If you are in the mood for being read to you might like to click on this podcast link. Podcast Jho Harris of podcasts.ie kindly interviewed me some years ago and also asked me to read a bit from a couple of my books. We did the interview on a wintry day in my wee house. We were sitting by a snug open fire and I probably had a nice cup of tea close by.

Got Jeanette Winterson’s ‘Why Be Happy When You Could Be Normal?’ out of the library recently. It’s a brave, insightful and very honest read. Read some of Barbara Pym’s books last year. Barbara had a great talent for
spot on detail, especially when describing the dismaying or amusing sillinesses many of her characters encounter. If you haven’t read a David Lodge book yet and are a fan of humour with depth and humanity, he’s another author who’s worth a Google. ‘Changing Places’ is one of my favourite novels. One of the characters moves to England and another moves to California. It is far more than a ‘campus’ type novel…it is also an exhilarating and very funny exploration of different cultures, and much more.

On a rather more prosaic note, enjoyed watching ‘Phil Spencer Secret Agent’ on Channel Four last night. As you may know, he cheerfully advises people about doing up houses that are for sale and have been on the market for some time. When the properties are shown common decor issues include ‘unusual’ wallpaper, carpets and paint colours…and occasionally grand arrays of plastic flowers and huge collections of figurines (how sweetly enthusiastic some of those collectors are!). General maintenance and diligent cleaning is often required, and a great deal of painting. A lot of the people featured are so endearing! Thankfully Phil is great at affable but firm feedback He has, as they say, good people skills…and a permanent tan. Having savoured his perky tips last night I did some decluttering myself. His suggestions are helpful even if you aren’t selling your house!

Hope that you have a great New Year.

With love and light,


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