Tuesday, 10 August 2010


You can't live a perfect day without doing something for someone who will never be able to repay you.
John Wooden

Things turn out best for the people who make the best of the way things turn out.
John Wooden

Never mistake activity for achievement.
John Wooden

It's what you learn after you know it all that counts.
John Wooden

If you don't have time to do it right, when will you have time to do it over?
John Wooden

Don't measure yourself by what you have accomplished, but by what you should have accomplished with your ability.
John Wooden

Failure is not fatal, but failure to change might be.
John Wooden

Wooden was a well known basketball coach in the USA. However what inspired me when I learned of him a few years ago was his utter loyalty and devotion. He met his wife, Nellie, when he was fifteen, and they were together almost sixty years. Nellie died in 1985 and John continued to visit her grave and write love letters to her every month. As he finished each letter, he would add it to the pile of others which he kept on her pillow. He did this every month for twenty five years. He died this summer, loving Nellie always.

Once I was afraid of dying.
Terrified of ever-lying.
Petrified of leaving family, home and friends.
Thoughts of absence from my dear ones,
Drew a melancholy tear once.
And a lonely, dreadful fear of when life ends.

But those days are long behind me;
Fear of leaving does not bind me.
And departure does not host a single care.
Peace does comfort as I ponder,
A reunion in the Yonder,
With my dearest who is waiting for me there.
                                           Swen Nater, inspired by John and Nellie

Friday, 6 August 2010

Wee Willy Winky

Me, in my old ratty pjs, running up the street peering in my neighbours windows at 3am. Not a great image, eh?

I have this teeny tiny phobia about fire. And moths, I hate moths. My eldest tells me that I must have died in a fire in a previous life, probably tied to a stake (probably at night, with the moths attracted to the flames... hah take that Freud!). I think it far more likely that my phobia springs from my father accidentally setting the house alight when I was a toddler, but whatever floats your boat.

So, asleep in bed. 3am. I get a whiff.. a tiny sniff.. oh my god, a fire! I am so much better than any smoke alarm, and I am out of bed, running into the children’s rooms before my brain catches up. Wait, I can smell fire but there’s no smoke. And my smoke alarms, so sensitive they pingpingpingpingping if a spider crosses the ceiling, are quiet. Hmm. Not my house then. (I still check every single room and electric socket).

So… it must be a neighbours house! I run into the street and check the windows for flickering light. Because you know that is obviously how I’d know. Tcch.

Himself finally catches up with me. He leans out the front door. “For pity’s sake, it’s the bloody tyre yard across town, the wind must have changed!”


I scurry quickly back into the house, and sheepishly slope back to bed (although with that adrenaline rush the chances of sleep are now nil). I may be a total idiot but secretly I am still impressed at my super sensitive sense of smell. Me 1: Fire 0.