Hi everyone, hope you are all coping under these extraordinary circumstances.
Once again, I struggled with what to write about for my monthly blog and just couldn’t get my mind off the obvious, COVID-19. It wasn’t that long ago when the media in every form was banging on about BREXIT, now this.
I haven’t left my home for 18 days now! I am petrified of getting this killer disease. I am a high risk candidate because of my underlying health issues. I have Heart disease, chronic Lung disorder and Kidney problems yes I have hit the jackpot!! The staying home bit I don’t find so difficult because having lived alone now for a few years, and not going out much anyway, it’s nothing new, but isn’t it strange that when you are told you CAN’T go out, you want to even more. I’ve felt lonely before but now I feel lonelier. What I am finding hard is not being able to hug my daughter Lucy. It is hard not hugging all of my children, but they all live in the UK, Lucy lives here in Cyprus. The other day she came with her mum Sarah to bring me some food, (thank you), they had to leave it outside the door. We chatted at the required distance apart and I found it heart breaking.
Another strange thing, with all this time on my hands, which I had anyway Lol, when I could be doing stuff, I’m doing nothing!! This is the first writing I’ve done in ages. Now, if you want to know how many lengths of laminate I have on my floors, or how many seeds were in the Pomegranate I had yesterday, but anything constructive? NO!
My son Nick and his fiancé Katie were due to get married in May, and I was all booked up for a trip to the UK, but now it has been postponed until next May. Another lost opportunity to see all my children.
A little verse I wrote recently:
Oh Corona Corona
What is it with you?
You came out of nowhere
What are we to do?
Like we haven’t got enough problems
To deal with every day
Why don’t you do one and fuck off away
Or are you trying to kill us oldies
With already enough disease and ills
Who merely survive not by washing hands
But by taking a ton of pills.
Well hopefully this will soon be over and we can go back to some sort of normality. Until then people, follow the rules, stay safe, stay home and stay alive.
Hi all, hope you are well.
I was just wondering, apart from a reason to show your love and affection, (if you need a reason), spend money, and generally get drawn in to the commercialism of “Valentines Day”, are you aware as to where it all started? No? No nor did I but after much research and finding many answers, this is the one that appealed to me.
St. Valentine was a priest in Rome in the 3rd century AD. At the time, Emperor Claudius 2nd, decided to ban marriage. He believed that married men made bad soldiers. (I wonder why?). Valentine opposed this so he decided that he would carry out marriages in secret to those that wanted it. Eventually Emperor Claudius found out about this and jailed Valentine with a death sentence to follow.
Whilst in jail, Valentine fell in love with the jailers daughter who brought him food every day. On February 14th, Valentines execution day, he sent his lady a love letter and at the bottom he signed it:
“From your Valentine”
Thus the special day was born.
I said I liked this explanation but don’t necessarily believe it. What I believe is that “Hallmark”, the big greeting card and manufacturer invented it!! Lol!
Either way, I agree with us all showing that we care. Personally, I won’t be sending or receiving any Valentine cards, but I do wish you all a very happy Valentines day full of love and peace.
See you next time. xxxxx
I hope everyone enjoyed the festive period, and hope this year gives you all you want. Myself? Well I’m looking forward to better things and I thank the Universe that I am still breathing.
This month I thought I would share with you a tried and tested recipe for “Bourgouri”, (Bulgar wheat). It is a staple Cypriot food that can be served with almost everything or as a standalone meal. With preparation, it takes less than 30mins to make and to your plate. Ideal for vegetarians/vegans, but also great served with meat. I like to cook a couple of “Louganiga”, (Cypriot sausage), and cut them up to bite size pieces and mix them into my plate of Bourgouri….Yum!
3 Tablespoons of olive oil.
1 cup bourgouri
1 finely diced onion.
⅓ cup vermicelli.
300mls vegetable stock
1 tablespoon tomato puree
½ teaspoon cumin
Salt and Pepper to taste.
For my Mum
We all have a mother
And of course she is the best
That she is like no other
She is better than the rest.
Well I am no exception mum
I believe all the above
Yes of course I am bias mum
You taught us how to love.
You have gone to a better place
well that is what they say
what I do know in any case
is that you have gone away.
To never see your face again
Or see your lovely smile
To never watch you knitting again
Whilst humming all the while.
Are you with my brother now?
I would take comfort in that fact
I want to believe somehow
And keep my dreams intact.
I just want you to know mum
Wherever you may be
I love you very much and some
You meant the world to me.
So until we can party again
At some future date
Rest in peace without pain
And I’ll see you at “The Gate”
Love you mum. xxx
Hi all hope you are well. I can’t believe how quick the months go by. It feels like the older you get, the quicker time flies. Note to self: I must stop seeing it as a sort of countdown to my end of days.
On a lighter note, like it or not, it will soon be Christmas. Buying gifts for family and friends is the tradition at this time of year, but what do you buy for that person who seems to have everything? You can buy BOOKS, you can buy MY BOOKS! Allow me to suggest some. My “Only in Cyprus” series. There are three books in this series, and yes they are short books, but all three can be bought for under £10. They are written very much tongue in cheek, (but true), and are worth every penny for the laughs and insight into Cyprus living.
My next suggestion is one I wrote in memory of my brother. It’s mostly about us growing up in a Cypriot environment/mentality, but in the UK. Very funny. Love you Bro’, gone but never forgotten.
This next one speaks for itself. Yes, you can probably read it all whilst waiting for your Christmas dinner, but I guarantee you at least one belly laugh, and better than your Christmas cracker jokes.
All the above books are very reasonably priced and are ideal as stocking fillers. They can all be found, (and others), here on my website under the “My Books” heading, or you can go directly to Amazon and search. That’s it for another month so stay happy and healthy.
Hope you are all well. My request for suggestions on subject matter to write about wasn’t forthcoming, so you will have to put up with my offering. Just curious, is there anybody out there?
Ok, so this month, after another successful season Airbnbing, I’ll write about my closing down…..for this year! I choose to close down end of October every year. I take November and December as my time to do any maintenance that might be needed, to find my brain again, to find my privacy again, and to relax a little. My last guests left a few days ago and guess what? I am already feeling lonely! I know, sad. I have been looking forward to being alone for the past ten months of this year, and now I am….. L. The only plans I have for my two months of freedom, is to take one room at a time and have a deep clean. Actually that is not quite true, I am planning on going to the UK end of November to see my very sick Mother. I hate travelling lately, but more so at the thought of seeing my Dementia ridden mum who may not even know who I am. This is Mum…..
Another thing I have noticed since having all this time on my hands, is that my drinks cabinet gets opened earlier and earlier every day. I have had many bottles of strange alcoholic beverages gifted to me by thoughtful guests, some drinks I have never heard of! It would be rude not to try them, so the other day I had had one too many of a particular “falling down” water, I had to have a nap! It was a gift from a Polish couple that had stayed with me. This is the culprit…….
Well I think that is enough drivel for this month. Again, if you have any suggestions for subject matter that you would like me to write about, please leave it in the “comments” section below.
Bye for now, stay well and Peace to you all. xxx
Hi everyone, hope you are all well. I really struggled to think of a subject to write about this month, does this mean I had an uneventful month?.......Probably . Anyway, I got there in the end, but I would very much appreciate that if you have any suggestions of subjects for future blog entries, that you pop them down in the comments for me. Thanks.
So this month, after 3 or was it 4 very large Chivas, I wrote this:
My fears are many, not just a few
Some will be the same as you.
As I get older, my fears multiply
More and more as the years go by.
I’m not talking Spiders, bugs and the like
Although they ARE things I don’t like
I’m talking about things deeper and from the heart
I really don’t know where to start.
It’s definitely an age thing and as I’ve got older
These fears I’ve taken upon my shoulder.
It’s one thing mainly that’s bothering me
And as I write you will see.
My health is not at its best
My heart, lungs, kidneys and the rest
But there are people out there so much worse
So I thank the universe for being my nurse.
No, my fear is this, at long last
It’s all connected to my past
I brought six children into this world
So here is where my fear unfurls.
Before that day comes, when I’m pronounced dead
I want to see them all get wed!!!
To walk my daughters down the aisle
Then I’ll die with a smile….
There you have it, well I was under the influence .
Until next month
Hi all, hope you are well.
This month I would like to remind you of my "Flora" books. Flora is a beautiful little Mini - Pinscher that came into our lives about seven years ago. She wrote these three little books in the first three years of her life, with a little help from me :) . They were written with children in mind, but they will also appeal to adults. They make great bedtime reading, also perfect as stocking fillers for this soon to be here Christmas.
If you wish to purchase any of these books, or all of them, you can do so here on my website by going to the "My Books" page and clicking the "BUY" button under the relevant book. You will be directed to the Amazon purchase page.
Thanks for your support as always, so until next month I wish you all Peace, Health and Happiness.. xxx
Hi all, hope you are well and coping with the heat.
This month I want to remind you of a short story I published in 2015 and haven't given it the promotion that it deserves. It is a short book but an endearing story with a bit of excitement and escapism. It is about a father and son and their adventures. It is called, "Utopian Magic".
It is set in the 1800's, poor times, hungry times, very hard times.
Armed with a beautiful Shire horse called Dexter that pulled their amazing caravan and their dog Jack, Elliot and his son Nathan scratched a living roaming the countryside performing Magic shows.
Here is a short extract:
The Red glow of our camp fire’s embers shone onto my father’s face giving him an almost eerie look. I wondered what it was he was thinking about, but I had a good idea.
“Are you ok Dad?” I asked.
“Yes I’m fine son; I was just remembering your Mother.”
We had lost my Mother almost five years ago near my fifteenth birthday, but it was hard to come to terms with. She had suffered for too long. Maybe if we had conformed to the accepted system and been your average citizen, we could have got her more help, but we were Travelers’. We have been called some other names such as Pikies, Vagabonds, Vagrants even Romani’s, but we were simply Travelers’. No permanent address, not registered on any system, just us and the good Earth as it was meant to be. We didn’t feel that we were owed anything but at the same time we didn’t owe anything.
My father leaned over with the pot of coffee and offered to top me up, which I accepted.
“Shame to waste it,” said my father.
“Yeah but mind you, it’s a bit stewed by now Dad.”
Jack ran over and sat at my feet. Jack was our dog and part of the family. Mother had named him Jack because he was a Jack Russell and for no other reason, we didn’t have the heart to change it, and besides it suited him. He was a great dog and a very good hunter. He could out run a Rabbit much to its demise.
The other member of the family was ‘Dexter’. Dexter was the biggest and strongest Shire horse you would ever meet. He was Jet Black, so Black that he looked a deep Blue color in a certain light. He had a snow White chest and ankles. I was pretty tall but to mount Dexter, I had to take a run and jump at him. He pulled our caravan with ease and wherever we wanted to go.
Our caravan was our home but it was also our means of survival. It was large and it was colorful. On either side, painted in bold colors were the words ‘The Wizard of Wonder’ that is my father. My father is a Magician and a master at his art. This is how we earned our living as we roamed the country.
We would find a Town or Village and set up camp on its outskirts, perhaps a field. One side of the caravan was constructed such that you could lower the side and it would transform into a stage. This is where my father would perform his miracles with myself as his assistant. It used to be my mother’s role. She also used to read the Tarot cards and Palms, and this ability she handed down to me. My father would often joke about adding an ‘S’ on the word Wizard.
My father watched me as I made a small ball appear then disappear, change color then multiply.
“Keep practicing Nathan, you will earn that ‘S’ yet.”
“Thanks Dad, but I’m going to turn in now.”
I made sure Dexter was well tethered and had water. Jack was asleep under the caravan now. Dad threw some dirt onto the embers.
“I think I’ll join you son, we move on tomorrow.”
We had performed for three nights here on the edge of Timberly, and pickings were not very good. We had twenty audience members on our first night but it had diminished to five on our third night. We put it down to Timberly being a small village. We didn’t charge an entrance fee as such, but I passed my hat around at the end of a performance. Over the three nights we took £1.12pence, three buttons and a chewed bit of gum. It was hard but we were ok, we wouldn’t starve.
I hope you liked what you have read. If you did, you can buy it for the price of a Frappe. It is available in Paperback and Kindle formats here on my website. Just click on the 'BUY' button, and you will be directed to the purchase page on Amazon.
That's it for another month, enjoy the weather and peace to you all. xxx
Hi all, June already!
As I haven't used my blog to promote my books since January, this month I'm going to do just that.
This story comes in two parts and it is titled "Tony's World". The first part is called, 'Indoctrination' and the second, 'No Escape'.
It all started when I decided to write my autobiography, and as it progressed and I realised what exciting and dangerous things I had done in my life, it turned into a fictional crime thriller. I will leave it to the reader to decide which parts are true and which are fiction. :)
Here is a little taster:
I looked in my side view mirror as I sped down Commercial Street. I could see that the Police vehicles had only just started doing three point turns to come and investigate. I took a left down Whitechapel Road, almost tipping the van again. I joined the A11, the Mile End Road, and then turned into Globe road. There was no sign of the Police yet.
“Ok, I’m going down here, and we all get out and split up. I’ll come and see you tomorrow at the gym”.
We were only walking distance from the gym, about five minutes.
“Ok marn, see yo tomorrow” said Tyrone, looking a bit wobbly.
They all jumped out of the van and went in different directions. I drove on and went up Roman road, right into Cambridge Heath road and eventually got to the Queens Head, where I parked the van, got into my car and drove home.
“Fuck, woohoo, what a rush” I shouted out loud banging both hands on the steering wheel. As I drove slowly towards home, I saw the Police cars, sirens screaming, go past me. They had no reason to bother me; they were looking for a van.
Here is one of the reviews:
5.0 out of 5 stars Fast paced witty crime novella
7 December 2014
Format: Kindle EditionVerified Purchase
Forget Tony Montana, it's Mr Leonitou who is in the driver's seat now! (quite literally). I really enjoyed this fast paced novella which introduces Tony Leonitou and his journey from hard-working good Greek-Cypriot boy to career-criminal. The crime scenes were particularly well thought out and there was definitely an air of 'Layer Cake' mixed with 'Lock Stock' about the story. I read the book in one sitting and am very much looking forward to the sequel!
If you like what you have read, you can get them here on my website. Just click on the 'BUY' button and you will be directed to the AMAZON purchase page. You can buy them in Kindle or Paperback versions.
Until next time
Well you know I'm an Author, so you keep reading, and I will keep writing :)