Posts Tagged ‘climate’

It’s The Little Things I Hate – That Will Send Me Mad

April 5, 2013

The love has gone, joy is hard to find but in the midst of the longest, coldest winter of my life (is it climate change or have we slipped through the wardrobe to Narnia?) I seem to be stumbling upon all the little things I hate and they are about to send me quite-quite mad.



So, a list, not in any order and not exhaustive by any means…

No wine in the house

No chocolate in the house

wine and choc

The internet being down

Finding the fridge or cupboard bare of what you were expecting to be there – who ate my treats???

Having to change the loo rolls EVERY time

Being at the end of the platform when the train suddenly goes from 10 carriages to 6

Leaving work early to find London Bridge in the middle of (yet another) meltdown – so no early home-time after all

london bridgr

Losing all your bookmarks when the hard-drive is re-booted

Spilling my dinner on my clean top (again – becoming a real mucky duck)

Random rudeness from strangers

The constant nastiness in the media about teachers

mr rude

The sudden disappearance of an old obscure favourite song from Youtube

DJ’s talking over your favourite song – especially cutting the ending short

The random rearrangement of supermarket shelves – why Tesco, why?

tesco shelves

The indecent amount some people get for nothing – think bankers, football players

Never being in the right place at the right time … on so many levels

The unreliability of the weather

london snow


A list that could go on forever and mutate into things I really hate. A list of things that if combined in the correct or incorrect way can and does lead to a personal melt-down, moments of madness, a shout and a stamp of the foot before stalking off to sulk upstairs for a while – but only a short while I hope! (Images courtesy Google Images)

Nature v Human Nature – for Barb

January 12, 2013

The world is an angry intemperate beast. She loves us, she hates us. Parts of the world suffer floods while others are devastated by fires. Cyclones rage, famines caused by drought cut swathes through populations and without a doubt the climate is changing and we will feel the wrath of Gaia again and again in the coming years.


Natural disasters are just that: nasty destroying harpies from Nature, things we have very little control over. Who wants to die in a tsunami, lose everything in fire, flood or storm? None of us. Ever. Yet we do, because we live on this planet and no place is safe, not really, not guaranteed, so we build our houses and hope they are rooted in the rock, not the shifting, intemperate sands. And given how the climate is changing how can we know where will be safe next year, in five years or a hundred?


My beloved step-mother Barbara has lost everything in the recent fires that swept through South-eastern Tasmania – her house, her goods and chattels; all her lovely paintings. She is in shock, devastated by her loss. But she is lucky, and I know she knows she is, despite her pain, her feelings of betrayal and unfairness at such an act at such a time of life. Yet, luck seems to have abandoned her, a lifetime of possessions, of treasures taken by the flames, burnt in an evil inferno. How can this be fair? She is a good woman: honest, decent, creative, artistic, loving (even where not deserved) and generous. She has lived a big life, a good, worthwhile life. So why has such a terrible thing happened to her?

tas burning

Sadly, goodness does not always elicit rewards. Bad things happen to good people. And despite this hideous event, Barb will recover. Because she is strong and she is still lucky – the irreplaceable things of life – the people and her cat – are still here. Nothing died in the fire – yes things were lost, things that can never be truly replaced but people once lost are gone forever and Barb has her loved ones around her to cherish her and keep her strong as she rebuilds her life. This is not to diminish her (or others who have also had everything reduced to cinders in this latest Antipodean inferno) loss but to remember that in the midst of despair if we look closely enough there is enough luck to keep us going. This is not the time to dwell on the fairness or justice of matter – that way madness lies. I say again: bad things happen to good people – there is no reason, no why, no divine retribution: it just happens that way.


In the midst of Nature’s melt downs – the earthquake in Christchurch, the Boxing Day tsunami (see The Impossible for a truly remarkable true life story about luck and the vagaries of Nature), Hurricane Katrina, etc – there are always stories of amazing survival: the indomitable nature of the human spirit prevails amidst carnage and terror. Yes, some of us are lucky to survive – why one family in Thailand and not another? But some of us make our own luck. There’s another mysterious fact of life: some people are luckier than others, things just go their way.


Life is a dilemma; living means joy and pain. We struggle and sometimes we win and some days we lose. It’s too trite by far to say that it’s what we learn in the struggle that is important. It’s not that easy to pick yourself up after life screws you over so comprehensively. Loss is hard for all of us, no matter the magnitude – a lost game of football, a missed promotion, a rejecting lover, the loss of face, a failed business, the repossession of your home and assets; a failed marriage, a stillborn child, the death of a spouse. These things happen to us – if we’re lucky we only experience a few of them. Some of us get more than our fair share. What marks us though is how we deal with such things. It is easy to fall prey to self pity and despair and give up. God knows, no-one would blame us. But after the pain has eased, after the shock is over, after the constant negative-destructive thoughts have ebbed away there is space and time to resume life – to rebuild, to start again.

cyclone t survivor

Lucky people know what could have been – how much worse things might have been. They count their blessings, and move on with their lives, remaking their futures, being lucky to be alive and strong enough to start again.


The world can only beat you if you let it. (Images courtesy Google Images and Ryan Curtis)