11 June 2020


                                              A TRUE HAPPENING

Hoping you hadn't read this before..... thing is, I am trying to master the ways and means of posting on this new style Blogger. 

It is an old post but one that proves the existence of ghosts. I promise you it is all true.

It came about when someone posted an item about ghosts and asked if anyone had a similar experience. Well I once had a ghost in my house, and the following is a brief description.

My Ghost Story in brief:

Time:              during young son’s infancy
Location:         home, a ground floor flat

First sign:       
Ø  A present given to Jon: a cone thingy that shot table tennis balls into the air.
Ø  Ball falls to the lounge floor and rolls under a chair. Chair’s location was in front of a small radiator affixed to the wall, the other side of which (in kitchen) was the airing cupboard. Immediately moved the chair to retrieve the ball, but it wasn’t there. Searched high and low but couldn’t find it. It’s not often you can say you actually saw something disappear, but I actually watched it go.

Other signs:
Ø  Small items of clothing disappearing from airing cupboard which was situated in the kitchen … adjacent to the radiator on the other side of the wall where the ball disappeared.
Ø  Small toys disappearing from all over the flat.
Ø  An unexplained fruity smell in the kitchen.
Ø  All the above occurred over a seven year period, until Jon went to boarding school. Only during holidays did things go wrong.

Second sign:
Ø  A Christmas gift bottle of sherry from workmates was placed on stereo near television. Curtains were drawn, and the room lit by a single table lamp. Jon and I were sitting on the settee watching a programme when suddenly a shaft of light circled the bottle before hovering over the ceiling then swooping out of the room via the open door. I thought maybe Jon was playing silly whatsits with his watch but he was sprawled out and engrossed in the telly. He wasn’t wearing his watch. That was the only really scary occurrence. I went into the garden to check if someone was there (not afraid of the dark in those days) but there was no-one. There wasn’t even a chink in the curtain so if there had been someone no sighting could be had of the room.

Ø  Several years later, a spiritualist husband of a work colleague sent a message to say I should call the ghost’s bluff and ask for the return of the table tennis ball, which was the first thing to go missing. I thought it worth a try so I chose a time when I was alone. Ooooh I did feel a fool talking to thin air and asking for my ball back. Well I did it and there the matter ended. Nothing else disappeared from that moment on.  

Conclusion, months later:
Ø  Talking to neighbour, Joan, she expressed surprise that Jon wasn’t at school. When I told her he was, she said she’d heard him in the garden quite late at night when she herself was out calling for her cat to come in. ‘Come on, Blackie’ she called and a child’s voice said ‘He’s here, Mrs M.’ Interesting! The only child in the area was mine and he was definitely away at school. All the residents were elderly and they never had night time visitors. I told Joan she must have been mistaken, but she was adamant she’d heard a kid out there. I didn’t think about the conversation until later in the day when I went into my garden and found a table tennis ball on the back step.

History of House:
Ø  We later discovered that years before I moved into the house a little girl died there, I cannot remember clearly but I think she died in an accident. Theory goes that her restless spirit returned to play. My son was the first child to inhabit the property since her death.  

I used this real life experience to create a short story, changing, elaborating, and using writer’s licence to make the story worth reading.  

06 June 2020


Julia Smith wondered if at seventy-three she was too old for partying but Arthur Rowlands persuaded her otherwise.
'Never too old for a knees-up' he said as he pinned a corsage of orchids to the bodice of her long lilac gown.
'My knees wouldn't agree,' retorted Julia as she lowered her head to sniff the flowers. 
It was quite like old times. Cedric used to treat her like a duchess when they attended those wonderful balls. Arthur was a bit like him in that regard though not nearly as handsome. Julia scanned the row of photographs on the piano, all of Cedric, some with her, some without. He was very personable in his sea officer’s uniform. Her family thought it was the uniform that attracted her. They were wrong.
She had been a raw teenager when Cedric came into her life, a passerby in sailor’s uniform. The gang she was with dared her to touch his collar because it was said to bring good luck. Julia never refused a dare. And she didn’t need asking twice. Without further thought she raced after the very tall, handsome young man and when near enough she leaped up to touch the collar. What she didn’t realise was that because he was actually walking it would be more difficult to touch him. She fell flat on her face at his heels. And he made a joke about falling in love.

If anyone asked she used the same dialogue. Yes, she would say, we fell in love that day. Married five years later. No children. Cedric couldn’t, you see. But it was no problem because they had each other for fifty years.

Julia’s gaze slowly travelled round the room. It was here that he died, peacefully, in his chair. His mother's room, he called it, for he had filled it to capacity with her belongings, Victoriana and other objet d'art. In that matter Julia was not allowed a viewpoint. His mother's stuff was there to stay. Julia had grown up with it, so to speak, and she hadn’t the heart to dispose of it. It would be like defying Cedric and, although he was something of a tyrant, she had loved him totally.
'Penny for them, Julia.'
Majestically, Julia turned away from the piano. It was no good trying to recapture the past. Cedric had been dead for four years and, although she missed him dreadfully, she saw no sense in fading into decline. It wasn't in her to hanker for the unattainable. 'I was merely thinking how like Cedric you are. He was one for presenting me with flowers. Considerate. I like that in a man.' Julia reached out to touch Arthur's arm. 'I am grateful for your friendship, Arthur, and your willingness to befriend an old woman.'
Arthur snorted. 'Old, you say. Dear Julia, you will never be old in my eyes.'
'Well then, shall we venture to the party and witness the incredulity on your daughter’s face.' Picking up a tastefully wrapped parcel, Julia smiled coquettishly at her resplendently attired escort, his dinner jacket smelling only faintly of dry-cleaning fluid. Anticipating a splendid evening, with the requisite amount of gin to loosen her reserve and an occasional cigarette, if any were offered, Julia allowed herself to be guided to the door.

‘You look wonderful,' Arthur  said, guiding her through the gate so that her gown and matching coat didn’t touch the grimy wrought iron. Pinned to the front of Julia’s shoulder was Arthur’s unexpected gift. She took his arm and confessed that the orchids made her feel like a real lady.
Arthur’s reaction was swift, telling her firmly that she was a real lady and she was not to let anyone tell her otherwise. Tucking her hand into the crook of his arm, he said sincerely and quietly, 'I am the most fortunate of men.  I would be your slave if you would allow it, but I fear I do not come up to scratch.'

Julia cried out in mock indignation. 'Arthur Rowlands, you should be ashamed. I have never indicated such a thing.' She turned sideways to look at him, her eyes glinting with merriment. 'As a matter of fact, I think you would make an ideal man servant.'

She could tell by his face he thought she was joking. 

05 June 2020


Well, let’s get down to business, shall we? Would you be so good as to turn off your telly, please, Mrs Hailestone? Thank you. That’s better. It’s very good of you to let us use your front room. I think we’re all assembled... Mrs Brill, Miss Culch, Mrs Pell, Mrs Hailestone, May and me. All right then, May, let’s have the minutes of the last meeting.

Oh, May. You’re supposed to have them in that little book I gave you. I told you last time. You’re supposed to write down everything we do and say and then read it out at the next meeting, and then I sign it.

I know we all know what we said and did, dear, but you have to write it down. That’s what minutes are for.

Don’t cry, May, dear, Let’s get on with the next item on the agenda, Apologies for Absence. You read out the excuses. Oh, May. Well, you must try and remember to bring your glasses next time. All right, I’ll read them. Give them here. Cheer up!

Mrs Slope is very sorry she’s caught up. Can’t come.

Miss Heddle’s got her mother again. Can’t come.

Lady Widmore sent a telegram ‘ALAS CANNOT BE WITH YOU, DEVASTATED’.  Can’t come.

Well then. As you all know, this is another special meeting of the Ladies’ Choral to talk about the forthcoming Festival and County Choral Competition. We know the date and we know the set song. Yes we do, May. It’s in two parts for ladies’ voices in E flat, ‘My Bosom is a Nest’.

But of course what we are really here for tonight is this very important question of voices in the choir. Now, we don’t want any unpleasantness. Friendly is what we are, and friendly we are going to go on. But it’s no good beating about the bush, we all know there is one voice among the altos that did not ought to be there. And I think we all know to what I am referring.

Now, don’t think that I don’t like Mrs Codlin, because I do. Yes, she is a very nice woman. Look at how nice she is with her little car – giving us all lifts here and there. And she’s a lovely lender - lends you her books, and her knitting patterns, recipes, anything. Lovely. Yes, she is a regular churchgoer and a most generous donator to the fund. But she just has this one fault: she does not blend.

May, dear, would you be so kind as to slip out and see if I left the lamp turned off on my bike? I don’t want to waste the battery, and I can’t remember if I did it. Thank you, May.

Ladies, I didn’t like to say anything in front of May, but I must remind you that Mrs Codlin’s voice is worse than May’s was; and you know what happened the last time we let May sing in the competition. We were disqualified. So you see it is very important and very serious.

Oh, thank you, May, dear. Had I? I am a big silly, aren’t I?

You see. It isn’t as if Mrs Codlin had a voice you could ignore. I mean you can’t drown her out. They can hear her all down the road, over the sopranos; yes, over your piano, Mrs Pell, over everything. You know, I was stood next to her at practice last week when we did ‘The Wild Brown Bee is my Lover’. When we’d finished I said to her very tactfully, thinking she might like to take the hint, I said: ‘I wonder who it is stands out so among the altos and she said she hadn’t noticed. Hadn’t noticed! Mrs Brill was on her other side and she said to me afterwards, didn’t you, Mrs Brill? She said the vibrations were so considerable they made her chest hum.

No, I know she doesn’t do it on purpose, May.

No, of course she didn’t ought to have been let in in the first place. It’s ridiculous. It makes a nonsense of music. But the thing is, it was her idea, wasn’t it? She founded the choir.

Do you think if anyone was to ask her very nicely not to sing it might stop her? I mean, we could let her come and just stand there. Yes, Mrs Hailestone, she does look like a singer, I’ll give her that. That’s the annoying part.

Would anybody like to ask her? Well, has anybody got any suggestions?
No, May, not anonymous letters. They aren’t very nice.

I wonder ….  May, one of your jobs as secretary is watching the handbags and coats at competitions, isn’t it? I mean you have to stay in the cloakroom all during the competitions, don’t you? I thought so. Look, May, now don’t think we don’t appreciate you as secretary – we do, dear, don’t we ladies? – But would you like to resign? Just say yes now, and I’ll explain it all later.

Well, we accept your resignation, and I would like to propose that we appoint Mrs Codlin secretary and handbag-watcher for the next competition. Anybody second that? Thank you, Mrs Hailestone. Any against? Then that’s passed unanimously. Lovely. Oh, I know it’s not in order, Mrs Pell, but we haven’t any minutes to prove it. May didn’t have a pencil, did you, May?

Well, I think it’s a very happy solution. We get rid of her and keep her at one and the same time.

What did you say, May? Can you sing if Mrs Codlin doesn’t?

Oh, May, you’ve put us right back to square one. 

04 June 2020


It's no use, I just can't live without blogging. I miss my friends too much to carry on in my stubborn way. So what if I offended Google! Google surely wont raise the cane and tell me what a naughty girl I am - even though what happened was no fault of mine. Even Charlie the cat seems to want me out of his hair, so to speak, so I am asking you for an opinion. Do I or don't I have another go at blogging?  Honestly, I can live without it but life is pretty dull if there's nothing to say or do.

Life here is indescribable. First the computer lets me down, then the printer decides to join ranks with the computer which forced me to call in the expert from the shop up the road.  Just don;t ask about the cost, that is something I would rather forget.

Looking forward to meeting up with you again, that is if you will allow yours truly to re-enter our wonderful blogging world.  I hear murmurs of  change so I hope someone will put be in the picture where blog changes are concerned.

Bye for now.