A Journey to the End of the world

I remember one day deciding with a friend that we would explore the very edge of our world. We jumped on our bicycles and set off resolutely in that general direction. After about 15-minutes, we had already entered an entirely new world about which we knew only rumor. Here, there were supposed to be roaming gangs that if they caught you, would carry you off to their secret lairs in the ‘blackgang’. We felt, well, very brave to have gone so far and to be in someone else’s territory.

Parking our bikes by the side of the street, we entered some gardens discovering a veritable paradise of willow trees and grass surrounding a small private pond. It was magical and it was someone else’s secret garden as we had hauled ourselves over a 6 foot brick wall to get there. To me, this was a secret and deeply mystical world. The grass and the drooping willows gently moving in the breeze stirred my imaginative juices and I recall sitting there savoring the atmosphere.

Of course, we were afraid that whatever Giant owned this garden, they would be miffed to find us trespassing there, so we shortly left taking one last long look back over our shoulders, hopping back on bikes and cycling down the street home just as fast as we could. We half expected to hear the thump of feet as we were chased down the street. We half expected to meet the members of ‘blackgang’ on the trek back. Of course, we arrived home safely and enjoyed a sandwich and fizzy drink in front of the TV.

I recall this expedition with clarity. I recall the feelings and emotions. I recall the secret garden at the end of the world. It was magical day in a magical childhood.

Not so long ago, I had an opportunity to go back to my childhood house in Westlands Rd., Hull. A quick stroll up the street, one block essentially, and I found that ‘blackgang’ was now a sprawling housing estate rather than the square of bomb damaged wasteland it was when I was growing up. Another block and I found a block of flats and peering over the brick wall, I was surprised to find the magical garden. It was much smaller than I recalled and there was just one willow tree there and  a small muddy green pond unkempt and overgrown.

Imagination is an incredible thing. Far better than the reality we surround ourselves with. On the other hand, perhaps that reality is created through our imagination? In which case, we simply need to imagine better just like I did as a boy. Just like we all did when we were kids.

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A Yorkshire Christmas

Christmas Eve was spent collecting Ammonites on a cold, blustery but magnificently beautiful day on the Yorkshire coast. We found lots of these whirly fossils in the lower Jurassic of Ravenscar and the walk down and then back up the cliffs was refreshing and invigorating. This experience was topped off with a delicious cream tea at Raven Hall Hotel. It couldn’t have been any better.

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As the three of us trooped down the muddy path, I reflected on the many trips around Yorkshire fossil hunting I had done with my late Father. Not only did we hunt fossils but we explored the area in depth. Roman roads, ancient burial sites, viking villages. You name it, we did it. We even found a whole bunch of iron age pottery that we donated to the Yorkshire museum – Staxtonware – from the valley just at the Scarborough side of Staxton hill. I was back in my element and enjoying that.

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We took a look at the Alum works and I tried to explain to my daughter that the rocks above us were brought down to this place and treated with gallons of human pee brought by ship from Hull to the south. I asked her the question my Father had once asked me, “Can you imagine how it would have smelled here?” By the wrinkled nose look she gave me, she probably could.

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After the cream tea, it was back to Beverley to finish the trifle we had left there that my Mother had made at my request. Delicious!

My daughter had never experienced Santa delivering presents. In the Czech republic, they are delivered by Jezisek and on Christmas Eve conveniently just after dinner. She enjoyed ripping open the presents that morning and she opened everyones just for good measure. She was also fascinated by the Christmas crackers and managed to go through a couple of boxes of them! Just the thing for her, little plastic novelty gifts and party hats in everyone!

Christmas dinner followed and she enjoyed traditional turkey and trimmings followed by Christmas pudding and rum sauce. Actually, she didn’t much care for the pudding which meant I got double helpings….

It was a brilliant experience for my daughter but it was also nice to be with my Mother and family back in the place I was born for Christmas for the first time in over 30-years. Hull City even managed an away win on Boxing Day……

Nationalism

At college I joined the territorial army. The union jack and the national anthem always stirred my emotions. I was deeply proud of being British. I even flirted with nationalist politics but was frankly put off by the other people I met on the right wing fringes of the Tory party. Even then, I liked to buck the trend. It was trendy to be a leftie so I did the very opposite like the contrarian Aquarian that I am.

But I grew up.

Firstly, I traveled a lot. At first inside the UK with three years in the midlands, a year in Leeds, three years in Glasgow, three years in Aberdeen, 3 years in London. To be honest, my parents liked travel too so even by age 16 I had seen almost every region of the UK, France and Switzerland already. The west coats of Scotland was always a big favorite and from age 10 or so to 18 we always spent at least 1-week in and around the Lochs of western Scotland. Later, I moved to Texas and broadened my horizons considerably traveling all around North America and Europe. Seven years ago, I landed in the Czech Republic and I have traveled extensively since in and around this beautiful land. When you travel and observe, when you meet people from different cultures and backgrounds I think you cannot help learn two remarkable things;

1. We are all the same. To put it crudely, we all poop and pee the same way but what I really mean is that we all have the same needs, insecurities, feelings, fears and so on. We are all bound together by the mass of commonalities that far outweigh the differences,

2. Local culture is important and it should be valued. The world is becoming too uniform and cultures are being erased in the process. Local culture should be celebrated in my opinion.

Secondly, meditation and reflection over the last 10-years has completely changed the way I look at the world. I have had experiences in which without a shadow of a doubt, I know all is one. I know that rather than be divided, we should all be trying to work together to improve our lot. No, this doesn’t make me a ‘leftie’ either (another trend in my opinion is pagan and left wing). Rather, it has taught me that we are responsible for ourselves and while charity can be a good thing, people don’t actually grow much when given everything on a plate. No one but me is responsible for my development as a person.

To me, one thing that seems to be on the rise again is nationalism. The idea that by some accident of birth and nationality or identity, people should have different enclaves in order to keep what they have from being shared with others. That is what nationalism is. Its not about preserving local culture. Nationalism means building and creating barriers between peoples. It involves politicians exploiting divisions, grudges and disagreements – real or imagined. Nationalism is ugly, no its obscene.

Humanity needs to come together as one yet it should celebrate our cultures and traditions. This means education, sharing and joining together – uniting – to pit our wits against common threats like ignorance, disease and poverty. It does not need artificial division centered around a sense of superiority or inferiority and intolerance. It does not need nationalism. Not now, not ever.

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Us and Them
Us and Them
Flames
Burning us
Bullets
Tearing us
It’s Us and Them you see
Words
Grinding us
Fists
Beating us
It’s Them to blame if you ask me
Bombs
Ripping us
Feet
Stomping us
Am I doing this to Them or to me?
All is One don’t you see
I am hating and killing me
Them? – Simply shades of me

From Astral Messages by G. Michael Vasey

How are The Stars Aligned?

I seem to be going through a very strange phase at the moment. I’m wondering if it has anything to do with the Moon so if you are an astrologer, let me know would you? I am an Aquarian with Moon in Taurus, Mars and Venus in Capricorn and Mercury also in Aquarius….. just in case you want to offer some advice.

I seem to attract disrespectful or strange behaviour.

This morning, I almost got run down on a pedestrian crossing, also last night. I may as well be invisible on those crossings. When driving, it’s always me that people cut off or wish to pass at 20km/hr faster than the speed limit and so drive 6cm behind me. Around me, people are fighting and in bitter discord with people close to me. I seem to be a sort of catalyst for what I can only term a ‘f**k you’ mentality aimed at me and my family. I am constantly getting audited by the tax people despite the fact I am about the only honest person around so far as I can see  when it comes to declaring everything properly (in two countries I may add) and recently, a real estate company here simply invented a debt in my name and sold it to a debt collector! What on Earth is going on here?

I guess the other thing though is just the general environment is really getting to me. It is all about division, jealousy, envy, nationalism and so on at the moment isn’t it? We just seem to be generally going through a time of upheaval and conflict on all levels. People seem if not angry with each other then certainly selfish. It’s all about me sort of attitude.

I have battened down the hatches and try to let it all wash over me because it really all is nonsense. People need to chill out a bit and be glad for what they have instead of always looking for more. They need to stop looking over the garden fence thinking their neighbors are doing better – in fact, you have no idea how they are doing. We need to be coming together and facing up to the big issues not fighting amongst ourselves.

It’s really not difficult people.

 

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Enough!

To accompany my blog post today – A few lines….

Abused and used
No one to tell
A sordid hell
Power mongered
Nothing gained
Children pained
Corrupt bastards
Running the country
Covering up
Hiding the truth
Protecting friends
In high places
No one cares
No one gives a damn
Homeless kids
Forgotten anyway
Don’t have a say
Humanity abused
Sexually used
Tears cried
Nowhere to hide
Insanity prevails
Pedophile monsters
Criminal abusers
No escape
No justice
None

enough

Stranger Than Fiction – The UK Pedophile Story that Won’t go Away

For decades there have been rumors about a pedophile ring at the highest levels of British society. From time to time, bits and pieces would bubble up in newspapers and then just as quickly, the story was gone again. The story was always there though in the background as whispers, innuendo and rumor. It was a story picked over by conspiracy theorists who no doubt embellished it with lurid stories of satanism, black magic, lizards, aliens, murder, royalty and much much more. Indeed, much of this was truly stranger than fiction but throughout there was a core of substance to these stories. Since the Saville case came to light, the existence of such a pedophile ring involving powerful people and going to the core of British society has been proven. Increasingly, the papers and the media are covering the story and the conclusion has to be that the Britain we all know is a lie.

Everyone who knows me will appreciate, I don’t like conspiracy stories. In fact, I set out to disprove conspiracy and my view is that the logical explanation is always the most likely but that we will never know the truth of anything. Too much chaos and too much personal interpretation by everyone involved in anything to ever see the truth of a matter like this. Too many people willing to twist and embellish for personal gain or some other reason. Read The Prague Cemetery if you want to understand how it is done. An excellent book. But I digress. In this instance, there are too many independent pieces of evidence now to come to any other logical conclusion than there is a massive cover up around this group of powerful pedophiles in the UK and that this has been covered up for decades.

I come to this conclusion reluctantly because, like most people, I do not want to believe or accept it. But consider just a few of these items, do your own research and you will come to similar conclusions I am sure. The despicable Jimmy Saville and all of his friends and connections including his driver, Cyril Smith, Peter Morrison, the busting of a huge pedophile ring involving more than 6000 people across the UK, Norman Tebbit’s statement that there ‘probably was a cover up as we believed it was better to protect the system’. He now views that as a mistake. I am not going to name other names though yesterdays news did not surprise me as this man is rumored to be a part of the high-level pedophile ring that literally ran (runs) the country. Stars, politicians, aristocracy and one or two business leaders…..For such a story to never actually bust out another logical conclusion must be that the secret service and police at high-levels are also involved in the cover up.

I think its time this story was blown wide open. I think its time we knew the truth. I think we should demand to have this investigated out in the open and that no one – NO ONE is sacrosanct.

I have two additional thoughts around this topic. Firstly, back in the 70’s and 80’s, this sort of thing was endemic and pretty much kept quiet by everyone. It was a sort of open secret. For example, at my elementary school, there was a male teacher whose name I do not recall that we all avoided. It was well known that if you were a boy and you got hurt or distressed, this teachers favorite way to comfort you was to shove his hands down your pants and fondle you. All the other teachers knew, I think parents knew. No one did anything. I recall falling and grazing my knee at break one day. I was crying but as I saw this creep walking towards me I ran. I ran as fast as I could because I had seen what he did and he wasn’t going to do it to me. Don’t get me started about the scout masters I knew. Nice men but they too seemed to think that a good old fondle was the way to comfort a small boy. Don’t tell me it wasn’t common knowledge – I am sure most people knew and they looked the other way.

My second thought is probably whimsical and falls into the conspiracy area that I so detest but…. I am inclined to believe that people sell their souls for power. Whether accidentally or deliberately, there is no doubt that for wealth, power and influence, people will do things that are ‘evil’. In doing so, they sell their souls. Stranger than fiction?

soul

A cornucopia of magic, mayhem and murder – The Last Observer – my latest novel….

Overpriced, Overdone but Beautiful

So what am I talking about with a post title like that?

The United Kingdom actually.

I left the UK in 1992 and emigrated to Texas where I spent a good 17-years before returning to Europe and settling in the Czech Republic. Periodically, of course, I get to go back on business or a for a family visit.

Over priced – The UK is expensive. How do people there manage? So far as I can tell, salaries have gone up incredibly since I left but despite the fact that people seem to earn what I would have thought of as ‘silly money’ back in 1992, prices appear to have risen even faster! Being in the West Midlands this last week, I paid over four pounds for a pint, had toast, eggs and a coffee breakfast for 15 pounds and all I can say is thank God I gave up smoking last year! Meanwhile, I was told that some remarkably ordinary looking homes were fetching 600,000 pounds and that people at getting mortgages of 10-12 times their income…. a recipe for total disaster. So, yes, over priced and by a long way too. By comparison to other parts of Europe, the UK is simply incredibly expensive.

Overdone? – too crowded, too full of people, too many cars, airports too small. The UK is full to overflowing and I fear it will eventually sink (south east first) under the weight of that steaming mass of humanity. The result is stress, aggravation and very rude people….

But something must be going right because I passed home after home in Birmingham that must have cost 500,000 GBP or more with 2-3 cars (BMW’s and such) parked all over their front yards. Somebody is doing well.

No, you can keep the UK. I don’t much miss it if I am honest except for the football, the beer, nice little country pubs, English gardens, Yorkshire, the west cost of Scotland, Wales, Cornwall, Fish n Chips, Pork pies – pies in general actually, sticky puddings, treacle pudding, shepherd’s pie,the east cost of Yorkshire, York, the moors, the history, little English villages,small churches…. Well maybe I do!

Englands-green-and-pleasant-land

Coming back its the greenness that always amazes me. From the plane it simply is a brighter, richer, deeper shade of green. Its a beautiful country.

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Given that, I should visit more often but live there? I could not afford it.