#EURef The European Union stops wars. We can fix the rest.

  • 6th Century: Really wish these Romans would stop telling us what to do.
  • 7th Century: Wars.
  • 8th Century: Wars.
  • 9th Century: Wars.
  • 10th Century: Wars.
  • 11th Century: Wars.
  • 12th Century: Wars.
  • 13th Century: Wars.
  • 14th Century: Wars.
  • 15th Century: Wars.
  • 16th Century: Wars.
  • 17th Century: Wars.
  • 18th Century: Wars.
  • 19th Century: Wars.
  • 20th Century: Wars.
  • 21st Century: Heated debates about bananas.

The continent of Europe has not experienced this length of peace and prosperity since the fall of the Roman Empire, another useful example of European integration and (forced) cooperation. On Thursday 23rd June 2016 the UK will vote either to remain in or leave the European Union.

Not everything is right about the European Union. But, much like our United Kingdom there is nothing about the European experiment that can’t be fixed from the inside, rather than throwing a hissy-fit and running out.

I’ll be voting yes in the referendum.




It may sound very depressing or morbid to but I have never felt that way about them. Even as a youngster I enjoyed walking around them and I have no memory of ever finding them depressing or scary. Spooky sometimes but my overall feelings are of repose, serenity and calming, thought provoking even. I guess I should say this is in reference to older cemeteries, a few or more generations ago, who’s oldest relatives are long since dead themselves. Perhaps this takes the depression away from it , the fact it is no longer a place of mourning but rather a of remembrance.

I walk along reading the epitaphs as I pass. It is nice to read what has been written about these people, how old they were and how they have been remembered by their family and friends, and I wonder are these people any different to how we are today. I do pause when I come across a young person or child, I suppose that in truth is depressing, how couldn’t it be, but for the very most part its long full lives be it for the time. They lived they loved and they were remembered.  Sometimes I feel like I am visiting them in a way, as strange as that may sound. Their own families having moved on or died long ago themselves so many years ago, it is now only the stranger who walks by and reads those few lines about them, that, in some small way keeps the memory of who they were alive, if only for a few fleeing moments.

I suppose it is quite reflection that I get from graveyards, a peaceful place that seems to permeate my heart with a silent composure. Some may say that being surrounded by death will evoke a thankfulness of life. I see it differently, graveyards are full of live, lives lived long ago, lives remembered in memory and in stone and by that stranger who passes by.

56: Sandwiches

There is something about the perfectly crafted sandwich that makes it so much more than a meal or a snack. It is more than something to eat it is an art form.  It begins with the choice of bread, the canvas that your masterpiece will be built upon thick cut to granary or even a wholemeal bap the choice here is what sets the scene. This being said sometimes what you desire to be in the sandwich will dictate what it will be served between.

So many good combinations of salad cheese and meat can be combined into the creation of the perfect bready treat and with the addition of mustards, chutneys, mayo and other assorted sauces you have a kaleidoscope of possibility’s all as beautiful and tasty as each other. It pays to think it through, the right bread the proper cheese the right chutney, mayo and meat.  All of these small decisions are each a stroke of the brush, a piece or he puzzle, nothings to be rushed it has to be crafted with love and patience.

Some of my Favourite Sandwiches

  • Ham hock with extra mature cheese served on a bed of crisp lettuce and a splash of onion between multi seed bread.
  • Egg and Bacon on toasted wholemeal bread.
  • Honey roasted ham with mature cheese, mayo, crispy lettuce and a few slices of cucumber between wholemeal bread.
  • Thick sliced chicken breast on white bread with sliced boiled egg and spring onion lettuce and mayo.

11: Autumn

Autumn is a second spring when every leaf is a flower.” – Albert Camus

Autumn always puts me into a very select state of being, one of nostalgia and melancholy wrapped up in  comforting blanket of contentment with the world. I love the crisp cold and misty mornings with frost on the grass, I love the darker evenings when a sunset will hang low in the clear evening sky.  I love the leaves on the ground the excuse to wear a scarf and back in the day to light a fire and sit around in the comforting glow. Everything is a little more atmospheric. It is the very specific colour palate which makes Autumn as a season so wonderful, all of the livid brown hues and faded yellows there rich crimson and dusky shadowy orange its beautiful.  Its a colder time of year and to have such warm colours surrounding you just makes everything in some ways magical.   Autumn has been my favourite time of year for as long as I can remember.  It was a time of year for looking for conkers, of Halloween and sweets.  I have memories of running through big piles of leave on my walk home from school as a little kid, and of the wish to bury myself in one of them to scare people as they walked past.  I still want to one day do this one day, but until then you will find me in the park kicking the crispy leaves as I walk!

Three Hundred and Sixty Five

Three Hundred and Sixty Five days including today since I moved back to Northern Ireland. This date last year I moved from Edinburgh and began the count a new to separate the time spent there to what would be happing now I’m here. It seemed a good thing at the time but I always had it in the back of my mind that I would be forever counting away from a moment in my life that was incredibly hard and sad to go through.

I haven’t really admitted to many people that there has not been a single day in all of those 365 that have past that I haven’t thought at least once for a fleeting moment about the 664 that preceded it. It isn’t about holding onto the past it’s just that some things you can miss when they are gone and others are so tangled up with you are that losing them means tearing off a piece of yourself right along with them. You can feel it in your bones like an ache that never truly goes away. I miss my little Edgar beyond words, and for the longest of times couldn’t bear to think of or face the truth that he is no longer in my life anymore. I held on to the fact of how well taken care of, happy and loved he was, which sill to this day is my only solace. Nothing was takin from me it was a decision that just had to be made, made in the best interest of a little soul we both loved beyond measure. I always knew that there would be no words to describe, that there would be no forgetting, that there would be no moving on or making it better. I knew that it would be something that’s there every day, something I would just have just got used to and something that I could never make anyone understand.  We may never fully understand what it was or why things happen as they do, that is the essence of life. Sometimes you go through things that seem huge at the time and while there happening they feel like the only thing that matters and you can’t imagine a world out there having anything else going on. Then it passes, then it moves on, you move on, you find that as time passes, you remember it less and less, and you are left only with a powerful wonder at the fleeting nature of even the most important things in life.

I always hated change, still do in many ways, I have a nostalgic soul forever smiling at the past and cherishing those memory’s good and bad that have shaped my life to what it is now. However that isn’t to say that I believe the best isn’t still yet to come. I have so much to be thankful for, to be happy about in my life and I know that there is so much more than this to come. My family and friends who are eternally supportive and loving, mean more to me than any poet could describe. I believe we are shaped and influenced by the people who we surround ourselves with that they make up who we are and my friends are the best parts of me. Collectively and each on their own, I believe I am made a better person by having them in my life and to that intimate inner circle you are my family.

The decision to move stop or change this count of days still hangs in the balance, I had planned on officially scrapping this today but now I have come to it I don’t know if I want to. I thought at the beginning of this I wanted to take a direct step away from something I felt I was holding onto or even couldn’t let go of. The reality is we don’t need to hold on to the past it’s always and forever going to be there. I do enjoy marking the passage of time though, and I guess that’s what life is, a series of moments linked together in an ever changing colourful tapestry of memory’s and if the past is what creates us then the future is what we create.

Memory Monday: Son of a Gun – JX

This song holds one strong and unforgettable memory for me.  I was 12 years old and setting in the back seat of my older cousin Davys car with my other cousins and head banging to this all the way up to Belfast on a night out with the church youth.  I think we actually played it on repeat the whole way up the road.  It was one of those times as a 12 year old kid who grew up with older cousins that I was allowed up on a night out and I found myself pretending to be a little bit older, while they were pretending to be a little younger. It is in my dolly mixtures playlist, where I put all my little favourites that just don’t fit anywhere else!

Artist: JX
Song: Son of a Gun
Album: JX
Released:  2 April 1994

Three Hundred and Twenty Eight

Thought I  would check in!  It has been a while since I have actually took some time to have a chat on here !  Loads has been going on but I wanted to take today to discuss a little thought I had. I have been pondering about quitting my job and becoming a Double 0 Agent.  I reckon I would make a really good double 0 agent.  I have been been watching and reviewing James Bond movies but in addition to that i also have been playing the Goldeneye for the wii.  It has  been a while but I am getting back to my old level of greatness.  I loved the N64 version too and was amazing at it, anyway . As a double 0 agent I would get to sneak about and infiltrate places kill the bad guy. I would be class at it. My skills are top notch. I am very good at hide and seek which is a good skill if you think about it cause it teaches you how to hide and also how to find the bad guys. If I was in charge we would of found your fella Saddam a lot quicker, and Osama Bin Laden wouldn’t of stood a chance!  When I was younger say about 8 or 9…ok say about  8 to 18+ I played army with my friends. That’s ten years training right there, running around building sites and sneaking about. Fair enough we never killed anyone but I still think it was good training with pellet guns cause them things sting when your hit, and sometimes my insane friends and I played indoors at short range.  So to rap this little thought up, I think that I as a double 0 I would of been flipping kick ass!