulgent passionate ‘I’m important’ response and believe the world is listening’ TO ME…..TO ME…..TO MEEEEE’, structure? Actually? No. No way. Not even close. Simply shameful.

If, and when, I type topic consideration, last minute randomly, it’s usually in a Jack Daniels haze and not a manipulative self promoting vomit words exuberance. When I re-read my comment, at times, I actually delete them. Why? Because I step into a land of ‘What negative response am I going to get in this statement or opinion?’ I wrote a short Twitter inclusion how it was great to be able to witness how Johnny Depp would be producing new work this year after all his troubles over the last few years. The first response focussed on the ‘troubles’ and asked me to expand on what I meant! I just deleted the Tweet. I imagined, rightly or wrongly, that a negative, drawn out discussion could be on the cards. Would have been nice to have….’Yeah! Looking forward to his take on……’. Maybe I am naïve!

When I’m at a loss what to selectively look for on a subject? I tip tap trip around the internet. I tap search engine words…….read mostly at night. Read various sources from social media, reviews, blogs or journalism content. Then…despair of some of the bland, vitriolic, trolling, click bait or so called journalistic content and then….sleep, wake up in the morning and…..zilch. Not a word stays in your mind of ANY significance. It’s simply useless dope. If I remember what I’ve ‘internet searched’ and done. I think….what the heck, very, very, very wasteful and I should have just pushed the iPad off button and actually, healthily slept. If I don’t remember…I agonise over ‘I’m sure I possibly did something internet productive’, but just shrug and think….’Nah! I probably found another bunch of other peoples’ crap and false self gratifying ideology’. Then, I read the proper newspapers. You may ask why the useless stuff is chased by myself. It’s because it’s addictive unfortunately. It taps into a deep psychology of the strangely nosey Parker nature of the human psyche.

Why am I deep into my own despairing melancholia about the futility of other people’s spent time typing crap in earnest response? I’m 63 years old and I’ve just spent a couple of hours of my precious life looking at all types of bullshit sites. Actually…’s the answers of trolls response. What they give out to the decent others who try to rationalise and discuss. These trolls? They are simply a laughing stock. I really wish that they would realise. They…are…a…laughing….stock. But if the decent others come back in a good natured response to comment in a rational way? More inane gobbledygook. They are relentless. I’ll give them that. It’s like road rage for the internet. But with a subtle, unhealthy push your buttons approach. They don’t push my buttons. But they leave a nasty taste in my mouth. Like word bullying. But……Psychologically inept. I imagine they are ultimately failures in life. Shame really. And then there are the all out there controversy for controversy sake sites.

This an advice site:

12 Ways to Stop Internet Trolls from Ruining Your Blog

Actually? These sites? Great stuff inherent. And the others? The one’s that try to be push your buttons but come over so very, very amateur. Ultimately rubbish, manipulative failure of massive hilarity and self promotion. When I come across them? I think….. A joke? Is this a joke? Am I naive? Or am I missing something? I actually don’t get these sites. Pastiche or heartfelt self belief? Insincerity’s a futile phenomenon. If I, myself, was a writer attributed to this stuff and actually inanely attached my name to the ‘late at night trippy typing garbage and push the button to allow world internet reading’………..I’d read, reflect and then crawl under a rock next morning. I’d push the delete button and hope the zillions around the world hadn’t noticed.

Whether it is the replies/comments sent to a decent blog:

“Judge a blog by its content, by all means, but not by what you might read below the line, where a pair of idle hands may do the Devil’s work. That doesn’t make the blogger the Devil; nor does it make the blog evil. And you can always choose not to read the comments at all. Ever”.

Is it wrong to judge a blog by the comments it attracts?

Or whether vitriol exists in the blog itself:

I’ve eventually decided that some peoples’ self promotion on the internet is a very unhealthy phenomena. My oh my. Do people want to be so desperately in the ‘public domain famous’ that they spout so much vile, aren’t I clever and self importance vitriol, with adage of emotionally attached pretence intended to tweak the heartstrings of others and want to try to be clever in that ‘bullshit pretence considerations’ in the ‘bullshit manipulative creations of words that trip of their false tongues/fingertips ‘ that they actually care? No they actually don’t.

Sadness exists because there are so many people troll jumping on to the internet decent discussion trends. Actually in an internet perspective ‘used in reference to an activity, cause, etc. that is currently fashionable or popular and attracting increasing interest that they don’t realise that said discussions are not a short lived transitional. They are there to reflect much further down the line. If we continue with the Johnny Depp considerations? There are writers/investigators out there that either want to ultimately research, find truth and present it in a calm way on YouTube. Or reflect on the inherent nature of ‘Johnny Depp the real character of this human being’. Present historical perspectives to amplify his good nature. And also reflect realistically on his past qualities of having lived life’s ups and downs. The writers/investigators? If you’re interested in the Johnny Depp story…..You know who they are. They’re pretty high profile on YouTube and Twitter.

So….contributing in a troll like nature to decent discussion. Unfortunate then when you re-read the terrible content you typed and contributed at a later date down the months, years when there becomes full on ‘now we all see the real picture’ enlightenment. When you are older and wiser? Please reflect…….it may calm your embarrassment. Or maybe? You’re still typing in your advancing years……with vitriol and…….false hope. And thank you to the ‘decent others’ out there. You know who you are.

Truth and Ultimate Hope? Become Mindful…….not Mindless.

“When you realise how much your worth…you’ll stop giving people discounts”. Now that IS reflection”.

Genetics. Passing on the Naughtiness gene.

Reflecting on some of the last year.

My year was all work and no play it seemed. Well…apart from a 2 week holiday in Cala D’or which blew the cobwebs away mightily. So! Before myself and Angie begin to conquer 2020 and the ensuing years and seek a more Mindful and stress free decade ahead? Angie will try not to work very long hours. These can become some weeks of up to 60 hours plus. Whilst I? I will try to get shift patterns that are not 5 long 13 hour days in 7 days. Actually! From tomorrow that is EXACTLY my shift pattern. Thursday, Friday, Sunday, Monday and Wednesday. Yay!

So my memory will be for November…….? And every November for years before for my Daughter’s daily dinosaur naughtiness (Dinovember) that hopefully hasn’t scarred the grandchildren for life.

My daughter has a ritual called ‘Dinovember’. It’s been going on for a few years now. The grandkids dinosaurs do a full on Toy Story and get up to no good every day in November.

Now! Here’s the thing. I blame my childrens’ Mum (my wife) who has what is known as the Naughtiness gene. Puts a white cotton sheet over her and waits till you come down the stairs and shouts ‘Boo!. That sort of thing. It’s a surprise our two children didn’t grow up twitching. I would never do these tricks. I would simply explain things in story fashion. I may tell my grandkids that ‘Hey yeah! Santa Claus is real. He just sometimes looks like Daddy dressed in a cheap Santa outfit from B and M’. Or ‘Don’t go near the open fire. A witch lives up the chimney and she loves eating children’s fingertips’. You know….subtle stuff. Not jump out scary stuff.

My Dad. He’d bend a 6 inch nail, wrap it around his middle finger so it looked like it had gone through it, paint deep red paint over his hand and actually run into the room screaming, with a pair of pliers in his hand, shouting for one of us to pull the nail out. Maybe the Naughtiness gene skips a generation. I would never do that to my two children when they were growing up! When I was a kid and had been fishing with my Dad and Brother, I was eating the Mr. Whippy ice cream post fishing and came across a maggot in the beautiful tasting treat. As a Nurse I still can’t treat patients’ leg ulcers with maggot therapy. Too, too traumatised. I turn my head when picking up the box of said larvae on delivery from pharmacy and hand them to a more willing Nurse. I’ve even been known to be blackmailed and hand over a £5 note or clean out bedpans for the day swapping our roles. Fishing maggot and ice cream? Still not sure who put it there. Dad….or…..Brother? So maybe the gene is a crosses to other members of the family gene! Who knows?

When my grand daughter visited us in Wales one November, I had to keep up tradition for the weekend stay. I put the dinosaurs on a train on a train track with the Pontipine family from CBeebies tied to the track. I YouTube’d the song ‘The runaway train came down the track and she blew’ playing when she came down the stairs all sleepy eyed in the morning. She wasn’t sleepy eyed for long. And turned the Dinosaurs into the madding crowd of Romans whilst the lovely collection of my brother’s frogs were in the arena being gladiators having to fight to the death. Not harmful at all! My grand daughter hadn’t got the imagination to see what was the full story of death and destruction. You see…….I’m nice.

But……brushing dinosaurs backsides with toothbrushes? Don’t leave much to the imagination does it?

Anyways. I try to smooth out the possibilities of psychological damage to my Grandkids by replying to my daughter’s Facebook uploads with helpful advice for them. Smooth the waters. The most recent one is the Dinosaurs using the kids toothbrushes to clean Dino poop holes. Terrible stuff! I’ve cut and paste by Facebook advice underneath these 3 photographs of Dinosaurs actually cleaning each others’ poop holes. And using toothpaste? Sudocrem or Marigold cream please. And, talking of Marigolds. A pair of blue latex free rubber gloves would be helpful for infection control. Non touch asceptic technique anyone?

So how did I try to smooth the waters? My reply.

For the vast majority of dinosaurs, a soft-bristled toothbrush will be the most comfortable and safest choice. Depending on how vigorously dinosaurs brush their poop hole and the strength of the elasticity of the ring, medium- and hard-bristled brushes could actually damage the area surrounding the said poop hole, ring surface, and, please no, but if they went inside the poop hole, protective inner simple columnar epithelium or stratified squamous epithelium tissue. And remember. You can buy very high quality electric toothbrushes for dinosaurs that get to those hard to reach places. This way you avoid Dino haemorrhoids. Don’t want them bleeding into your toy box over the sparkly unicorns, my little ponies, expensive LOL dolls and Disney Frozen characters do you?

Found the following on Google so the kids can use their brushes again.

Step 1: Clear Out the brush. So….clear as much as you can of the slimy Poop with your little finger. Use a comb to clean excess hard to get at lumpy bits in the poop and the clinging food bits, (rabbit bones I suppose) from the bristles of the brush. …

Step 2: Wash the Brush. Run the brush under running warm water, or swish it around in a shallow bowl filled with lemonade, Will’s Doombar beer and tonic water (best bit of news is no Gin involved) and bicarbonate of soda all mixed together…’ll probably take 3 hours of swishing. But hey! You need to exercise when you’re growing up. Good for your future health.

Step 3: Dry. Lay the brush, bristles down, on a towel to dry. If you use these techniques your fine to reuse your toothbrushes. But you need a pot of antibiotics in case you get Stapholosaurus rexicoccus bacteria with ensuing Dinobellyacheus vomiting and diarrhoea. Not nice.

You see…….I’m a kind and thoughtful grandparent.

Ambience. Something watching over me.

When I took this photograph I saw the title straight away. I’ve always wanted to live in a seaside shack. To sit in isolation and garner every single hoped for in my life. All my inner realisation ambitions achieved because finally I had the time to set them free. An elongated process of the spiritual journey called ‘Vision Quest’. Tap down into the psyche. Find pleasure in experimentation with the arts. Read many books. Eventually come out from that seaside shack door, after entering it in a physical and mental quagmire of chaos, with an enlightened and satisfied soul form. This white wooden abode would overlook the trembling sea. The crash of surf on pebble counting the seconds, minutes, weeks to months of gentle time spent.

Then I thought of what is represented in that overlooking ‘guardian’ in tower form. Who was watching over me? Whilst I lived and spent imagined days of delight sitting within that white structure filled with my iconic belongings of comfort and never let me downs. What help would I actually need from an angelic entity?

Then the lightbulb went on. That guardian? Would it proffer a simple nudge in the right direction. I imagined the guardian would have no interest in providing deep analysis or insights. It wanted me to find it all for myself and allow me to add my own ongoing findings to my inner sanctuary. And then I thought of holistic. We exist in a biological, psychological, emotional and social world, not as an essential collective all the time. There has to be long periods spent concerning ‘Me’. Just me. Not egotistical. But survival.

What helps to realise ‘Me’ into an entity of well being? In actuality? It’s…….The senses. I truly believe it to be the senses. Ambience of being. Smell, touch, seeing, beliefs, taste, listening, learning. Those individual past, present and future hoped for experiences of collective positives that exist to appease the soul.

As an example? You’ve discovered something that has brought enlightenment to your purpose in life. Time on your hands has awakened an inherent need. Something that was bubbling under the surface. Or a deep down dream or ambition that was forgotten. Way back in my past. I discovered the simplicity, which allowed me the complexity of working with clay.

Clay. Cold, soft, beautiful………..clay.

The presence in the simplicity of clay. The smell of clay. The touch of clay. The sight of clay developing into my dreamed works in artistic forms and actually from my own hands. The belief of what clay represents in my world historically and emotionally. The tastes of what exists in my life when clay is involved. What clay represents in my abilities to truly listen and hear and understand what is around me and what sounds I reflect on when clay was present at that time in my life. What went on in the world surrounding me. What is garnered in knowledge of what clay has given me by simply being associated with my life over a ten year period. Simply? Handling and having clay in my life became something that, now I reflect on what happened and it’s influence, I could cry for it’s never being revisited for decades now. It was simplicity of basic material with the possibilities of becoming something truly beautiful. Moulded by the hands and mind to take on unlimited forms. Imagine it being newly discovered in my seaside shack.

I look at the photograph above. Look through those 3 windows above….and see dreams and possibilities.

The Tower above? It is your inner self. Not someone looking over you. It is the inner beacon of hope. It is the inherent you that you find in these times of taking a step back. Whispers to you. This is the time to find your essential you. The you that misses creativity. But! The Tower has an enemy. That enemy is your current ‘Mind’. It dwells on conscious activities of the past and what went on before all this? The Mind. Going…..coming…….fading…….re-emerging……heading now towards a distant horizon……..heading now back to your current life. Ebb and flow of monkey chatter. Stop the noise that your Mind makes. It’s time to re-evaluate the innermost you. Find clay…..again. Find you, yourself again.

It’s a phrase constant in my life at the moment? The Chattering Mind. The thoughts that keep reflecting on negativities. The Mind that harks to the past. The Mind that worries in the present and about the future. The Mind that wants to keep telling you that you will keep experiencing what you already know and readily believe. The Mind that says sit and wait….wait…..wait. Do nothing. Stay safe in your life. Don’t take chances. Stay with what you know. It’ll all come out ok. The result? Missed opportunities. Time to find new treasures and wished for’s. Step outside your mind.

“You….are not your Mind”. That Mind, in the isolation inside the seaside shack has temporarily gone. Faded. Return to the past by all means. But in doing so…..reflect on what you could create in isolation. Because, days, weeks, months and years from now you will find joy in the spiritual reflections of those new findings.

Sit outside your Mind and simply watch it’s chattering. Don’t engage with it. It’s trying desperately to influence you. Telling you of your weaknesses. Think of yourself as a single audience, sitting watching your Mind’s activities on a stage. That Tower? That ‘Something watching over me?’ Your inner ‘Tower Guardian’ separates you from the lifetime histrionics of what your Mind is consistently whispering inside the brain. The past ‘YOU’. You are sitting in a theatre watching the Mind, your Mind, perform it’s well worn stories to you and simply dropping little bombshells of advice that are there to rein you in and keep you questioning your weaknesses.

Now? One expression. Hold up your hand, Say…..”Please stop whispering and chattering and badgering….Mind”. It’s time to break free of the shackles of you……Mind I’m not listening to you saying ‘You can’t’. When actually….I can’. I absolutely can, and will, create.

So? In the photograph I am both the Tower that is my own inner guardian watching over myself. I am also inside the seaside shack which gives the chance of new found strengths. The Tower, my own self, will help in in realising Vision Quest form whispering ‘Here’s your opportunity to discover the newness of you’.

You are unique and you are able to break the chains that have bound you. Isolation has given you the chance to set yourself free. To create.

You know? I love the simplicity of clay. It changed my life in a beautiful way. And I yearn for it’s return…………

Safe in the knowledge that Angels exist.

I took the above photograph an absolute age ago it seems. The title was called ‘Flight of Angels’. I had this vision that Angels visited the town across the sea bay at night time. I could see all these lights from the bedroom window, thought of the ethereal and magical and moved the camera to catch all the imagery. When I saw the photograph developing in the darkroom dish? I actually initially believed I caught Angel flight. Why? Because I watched it come from a blank white piece of photograph paper, literally from that representative white considered light into the gradually ensuing and slowly getting darker and darker imagery of my thinking and resulting in this ‘what you see now’. Lightness visiting darkness. Visitation of a profound nature. There before my eyes. OK. You are not sitting inside my mind. But… was a moment I will never forget. This was not a point and shoot photograph. This was a searching for answers photograph.

Recently I’ve been thinking about hopes and deep, deep heart felt dreams and wishes. Do our loved one’s who aren’t with us anymore exist as Angels? I sincerely believe so. This photograph? I’ve looked at it again after years of it’s existing as a piece of my artistic history that came to life with the help of a beautiful SLR camera, film, latent imagery, my emotions and a yearning for questions answered. This resulting imagined imagery? The Angels? They fly in from the East (appropriate) and sweep across the houses and all the living abodes of Aberdovey (that is their visiting location), check on family or friendship well being, whisper words of encouragement, wisdom and watch out for’s, and promise to sit on our shoulders throughout life as they’ve always done. I for one will sleep soundly in the knowledge that Angels DO exist.

Thank you Angels. You are remembered and we thank you for remembering us.

Time for deliberating. Time for delivering.


woman looking at sea while sitting on beach
Photo by Pixabay on

Short Blog……thinking in the ‘now at this moment’ or ‘oh dear… question is like Alice in Wonderland and it’s getting Curiouser and Curiouser. So…….I’ll leave it to the future (future is not your decision maker actually) and allow a ‘keep it on the back burner’ and not ‘planned out aim’ process. In other words, ignore the situation and maybe it will come out ok in the end. Or, just simply disappear.

So……considering my job? Is it the right job for my well being? Decision please. Come on…….Decision! Hey….Waiting……please……Decide! Go on…Jump into the fire and make…..that……decision.  Oh No!! Are you still deliberating? When you actually know the answer!

Blog? It is all in ‘The Title’. You all have a life changing question I’m sure. The perfect decision to a question you’ve been asking yourself? Not easy is it? That question of simplicity or magnitude? It’s popped into your head at some point along your life’s axis. Maybe you have spent seconds to minutes to hours to days to months to years to…….even your whole lifetime deliberating the answer.  So? When do you think you are ready to deliver?  And will it heal your soul? Or leave you deliberating? 

Breaking Bad VERSUS Snow White.

My New Blog…….And actually? My favourite to date. Why? Because it was written under the influence of Jack Daniels. Tomorrow at ‘Gosh knows what time I’ll wake up and still confused by F-Wit hour changes back and forth!’ I always wonder….Am I an hour closer to dying or an hour missed in living a bit longer?’ Very confusing isn’t it? Anyways. My fave blog? It’s coz it’s my latest! I’ve improved. Not storytelling wise. It’s because I can spell without using predictive text. Please spend 10 minutes reading this. It took all of 20 minutes to write it. I reckon …….fair exchange. Less time for you than me.

Right! I’ve been following Johnny Depp and his career in film for the best part of ……well……since he started his career. The photograph above is from the film ‘The Ninth Gate’. I see this photograph as a gentle and genius piece in the movie. The light flickers in the phone box. He looks upwards as if towards God. But the film is about the Devil. Is he seeking God’s help? The person who is on the end of the phone call believes that Lucifer exists. Is Johnny looking upwards because he feels Lucifer is ‘God’? Or is it simply the lights flickering thought processes awaiting the final light bulb moment of ‘I’m in a situation that’s a bit too sinister here?’ My thoughts? No idea. Like many parts of this film it has small iconic moments of ‘Ohhhh……something maybe be suggested or meant there’.

Concerning Johnny Depp? You know? I believed and still believe that I’ve always liked what I’ve seen, still see and will always see. A gentle man, a kind man, an interesting, clever, artistic and well read man.

It’s a system of both perceiving failure…. because there is instant judgement of what are considered ‘people’s weaknesses’. And so harsh, quick to point the ‘typed word’ at and criticism or belittling exists. Or that, actually, enterprise does exist in people and therefore, in reality and acknowledging, should be applauded……..a presentation of Breaking Bad versus Snow White.

Evil ? Breaking Bad? No. Not at all. It’s seeking solace amongst the turmoil of catastrophic thinking. The reality of a working day filled with stresses. In my case? Working alongside compromised patients. Who are not patients. They are people. People who share death and the art of dying gracefully and, alongside many emotions and turmoil, with dignity. Or surviving and living with the unlooked for planning of balancing change and hope.

So to explain. Have we all done this? Please agree. Or I’ll feel like Billy No Mates. Days off from this intensity exist and relaxation is sought. Go for a stroll in the countryside? No. No!. I’ll sit and have a fair, fair few and yes, too many ‘phew my God what is it about Jack Daniels that rocks the senses? …..whilst I eat lots and lots of too hot for my palette Thai chilli crisps and 100% intense chocolate ……alongside eating craggy milk and sugar drenched Galaxy or Fruit and Nut cheap 1 ton blocks of heavy for the heart ‘wait and hope it don’t affect the cardiac pump’ chocolate…..and then sit with ever expanding waistline and fluid compromised lower legs whilst watching box sets of instantly forget and thank you very much for wasting hours of my life. But hey! My choice….not yours.

Goodness? Snow White? No to that also. I don’t smile all day with perceived good intentions. When I smile it’s because I recognise the good intentions of others. And that is what we all do. Dodge our inward awkwardness and dread. But we overcome this to present ourselves in a considerate way. If, that is, we have compassion.

Why does the bad always outweigh the good? Who is with the words of weight? Bad just splutters drivel and overloaded in/out the brains ability to capture and retain. Good says a few important words. Shows itself in minimalism and under an umbrella of humility. And it sticks. A day, month, year down the line? Bingo! Yes indeed. I definitely remember that specific nutshell of thought. I carried it with me as an ethical consideration.

And that is what Johnny Depp does. Carry considerations. Humility. Dresses up as his iconic pirate, ‘Jack Sparrow’ and assists others. Uses his simple expression from his heart. Compassion with no seeking of ‘look at me!’ Simply. Doesn’t contact the Daily Mail and say….’This date, I’ll be here, showing off my compassionate nature….or new outfit!’. This is modern iPhone response. The general public videoing and capturing a moment in time that changes their own lives. Johnny? Simply put…..Visits hospitals. Speaks to individuals in the crowds. Shakes hands, hugs, signs autographs. Relaxed and happy in his skin. Well…..he is now. Since the turmoil of the recent poison filled marriage and now, thank God, since divorce he no longer looks haunted and waxy skinned ill and looks back to his fresh faced and smiling and happy old self. But, look further into the way he goes about this generosity of giving to many, by both crowd inclusions and one to one meetings. And what results? I recognise someone as a persona of infinite goodness, a benefactor. Someone who shares that goodness when it really matters to others. And truth. He shows a truthful nature. Truth. Such a word alongside Honest. You don’t buy these qualities. You earn them through endeavour.

Johnny? As said……a humble man, a man who seeks all life has to offer, a well read and insightful man and actually…..all in all… reality……a one off genius. And alongside this? The edgier side. The side we all, as human beings. actually have and possess because we are, simply human. Warts and all.

It’s a system of both enterprise and failure.

I will repeat…Truth. Such a word alongside Honest. You don’t buy this quality. You earn it through endeavour. Shallowness and insincerity’s? You can’t dance the dance of working alongside people who are undertaking the art of dying gracefully and with dignity by being insincere. Or surviving and living with the unlooked for planning of balancing massive life change and building new hope. Goodness? No to that also. I don’t smile all day with good intentions. I smile because I recognise the good intentions of others. And that is what we all do. If, that is, we have compassion.

Sincere thought and expression? This ethical description of decent human kind and the way that we think and act? It is simple, ethical, straight forward and to the point. We nod and appreciate. Insincere expression and manipulation that is inherent in self seeking notoriety? It exists where the perpetrators add a million and one additional vindictive or manipulative words until it becomes diarrhoea. Splatters around the toilet pan and so we pull the chain and wash it into the sewers where it belongs. We shake our heads, tut-tut, wonder what the World is coming to, shrug and forget.

Getting back to basics.

In Johnny Depp is a guy who has lived. Living life’s’ challenges……but, I truly believe, doesn’t actually care how it affects him. In other words. Has lived life to the full. And the rest is now a bonus. But, when it comes to others’ problems. He just simply ‘does care’. He is simply a ‘humanist’.

His life is out there, in the media, for all to see. No control, other than that of his own making. He is what he is. And in this arena of millions of onlookers? And, albeit whatever he chose and still chooses, to show, his openness, honesty and ‘this is me’, he gets both fan worship and absolute slaughter. He has an admirable quality. Being essentially ‘Truthful and Honest’.

How many of us have elements of our lives we choose to keep or hide under wraps whilst still having the ability to present the perceived stable persona of our lived majority which is out there and on show? You know the best tactic I use? Be honest. Be truthful. Say what both your strengths and weaknesses are. It’s cathartic.

Me? Drinking at times where you get absolutely bladdered and care free. Switch off the experience the next day and then without a drop partaken for a few days because, in my case, ‘Hey! I’m a nurse and have got a serious job to do’. So my relaxation weekend stops short, I get serious, I get back to reality and I go to work and I look after my patients…..Professionally. My excesses stop. My reality bites and the circus of seriousness continues. I prefer the care free status. But the reality pays our mortgage and helps us eat, stay in the real world and carries us into the next binge.

Same with Johnny. His working philosophy? ‘I’m filming hoped for film/movies of credibility and outstanding quality. I see the same as that which can be also seen in the eyes of many of my colleagues. They and I have spent months/years in developing the hoped for success for a cinematic outstanding masterpiece. I have responsibility ‘for’ and ‘with ‘ people who have invested their lives into successful outcomes. But hey! You know…..I will get deep down drugged, pissed and self indulgent everyday whilst I carry on fulfilling my role as a serious actor. Turn up for work as high as a kite, or staggering giggling and giddy and, in doing this, ruin their and my livelihoods! The livelihoods of hundreds/thousands of people’. OF COURSE NOT! He is a successful professional. A man who has a profound love of all he desires and wants to achieve.

And so………He has drive and energy and focus. His films are works of art. And are loved by millions of people.

And this is why I despair. People in the media and trolls on Facebook, Twitter, etc. Who with pleb orientation brains go ‘Duh! Let’s type crap and state stuff that is confrontational. Or. ‘We’re further into the chain of media as journalists and critics but ‘ Yeh….let’s still …….Duh! Let’s type crap and state stuff that is confrontational’. ‘Why? You ask Why? Because ethics nowadays is all about click bait. And F**king ruining people’s lives’!

Oh you ‘oh so sad’ people. Go away. Please, oh please…..just go far, far away and reflect upon your actions. And hang your heads in shame. But….I doubt you will. You will just continue to snigger……like the sound of hyenas.

No! We nurses have not lost our ‘Muchness’.

“‎You’re not the same as you were before,” he said. You were much more… muchier… you’ve lost your muchness.”
Lewis Carroll ‘Alice through the looking glass’ quote.

Watching the Alice films with Johnny Depp, I heard this line and ‘Bam!’ immediately I thought of our roles as nurses. I hadn’t remembered it from reading the books way, way back in my childhood. In my infants school days, the teacher read the books to the classroom at the end of every lesson over the weeks. That experience cemented a love for the Alice stories. So? Muchness……

The illustration above with those beautiful individual characters expressions? Speak to me of a hundred stories and reactions. Each of the 4 could speak a volume in thoughts and subsequent responses. Look yourselves…..and imagine. The hare?………The dormouse?……..the Hatter?………Alice? The Hatter looking at Alice with those immortal words. His expression of disdain and judgement. Or maybe concern and worriesome thinking. The dormouse ‘keep my eyes shut and pretend I didn’t hear’ stance or maybe ‘I’ll shove my two pennies worth in if I can be arsed’ thinking…. the disbelief of hare and the words on his lips of ‘now just wait a minute’ or nod in agreement opposite? Alice’s indignation or anger at Hatter getting it all wrong or being in such a mood due to her current situation.


“‎You’re not the same as you were before,” he said. You were much more… muchier… you’ve lost your muchness.”

I say……..Long live ‘muchness’. Current trends have led to us nurses and HCA’s experiencing the perceived phenomenon of having lost our ‘Muchness’…….and we need to say ‘We never lost our Muchness. It’s always been there!’. We take pride in our contributions and reflect and look into our own looking glass and love what we see. We are ‘and have always been’ the best at what we do. Just wish others see us from the personal experience after having seen what we do day to day……and not what they read in the media.

Staff Nurses and their co-workers, the Health Care Assistants, (although I disagree with the ‘assistants’ descriptive and prefer to recognise their equality as co-workers in providing minute to minute, hour to hour, day to day, week to months to years of healthcare and provision towards patients realising well-being outcomes) have, alongside their patients, considerations of personal individualised daily challenges.

Health Care Assistants (HCA’s), who, as said, are equals within the teamwork ethic, prod and delve and encourage and support ambition. They smile, are both positive in their spoken encouragement but also extremely good listeners. They can also spot when something is wrong due to their assisting the patients in fundamental care. They come up to me on a shift and say things like “You need to come and have a look at…….. Something is not right”. They even tell you what they think is actually not right. They’ve witnessed hundreds or thousands of bodies and knowledge, instinct and comparisons are all inherent in their life skills.

Alongside. Us Staff Nurses, who train damn hard through three years of the most emotional and technical draining-training you can imagine and, once qualified, have to keep learning and updating in an arena that has massive staff shortages and so…..Where do you find the time? Staff Nurses and HCAs? We are both vital to assisting and promoting the daily assessments involving considerations regarding patients who are in the midst of ‘changed experiences of living’.

What do we do when faced with the task of saying to people ‘Life,maybe, will not be as it once was…..or,hopefully, you will prove us wrong!’ This is by showing the patient that there are fundamental needs of abilities to either successfully carry on with living the life they always had experienced or……to consider…….but by re-evaluation of success within their current illness dilemma?…….they may not achieve. Whether rehabilitation to get back to the day to day life the patient once lived. Albeit stronger, weaker or very much ‘changed but need to get on with it’ reality. We work tirelessly to seek patient acceptance of the change reality or we accept the fact that, with all the will in the World, death is now actually a reality and so let’s face it full on with a ‘nod and let’s get real’ because we’re all in this and we’ll work through this the best way we can.

But actually? And reflecting our year in, year out experiences? So many choices. Not that Yes or No in reality. People do surprise you and overcome enormous ‘against’ odds. Seek to live life to the umpteenth degree and break out of jail with a new promise on their lips. Or simply give up because they are just ‘Oh so damn tired of it all now!’.


What I’m sick of is current perception of myself as a staff nurse. From many, many sources. Media, people’s conversations and off the cuff remarks. I am who I am and I try as I always did. Fundamentally? Let’s get real in all of this. The system has changed. It’s struggling because there are not enough nurses. The environmental change is definitely a reality. But……Inherently in the form of professionalism and trying to carry the same positive spirit into each daily shift at work? Changed? Have we or are we changed? I’d love to believe that I, and my colleagues certainly, ……….have not. So. As the Mad Hatter would say…..

“Tea anyone?”

Hope for the Heartbeat.

Until you’ve experienced the awful mind games? What happens? They Freeze your life’s purpose. When you should be experiencing Free your life’s purpose. Those unlooked for and unwelcome feelings of this mental health hot potato? It’s inherent badgering thoughts of ‘man up coz you’re supposed to be strong’. Express yourself in a positive light. Lose your boring negativity. Your boring me now. I’m boring myself now. People, I imagine, would say ‘If it matters that much to you, if it affects you that much? Just go see a doctor or a therapist and tell them you’re………….’

But it ain’t got a simple name that lets you shout out your situation. And even if it had you’re too ashamed to actually reveal it. It’s always “This? This thing. This cloud of God knows what made it come alive and snigger and tease your mind”. It’s my problem. It’s part of my life. Part of me. And I live alongside it and it is has become my ‘fragile and quick to thump me in the stomach until I wanna throw up’ friend. My friend? It goes on holiday for a couple of days, but comes back and waves and tells you it’s stories….all over again. It even stays away for a few weeks enjoying it’s rest so it can come back with purpose and stronger than ever. It taps you on the shoulder and says ‘Hey! I’m back’.

I just don’t really ever, ever understand, or want or need to understand the despair inherent and the reality of this ‘I can’t see a way of getting out of this‘ situation. It lives it’s life and you live it’s life. It doesn’t kiss and make up. It throws it’s petulance with alarming force. So……what are we as supposed strong blokes who, many snigger, should be strong….er and man-up to do? Maybe we should all have a go at reading any written personal experiences and insight words that may change the self situation. The situation? You know? That wringing ringing in the brain that wakes you up at 04.18 am or an actual ringing 05.45 iPad alarm in the morning. A familiar ‘wake up call’ alarm on the iPad that trills that, as said, same old familiar Groundhog Day tune. It wakes you up with a mind battering ‘gasp’ and snapped eyes open expression of breathless……..ness. ’Hey!…..what just happened in that dream status’? A pulse rate at 150 beats a minute with grasp at images of the just escaped dreamed dreadful imagery. Then? It’s followed by fogged confusion and then the reality of ‘face up to another drudge filled and frightening‘ everyday and the same old, same old mixed up with a heaped spoonful of darker than dark darkness. Groan with ‘what the shit will the day bring and where do I go from here’ whispering on our lips. Dreadful. Not kidding. Absolutely dreadful.

You know what? I’m going to change the iPad alarm’s tune. Choice? A different one for everyday. iPad Apple, bless them, offer a whole list of trills and farts. There you go. That ‘Rainbow Cascade’ is going to be bin dumped and I’m waking up to Monday Mozart, Tuesday bird song, Wednesday waves on the shore, Thursday…….you get the picture.

So…….I’ll look for answers. The blessed bright spots in the day that actually do occur. Grasp them. Pull them in and hug them. Smell their freshness and vitality. Look for a self-help book or CD, music, hobby, walk next to the ocean, amongst the trees, up to a hill top, meditate, anything…..anything. Simply anything or, actually, anyone else’s story of surfing and survival of times where their monster was kept at bay.

Kept at bay? It’ll always be on the shore. But. As a staff nurse I myself taught ACT (the mindfulness based Acceptance and Commitment therapy course) to the local community. It’s one true, stand apart sentence? “You are not your mind!”. I have to practice what I pretend to preach. I am not my mind.

And then………..Some of the lines from ‘Hope for the Heartbeat’ lyrics by Bill Nelson spring into my mind.

Tender or brittle, take your chance,

Come to your senses, enter the trance

Here is a rumour I have heard,

You believe in your past like a weeping bird,

Sleep is the key to another world,

The things I dream nearly blow my mind away

Hope for the heartbeat

Hope for the heartbeat

I can pull up my other beautiful mind. I do believe one is inherent. It’s deep down there somewhere and I can pull up the anchor that’s dragged it down to the oceans floor, head out to the sea, start a different journey and rub my hands because adventures await. Wave bye bye to that swirling part of my life cloud that hovers over the beach I’ve just left behind. Look to a new horizon. Look at the stars. Look at my family. Look at my friends. Anyone that gives hope. Anything that gives hope. That way. I’ll feel a little stronger and feel………I maybe actually belong in this world. I haven’t started yet…..but, ‘Hope for the Heartbeat’ as Bill Nelson sang…

Windows of the Soul.

A photograph of someone in the family. Or a friend. Then you notice their eyes. And their eyes tell a deep, deep story. They show something that you can’t see in the facial expression. Or the body’s stance.

And I reflect. I think of media and explosion. You type and think the world is listening. Naive and self obsessive. If you are a simple ‘type and publish’ person without the seeking of self promotion? You reach a few family and friends. They matter. They always matter. But….Concept of the internet. You type and imagine a process that people can interact. But. I know my family/friends are picking up. But they respond as they feel how. In reality? I write to cleanse my own thought processes. Not to actually, in reality, share. I don’t want to be a wannabe global social media click bait. I want to share thoughts with my close family and friends. But sometimes a thought, expression or idea enters your mind that extends out of the intimate. You feel that an experience that may also affect the ‘wider audience’ may give an opportunity to others to self reflection. For example: from my written Facebook inclusions….and there are so many more! The following recent examples:

I wrote a song lyric way back when in the 1970s. It said ”We smash the clock faces. And turn them all back. Try to wipe out all traces. But Tick Tock……the clocks keep ticking”. Strange…..Just watching Ash versus the Evil Dead and a t-shirt read “F**k the clocks”. Went straight back to my song and thought of the context as to why I’d written those lyrics. Gotta agree. Time? It’s all in the mind….full……ness.

OR as of today……..

Over a few years I’ve read many ‘The New Yorker’ articles. I’ve just subscribed for their magazine ‘actually in my hands‘ with unlimited internet access option. A very interesting read from the New Yorker came up on my search for bohemian lifestyle in a VeeDub bus. I was thinking of looking at photography or bohemian retro clothing/artefacts memorabilia business thoughts. Then this came up. Was very interested. It almost, and I use the term ‘almost’ loosely, has a Vision Quest quality to this article. Vision Quest is something I’ve read about for the last 20 odd years. A process of spiritual findings of what lay deep within ‘Self’ imagery.

I’m very proud of my wife. Why? My wife, the very lovely Angie, is a Director, started and owns Dyfi Wholefoods as a Machynlleth business and her contribution to local ethics is an amazing endeavour and success. She has gone about this in a measured, focused and hard work/committed way. It has taken it out of her with tiredness and endeavour. But….she loves her job! She has simply found an important quality to life that drives her ambitions. It also assists our family too. Our 2 children and their extended families have also benefited from the successful process of Dyfi Wholefoods.

Some might say that my career as a nurse is equally admirable. But……..whilst I agree that nursing is great, it really destroys my health and well-being. This is the only job choice I have ever had that has affected me mentally. To the point of ‘I don’t actually know what to do to feel sanity again’. So? My thirst for change is 24/7 in my mind. I’m hunting. And finally I may be getting a glimpse of what could potentially lie ahead. This VeeDub Bohemian lifestyle of seeking life’s experiences and exchanges with human beings and nature’s offerings with a Moleskine diary/journal full of one year reflections. Songwriting and iPad recording results, cooking, photography, sculpture work, art, aromatherapy synergy mixtures and the journal diary catalogue of all the wonderful journey. Maybe I’m ready to start my life’s experiences and marry them all into one big finale.

OK. Not considered Facebook to WordPress blog inclusions. But I’ve written loads of this stuff. And sometimes you wonder if a few of your written words hit home to people and assist healing processes. Or….maybe they view and think…..Full of S**T. Don’t care about the FOS response. But do care about the healing process possibilities. I tap into loads to help my own self seek healing. And it can range from a few short appropriate self reflecting words to a simple cooking recipe or a black and white photograph. I kid you not. Anything that helps moment to moment to escape the turmoil of impending insanity. The day’s end is a welcome affair. Waking in the morning is a quagmire of initial thoughts that eventually settle down. Leave you with a bad taste in your mouth as the day progresses. They include negativity, positivity, wished for outcomes and……’do I actually really want to carry on with this life?’ thought processes.

And then I look into the ongoing story. The challenge of a photograph. A grandchild who looks directly at you from that photograph. With intensity and insight. This happens and you smile because they are just starting their life. And yet they can shock you with eyes that already show wisdom and understanding. These images alongside others. In fact…images of all my family which includes a Wife, children, grandchildren and a host of others. The ongoing story? Others. The most important part of anyone’s existence. OTHERS! For the sake of self obsession! STOP self analysis. Difficult in it’s turmoil of ‘I don’t know where I can go from this!’ situation. Difficult….I know! But…..There is more to life. And others tell their own important stories. And in their own personal way. So maybe the Full of S**T response is valid. Stop self projecting. In those eyes of an an innocent? They enquire. They judge. They say….’I’d like you, very much, to stick around so I get to know you, and, ultimately, you know me’ The eyes have it! Windows of the soul.

Above photograph from:

From Simplicity to Disregard. Or? Chaos versus Order.


Simplicity? Way back when, to when I was a teenager. A process of exciting, and yet, unlooked for life change. Thirst of new endeavour (note not plural. I wanted something singular that truly belonged to me long term. For me! Just for? Me! This will be Me!) and then…..failure in realisation and toss it to the side……but carry on seeking…..the next step of life’s offering. So many choices out there. On, and on, and on, and……oh for who knows, not my sake? And…..To now? Present day now…..Disregard. Disregard it all. And sudden realisation…….when I’m nearly at retirement age. I want to disregard it all…..and wind down. Really?

I had purpose all along the way. Life’s way. Believing in the early days. The middle year’s. Even…..The later year’s. Thirst for all things. Looking and searching and learning. A belief in every given moment. Joy in what each ‘chasing the unknown’ offered. I continued the ‘don’t know, don’t understand, but want to experience and learn’ came up with. This will be my purpose in life. But…..when each chosen element of submerging into a subject of interest began to change….then really began to ‘rankle the senses’ change…..and then eventually….’REALLY? Is this in reality what I’ve been wasting my recent time with? Give me a break! Enough of this and just give it up’. I changed….I backed off. Not because it was difficult or not achievable. But that it simply lost it’s self import and I just wanted it out of my life and…..far, far away. I can’t give any of  it the one word, the exact moment, the lightbulb moment when the link to all that altered simplicity changed to the decision of ‘I have to Disregard it’s actual purpose’ happened. The subject choices? They always ‘just did’. They didn’t let me down. But in all honesty…..I let them down. My failure….not theirs.

And now? I’m in complete disregard sensibility. Why? Because realisation exists that whatever I seek, satisfaction will never exist. I truly do, with hindsight, realise that ‘Simplicity’ is the key word. But in a keen mind? Simplicity does not exist. Thirst for the unlocked fors is ever present.

Will simplicity of my yearned fors in early life return? I don’t think so. Simplicity? Naive. The task driven and eventual hoped for total understanding of my chosen subject choices can and never will be truly self understood, will never be achieved. The choices I made regarding my chosen subjects that I wished would result in some harmony? Yearned for…Peace in understanding, This is the one. Finally my life’s ambition realised. And yet…again. There you go! Let Down……and yet….this was supposed to be the subject of choice that would be my ultimate dream. I now live life in Disregard. Nothing matters. Not healthy. Not helpful. Not hopeful.

And then what happens next? I recently buy a beautiful £1.00 charity shop map book of Europe (all of Europe) when I’m visiting Halifax and get to thinking ‘Maybe I could plan a route from England to Utopia and experience every given moment along the way in my beautiful VeeDub. I then realise that I have the heart of a Romantic, but the mind of a Virgo. Maybe that’s been my problem. Chaos versus perfect planning. That is…..the dreams of jump into the fire of the unknown versus order of feet on the ground safety and planning……..Chaos and Order. My life’s failing. Maybe….Ne’er the Twain should meet.


Waiting for the final curtain. Johnny Depp. Seeking Harmony……amongst Turmoil.


What a beautiful photograph. Sits there begging to be studied. Rough and Smooth. Yin and Yang. One with wholesome, hard won ultimate contentment and uniformity. Whilst the other? Jagged/ragged experiences still attached, a life filled with imagined hoped fors that will polish away the unwanted baggage. This ‘top stone’ life more ultimately rounded than the other? Won by patience, allowing time to do it’s work in the process. Wearing away the rough edges to bring a gentler countenance. It got me thinking. Patience in waiting and ultimately achieving serenity and harmony? The Buddha under the tree, suffering, learning enhanced from gained, ongoing knowledge learnt and then finally seeking enlightenment. Time passes, a person’s endurance in seeking out the answers continues and finally enlightenment is realised. But only to precious few does the rough become smooth. You have to work at these realisations. You don’t get them handed to you on a platter.

A massive amount of recent news results in the Johnny Depp and Amber Heard situation completely turning around. He abused her………she abused him. Both cases? Awaiting the final curtain. It never was a case of Johnny as guilty in my thoughts. I had a gut feeling when the news broke a few years back, that Johnny Depp, after Amber and her friends blamed him of abuse, was the victim of a wrongful accusation. He was being accused for something so uncharacteristic and bizarre to what I saw in his nature that led me to thinking that this was not really the ‘guy I’d followed’. Nothing ticked the boxes.

Ever since myself, my wife and my kids watched Edward Scissorhands we became fans in following his work in films. And what films they turned out to be. I remember reading info and dipping in and out of his lifestyle over those many years. The way other actors/actresses spoke about working with him. Always very fondly. Abuse! Actually attached to this guy I’d read about? No way. My picture of him was, and is, that of a bohemian, thirst seeker for information, a collector of all that life offers, interested in all other people, a rebel, a presenter of individual performances, humorous, shy and quirky. All artists with genius inherent have qualities that most of us, as lay people, can’t truly understand. Accompanying this lust for life and knowledge? An intelligence, gentleness, humour, humility, encourager to others and a deep interest of loving life for all it offers.

I try to feel and act this way when I meet patients. Trying to understand who they are, what they are, what they’ve been through, where their lives have been up to now. It is the aim I have to try for. Holistically, that is biologically, psychologically and socially, I try to glean what makes them tick. The quiet ones who seem to just get on with their healing and rehabilitate really well. Inner strength. Yet still need support, encouragement and feedback. Then there are the vocal ones who look negatively toward their illness and fail from complaining and looking for excuses. They can achieve. But inherently? They don’t seem to want to. They feed off the professionals that are involved in their care. Attention seeking. Playing a game that requires ‘failure” to keep in place the necessity of individualised interventions in their ‘attempt of fighting’ to get better. A glimmer of success is quickly challenged and the next day? Back to square one. But we, the multi disciplinary health team, all try, nonetheless, to encourage and support. And there it is. People who encourage, show compassion and support to others? They are essentially good people in their make up. Can you envisage a dark, unhealthy vindictive, viscous, nasty side to such a character? I can’t.

As said, in my thoughts here in WordPress, life has Ups and Downs. Each day challenges. Each week, month, year all challenge. Me? I changed every ten years or so. Musician, Potter, Writer, Photographer, Interpreter, Nurse. A Vegetarian for 46 years, with the off balance liking of occasional Booze and Baccy. An ongoing seeking of what life could or will offer. A process of interests and great times alongside a lot of turmoil and heartaches. Ups living alongside the Downs.

Johnny Depp? He kind of did, and does, all the above passions at once. And this latest crazy period in his life? Kept quiet over the last few years and then…….enough is enough. No more accusing or blaming land. If your buttons are pushed enough, then validation of innocence has to be pursued and proved.

And here begs the question.  ‘Would he beat and abuse someone?’ You have to laugh. I should imagine (I’m obviously not an expert) that a person who is unhinged and tainted to such thoughts/matters would present unknowingly signs or behaviours with these inherent flaws and cannot hide these matters. Especially someone as high profile and consistently in the public arena as Johnny Depp.  Somewhere in a life of continuous monitoring, slip ups would happen. I watched his career, through films, after, as said, my young children fell in love with Edward (Scissorhands). Nothing! Interviews of humour, lived experiences and insightfulness in many subjects. No interview ready false smiles and forced laughing resulting in him humorously smacking out at or pushing people. Just a natural, good humoured nature to his conversational exchanges. Look at the Jack Sparrow hospital visits. Play acting, naturally interactive, no forced nature and, all in all, good fun to have around. Compassion isn’t all seriousness. It’s provision of bringing welcome relief and a normality of happiness. Raising the spirits of others his ultimate aim.

Oh! That uploaded YouTube video. You know the one! I remember when I was younger. About 18 or 19 years old. We had a serious fire in my Mum and Dad’s house on Christmas Eve. The front room was gutted, the windows blown out onto the front lawn, the presents under the tree up in smoke and the whole house was a blackened, smoke damaged mess. Tensions were really high. Our Christmas was ruined. As the fractious situation and emotions of despair heightened I picked up a wooden stool, yelled and threw it at the wall. It was my outlet for frustrations. Was I proud of my actions? No, of course not. But it’s how I released my tension at that given moment. Rather like slamming cupboard doors or a wine glass thrown into a sink. Sometimes life simply overwhelms and you need to rid tensions. You don’t intentionally seek this intervention. It just happens in a flash because the body, soul and mind need release from underlying turmoil. On the other hand. Abusers? A whole different ballgame. Intention to harm others definitely inherent.

Johnny Depp films in my house? The video tapes began to gather shelf space, followed by those videos being replaced by DVDs and, ultimately, I’ve bought or my wife and kids have bought and collected all the videos/DVDs as they were released. Read and watched interviews. ‘Great guy’ we, as a family, all said. Buying the films? It became a ritual. Like my buying Lovejoy, the Good Life collections or different printed/illustrated versions of Dickens’ A Christmas Carol, Harry Potter books with Adults’ and Childrens’ friendly book covers, and David Mitchell Ghostwritten cover alternatives. Buying T.Rex and the Smiths/Morrisey albums. Not obsessive. Just homage to talent. OK! I admit. Obsessive…. and proud to be obsessive with artistry that gives me a lift.

But. Appropriately, considering the recent abuse allegations, when my kids were younger they felt peace with Benny and Joon, Gilbert Grape, Chocolat, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. These were beautifully fine characterisations and very watchable for the kids. Edward Scissorhands? Akin to my grandchildren watching ‘Frozen’. That is…….Watched a thousand times it feels. A Nightmare on Elm Street, Platoon, The Brave, Donnie Brasco, Arizona Dream, Don Juan de Marco, etc……! Why? Too….Edgy? No. Not at all. An exploration of story telling. But for an older audience. But as my children grew older? All his films came into play. Phone call exchanges and ‘Johnny’s got a new film coming out’ excitement. A family share of ‘Wow! What’s he exploring now?’ As an aside…….As a keen black and white film photographer using a SLR camera myself, I’m looking forward to his William Eugene Smith portrayal. I bet he gets it right full on as to how you hold and point a SLR camera in the proper way. How? Imagine cradling an old friend! And being blessed with the ability in looking out for and capturing that perfect moment in time? That’s a gift you have to be born with.

So………These times of the challenging and belittling words linked to worldwide media access? Very unsettling. In my other blog, concerning Johnny Depp and J K Rowling, I really tried to think about what is happening out there. I felt sad. Criticism, lack of true insight and the unfairness of it all.  Trial by the Twitter, Facebook, etc, with a few sentences of shallow and poor analysis, or more correctly, ‘statement’ response of ‘Trolling’ nature…… inherent with abuse and accusations. I feel ultimately more than sad. I feel sick to my very core.

I’m a nurse. It has afforded me a humble insight into peoples’ insecurities, frailties and fragility’s. Either from biological disease, being psychological compromised or experiencing social injustice. All considerations to this holistic make up in our treatments and our aim to achieve wished for well being, balance and harmony for that person. Well being is a mixed affair and a rollercoaster ride. We strive day to day for some quality in our lives. We hit lows and fight to get back to some kind of normality. Sometimes we can’t fight and need a helping hand. And we don’t know each others’ insecurities, life’s poor ambitions or ill health. How it massively or minimally they affect each of us. So? Treat everyone as you would want to be treated yourself. With empathy, sympathy, goodness and respect basically.

By the way……. I’ve sat and talked with a few patients (only a few) with a history of past regrets. They provided information that astounded me. They reflect and open up. Whether it is because they consider themselves frail, fragile, old, with opportunity to finally speak about stuff they’ve kept under wraps?  I have no idea. But. It got me thinking. If all the current viewpoints turn out to be true and Amber Heard is guilty. Can she, in the future, be allowed to rationalise and own up and explain her perceived actions? Were they borne from childhood, teenage or later experiences. Nature or nurture. People readily state the word “Narcissist” as the person Amber Heard actually is. The narcissist? The actual word and people it is attached to is, in itself, a massive complexity of definitions, character types, different symptoms and presentations. Any Google Scholar search, re: narcissist, will broaden your thinking, but at the same time, leave you utterly perplexed re: understanding. Would she reflect and discuss? I feel as uncomfortable with her now being slaughtered from the media, Twitter and Facebook as I did with Johnny Depp. Why do people perform this instant, reactive typed vicious response? Johnny Depp sat back and went quietly about gathering information for proof of what really happened. He needed to. His whole persona and image depended upon it. This gathering of proof was also in order to protect the future mental health and well being for himself, his children, his family, his friends and his fans. Wait until the final curtain.

Cloud Atlas. Iconic Book/Film


The long established question. Which is better? Book or Film? Invariably, the question exists like this because ‘books’ are made into ‘films’. Are films made into books?  Don’t ever recall one……..ever! But, maybe there is one out there. Certainly, stand alone/stand out films written by script writers exist. But my three favourite books of all time exist in film. A Christmas Carol, (my favourite number one book) has many adaptations in film with modern takes just about bearable. Re-telling of the story in film having either a non altruistic (I despair) or altruistic (I smile and applaud) link to the beauty and sentiments of Dicken’s original vision linked to embracing Christmas spirit with the result of Ebenezer Scrooge regaining human dignity and achieving personal transformation which is told so eloquently within his original wonderful storytelling. Number two, The Lord of the Rings, has an unfinished project of creating a full cartoon version film of the book (only Part One, an Unexpected Journey, of the books, being realised). What followed was very satisfying. The Peter Jackson trilogy we all love and know. Number three. Cloud Atlas. I read the book three times and literally finished it and read it again, finished it a second time and then read it again. Not since my annual visit to re-reading of both Dickens and Tolkien has a book got under my skin.

I don’t really have the skills to put down thoughts of analysis as to what this book is about. I can explain what this book does for me. It’s a joy of 6 different format styles. It’s unique in it’s Russian Doll take apart and rebuild format. The first story simply stops, as do the next 4 others until the 6th middle story (which is read in full) and then it continues with the stories which sequence 5,4,3,2,1. That is….the first story becomes finished at the end of the book. Chronological order. Written in a chained ongoing sequence of different eras from past times to the future and back again to the past.

It’s a puzzling, challenging and complex book which requires a few readings really. And David Mitchell, in this and his other books, includes various reappearing characters from different stories. In other words, the same characters or people linked to characters appear in different books. The following link is essential reading from David Mitchell’s thoughts of this application to his writing.

As a David Mitchell fan? It’s a club. He’s the only author I actually look to the internet to check if any more of his work is available. Tolkien, Conan Doyle, Richmal Crompton, Stephen King, Murakami, Andrew Miller, Agatha Christie and very many more authors I have read can weave within their words a visual extravagance that sits in my psyche. David Mitchell does this too. But, he somehow transcends the imagery and I leave his books having experiencing a total immersion in the world/worlds I’ve just visited. I’m there, within that story, watching it all develop. It’s like the film exists and plays out there and then.

And so……the film adaptation of Cloud Atlas by the Wachowski siblings.


An atmosphere all of it’s own. Completely different format to the book. The various stories interweaving with each other with a jumping back and forth experience. I knew the story so well that it was not an issue for me. As with all visually presented film characterisation, I had that so familiar experience of thinking, ‘Nah! That’s not what I thought they’d look like’. Also, the Wachowski’s used the same actors/actresses in various different guises/disguises to play various parts. Some crossing genders even. Men become female characters and females become male characters. An extension of the life changing decisions of the Wachowski brothers, who are now sisters. Whilst this ‘actors in various roles’ happened, I found myself not comparing the film and book. But got caught up in the film precisely because it took itself off into an individual Wachowski philosophical presentation. It became awesome of its own accord. A fascinating development of guessing of the actors, who was who, then sitting back and enjoying the film for all its holistic presentation on second viewing, and then spotting the Easter eggs in subsequent viewings. And I keep watching the film or dipping into it from time to time to get a ‘hit’. The philosophy of Buddhist links just simply resonates. It’s like carrying around a familiar book of quotations that ground the mind’s wandering. A smile at familiarity and logic. The atmosphere presented in both book and film is a beautiful experience. I treasure each now as classics/cult status in their own right.

Cloud Atlas is a book I always recommend to family and friends. Some are as enthusiastic after reading. Others scratch their heads. Not quite Marmite qualities of love or hate. But, worth a try. Like Marmite. You may discover a whole new challenging and good feel enhancer. I recommend the film too. Again the same scenario as mentioned. I have three situations. My mind’s eye of characters from my own visualisation after reading the book. The actors’ presentations in the film. And the environmental imagery created by both David Mitchell’s words and the Wachowski filmed experience. Akin to the beauty that was inherent in the Lord of the Rings film filmed mainly in New Zealand.

David Mitchell is simply a genius in his skill regarding the written word. The Wachowski siblings are geniuses too in the visual format. The Arts are much richer for these people. Yummy.

Johnny Depp. Fantastic Beasts storylines. Wait until the final curtain. Then decide.



The irony of Edward D. Wood Jr. and his films was that he has been dubbed the worst ever Hollywood director and yet his films are now considered Cult Classics. It got me thinking how Johnny Depp played ‘Ed Wood’ in a Tim Burton movie to great critical acclaim. Depp’s latest film, Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald has a very mixed and mostly negative reaction to it. Johnny Depp has gone from perceived hero to perceived monster status. There has been a definite singling out of Johnny Depp over the last few years. Relentless pursuit to bring him down. What is also interesting is that Edward D. Wood was in fact a target too.

“Straight cross-dresser Ed Wood was often ostracized and ridiculed during his life. The now-legendary filmmaker, producer, actor, and writer of lurid pulp novels lived in boozy poverty with his wife Kathy in Hollywood at the height of his career in the 1950s. At a time when sexual orientation and America’s identity were strictly conservative, Wood explored the darker side of human nature—albeit through an unapologetically pop medium. He created cult-classic movies and pervy paperbacks with titles like Killer In Drag. He and his wife Kathy also rubbed shapely shoulders with Hollywood’s elite at underground transvestite parties“.

Below from Wikipedia: Interesting.

“In the 1950s, Wood made a number of low-budget films in the science fiction, crime and horror genres, intercutting stock footage. In the 1960s and 1970s, he made sexploitation movies and wrote over 80 pulp crime, horror and sex novels. In 1975, he was awarded a Golden Turkey Award as Worst Director of All Time, renewing public interest in his work.[1] Wood’s career and campapproach has earned him and his films a cult following.

Following the publication of Rudolph Grey‘s 1992 oral biography Nightmare of Ecstasy: The Life and Art of Edward D. Wood Jr., the public took a greater interest in Wood, leading up to director Tim Burton‘s biopic of Wood’s life, Ed Wood (1994), a critically acclaimed film starring Johnny Depp as Wood that earned two Academy Awards“.

No doubt about it. Many of the considered unacceptable aspects of people’s lives in specific time eras are reviewed at a later date and a new and changed viewpoint leads to a sympathetic response and, ultimately, acceptance. Tolerance? Not really. Just ignorance of what we do not want to accept at certain points in history. And ultimately a self confession of ‘What were we actually thinking was right or wrong in all of this?’

Unfortunately Johnny Depp’s life is under the microscope recently. A free for all.  My own feelings? I believe he is being ‘man hunted’. A victim. Both in the arena of the modern media. Out there being slaughtered by all and sundry. And also a victim of the considered ‘unbelievable’ status of having been a ‘male’ abused victim. And as a male who, as he states, was abused in his relationship with Amber Heard, he has been scorned. Not by his army of fans. They are massive in support for him. On the other hand, trolling, public comments of extreme belittling, ‘what did he expect ? He’s a dirty, filthy, washed up, drunk/drug addict’, are unbelievably vicious. This guy has given us some outstanding film work. I remember reading about his personality over the years since back when my children saw and loved Edward Scissorhands. All the films since of variety and interesting genre. So versatile, dynamic and professionally a ‘one off actor of superb skills’. As said, over the years I’ve read reports. How gentle, generous and considerate he was to others.

Artists in the current public eye are in the unfortunate position of modern age trial by media/Facebook/Twitter/etc. Absolute gutter comments with no consequence from abysmal bullying actions. These typed/written crucifying words from people who set out to trash lives. But I believe in truth. I wrote a lyric in one of my songs that went ‘One truth beats a million lies……every time’. And so……I’ll be waiting until the final Curtain. I’ve got a feeling that true enlightenment is around the corner. Johnny Depp is currently suing the Sun Newspaper for calling him a wife-beater and criticising JK Rowling for supporting him and continuing with him in the role of Gelert Grindelwald in the Fantastic Beasts movie franchise. I believe Johnny Depp. It’s a gut feeling. A ‘feel it and know it in your bones’ experience.  It has to be these types of feeling because this scenario has everyone chucking their ‘two penny worth of vicious and vindictive viewpoints’ at the internet. It’s a chaotic back and forth. You have to scuttle through the mind blowing written negative drivel. And resulting from all this? He’s subsequently drowning from perceived public negativity. A rebel? Well that’s a part of his nature. But he has more values and strings to his bow too. But viciousness inherent? Nah! And I am under no disillusionment that JK Rowling would have definitely removed him from the role if she thought he was a wrong one. As said……..a manhunt. About the film and the critics’ views? Oh me oh my! Being a Critic is a very shallow profession it would seem. ‘Controversy’ they bleat. ‘How very dare they’ they bleat. ‘Let’s all repeat each other because we have a collective planned seek and destroy target’ they snigger. JK Rowling, by association with employing Johnny Depp, is now a target too. Please! This is becoming a joke. And it’s not very funny. Guilty by association to the not guilty. You couldn’t make it up. My own views on the Fantastic Beasts film? From my Facebook page:

Loved the whole Fantastic Beasts:The Crimes of Grindelwald experience. As did the audience around me. As did my wife who has never read a word from the Harry Potter books. The critics? No point in reading over and over again the same old ‘repeated from other sources’ (whether book/film inclusions or delving into private lives) sound bites. No insight really. Just re-quotes over and over picking and complaining at either plot discrepancies, the private life of Johnny Depp, JK Rowling’s political observations or seeing this film in the singular. Yes! Let’s remember……The film is a part of a series. Harry Potter books had cliffhangers and years of querying the books as they followed each other and then reflective analysis culminating in enlightenment. The Fantastic Beasts films do not have books published available for analysis.

Debate, insight, analysis on Pottermore are a decent source to delve into. Lively lighthearted or deeply intense discussion is essential and welcome levels of peer social belonging. Tolkien is the only author I can think of that does the same. And we had the other added stories of the Silmarillion, Tom Bombadil, and many more to look further into Middle Earth. There is comfort and well being in the recognition of books, films as part of your life and having the presence of old friends. Tolkien? Loved both the films and the books. Look what artistic licence they wielded in the Tolkien films. But, very enjoyable experiences nonetheless. And I still have the books as my comfort mainstay. Sometimes, you just get on with life. Cloud Atlas was a similar experience. My favourite book alongside Dickens, A Christmas Carol. Also Conan Doyle’s Sherlock Holmes and Agatha Christie’s Poirot. These books and resulting plethora of films? Now there’s chalk and cheese at times. They are what they are. But I do understand the valued and precious content of the Harry Potter world in the books. Not an aficionado but there must have been changes from books to those films too. It’s the medium that dictates. You simply aren’t able to cram thousands of pages into 2 to 3 hours of film. So….

Back to the Fantastic Beasts film. There is a luxury that the Potter films came from pre-read books. Also, JK Rowling knew holistically her Harry, Ron and Hermione and other characters’ stories and the storyline development rationale. Little bombshells scattered throughout the books with us awaiting the final book to bring understanding, whilst leaving you wanting even more from the Wizarding World. And here we have it. However. These new Fantastic Beasts films have no background insights for us to analyse. No opportunity to know where we are going or argue ‘is the book better than the film or vice versa?’ But, I’m pretty sure JK Rowling knows what she’s doing! Hasn’t done too badly so far has she? Wait until the final curtain.

The critics? The detractors are mostly nit picking singular film experience ideals and writing the boring same old, same old rehash. I stop reading most critics after, at most, a third of the way through. Tedious drivel. The admirers, some with reservations, are mostly recognising the film’s artistic skills whilst awaiting development and explanations from future stories and with a willingness to invest in the ‘wait and see’. Whatever the critics’ views, good, bad or indifferent, they’ll never take away the goosebumps I had at that amazing opening sequence, and other scenarios further into the film. Never take away the laughs, the sadness, the shocks, the puzzlements I felt. They’ll live within me forever. Those puzzlements? Regarded as confusing or boring inclusions by some. We haven’t got the books to link new ideas re: history and character insight. A cup of tea? Priceless character grounding in normality amongst the chaos that surrounds. I imagine is it Earl Grey, Lapsang Souchong, Chamomile or PG Tips? The equivalent of the Bertie Botts beans flavours. The normality of inclusions letting your own imagination flicker. I love the familiar aspects from the Potter franchise. A sense of coming home. Like Holmes or Poirot.

So, the longer exchanged dialogue/character insights within the film? Simply an essential inclusion of explanation and follow up consideration in the short length of a film. I don’t go to a film to be met with non stop action. Especially one in an intended long series. And the people who have invested in JK Rowling’s stories will probably go and develop their own views too. People who have invested in JK lore or critics? Insightfulness or planned agenda? I feel shallow pretence analysis of this film has more to do with critics having agendas/axes to grind than true thoughtful artistic insightful comment. Have a look to see how many mention the word ‘Controversy’ and go on to discuss with one sided bias. All this intent on besmirching and intentional attempted assassination of the lives of real people? Let’s wait.

Johnny Depp has once again given us a characterisation that will become a film icon. A beautifully considered Wizard to match his beautifully considered Pirate. This. Despite all that is going on in his life. He’s a fighter. And I, for one, thank him for this. Will we have enlightenment later on down the line?  Again…..Wait until the final curtain. I believe we will.

The Billy Bud Un-Familiar Face is Returning.



The thing about VeeDub buses is their character. And the main part of that character for me, lies in this full front aspect. It’s the bit that brings smiles to the faces of the people who see them. You get so many different individual looking buses by the way they present themselves all over. Inside, outside, front to back, side to side, up top and down bottom. People finish them with so much individuality that no two look the same. And that extends when you think of types. T2 Splittie, Bay, T25, T4 and 5’s. But, the mainstay is that face. The simplicity of iconic design.


Whether it has a spare wheel or bull bars on the front or not can change the appearance though. Or if it has one of those ‘bra’s’. Or windscreen mesh canopy, eyelashes, extra fog lights or a couple or more transfer stickers. Me? I love the simple clean outside original look and let the inside do the ‘this is the individual ‘Me, Sputnik Billy Bud’, look’. Extras for outside? Not for me. Maybe a roof rack looks really cool with old trunks and rusty petrol cans up top. But with the miles per gallon petrol considerations, I reckon the cleaner the better. Wind resistance and all that. Also, the  spare wheel up on the front?

When I bought Sputty Billy, it did have this spare wheel up front arrangement. But, in the unfortunate possibility of a front smash impact crash? Dangerous. The wheel sticks out further than the bumper and the bumper has a purpose. It collapses and you avoid the whole of the front buckling. If the wheel is the first to hit something? It pushes the whole front panel inwards. So, simplicity in all it’s glory for me.

So, we’re getting there. Billy is coming along nicely. Inside considerations at present too. Need some curtains, throws, sleeping essentials, cushions, my metal merchant seaman box filled with simple survival essentials and a jute mat to gather dirt, snow and sand that can be smacked off with a carpet beater. A few books, a cassette player, gentle lighting, a foldaway table and chairs. Oh! And a survival toolkit.

Then, we’ll be “Off (on the) Road to Everywhere”.

That should keep Sputnik Billy smiling.


The Whistling Song for the Day



I remember watching ‘The Good Life’ and was fascinated by Tom’s chirpy little whistle. Every time I’d finished watching an episode, I never hummed that catchy theme tune at the start afterwards. I’d always whistle that little trill. Even though he may not have whistled it in a ‘just watched’ episode. Years and years later, I came across a Richard Briers interview. He divulged that the tune was from the song Somewhere over the Rainbow. I was gobsmacked. How come I never realised? The bit that goes:

’If happy little bluebirds fly beyond the rainbow, Why oh why can’t I?’

Why hadn’t I realised? He whistles half of it. Omits the ending. Which would have made the penny drop. Strange. It’s an incomplete tune for what he dreams and hopes will become a complete lifestyle. Does he have reservations, nerves, it may collapse, fail. Doubts? Worriesome thoughts that they may not ultimately succeed. So he stops half way through unintentionally without realising why. Why that tune? It was certainly linked to his lifestyle choices I’d like to believe. It was his choice for inclusion in the sitcom. Not John Esmonde and Bob Larbey, the writers. An inner psychological inclusion, brought out in melody/lyric form, of his wishes to escape the normality and everyday trudge of life. I’d whistle that little ditty all day long.

I often whistle a song which pops into my head, from out of nowhere, during the day and suddenly realise it’s linked to my situation at the time. A scenario that has just happened or thoughts to what may be experienced later. Usually the sentiment comes from one line of lyric. Not the overall meaning of the song. A line of tune that stabs at that moment in time. If I’m experiencing abdominal discomfort from surgery I once had? Nilsson’s ‘Coconut’ song pops into my head. Every time. A couple of days ago I kept humming, whistling and singing  ‘Follow the Sun’ by the Beatles after a hard day at work? ‘One day, you’ll look, to see I’ve gone, for tomorrow may rain so….I’ll follow the sun’. Escaping the job.

I don’t go around whistling outright. Loud, get on your nerves whistling. Usually alone in a task and not a true whistle. Why? Because I can’t whistle anymore. I’ve lost the capability. Gone forever. Wind with slight gentle rasp whistle inclusion is my extent nowadays. No loud volume. Just hushed and self healing noise for the mind.

Today? This is my whistling song for the day. I thought of Slim Whitman through a process of thoughts that began with an alien film we watched last night on Netflix. Well ‘Extinction’ wasn’t an alien film, but it made you think it was at the start. SPOILER. It was humans dressed like aliens. Then the Tim Burton film ‘Mars Attacks’ came into my head. And what kills the Tim Burton comic yet hostile aliens? Slim Whitman’s music. I was very offended! Slim Whitman is one of a few singers that can make me cry. You’d think a voice as pure as his would be clinically and emotionally sterile. No way. Emotion in the voice is portrayed in many ways.

Lyrical content can hit a spot inside your mind that blows you away. I remember sitting in my car, tears rolling down my cheeks when I heard a Morrissey song. ‘Please, please, please, let me get what I want’ and it caught me at a low ebb.

‘See the life I’ve had…..can make a good man….bad’. THAT line.

Oh! Sorry got diverted. Back again to today? ‘Rose Marie’, is a beautiful song. Just a heartfelt love story of one’s feelings of another. I was fascinated by the Andy Kaufman rendition. The presented imagery and initial laughter. Then the song begins and blows the whole comic experience apart. Suddenly, the song becomes everything. No more laughter. Just the song and it’s sentiment. Andy Kaufman genius. Read into this little story what you will. He’s done this for a reason. And you can enquire into your own analysis.

Back to ‘Whistling’. So…….I sat there one morning with my brothers old guitar from the 1980s. A cheap little affair with his original strings on it. And sat looking at the childrens’ goldfish. I thought of them whistling their own song for the day. And I quickly wrote and whistled this little tune. I’d forgotten all about it. Made me laugh at the timing when the fish at the end kisses stone.


So. Nice links below to get you whistling. Mind you. Some are pretty sinister. Wild child? Never heard of them until I began looking for this whistling topic through links on the internet. What a great band! I tapped into about half a dozen of their songs on YouTube. I reckon I’ll buy a few of their CDs.

First link below is pretty neat with lots of whistling song links.

These are direct to: American Horror Story……..very uncomfortable, but absolutely worth watching.


Window into Faerie Land


Your view of the world creeps up on you unchallenged. ‘Hey’! You say. ‘Not the same! Nah! Not the same. I could see much more way back when. Damn stuff has got in the way. Clouded and impacted on my vision out there’.

I moved to Wales 24 years ago. Visitors marvelled at the views from the house. Wherever they sat. Out front? The distant sea, Aberdovey and the bay to the right, the wetland bogs before Borth to the left. Out back? The forests and fields. Forests on a massive hillside leading to Bedd Taliesin (Taliesin’s Grave). The fields full of bleating sheep and clucking hens and chickens. We see it all from the immediate surroundings of our house. High up in the back garden. Low down at the side and front of the house.

Time rolls by and Mother Nature does it’s thing……and simply grows and expands. But. At first considerations…..In the immediate surroundings. The beech tree grows taller/wider. The trees and hedges in front of the house and across the road do the same. Out back in the garden? Damson and apple trees get confident and slightly larger. Fruit trees, probably planted in the late 1800s or early 1900s become the focus. You can’t use the word claustrophobia because nature doesn’t work that way. It is there to sit and be wondered at. Apples and damsons growing. Beech tree alive with honey bees a buzzing. We are in a situation of development of the “immediate natural elements and are surrounded by awesome inclusions “.

But……where are those easily accessible distant views now? Hidden. Unless you move your body and seek a different position to look out at the “what once was”. What’s wrong with moving from your comfort zone? I and visitors no longer see the same views. But move out of our safe haven and seek a different perspective? Walk down the village, left up a staircase of a track, steep, relentless and loves to take the breath from your lungs, right along a forestry path, up into the shadows of trees, silent footsteps in the thick fall of leaves and evergreen brown needles, out into a glade and turn. Wow! A collective Wow! What once was, still is. But so different. Same sea, but a wider, deeper stretch in view, same wet bog lands, but a tapestry of rustic colour that presents itself like a quilt on the land. Same estuary, but full with glittering starbursts from the water, and same seaside houses in the distance, but fuller, richer and imagined life teams within their surrounding streets. We’ve reached a higher standpoint with the intentions of looking back from there to a moment in time we all want to remember. And it works. A warmth of rememberance, but seen through new perspective, steeps into the bones, psyche and social comforts. Holistic. No longer restricted by nearby purpose, harmony and development. All encompassing pure joy.

Now? The beauty of nurtured and close by growth which enhances the immediate joy of looking. Whilst those distant loved scenarios have never changed. Always there? So……stay and enjoy the immediate comfort of safe and recognised envelopment/development. And…..move to a different perspective in order to seek the comfort of memories once again! You can never go home again. But you can accept that home is where the heart is.

What I’m trying to say is “Don’t destroy what is nurturing before your eyes just to get at the memories of the past. Change your way of thinking. Shift perspective and move to a place where you can still find sustenance in the past which never really changes. And look at what is growing and developing before you”.

I am not going to remove a Beech tree of beauty, a collective of fruit trees or ask the neighbours to trim their hedges to see the beauty of once was. I’ll simply move myself to a different spot. The view was always there, but maybe a bit higher up the hillside. But then, nothing wrong in staying in the same contentment. Because the ultimate? An ever changing sky. Heaven. You can always stay in the same place, look upwards and always look at the beauty of everchanging everyday stories of clouds and the permanence of stars. Well, stars with the odd story to tell of death and birth.