Walking Away

Walking Away

Tuesday, 1 September 2015

First Day of A New Phase

September 1st 2015 .... I've been working all my life for this day, well to be honest it should have been 31st May 2013 when I celebrated my 60th birthday. But the state pension age was moved for women born in 1953 and my new date became 6th November 2016. I made a decision in the new year to leave work and take my NHS pension. I thought I would leave in November till one of my colleagues asked "Why November?" and I really didn't know. As I had to give 5 months notice and my Grandson Len is starting school in September I decided my last day would be August 31st and as its a bank holiday, a bonus :)

My last working day was amazing, my work bench decorated, a two hour buffet lunch and beautiful gifts from my workmates. I didn't shed a tear although I came close to it several times. I've worked at the hospital for 26 years and I know I will miss it but at the moment I feel like I'm on holiday. It will feel strange when my salary isn't paid into my bank account on the last day of each month :)

The worry I have is that I will turn into a hermit and never leave the house so I've got lots of plans. Thursday I'm enrolling for a Creative Writing course and a Pilates class. I'm going to learn Polish, join a book club and of cause collect Len from school twice a week. I'll be watching plays and musicals at the local theatres within train travelling distance and be a lady that lunches.

I will miss my young work colleagues with their ability to update my education, the fun and laughter I have shared with them. I have always been so proud to work for the NHS but when my sister died last year I re-evaluated my life and work didn't seem very high up my priorities. I have made the right decision I just need to live the life now :) 



Thursday, 20 August 2015


Wrote this flash fairly quickly last Saturday and it came 2nd or 1st runner-up in The Angry Hourglass weekly competition. You are given a picture prompt and a word limit of 360 and off you go..... For once I really liked my story :)



I’d watched that film it had a girl’s name. The car was a killer. It just mowed everything down, guts and gore everywhere. I’d sat hiding my eyes behind a cushion. Johnny laughed at me saying I was missing the best bits and tried to wrestle the cushion from me. I ended up bruised on the floor, if I hadn’t moved quickly I would have had a real shiner of a black eye. Johnny called them play fights my social worker calls it assault but I wouldn’t press charges didn’t seem right he’s my boyfriend after all.  

My social worker says I need to work on my self esteem. I deserve better. Not sure about that, can’t see Prince Harry come knocking on my door any time now. I’d have nothing nice to wear and his dad wouldn’t want him going out with me Christine from the council estate.

When Jason from up the road asked if I wanted to sit in his new American car I knew he meant something else but the car reminded me of the one in that film. I sat in the driver’s seat whilst his hands roamed over my body. If you squint your eyes a little bit he looks like Prince Harry, well he has ginger hair.  

The police were really nice to me. I was in shock the paramedics said. I’d started up the car. Jason was giving me a driving lesson but I didn’t realise it was an automatic. Put my foot down just as Johnny came around the corner. Guts and gore just like that film. The police weren’t too bothered that I didn’t have a provisional driving license more interested in the drug stash in the boot. Jason will be in prison a very long time. My social worker says I’ve been very lucky. No injuries, no charges. After Johnny’s funeral she’s going to help me enrol at college. She says I’m cleverer than I think.       

Sunday, 9 August 2015

How Time Flies

Can't believe it been 6 months since my last post. Lots of things have happened since then. The most life changing is I've given 5 months notice to terminate my employment and take my NHS pension. My last working day will be 28th August and last paid day 31st August which happens to be Bank Holiday Monday :)  So only 15 more working days before I plunge into a new phase.

I've got so much planned I'm going  to learn Polish. My son lives in Poland with his fiancĂ©e hence that's why that language was chosen.
I'm going back to the Gym. I've been paying monthly charges since the year dot without much attendance during the last 4 years.
I'm going to enrol for Pilates lessons. Learn to play the ukulele so my good friend Sal and I can start a Ukulele Ensemble ;)
Join a Reading Group and a Writer's Group. I've already got tickets for theatre productions in September. Write a novel and the most important task collect my 4 year old grandson from school on a Tuesday and Friday, play with him till his mum returns from work.
I will also have more time to see my parents, both are 89 years old, still managing to live in their own home. My dad has Alzheimers, my mum, still as sharp as a knife.

I'll officially be an Old Age Pensioner on 6th November 2016 when I get my state pension. I'm trying to organise myself a loose Five Year Plan and after that who knows :) My sister died last year just before her 64th birthday which made me want to be more mindful.... LIVE IN THE DAY.......

In July I was visiting Sal in her home town of Morecambe and she took me to see an amazing graveyard in Heysham with the WOW factor. I walked around the corner and literally caught my breathe. I can't be the only person who loves graveyards. I find them fascinating. This one looks like its literally going into the sea. It isn't, there is a brick wall acting as a sea defence :) Thank you Sal for that perfect moment. 

Sunday, 22 February 2015

Liebster Award

Liebster Award
Thanks to Voima, known as @voimaoy on Twitter I've been nominated for this award to promote a blog tour.  I have to tell you 11 random facts about myself, answer 11 questions she has asked and then nominate 3 people to answer the 11 questions I set. Trouble is I've taken so long to do this... sorry for my tardiness... hope the three I nominate haven't already been here and done it. Read Voima's blog at this link


11 random facts about me

 1) I am left handed and extremely pleased to be in the minority
 2) I'm 5 foot 2 inches tall which can be a hindrance to reach the top shelf in the supermarket but I see that as a challenge :)
 3) I suffer from arachnophobia in a big way. Ask my children who screamed the loudest when they begged me to take them to see the film. I had nightmares for months afterwards.
 4) I abseiled 70 foot down into a cave in the dark
  5) I failed A level Economics twice...
  6) I have never cooked scrambled eggs
  7) I failed my driving test 3 times then passed once!
  8) I have my name on a theatre seat at the Birmingham Rep, (England).
  9) I have a certificate for Best Handwriting won in a national competition when I was in my last year at primary school. 

10) Although I was desperate to go to university I didn't get there the usual route but did get a BA (hons) through the Open University. So proud to get a 2:1
11) I'm a bit of a Drama Queen or so my friends tell me. Glenda Jackson never!

11 questions Voima asked me

1) What book or story changed your life?
Candide just mesmerised me. Voltaire could have written it for today. I love just dipping into it. It never fails to make me laugh and I try to have my copy near me all the time. Voltaire shows that life just goes around in repeating circles that's why history is so important. I was so lucky to have an amazing History teacher Alan Blackburn who inspired my love for the subject.

2) What is your favourite movie?
Dirty Dancing. Why because I loved Patrick Swayze, loved the songs and the story had a strong moral and the unforgettable line "Nobody puts baby in the corner"

3) Do you read non fiction if so what?
To be honest I prefer fiction but I have been known to read biographies, text books and self help books.

4) If you could visit any period in time past or future when would it be?
This is a hard one to answer. I think the 1920's WW1 the war to end all wars had ended and I'd like to have been a flapper girl challenging society :)

5) If you could meet a fictional character who would you like to talk to?
No one really, I don't want to be disappointed if they didn't look like I imagined them to be and didn't meet my expectations.

6) You have 3 treasures what are they?
Family, friends and to still be breathing :)

7) What kind of music do you like? What are you listening to these days?
I have an eclectic taste in music. I can listen to everything except Country and Western although I wouldn't completely write out the genre. I have been known to sing along to Dolly Parton! I love Bob Dylan, Jimi Hendrix, the Rolling Stones, Shakira, Blue etc etc.  I like buying CD's of artists I don't know in the bargain buckets to introduce me to new sounds. I'm listening to Mick and the Mechanics at the moment.

8) Would you ride a Dragon?
I'd love to say yes but I'm a bit of a scaredy cat when it comes to heights.

9) What if you won the lottery, what would you do with this fortune?
I'd give up work immediately, go on a long holiday and ponder my options. Whilst pondering I'd be making sure my family and friends were enjoying my new found wealth.

10) What's on your grocery list?
Cheese, pizza and fish as well as the usual boring household necessities, such as toothpaste and bleach :)

11) What or who inspires you?
My friend Sal Page, she asked me once for advice and I said what's stopping you achieving your dream, she replied nothing and then went for it, such strength of character and she writes great stories and novels too.

I nominate for the Leibster Award

 1. Sal Page   https://twitter.com/SalnPage
 2. Tamara Shoemaker https://twitter.com/TamaraShoemaker
 3. Foy https://twitter.com/db_foy

Sorry if you three have already been nominated or don't want to participate because my questions are boring :)  Remember 11 random thoughts about yourselves, answer my 11 questions then nominate 3 others to answer your 11 choice questions.

My 11 questions to be answered
1) If you could have a super power what would it be?
2) What quality would you like to have in abundance?
3) Favourite Actor/ Actress and why?
4) What is your worst trait?
5) Favourite TV programme?
6) How would you like to be remembered?
7) Why do you write and where?
8)  Do you prefer to shop in supermarkets or local shops and why?
9)  What is your favourite colour and why?
10) Do you approve of social media?
11) What are you reading right now?

Thanks for reading and thanks Voima for the nomination :)

Wednesday, 7 January 2015

Flashdogs: An Anthology

Happy New Year Everyone. I can't believe that I haven't mentioned before how proud I am to be included in this anthology.  http://t.co/AI8d0cauCS   34 writers 110 stories and 1 charity. To quote from the official Flashdogs site

'The book profits will go to a global charity, IBBY. The charity promotes the philosophy  that children have a right to read, this is something that FlashDogs feel passionate about.'  

This is a great choice of charity as the writers come from all over the globe. We came together through Twitter united in our mutual love of flash fiction. If it wasn't for Mark King, David Shakes, Emily June Street and Tam Rogers for all their hard work in producing this anthology it would never have have happened. So thank you to them and to the 33 talented writers and the 110 stories.

Hope you buy a copy and enjoy all the diverse stories.

Things I like

  • Writing
  • Wit
  • Voltaire's Candide
  • Theatre
  • Shoes
  • Reading
  • Music
  • Laughter
  • Coleslaw
  • Cheese