‘Cause baby now we got bad blood

Today I woke up at 5am crying.  I’ve had about 15 hours sleep at most in the last three days, I’m hot, clammy and now I feel like someone is hacking apart my insides.  Why is this? I got my bloody period again, that’s why.


When I started going out with the last boyfriend I went back on the pill, it’s a marvellous thing, not only would it help to prevent unwanted pregnancy, but it was one that I took everyday so it effectively stopped my periods and therefore stopped the period pain that went with it.   About a year and a half ago I stopped taking the pill because I had stopped having a boyfriend, after he stopped having sex with me, and so didn’t really need it in terms of preventing pregnancy.  I’d forgotten about the pain relief aspect.  I actually went cold turkey, apparently that’s not the best way to do it but I did, and for about three weeks I was moody, snappish, irritable and horrible to be around.  I suppose this was part of my hormones re-balancing, but it really sucked.


But let’s go back to the beginning.  In the summer of 1996, when I was twelve, I went on a morris dancing holiday around the south of Ireland with my Mum and her team.  On the Tuesday I woke up with terrible pain in my belly, went for my morning wee and was horrified to see blood when I wiped.  It was truly traumatic.  And the worst pain I could ever remember experiencing.  I was surprised that it was happening, although Mum had told me about it a few years before, something along the lines of “One day there will be some blood between your legs and it might hurt a bit, but don’t worry it’s normal.”  I didn’t tell her when it happened.  I was in pain and a bit ashamed and scared and so I stuffed toilet roll into my pants and said I didn’t feel well so they went on a sightseeing day and left me in bed.

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Everyone’s a little bit racist?

I’ve decided to write this because of something that has just popped up on Facebook.  It’s very much going to be a stream of consciousness so let’s hope it works out.

I was scrolling through the news feed and spotted something written by one of my friends in Australia. (She’s from Britain but moved to Australia a number of years ago).  I thought I’d mis-read it to start with and then re-read it, but no. It was actually a comment that said ‘dirty abos and their dirty children, I’m not racist but I bet if I spat on them they’d be cleaner… urgh disgusting specimins!!!’ Three people had ‘liked’ it.

I’m just going to let you sit with that, as I did for a little while.

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From tiny acorns grow mighty oaks.

I’ve been on the bus for maybe 8 mins and I’ve just thought to check my phone.  It’s been in the bottom of my bag for the morning, underneath tubes of dye, hand cream, a camera and all sorts of odds and ends. I’ve been sitting reading the second Game of Thrones book – A Clash of Kings – it’s taking me a lot longer than the first because I’ve not locked myself in my room for two days this time, so a half hour bus trip, plus the time waiting for it to come, is a good to crack on with trying to finish it.  I dug around for my phone as the bus was waiting at the roadworks at the outskirts of town.

There are two texts and an answerphone message – I can’t access the answerphone message, but the texts tell me something I really should have checked earlier. My hair appointment, the one I’m on the bus for, has been cancelled.  Bugger, I’m annoyed but there’s not a lot that can be done.

I’ve decided to get off at the next stop, which is the village of Farthinghoe.  I’ve been through it millions of times but I don’t think I’ve actually set foot there.  That seems odd to me, so I’ll take this opportunity to take a look around.  I walk past the hedge and take some photos of the allotment behind it.  I’ve been taking a series of photos of my walk to work and the countryside changing from Summer to Autumn in front of me and it’s good to have different locations to look at.

At the end of the hedge is a huge oak tree that in all these years I’ve never noticed it.  I really don’t know how. It’s easily a few hundred years old.  It has acorns sprouting all over it, most of them a vivid green, some beginning to brown and fall to the ground.  I take some pictures with bemused looks from locals taking in their bins.

I continue on towards the bus stop, spotting a lion in the school playground.

The churchyard next door has many aging and worn headstones but one stands out in particular.  It looks brand new, untouched by age and time, it’s bright and clean.  At first I think it must have been recently added. Private —, possibly a casualty of recent wars, but no. It’s actually from a long past one.  That headstone has possibly been standing for 67.  He was killed in 1945.

I love churchyards and churches.  I’m in no way religious, but I love the way that they were created with love, care, skill and attention.  They are still and peaceful, there is a state of quiet that is hard to find elsewhere.  I take some time looking around reading the headstones because I feel that they are there to remember someone who was loved.  Reading them continues on the remembrance.

The bus shouldn’t be long,  I continue onto the bus stop, it’s wooden and set back from the road, a good amount of shelter. I sit down, taking out my book to continue where I left off.  A small movement in the corner of my eye makes me look up, it’s too distracting to try and keep on reading. I move the small brown spider from the sleeve of my coat to rest on the bench.  I don’t think it wants to come all the way home with me.  I look down again as an old man approaches the bus stop.  He has black shoes held together with black electrical tape, holding in dark thick, woolly socks.  Baggy black corduroy trousers, a shirt and jacket with some sort of button pinned to the lapel.

“Are you waiting for the bus?” he asks me.

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