Welcome to justthoughtsnstuff

I started posting to jtns on 20 February 2010 with just one word, 'Mosaic'. This seemed an appropriate introduction to a blog that would juxtapose fragments of memoir and life-writing. Since 1996, I'd been coming to terms with the consequences of emotional and economic abuse that had begun in childhood, and which, amongst other things, had sought to stifle self-expression. While I'd explored some aspects of my life through fiction and, to a lesser extent, journalism, it was only in 2010 that I felt confident enough to write openly about myself. I believed this was an important part of the healing process. Yet within weeks, the final scenes of my family's fifty-year nightmare started to play themselves out and the purpose of the blog became one of survival through writing. Although some posts are about my family's suffering - most explicitly, Life-Writing Talk, with Reference to Trust: A family story - the majority are about happier subjects (including, Bampton in rural west Oxfordshire, where I live, Oxford, where I work, the seasons and the countryside, walking and cycling) and I hope that these, together with their accompanying photos, are enjoyable and positive. Note: In February 2020, on jtns' tenth birthday, I stopped posting to this blog. It is now a contained work of life-writing about ten years of my life. Frank, 21 February 2020.

New blog: morethoughtsnstuff.com.

Sunday 10 July 2011

weeding, minsters, golden courgette

I had an enjoyable couple of hours weeding on the allotment.

Focused on the runner beans, which I'd let get horrifically overgrown due to pressures of work keeping me away from the plot.

It's amazing how late the runners are--as indeed are all the veg on the allotment. Compared to Jess' crops in the garden at the cottage, they look so behind. The plot is all Oxford clay, whereas the garden is over gravel and is much, much earlier ground.

It was interesting to see a geological map at a meeting in the village hall a few years ago, that showed where the monasteries in this part of the Thames Valley had been founded during the late Anglo-Saxon period. Bampton church is one of the remaining minster churches. You can still see the Anglo-Saxon stonework in the base of the tower above the crossing. The geological map showed that the monasteries and their settlements were built on small free-draining gravel outcrops in the midst of the Oxford clay.

Harvested first round golden courgette.

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