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.

Saturday 8 June 2013

feeling better, cold breeze, soft blue skies, presidential visit, valencourt books, assignments

I'm feeling better now, thank goodness, although it's only been during the last couple of days that I've got my strength back.

Enjoyed cycling this morning, despite the bitterly cold breeze.

The breeze has been unremitting for the whole week and meant that today was pretty chilly even when the sun was fully out. In sheltered places, though, the air was beautifully clear. The sky has been a soft blue with light cloud.

In the country, the blossom is still out and barley is coming into ear and will soon ripen.

At work, Oxford full term is nearly over--just one more week to go. Gosh the term has flown.

A highlight of the week was a visit to the library by Juan Manuel Santos, the president of Colombia. He came to acknowledge the pivotal role that the Latin American Centre has played over the last 50 years in developing greater knowledge and understanding of Colombia in the UK. He was in Oxford to attend a fascinating event at Magdalen College to launch the Multidimensional Poverty Peer Network.

An excellent article in this week's TLS highlights recent publications from Valencourt Books, an American print on demand publisher specialising in reissuing long forgotten British authors such as Oliver Onions, John Blackburn and Ronald Fraser--authors I had never heard of.

Meanwhile, it has been a weekend of marking assignments so far. A little bit of a lie-in tomorrow, however.

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