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 1 April 2012

party, assignments, clanfield tavern, brunch, patio, drought

Went to a party in Oxford last night. It was Jim's sixty-fifth and Jill's retirement. Lovely to see old friends from Osney Island.

The rest of the weekend has been spent marking assignments. Now off for a pint at the Clanfield Tavern.

Another amazing day. Unexpected, though, given what the online BBC weather forecast said earlier in the week. Sunday brunch on the patio again.

Meanwhile, there's still a lot happening in the west Oxfordshire countryside. The magnolia flower is showing traces of burn resulting from last night's frost. The background to the horse-chestnut bud pic is a reminder that it is only the end of March/beginning of April, after all.

For those who subscribe to the Sunday Times, there was a disturbing article today on the possible effects of the drought on wildlife, entitled Drought threatens birds and bees. The article begins:

"BRITAIN’S drought is threatening to topple millions of trees, destroy populations of wetland birds and wipe out the insects that form the base of the food chain, say government conservation advisers...

"Even though it is only the beginning of April...key breeding areas for wetland wading birds such as redshank, curlew and lapwing have dried out. These are often dependent on winter flooding to replenish their moisture levels but this year the floods have failed in many areas..."

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