Glorious Sunny Day

It was a glorious sunny day yesterday and I made my way out into the garden where I was joined by The Radiant Queen and The Handsome Prince.

Here’s The Queen eyeing up 2 Starlings who had dared to venture onto her patch of lawn.

In the far distance is The Handsome Prince who is guarding the entrance to The Secret Garden.

Here was the garden, washing blowing in the breeze. I love the trees at the bottom of the garden. I say trees because most presume it’s one large tree however it’s two separate ones. On the right (as you look at the image) is a Flowering Cherry and on the left, a Sycamore which must have started life as a seed dropped by the birds as we didn’t plant it. I love the fact it has grown in a way which compliments the shape of the tree next to it.

If you look at the post at the end of the hedge just to the left of the washing on the line and go up vertically from there, that’s pretty much where the Sycamore begins and it grows to the left as you look at the image. The Flowering Cherry is from the post and then goes to the right as you look at the image. Nature is amazing.

5 a.m.

I awoke early this morning and galvanised by my ‘new’ direction, which is returning to my first love – writing, thereby leaving musical creation to those who know what they are doing, namely my good friend Sharine and her husband, I set about charting in words my daily life, seen through this newfound filter of peace and equilibrium.

I walked into the garden, set up my field recording equipment, placing it in a prime location to capture some early morning sounds. This is the result:-

These are the sounds from an English suburb. Recorded Thursday 18th May 2023 at around 5 a.m. GMT. It contains an overhead plane, the sound of a passing motor vehicle, a distant train whistle and birdsong as well as birds flapping their wings.

This is the scene:-

The Eucalyptus Tree which stretches up to the sky just to the right of centre in the image was cut down because the roots were going under the house and risked causing subsidence. It has grown back just as vigorously. 2 years ago, it was a stump. Last year it stood just 8 feet high. They grow at an alarming rate and this image more than adequately charts the power of nature. Mother Earth at her finest.

I made myself a cup of Masala Chai tea and listened to some Indian Chill music on YouTube which can be found HERE. Track 2 (Mystiqal – Vugh Gardens) I especially love. I made the tea in a teapot and added a splash of oat milk. It was delicious. This is the tea I was drinking:-

I have always felt a strong pull to India. I at one time considered converting to Hinduism. I am not a joiner though and besides by becoming Hindu, I would be creating a sense of the Other. I recently discovered a spiritual path called Omnism, which views all religions as containing inherent truths. I’m an Omnist.

I discovered a great website called Aporee which details field recordings from all over the world. I have always been fascinated by the idea of hearing from people all over the world. ‘Ordinary’ people just like me. Not celebrity types. Just regular folk going about their lives.

As a child I would do this by listening to obscure radio stations courtesy of my Dad’s long-wave radio. The idea that all of these people were out there blew my mind. Largely unheard by the masses yet captured in a fleeting moment. A raindrop in the totality of an ocean but containing the essence of that entire great sea in that one tiny drop.

Anyhow, I hope all of you reading this have a great day today. Peace.

The good old U S of A

I met someone a couple of days back who lives in Los Angeles. Very nice person to chat with. I’m glad we bumped into each other.

I grew up on American TV shows, American films, American music. The Blues, I mean what more can be said? That genre of music flows through my veins.

I like the attitude of women from The States. The openness in their manner. Very little in the way of affectation.

Then we come to personality. It’s so stuck up here in the UK. People seem to be afraid to even smile in case it might crack their faces. There’s just so much control here. Too much uniformity of thought and conformity of behaviour. I love talking with people from The States, as they are so genuine in how they express themselves. I love their spontaneity. I have often wondered how my life would have worked out had I been born in the United States. As a child I was what is referred to here as a ‘chatterbox’ and it’s an insult, a slur.

Everything is so ‘polite’ here. Stiff upper lip and all that nonsense. I was chatting with an American couple who now live here and they were telling me how music concerts and gigs differ there to here. People whoop, holler and cheer there whereas here it’s a light ripple of applause with those same types looking around them just in case they have gone too far in showing their approval for the music. I think it was Brian Johnson, lead singer from AC/DC, who lives in The States now and he was talking about how people just let their hair down and are themselves in America, even doing mundane things whereas people in the UK don’t know how to do that. I wonder if the weather plays a part?

I don’t think my life would have been easy if I had lived in the United States. I would likely still have been bullied growing up because I was clearly different. I was a bookworm, an introvert and I kept very much to myself. I still do. I would likely have clammed up around the girls at High School and would have ended up working in a bookstore or library however I feel I would have largely been allowed to be myself, personality-wise. It feels freer ‘over there.’ I cannot recall the last time I’ve had a good old chinwag with another Brit. Everyone is so surly here now. It’s silicon valley really. The Live to Work, Work to Live mindset is everywhere sadly.

Alcohol misuse is prevalent here too and that’s understandable as for many it’s the only way they can loosen up socially and really ‘be themselves’ in a social setting. I have a good friend from the United States and when I talk with her, it’s just about the only time I can have a really great in-depth and good humoured conversation with an intelligent human being. There’s a very real sense of a line to be toed with so many people in the UK however not so when I meet someone from The States. Quite a lot of people from there have different views in terms of the spiritual side of life and I love that. There used to be so many different spiritual options here when I was growing up however that’s now largely disappeared in favour of The Big 3 religions and their spin-offs, or not believing in anything at all.

Politically, we get told about our special relationship with those who live ‘across the pond’ which is largely borne out of geopolitical concerns however for me, it’s far more than that. American culture infuses my soul. No other country on Earth has had such a wide-ranging and deep impact as The United States. It’s not just because I grew up on CHiPS, The Dukes of Hazzard, Sesame Street, The Muppets, The A-Team etc Even if I had been brought up on Canadian TV or solely British TV I would still have been drawn to the U.S. The music alone is out of this world. But the most important reason for why I would have ended up discovering the country and its people is really very simple.

I find Americans warm, friendly and their honesty refreshing.

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