Here’s a challenge:

How to keep in touch and show one’s love, on her birthday, when she’s not physically here, anymore.

I think I have a solution

I have found a famous time machine on eBay for sale by Leonard of the ‘Big Bang Theory’.

so I can travel back in time …..

and pass on a message

That was then and this is now. What fun and a great success but I think I’m back one day early. What date is it?

The next test is whether my strong-willed, determined most positiveness wife can somehow gets a message back to me. As she said: “we’ll see.”

Expect the unexpected

Nothing ever seems to go to plan in India……

to help commemorate Manjulasness on her birthday we’d invited a few friends to celebrate in the park opposite where we’ve placed three benches.

But two days before, this happened…..

There’s now the beginnings of a new path. We’ll just about manage if it doesn’t rain and create a river of mud.

One or two great books

In Manjula’s library on grieving…..

Adult books. My two top picks would be Didion and Grief and Grieving.
and children’s books, that this child loves. Memory Tree and Heart and the Bottle are fab but they’re all great.

Birthdays

Events that bring people together help create our Mysore BnB community.

Manjula, special in many ways also had two different birthdates but unlike the Queen, celebrated neither of them. Once Mr English lets-get-organised differently was involved, she decided to adopt the 21st August birthdate and drop the one she shared with Jesus. After that she expected a celebration every year that was full on fun.

2016 age 43

We might have breakfast, a visit out for the day and a meal at home or in a restaurant. It was a celebration of Manjula’s choosing: our life, and good fortune, the home we’d made, together with local friends and often with special guests like Ina from Australia.

Her 45th, in 2018, was extra special after that worrying time in Intensive Care. Ina and Willian, (he’s from Brazil) were with us for a ’rounding’ as Madam would say: a visit to Somnathpur, lunch on Srirangapatnam and a gathering of our immediate clan for dinner at the Roopa. My ‘sweetness’ was on form making the best of her every single moment.

We will always celebrate Manjula and her birthday whether she’s here or there. As we approach her 47th birthday we’ve placed the benches in the park and paid for meals at the Old people’s home. I hope for more to follow, maybe I’ll hear from herself and could the phantom smiley painter return?

…….watch this space….

We’ve been time travelling again on her birthdays

Manjula wanted something a little less exposed to the wind than the open-topped machine, so I borrowed the Tardis (compliments of Dr Who?) to take her on another trip or ‘rounding’ as she used to describe our outings in our Ambassador car.

Somehow we became younger

Manjula loves this as it suits her highly developed (English?) sense of humour 😉

It’s not the first time we’ve time travelled like this. She was keen for adventures into the unknown. We also discovered parallel worlds at the WOMAD (World of Music Art and Dance Festival) in England.

I admit to being disappointed as we’ve not heard directly from her. There’s time yet and I still hope

when we meet

When we dogs meet each other for the first time, with a sniff in the air (or if daring, up the bum) a wave of the tail a look in the eye we quickly decide: is the newcomer above, below or equal to me?

We signal by the tail. If they are lower in status the tail tucks in between the legs and they physically cower.

People often, psychologically and socially do the same.

After an initial look, a few questions, key words they evaluate the other.

Are they on the same level? If so, they’ll behave adult to adult,

Or are they so different in terms of age, caste, colour, race or religion? If they perceive one above the other they’ll behave like parent and child. If they’re uncertain there maybe a tussle to work out their relative positions.

People do this, often and everywhere.

It may help them feel superior or inferior uncomfortable or comfortable, accepted, rejected. It helps define who we think we are and how we relate to others. It’s common and often involves games to clarify, communicate and impose. I’ve adapted this from transactional analysis as featured in the book: “Games People Play’.

Yes, some dogs can read, but don’t tell anyone.

All societies do it, to varying degrees but ultimately in my view can often reinforce status, encourage elitism and highlight difference. It leads to unacceptable behaviours, social distance and it’s not very nice.

from Lucie’s soap box

Searching for Cinderella

Well I’m not Prince Charming, far from it, but I did find my Cinderella.

She’s left me with another challenge…. as if there aren’t enough already …. it’s to find someone with small feet who might be interested in her shoes.

Here is Manjula, the lovable, modelling a seriously famous designer pair of shoes that were never worn outdoors.

There’s quite a selection, so please pass on the information and let me know. The biggest challenge is they are sizes three and three and a half, so very small.

Sandals and the middle one is Birkenstock
Snazzy ones, outdoor wet ones and Ecco

Manjula was of course a strong woman with teeny feet.

Teva Sandals

This wonderful woman had style, flexibility for different circumstances and an eye for the brands.

Two classy pairs.

All the famous brands we brought from Europe.

Please message or email me if you think they might fit and you wish to try on.

Who’s a storyteller?

Here’s two things that maybe of interest to storytellers:

1 resources, links, information that maybe useful and entertaining

2 what it is and why it’s important.

But before I get to that I wish to declare: I’m a writer and storyteller. How do I know?

I have writer’s block so I must be a writer 🙃 😉

I have shared my writings (through our sites) for eight years with people from around the world (a handful in England, at least one in Canada, some in India, and a smattering in Australia, Europe, Europe and US.) I didn’t say there were many but at least one reader on every continent, except Antarctica. I now plan to give more attention to writing stories.

I’m also a storyteller, as I believe we all are. It’s only recently though that I’ve realised how much I have shared stories. The first training and puker presentations I gave we’re in my early twenties. I’ve done it lots but was it any good?. 🙃🙂😉 I’m not the judge.

I have a particular problem. The English will joke that as I’m from North England I don’t know proper English whether written or spoken.

Any way back to the two things:

1. Recently, I’ve joined a lovely group: the Mysore Storytelling Network (MSN) who organise events and are a great source of information and help. They are on Instagram. Great group, check them out.

An ex-president of a fanciful country far far away and his wife Michelle like stories.

I’ve also read stories for children during lockdown. They are on this site listed as storytime. Here’s a couple: wonky donkey and a different take on Snow White for others just search

A good friend Victoria sent details of storytelling near where she lives in London . A serious training school with some great descriptions about what it’s all about at the school of storytelling and Storytelling clubs, examples are the crick crack club and story circle

2. What is storytelling? We will, of course, have different views. Here’s a start.

Stories are for entertainment, they enliven, enrich, make us think, stop us in our tracks bring us together, help us manage conflict or disagreement and because it’s sharing and helping connect they create communities. They might be written or spoken and can reinforce, change, adapt people’s behaviour, stimulate interest and stir us to act, or maybe just reflect, learn and have fun.

They introduce and reinforce beliefs, that enable us to relate to each other, without that where would we be?

What do you think?