Dig To The Summer Breeze

Jim Adams, aka Newepicauthor, the creator of A Unique Title For Me, is hosting SONG-LYRIC-SUNDAY and this week he has chosen the theme: BREEZE/CLOUD/SKY/WIND

So many great songs to choose from. Eventually I picked one based on the remix which for me is an example of how an old song can be transformed into something more phenomenal than it was before. That does not always happen, but in this case, I love what was done with the Elvis Presley track “A Little Less Conversation“.

Why have I picked this song? It is one that Jack sometimes plays to tease me. The truth is that he is much more of a chatterbox than I am, so I don’t know why he teases me. I do understand why Goldfinch teased me about the amount of words that I can deliver in one day.

There is always so much to talk about when you have two hundred relatives and too many friends to count. It’s not as if these are uneventful times either. Of course I have a million things to share with him! But on a Saturday night when he has not seen me since Tuesday lunchtime, he does not want to talk….

A little less conversation, a little more action please
All this aggravation ain’t satisfactioning me
A little more bite and a little less bark
A little less fight and a little more spark
Close your mouth and open up your heart and baby satisfy me
Satisfy me baby

Baby close your eyes and listen to the music
And dig to the summer breeze
It’s a groovy night and I can show you how to use it
Come along with me and put your mind at ease

A little less conversation, a little more action please
All this aggravation ain’t satisfactioning me
A little more bite and a little less bark
A little less fight and a little more spark
Shut your mouth and open up your heart and baby satisfy me
Satisfy me baby

Come on baby I’m tired of talking
Grab your coat and let’s start walking
Come on, come on
Come on, come on
Come on, come on
Don’t procrastinate, don’t articulate
Girl it’s getting late, you don’t sit and wait around

A little less conversation, a little more action please
All this aggravation ain’t satisfactioning me
A little more bite and a little less bark
A little less fight and a little more spark
Close your mouth and open up your heart and baby satisfy me
Satisfy me baby
Satisfy me baby

Written by: Scott Davis

I Put My Parents Through Agony

My parents were never really sure quite what happened. They said they felt helpless and they prayed many times that things would turn out well. But they were deeply anxious and doubtful I would recover.

For years I had been a typical child, eager, full of life and laughter. I ate and pooped, ate and pooped. I was immature and completely dependent on my parents. I looked up to them and felt very secure in their love. They fed my mind, my heart and my stomach and watched me as I grew and grew and grew.

Svensson'S Pyramid Owl

But then I went to high school and entered my teens and puberty. Something happened which they knew may come one day, but not in quite such a drastic way.

I shut myself off from them and refused to communicate properly. I grunted, shrugged and sighed my way through my fourteenth and fifteenth year. My parents tried their best to keep reaching my heart, but they had no idea if they were getting through.

They must have found it agonizing. In many ways, I am glad I was clever enough to hide what I did from them until many many months later. I hid so much from them for so long.

They still don’t know the half of it! All sorts was going on inside of me. Boys, music, drinking. I was no longer happy to conform, to obey. I questioned everything inwardly and outwardly.

I skipped school and forged sick notes. Instead of going to school I would catch a train into Manchester which was almost 40 miles away from home. When I was at school, I became disruptive in some classes (the ones I did not really enjoy). My best friend and I spurred each other on. We vandalised the geography teacher’s classroom and even his own belongings. We turned every physics lesson into anarchy. We played netball in the middle of our French lesson with a French dictionary and jumped up on to her desk and danced the Can-Can.

Sometimes I was given a “detention” by a teacher. I forged my mum’s signature and turned up for the detention (except the time I skipped detention because I was going to a concert), I was fortunate in being so bright. My school work never suffered and I maintained my straight A grades.

I started to work for a record company, which my parents knew about. But most of the nights they thought I was staying over at the home of a school friend, I was in Manchester at a music venue or club. I did things I am ashamed to relate.

The teachers wanted me to make decisions about what to do when school ended. I did not know what I wanted to do. I knew what I did not want to do.

I pondered what purpose there is in life, when we seem to be forced down a path that does not in any way appeal to us. I felt hollow and lost at times. Life seemed like a grey expanse stretched out before me. I felt trapped. The music I listened to constantly incited me to be disdainful of boring conformity. There was a spirit of arrogant rebellion breeding in my mind. I was full of resentment and anger towards everyone – I am not even sure why.

But I was not happy. Some of the things I saw at clubs shocked me. Behaviour beyond disgusting. Everything felt filthy. I did not know how to be happy any longer.

aunt june.jpg

A wise old owl – Aunt June, who was almost eighty, and had sparkly blue eyes and a very deep grin – asked me what I was going to do when I left school. I muttered and gave her a wishy-washy answer about going to college. She probed further and soon discovered that I had no real plan in mind. There were no subjects that interested me just then, accept music. But I already knew I hated the places I was going and the people who were there. I was disillusioned with the music industry.

Aunt June could be scary sometimes. She looked at me sternly and said: “Do you want to live?” I was a bit taken aback by that question. Tears came into my eyes as I realized I was not even sure that I did want to be alive. I had been miserable for so long, my enjoyment in life had evaporated.

She asked me if I didn’t know what I wanted for my future, then what did I want for the rest of the world and for the planet? I thought about it, and knew that actually I did have a vision in the back of my mind. A vision that I had first seen in a golden story book my first ever teacher used to read to us from when I was just five years old. I knew the word to describe it: PARADISE.

Aunt June cried out that I should set that goal for my own future and see myself there, not just the rest of the world. She told me to work towards that goal.

At just the right time a project started in the town where we were living. They needed volunteers, skilled or unskilled. I had just broken up for study leave for my GCSEs. I went down there and from the first day I was trained and assigned all sorts of tasks. I ended up on the front page of the local newspaper because of my involvement for the full length of the project.

I remember a couple of my dad’s friends talking to him about me one day. I could hear everything. My face flushed with embarrassment but I was pleased. Then they called out to me: “We were just talking about you Mel! We were asking what has happened to you? You have come to life. You were grumpy and moody a few months ago and wouldn’t talk to anyone, not even make eye contact with anyone. Now look at you. You are glowing.”

I knew I was. I knew that ever since I had started to become involved in volunteer projects I had started to taste happiness.

What I wanted, in my heart of hearts, was to live on a clean planet, where people, animals and all of nature are treated with love and respect. Now I had found many of thousands of people in this country who all felt the same and were giving whatever time they could to work together to make a difference to communities.

My parents always said those couple of years when it was so hard to get me to communicate were very difficult for them. They were so worried about me. They always said it was as if I had cocooned myself within a chrysalis. They had no idea what was going on inside my mind and heart. But it was very much a metamorphosis.

One day something wonderful started to happen. They said a beautiful human being started to emerge from that mentally and emotionally isolated state and started to give colour and happiness to everyone around her.

I always felt it was because I had started to spend time with very beautiful people. People who were freely giving their time, their energy and their skills to build something that would benefit a community. I was learning so much from them.

I wanted to be alive. I wanted to work towards a better world, a world where everyone is happy, full of life, secure in love. I wanted to help make this earth a paradise.

I now had a purpose, a goal and I loved beautifully hearted people who were working towards the same purpose.

Job Interviews

Job interviews….!  Ay ay ay!!!

I don’t mind them really… I don’t really feel nerves, but afterwards I do sometimes cringe at the awkwardness.  It’s a bit like going for a blind date.  You don’t really know what the other person is looking for or comparing you to.  You sit there in the judgement seat while the other person seems to be analysing every word and gesture you make.

I have been for a few interviews recently which were 95% OK, however when I think back analytically, I realize I may have blundered by choosing the wrong words at the wrong time.

Job interviews

One interview I went to, I thought went well, except for the point I made of saying I had to be available every Friday to help my landlady.  The job is for two days a week on Tuesday and Thursday, however they want someone who is available to cover holiday time, and the most popular day for holidays is Friday.  When I first moved met my landlady, she wanted me to be available every Friday and Saturday, but she was flexible and thus all year I have helped her on Wednesdays and Fridays. So I expect she will be flexible if I change my job so long as I am available for at least one day mid-week and so long as I am able to accomplish all the tasks she needs help with.  So, there was no reason for me to make a fuss about Fridays.  But I said something else which was worse.  After the interview, the manager took me down to reception and we chatted a bit more.  She mentioned her back pain.  I asked her briefly whether she had had an injury and when she mentioned being in bed and reaching for something on the bed side table and feeling her back strain… I then alluded of the accumulative damage from lots of small incidents.  I came out with the phrase “the straw that breaks the camel’s back”.  As soon as I walked out of there I suddenly thought, did she think I was calling her a camel?

Another interview I attended, I know now that my period of notice to my current employers was too long for him to wait.  But I also remember at the interview asking him if he receives a lot of complaints.  When he asked what prompted my question I came out with an explanation in which I clearly insinuated that people who are wealthy from the south of England are more likely to complain about silly things.  That may not have gone down well either.

One interview I attended made me feel super uncomfortable.  The interviewer asked me what I would prefer to drink… wait for this… red or white?  His first question to me was, “are you married?”  As the interview continued I realised all of his questions had been personal, none of them were about the role he was hiring for, or my work experience.  I tried to steer the conversation around to the job itself, but he was not interested.  I asked him about uniform.  He said he likes women in skirts and dresses.  Which would not be a problem in itself, but I did not like that he cast his eyes up and down my legs. I had to travel to attend the interview of which he was aware.  He offered to put me up that night if I was tired, so I could travel back the next day.  I thanked him and made it clear that would not be necessary.  As I left, trying to repress my desire to run like the wind, he gave me a peck on the cheek and assured me he would be in touch soon.  Scaaaaaarey!  I blocked his e-mail address as soon as I was home.

Then I went for an interview when because of the relevant experience I had they asked me if I would be interested in the role of supervisor over a team of around fifteen to twenty.  To which I asked, “is the supervisor allowed to actually do any work?”  I then explained how much I love practical work, and I have been on construction projects were supervisors were discouraged from getting involved with practical work but were told it was there responsibility that every member of their team was trained, safe, with the right PPE and equipment, had to liaise with purchasing about needed resources and the site manager and other departments about all sorts of matters.  I said I love the kind of work I am applying for a role for, but the thought of having to motivate a team of tired, unenthusiastic youngsters who are addicted to looking at their phones repels me.  Then my interviewers spelt out the wages that supervisors receive compare to team members.  I replied that if they can’t find anyone else suitable I would consider the supervisor’s role.  Ha!  I am sure that impressed them – NOT!

I arrived at another interview and within a couple of minutes I realized that rather than the part-time role at a site twenty minutes walk away from my current abode, the manager was considering me for a full-time post almost an hour away via public transport.  I can’t even remember what his first question was, but I remember with shame my reply.  I told him that I have to think about myself and my own personal circumstances.  I said I want to simplify my life, not complicate it.  I told him that I had applied for the part-time role close to where I live because I want to squeeze more time out of life and get our and enjoy living rather than feeling trapped in an existence which is monotonous and unfulfilling.  Some how…he seemed to respect my honesty and by the end of the interview I thought I had almost charmed him into giving me the part-time role.  Apparently not!  I never heard back from him!

Then there was last Wednesday’s interview.  He interviewed me for over an hour and it seemed he was quite keen on me as a candidate.  There would be a lot to learn, but I mentioned how much studying I have done within my current role and that I have a much keener interest in construction trades over medical matters.  He seemed very positive.  But then right at the end…he said to me that he thinks I am very suitable for the role and he thinks I am looking for a career and he can offer me that chance.  Immediately I contradicted him!  I said I am not looking for a career.  I told him working for money is just a means to an end.  The end is a purposeful enjoyable life.  I said I enjoy work and give my best, but I am looking for a role that allows me to enjoy more of life, and that a key part of my life is unpaid voluntary work.

I seem to be calm and composed in interviews but also capable of throwing in something controversial or hard for my interviewers to swallow!  What is all that about?

I don’t really mind…if I am not what they are looking for, it is fine.  Just as going on a blind date, you can realize whether there is any potential or if it is more likely that there would be friction and frustration.  Sometimes when I hear I have not been successful after an interview, I almost feel relieved as if I have escaped a miserable existence.

 

Heal Us

still control me.jpg

You still have power over me

Your glare sends shivers down my spine

From miles away you still haunt me

Though I’m not yours and you’re not mine

Please don’t let anger consume you

It only makes you look so weak

I would love to sit down with you

And listen to you as you speak

Can we heal this rift between us?

I always pray to God above

With the hope that He can heal us

For you, I still cling to this love

Explaining The Magic Bin Emptying Fairy

In a few of my previous posts I have mentioned former single male flatmates who seemed to believe in “the magic bin emptying fairy”.  It seems I have caused a little confusion by using this term.

Well, some bloggers understood immediately what I was talking about, whereas others seemed puzzled.  So I am going to try to explain to clear up any confusion that lingers.

emptying rubbish (2)There are those flatmates, house-mates, even members of one’s own family or household who seem unawares of a supreme truth.  Someone, and by that I mean a human, not a fairy (often a woman, but there are some exceptional men) is actually behind what may seem miraculous or magical.

For example, Ella and and I were the ones who emptied the bins in our flat.  In addition to emptying the bin, we wiped the bin, the walls and the floor surrounding the bin.  The male residents of our flat seemed to go to further extremes each week in their  carelessness.  Coffee granules, tea-splashes, sauce stains and unidentifiable substances were smeared all over the walls, floor and the bin itself.

Now the boys…well, they never thanked us, they never thought to help by emptying the bin themselves.  If Ella and I were away, we would come back and discover the bin was literally over-flowing.  Ella tried to “enlighten” the boys…but they obviously were convinced that they had been specially chosen by “the magic bin-fairy”, whereas Ella and I had not been favoured by her.

It was not just emptying bins.  They seemed to believe in the magic dish-washing fairy, the magic toilet roll stocker-upper fairy, the magic fridge shelf wiping and mouldy food disposing fairy, the magic picking clothes up off the floor fairy…the list goes on and on!

I have laughed about it with Goldfinch.  He has two new house-mates at the moment who are clearly not particularly domesticated.

He showed me this video, of an Australian comedian who highlights this belief I have been referring to – there is a swear word at one point.  I like my site to be suitable for all ages, but this video…if you are under I don’t know which age, but just to mention it contains one swear word, just in case you are like me and feel shocked when you hear bad language.

Anyway, this brilliant video does a great job of highlighting the situation I have been referring to. If you believe in magic coffee-tables, magic laundry baskets, magic bin emptying fairies or any other household miracles or domestic magical occurrences – please feel free to ask questions and I will try to “enlighten” you.

 

https://onedailyprompt.wordpress.com/2018/10/15/your-daily-word-prompt-brilliant-october-15-2018/

Caramel Is Decorating!

You may remember that one of the surprise outcomes of me starting this blog two years and ten months ago is that I have ended up writing and publishing a bunch of books! Never expected that when I started blogging! Hardly know what came over me!

The amazing thing is, I managed to do most of the writing and editing before the Pandemic began, which was good because work has been bonkers with this virus. Work has been incredibly taxing and for every right reason, I have had to cut back on the amount of time I spent blogging and writing. But it has always been a hobby I have enjoyed whenever I had the opportunity.

Too often I don’t get a break at work, we are often just too busy. But when I am able to sit down for ten/minutes (or on the rare occasion half an hour) I have pulled out a paperback copy of one of my books and a red pen and circled corrections I needed to make. Slowly slowly I have continued to make corrections and update my manuscript. At last that process is complete! I now feel my books will not embarrass me with really silly mistakes. So I am trying to find a way to add pictures of my books with Amazon links to them to my site.

However, I have realized….I cannot do that with my current WordPress theme. So….I am dreading this….but I am going to start messing around with finding the right theme to allow me to do what I want. That is going to be a complete nightmare! I know it. I should have done it before now. But I could not face it.

There was a stage when I was on top of all the widgets and menus on my site – but I gave up about a year ago when things started getting too busy. But I know that changing my theme is going to be a momentous task – momentous! I am going to be searching for a theme that allows me to stay that blue colour I like so much and that allows me to to have a few simple widgets. I don’t want lots of them. I just want some kind of easy navigation widget (is there one?) and to be able to feature my books.

Playing about with the theme is something I am frankly terrified about. I do believe my site will be a mess for a while. But now is the time it would seem. So…while I play around until I find what I want….I do sincerely apologise for any confusion I cause. Caramel is decorating her site – yikes! This could be one of the craziest disasters ever seen on WordPress – are you ready for this?

The Key To Being A Karaoke King Or Queen

Another post from the Caramel Archives – we are still in National Lockdown and I did not go to a karaoke club last night.

***

I went out tonight with friends…I think I may have told you about the planned karaoke night the girlies had organized to cheer me up:

Imagine their reaction when I told them everything is fine between Goldfinch and I!

The Jolly Flatboatmen, George Caleb Bingham, 1846. National Gallery of Art.

With the elation and relief on realizing Goldfinch was abroad and had not seen any of my messages…was I going to cancel the karaoke night?  Not on your nelly!!!

Now…I have to admit I was struggling to think of a story when I saw this picture prompt from The Haunted Wordsmith, but after making a show of myself just like the chappy in this picture, I thought I would share with you the secret of success of being a singer on stage, the key to being a karaoke king or queen:

HAVE NO SHAME!

or

DO NOT BE EASILY EMBARRASSED

I used to work for a record company…and I know, it is not necessarily the idyllically harmonious and melodic tones that are going to win the karaoke contest…it is the performer – the person who puts their heart and soul into their performance.  They jump up on the table and belt it out, completely unapologetic for their off-key notes!  These are the real entertainers, the raw, imperfect but full of charisma performers that an audience absolutely adores!

As Cameron Diaz demonstrated only too well, when love for her beau moves her to abandon all fear and give it her all in what turns out to be a terrible yet triumphant turn on the karaoke microphone!

Just like Cameron Diaz…I do believe I heard the crowds tonight shouting “MORE, MORE, MORE!!!”

I only came home early, because I have so much to do tomorrow!  But believe me…I gave London something to remember tonight!

https://thehauntedwordsmith.wordpress.com/2018/09/13/worth-a-thousand-words-32/

In The Moment We’re Ten Feet Tall

Jim Adams, aka Newepicauthor, the creator of A Unique Title For Me, is hosting SONG-LYRIC-SUNDAY and this week he has chosen the theme: LONG/SHORT/SMALL/TALL

Clouds, Night, Ballerina, Moon, Sky

Please forgive me, but I am going to pick a song that I am sure I have chosen before for other SONG-LYRIC-SUNDAY themes. There are some songs that are so meaningful to you that they become part of your very fabric. This song hits me deep – in a good way It is my Goldfinch song. Read the lyrics and you will understand why this song registers with the way I feel about the gorgeous man who is 10,100 miles away from me.

Aaaaw, Jack just put his arm round me and kissed the side of my head. I don’t like to hurt him. He knows how I felt about Goldfinch. I am thrilled to be with Jack, but I will always hold Goldfinch dear. This song – one I think I will always treasure is “Wings” from the sensational Birdy. For me, it is a momentous song!

Sunlight comes creeping in
Illuminates our skin
We watch the day go by
Stories of all we did
It made me think of you
It made me think of you

Under a trillion stars
We danced on top of cars
Took pictures of the stage
So far from where we are
They made me think of you
They made me think of you

Oh lights go down
In the moment we’re lost and found
And I just wanna be by your side
If these wings could fly
Oh damn these walls
In the moment we’re ten feet tall
And how you told me after it all
We’d remember tonight
For the rest of our lives

I’m in a foreign state
My thoughts they slip away
My words are leaving me
They caught an aeroplane
Because I thought of you
Just from the thought of you

Oh lights go down
In the moment we’re lost and found
And I just wanna be by your side
If these wings could fly
Oh damn these walls
In the moment we’re ten feet tall
And how you told me after it all
We’d remember tonight
For the rest of our lives

If these wings could fly

Lights go down
In the moment we’re lost and found
And I just wanna be by your side
If these wings could fly
Oh damn these walls
In the moment we’re ten feet tall
And how you told me after it all
We’d remember tonight
For the rest of our lives

Written By: Jasmine Lucilla Elisabeth Van Den Bogaerde and Ryan B Tedder

I Love Eddie Jones

Do you know who Eddie Jones is? Well – he is my new hero!

Toilets, Public, Lost Places, Loo

I am only vaguely aware of his career in rugby – I think he is head coach or manager or something important for England’s rugby team But that is not why he is my new hero.

The reason I am loving him at the moment is that he took what has been a grievous issue to me for years and made it seem so small with his analogy.

He basically compared social medial abuse online (which robbed me of joy for years) is the modern day equivalent of the writing on toilet walls. He added that the people who used to write on toilet walls are now writing on social media. Why or why would we pay attention to their opinion? I think he was effectively saying: DON’T TAKE ANY NOTICE OF IT!!!

I still think it was only because somewhere someone or maybe several people were jealous because their celebrity crush was linked with a caramel blonde that they began to troll me and use terms that belong in the gutter about me. They used insidious insults about me.

I know it might sound simple – but Eddy Jones just helped me put into perspective the barrage of online bullying, trolling, abuse – whatever you want to call it….and although I don’t really have much interest in rugby – I am so grateful to him for an insightful metaphor.

I Am Not Embarrassed To Admit I Owned A Baby-Doll

baby doll (2)I suppose I am rather embarrassed to admit that I had not been able to bring myself to let go of her at the age of twenty-four!

Worse still is the story of what happened when my future brother-in-law and one of his best friends found my baby doll (they were nineteen) and what they did to it.

It is totally normal for a little girl to be given a baby-doll by her parents.  Mine came as a hand-me-down from one of my Dad’s customers.  I named her Tanya.  She had a reversible dress that made her either poor little Cinders, or like a princess as the stunning Cinderella.

Like any other little girl, I loved my baby-doll Tanya and she was my companion on lots of days out with my family and friends when I was growing up.  I used to wash and style her hair and  her clothes and iron her little dress.  I was proud of punch of feeling like a mum to my own little baby.

I was also very much the tom-boy. climbing trees, playing football, riding my bike…climbing all over the scaffolding on abandoned construction sites, coming home covered with mud and scratches.  Yet…I still loved my baby-doll Tanya.  I am not ashamed of that!

Have you seen the movie “Toy Story 2“?  It really tapped into my sentiments of not wanting to let go of my childhood toys.  I just did not have it in me to part with Tanya as I grew older.  Once I started high school Tanya became just an ornament, high up on the top shelf.  But I could see her from my bed.  She stayed up there for years, in a way neglected, but at least she was there and I had not discarded her.

Now Mum, Milly, Mandy and I were away one weekend – I think we had gone to Belgium for the weekend.  Dad invited my brother-in-law who had been courting my sister for about six months to stay over for the weekend so he could get to know him better.  He brought a great friend of his whom he had grown up with.

The two boys stayed in the bedroom that Milly and I shared.  And those cheeky boys – do you know what they did?!!!  They rooted through our belongings!  They found my baby-doll Tanya.

And do you know what those two boys did when the found Tanya???  I mean can you imagine two nineteen year old boys with my baby-doll?  I can’t talk about it!

When I came home with Milly and we found Tanya…I was half in hysterics laughing and half shocked they could be so cruel!  We told everyone what they did…the rascals!

Girl, Baby, Doll, Baby Girl, Child, KidPoor Tanya…I should have hidden her when I knew they were going to be staying in our room.  I guess that will teach me for still having a baby-doll at the age of twenty-four! The only way I can explain it – when you are a little girl and your mum gives you a doll – you treasure it and care for it like it’s your little baby. It never occurred to me that I should part with her!

Now my brother-in-law has a gorgeous daughter of his own, and as is totally normal, he has given her a little baby doll which she adores…I hope he feels ashamed at what he and his friend did to my Tanya!