Sunday, 28 March 2010



Probably my most favourite book as a child was The Faraway Tree with all its characters and adventures; the tree in itself was a whole community, from the Saucepan man to Dame Washalot and of course old Moonface who provided a safe exit from danger, down the slippery-slip. MoonFace

Reaching the top of the tree was only the beginning, for there, reaching up beyond the clouds was along ladder. Each day at the top of the ladder a new land was to be found; a land of Dreams, a land of Spells and a land of Tempers. I have been thinking recently about Merry-go-rounds and beginning to wonder if I have been carried away by the Land of Merry-go-rounds; you see, if you do not make it back to the ladder in time, you could indeed be carried away.Farawaytree2

The merry-go-round seems to travel so fast, yet once on the merry-go-round, everything outside this space seems be be going twice/ ten times as fast. Time seems slow to those who are in the spin and once off the merry-go-round I seem to have missed so much. There is much more to this story as there are so many merry-go-rounds. Come on old Moonface, what is the secret? how do we jump from one to another and not miss what is happening in between?


The Faraway Tree by Enid Blyton. Illustrations by Dorothy M Wheeler.


Wednesday, 24 March 2010

Pustinia Door

Light bursts into my day

            I reach for the shades to hide my eyes

impossible to look directly into the light

but it is the light

           that enables me to see all things.




Monday, 8 March 2010

The view


Looking out of my window, I notice the view never changes; ok, so the trees have grown over the years and we have a few more houses, but essentially it hasn’t changed.

Each morning I look out with expectant eyes and frequently I am not disappointed, for the changes are immense.

Light itself changes colour, mood, depth and clarity, the sense of distance and my perception of environment changes; how I feel inside is a response to this outward view.

Note to morning office: You are the light of the world, may I change in response to You.

Sunday, 7 March 2010

Into the light

The big church in Saltburn are having another art exhibition, the theme is “into the light”. One of the ladies of the parish asked if would submit a photo, I did some last time on creation.

I had many thoughts and most of them based on the fact that it was too difficult for us to look directly at the light; reflected by water, through glass, trees etc - sounded the best route. I went in search of tall buildings, Banks, Churches and found myself in the back streets and alleyways.

We see light from our darkness, from the shadows, I tried to capture the effect of light and how it eats into the vertical darkness and tears into the shadows; the added presence of light on the garbage cans was a bonus.

05b           03

Note to evening office: Illuminate my shadows.

Saturday, 6 March 2010

Arncliffe woods


A long promised walk was finally found; I thought about two hours would be good, but due to ice and a slight detour it lasted more than four. The path was so frozen that I had real difficulty getting up the hill and into the woods, I am glad no-one could see me as I took one step up and slid my whole length back; it was like an old silent movie.  Probably due to the weather there were no other brave walkers, just the sound of the swelling river as it hurried over the great sandstone boulders. Movement caught my eye as two small dear darted through the trees, I was amazed that something running so fast made hardly a sound.

It was more than just a walk, I was on a quest, weeks ago I decided on this walk, to find the wishing stone and a part of the woods that I remembered when I was young; this was to form a central part of my book (which is very slow work in progress).


I felt I was well prepared, with camera, binoculars, mobile phone, waterproof jacket and boots; an ice pick and crampons would have been better, I soon found a stout stick that helped to keep me vertical. I think I was more worried about my camera!

The scars and sandstone outcrops are evidence of mining, Glaisdale was abundant in iron ore and in 1865 three blast furnaces were built in this small Esk Valley town. The path is made up of large sandstone blocks leading on, higher and away from the river, the sound of the water becoming deeper in the distance, slowly being taken over by the quiet of the trees.


It was easier to walk on the verges as the stones were like trying to walk on ice cubes; I decided to head up away from the path as I felt the wishing stone was much higher as I recalled. I did find one stone that resembled it but decided this was much smaller than I remembered. Further on still I caught my breath as I saw and remembered the wishing stone; there it was, as big as ever and with that big crack running through the middle, I wanted to run to it.

P1060933I stood and looked at it for such a long time, photographing different angles; I felt I could still hear the shout of us as children jumping and climbing over it; it is a magical stone and of course I couldn’t resist but to walk through the stone and make a wish.

My quest to find the second special place was not to be, try as I might it remained hidden. Further on still I left the path again and headed towards the the edge of the steep cliff with the river below and trees forming as it were a safety wall that I might not fall off the edge. I had found a different place that was indeed special, a sense of security and peace; I am sure I could have stayed there all day.

Note to morning office: Not all magic is about wizards and spells, its good to have a dream; MAKE A WISH!