A good influence

Completing my last morning school gate duty before half term, I am clearly invisible to a large group of students huddled by the bus stop.  Heads down, they stand in furtive silence, taking one last drag on their mobile phones before the bell signals that phones will need packing away for the school day.  Taking…

A new yarn

I love it when people you know well still have the ability to surprise you. Having recovered from the discovery of my sister’s gambling,  this week I get an early morning text and accompanying photo from a friend on her daily commute; ‘when you’re stuck on a very slow bus to work, thank goodness for…

The white stuff

Funny old week.  To continue the betting theme, it turns out that I’m just as bad at predicting the weather odds as I am picking a winner at Cheltenham Races.   One amber weather forecast from The Met wanging*  on about the  The Beast from the East II and everyone goes into meltdown. Most things get…

Runners and Riders

Marathon training in full stride, it was great to be invited yesterday to rest my athritic hip and blag some spectator sport as the guest of my sis and her family at Cheltenham Races. (The event’s catchy title was,  ‘Festival Trials Day’, but it’s enough to know that they let total horse duffers in to…

Lark rise

As hard as I try to reset my body clock, I seem wired to wake up early.  Some might envy my vivacious response to the alarm clock, but long-term this high octane approach can be exhausting and I’m realising that it may be limiting my attempts to spontaneously accept any evening invitations (perhaps I dream)…

Low resolution

Thankfully I’m nearly into the second week of January without any public shaming for my lack of New Year resolution. I’ve been allowing myself to zone out when people  mention their progress through a dry January, Veganuary, or general cheese abolition. If you know me you will know that this is not because I disapprove…

The Glad Game

The advantage of a long post-Christmas break allows me to make myself selfishly available this week to celebrate the end to my friend’s daily trips to Brighton for radiotherapy sessions. Keen readers will remember Mildred’s filthy footprints back in September and will remember why this cancer was christened Mildred (thedragonflyjar.com/…9/08/bog-off-mildred) Even if you have been…

As I live and breathe

As I live and breath, Mary Poppins has returned and she came in the form of a practically perfect (in every way) antidote to too much Christmas chocolate and an excess of lounge lizarding in festive pyjamas. As I didn’t have access to young children, I nagged Favourite Son and Favourite Daughter into Boxing Day…

The Santa Clause

I can’t remember as a teacher ever writing December 21st on the whiteboard and still trying, so close to Christmas, to convince students that GCSE set texts might be more interesting than watching ‘Elf’, ‘The Muppet Christmas Carol’ or eating their own body weight in Miniature Heroes. Usually, to shake off the memories of school…

Rapping up birthdays

If I had been dreading my birthday, (last Tuesday, thanks for asking), that foreboding dissipated last weekend when I was invited as a plus one to a lunchtime drinks party.  I didn’t know the host at all and had decided at an event the night before that – as I really wasn’t cracking solo socialising…