I have a reminder on my iPhone which pops up every Monday at 8am:

But today not so.

I feel fine. Changing the clocks back must have helped… The sun is shining and despite travelling up and down the motorway for 14 in 36 hours; and a highly unappealing day ahead – I do feel fine!

Why? Here’s a clue…

I just have to go back to this post to find out. In the words of the meerkats: “simples”.



After the longest winter I can remember, warmth and sunshine break through the never-ending clouds and cold. What a difference the sunshine makes.

Yesterday, in the driving rain, I debated with my daughter whether this country is just too chilly these days. Her view: “This may be the safest country in the world but it is much to cold and wet – really!”

“Yes” I agreed “but we’d miss the seasons if it were always hot – and we’d be eaten by the bugs and the wildlife.” “Hmmm” she said.

This winter has been hard and has set me thinking about my autumn years. How many more long cold grinding winters like this do I want to endure? And rattling about the house doesn’t help.

Should I quit my job and do something different? Aspects are a ball ache, but a lot of it is perfect. I can’t really imagine a much better job in all honesty. Hmmm.

Should I set about fixing our house. It’s pretty chilly, pretty untidy, most stuff’s not where we want it and there’s a thousand and one things I could mend. Hmmm.

Should I write a book – or wait, it’ll give me something to do in a decade or two. But I might peg it before I’ve even got started. Should I start right away? Hmmm.

Should I, should I… Or should I go and sit in the garden, on a kitchen chair, soak up some sunlight and do nothing at all? Well not much anyway, just tap on an iPhone screen.

That’ll do. Simple is best. Sunshine, it’s a wonderful thing.

Autumn Sunrise


On a misty morning
With the kids in the car
Turning left
The surprise of a huge sun
Low in the sky
A silver gold blob
Just too bright to stare at
Not too bright to blind
An emergent phenomenon
Not easily had
Coming into being
In my busy head
More than a brain state
A life lived instead
Myriad things
In work at home at play
To bring together
Before it is found
Easily lost
A single moment can confound
But in simple pleasures
Doing the right things
Caring for people
About things
And oneself
Happiness shines
At times
Just too bright to stare at
Not too bright to blind.

I talked to a taxi driver today – an old man and a nice one. He revealed he studied art a good many years ago. Very much against the odds on a scholarship, he went to the art school at the bottom of our road – near where he was taking me.

He said other cabbies sometimes mock when he says he paints, but it brings him great peace and satisfaction. I owned up that I’ve started writing poetry too. We found ourselves kindred spirits. It’s not always the winning, it’s often the taking part with art. This poem refers to yesterday, but some of the warm glow spilled into today’s conversation.