I Wish I Knew More

I remember hanging out of my window as a teenager gazing up at the starry sky and feeling awe-struck.  While on one of the first camping trips I went on up in Aberdeenshire a good looking 24-year old who had his arms wrapped around me pointed out many constellations, and as we stood watching the night sky we saw a shooting star.

I have a few friends who have saved up their pennies and bought themselves telescopes. It is not difficult to understand why.  It is common to most members of our delightful human family that we are memorised by the skies.  The immensity and the sheer beauty.  I wish I knew more about the stars and constellations.

On my own, there is only one constellation that I can pick out with absolute certainty.  Orion – the hunter.


Some years ago I read about discoveries that have been made since the Hubble telescope was launched.  The article focused on Orion for some time.  Since this was a constellation I knew, I read with avid interest.  What I read simply knocked my socks off!

From the three stars of Orion’s belt dangles his sword. The fuzzy star in the middle of the sword is not really a star at all but the famous Orion Nebula, an object of striking beauty even when seen through a backyard telescope.

Astronomers were investigating the Orion Nebula and its many young stars because it is the largest and most active region of starbirth in our part of the Galaxy. The nebula appears to be a cosmic maternity ward!

When the Hubble telescope photographed the Orion Nebula, capturing details that had never been seen before, astronomers saw not just stars and glowing gas but was described as “fuzzy little ovals or blots of orange light”. They resembled specks of one’s lunch dropped accidentally onto the photo. Scientists believe that rather than darkroom defects, these fuzzy ovals are “protoplanetary disks, the first solar-systems-in-the-making viewed from a distance of 1,500 light-years.”  (Alternatively Clive did sneak a kebab in for lunch while he was in the dark room that day….JOKE!)

It seems that stars—indeed, entire solar systems—are being born at this moment in the Orion Nebula? Rather mind-boggling!

orion's nebula

I am not going to even pretend to know much about the stars and galaxies.  I have read as much as I can get hold of, but it’s a minuscule fraction of what is out there.  Beyond anything humans can imagine, let alone make…it is awe-inspiring and humbling to realize utterly phenomenal this universe is.

I am would love to go on and on…but truth be told…there are no words…but I am sure you have felt exactly the same way as I have when you gazed up at starry skies.  Aren’t we privileged?!!!


Riding The Storm

My Mumma and Dadda used to prepare us in advance for challenges…and I am glad they did.  Even now we all have “grab-bags” with everything we may need for an emergency.  They made sure we knew life would not be all plain sailing, and we could not be sure what to expect from one day to the next, one year to the next.

It was prolonged times of adversity they warned us might come at any stage. They said unexpected events can occur at any stage and they asked us what would we do if there was an accident or illness that meant we were on our own at any stage.  If tragedy took our parents away, who would we trust?  where would we go? how would we behave? That might sound a bit morbid, but it has certainly helped us to be stable when tragedy has struck at various times over the years.



At the same time they made sure we developed a sunny hopeful disposition so that we were never overcome by challenges.  They said let hope be like an anchor that keeps you stable when you face a storm.  They said sometimes you just have to cling tight to all that you know is good and right and trust that the storm will ease off at some point.  When the storm clouds roll away and the boisterous sea settles down…that was the time to unfurl your sails and let the changing winds impel you forward.  Then you could continue your voyage through life full of joy and satisfaction that you have weathered a storm and are ready for what life may throw at you.  Perhaps with a little bit of storm damage but your integrity intact.

Today’s picture prompt from  The Haunted Wordsmith  The Haunted Wordsmith instantly reminded me of their sage advice.  For ships way back in the day, an anchor would have been a powerful safety device, indispensable for holding a ship in place and preventing it from drifting. No mariner would venture out of port without an anchor.  For centuries, ships had no engine to enable the captain to maneuver as he wished. Except for oar-driven warships, vessels depended primarily on the wind for movement. If their ship was in danger of being driven onto rocks, a captain’s only recourse was to drop anchor and ride out the storm, trusting that the anchor would not lose its grip on the seabed.

But then storm over…anchors up…up the sails…and we are off…impelled by the force that drives us humans along, eager for life and happy times ahead!

I think one or two readers who have read isolated posts I have published, have not been sure what this site is really about.  One reader thought I was just writing about a teenage crush I had on someone once.  I don’t like to spell out what happened too graphically as this is a child-friendly site.  But in case you missed it, here is a little synopsis:

Protaganist: Caramel

Brought up by wonderful parents and taught invaluable lessons for life.

Chooses an incredible career as an international volunteer and is involved with amazing projects.

cyberbullyAnother volunteer (who is also a celebrity) crosses Caramel’s path leading to two years of emotional turmoil, and a challenge she has not weathered before, intense interest from friends, co-workers and the fans of the celebrity – gossip and social media rumours.

Caramel decides she needs to remove herself from the close proximity of sharing a flat with him.  He turns nasty.  A campaign seems to be launched to blacken Caramel’s name.

AmbulanceCaramel goes to a park one evening when she is feeling overwhelmed by the challenges she is dealing with and there falls victim to a serious crime.  She is found the next day by a security guard who calls an ambulance immediately.

Caramel…is rebuilding her life and preparing herself to go back to her chosen career and life.  But she has to be patient.  She has many blessings though including the very lovely Goldfinch.

That is the basic outline…some may have picked up on what the crime was, and some of the other isolated incidents that interweave within this basic outline.  But, I assure you, this situation was a storm unlike any I have ever faced…it was not at all simple to deal with.  A bit of storm damage, but I clung on with all my might to what I knew was good, and right and true and I can hold my head up because I did not retaliate.  I have the blessing of knowing I conducted myself honourably.

Lots more to come…and perhaps at some stage I will rearrange the posts so that they appear in a more logical order.  But for now…it is sails up and away…we are catching the fresh breezes and voyaging ever onwards through an ocean of uncertainty…but keeping our eyes set on the glorious destination ahead!


Seems like a great excuse to attach a song that I have been singing since primary school (goodness I have to tell you about our wonderful Headmaster who played the guitar and taught us all sorts of songs – that is another one for the drafts folder).