Nov 10th

On the street where I live

By mimi

If you have ever wondered where all the 'Rag 'n' Bone' men went, well they packed up all their things and moved to Brazil. 

Brazilians have street vending down to a fine art.  Whether it's street fairs and markets or cars, carts and bikes driving down residential streets hocking their wares.  Even on the beach it is possible to buy practically everything but the kitchen sink, but I will do a separate blog on that when I am there as it is quite a sight to behold and there are many characters to be captured on film.   

Over the few months that I've been here I've slowly been compiling a list of my favourites, much to the surprise/shock/shame/horror/amusement of my husband and his family.  Naturally they think I am totally mad whenever I hear the familiar cries of whichever street seller happens to be driving by but I have to rush out and click away with my camera. 

My street and many streets in Brazil resemble a latin-american version of the wonderful scene from Oliver's Who will buy?, when all the vendors gather in the square selling milk, roses, strawberries etc. 


Get your brooms...


Orange, juicy oranges...


And my absolute favourite - the saucepan car...


Yes, you did read right, I did say Saucepan car, which I have literally translated from the Portuguese - O Carro da Panela.  This is a car that comes round about once a fortnight to mend saucepans.  I don't expect you to understand but over here pots and pans are really expensive and so people tend to keep them forever - about 20-25 years.  Over this time period they get battered up and dented and this is where the Saucepan Car comes in handy.  This handyman will come round and bash your cookware back into shape and offer a six month guarantee. 


For those who share my fascination I have also captured this wonderful advert on film. Don't judge him by the state of his car though!

Nov 5th

Hello Stranger, My Heart

By Cyprus67
Hello Stranger, my heart
Have I been ignoring you?
Unintentional oversight that's all
Not one but many times

Is it still there? I hardly know
What purpose does it have
When I am so sad
Just serves to perpetuate more

Heart that's deep, with little to keep
Sinking and closing, too much rain
External pain, no control only choices
Pensive and alone, serving echoes

Dear stranger, my heart
what purpose do you have
Alone for a long time, rather sad
Stolen offerings, even in shallow

Dismissive experiences
Alliances temporary
No fulfillment
Only empty.

Sarah L Hunt
5 11 2009

Nov 3rd

The Artist's Face

By Cyprus67

Eyes seen through eyes, tired and dismayed

Sieved through continual critical gaze

An artist turned artist on her own face.

Fund My Face, describes the drive

A website, a request, or a chance to hide

Her face holds tides of disappointment

And it shows not these but it is her own point

The view is held, which turns to validate

The face she sees through any milegate.


The movement of clouds across the sky

Is seen in daylight with an unkept eye

The light refraction, is given a distraction

To a night time focus of blue, black haze
Capturing reflections, on most of those days


Worth is master, withheld in proportion

Completely covered by life’s adoration

Some will receive in abundance thereof

Some will decline their portion and scoff

Ill-fitting a standard would rather push forward


Humility may direct, for shy is loathsome

Contrary neglect of what deems handsome

Usual judge of superficial themes

Changing forthright goodness into fading seams

The fabric is torn as some do mourn.


Truth is to some, as perception is to others

Glazing over, not accepting another

Who determines how we should look

An author, a writer, an ultimate book

Lest we forget how lovely is the Creator


The Artist’s face, is like no other

Created unique in pastel complexion

Simply is not void of vital expression

Consistently feeds with sad rejection

Her criticized, beautiful, living reflection

Sarah L Hunt
3 11 2009

Oct 27th

Controversy, is that how you say it?

By AlanP
We do seem to be having a few ding dong days at the moment. Here’s a thought. I work from home, which means I don’t lose time travelling. When I am desperately busy and charging by the hour, which I usually do, this is cause for joy as I can put in more hours and enjoy a two minute commute. When I am not desperately busy I get what is needful done early on if possible; do a bit of scribbling, a bit of drifting through the clouds and I take on increased domestic duties, particularly as Mrs P is sweating over hot pliers and other such stuff right now. Q4, as they say is her busy time.

We have a TV in our kitchen and, being me, I turn it on whenever I am cooking, washing up etc. Still being me, I turn to the endless re-runs of blokey stuff on Dave.

Now here’s the thing: The adverts. Claim this, injury lawyer for that, yada yada yada. I have come to that time in my life when I think I should be compensated. The question is, what for?

I wasn’t mis-sold a mortgage. I remember someone making a spirited attempt once, but I read the small print and declined.

I wasn’t mis sold a pension, I probably have the same crap deal as anyone.

I haven’t been mis-sold an insurance policy. I am capable of refusing stuff I don’t need and exercise that right whenever the need arises.

I haven’t tripped over a paving slab and damaged myself. I routinely look where I am going and lift my feet at appropriate moments.

I haven’t fallen off a dodgy ladder supplied by someone else.  I don’t do that sort of thing as it happens, but in any event I would check it out first.

I don’t seem to have rsi, just as well because I would have to sue myself.

So, what to do? Could I perhaps raise a claim under the human rights act for being unable to claim any compensation on account of my lack of personal irresponsibility and not being stupid?
Oct 21st


By Cyprus67

What a privilege

What a responsibility

Looking to the future

Hearing the failure

Waiting for the peace

What a privilege

What an honour

Heartache in measure

Smiles of equal score

Patience is a virtue

Please Lord I want some more

What a privilege

What a joy

Whether girl or whether boy

Dissolve the generational bore

Looking for more

Being a mother !

Sarah L Hunt
Jan 12 2009

Oct 20th


By Cyprus67

Consider this, all you who are there
Keep the lines of communication open and fair
The peace that exists from that which it seems
Gives a sure place for people to dream

Cutting the ties abruptly therefore
Serves to hinder a perpetual score
Wisdom is to growth as foolish is to rotten
Open and honest where fairness is gotten

God breathed the words to live and be
As only we should continue to see
Conduct and thought are two of a kind
Blended with love is easy to find

Jesus is light who reverses the fall
Trust in the Truth once and for all
Patient and kind, prefer one another
Hearts are for good and for your brother

Sisters in Christ grieve with no doubt
Loss is gain, turned inside out
Share of your woe and everyday hopes
Communicate freely as it promotes

Sarah L Hunt

Oct 7th

Life's Great Unsolved Mystery

By jazzgirl
You know, all this talk of Darwin lately has been making me think more about my spiritual beliefs. I was questioning them anyway after the recent death of my brother. I sit on the fence you see. I don't know what I believe in because living in the 21st century with all its scientific explanations and discoveries makes faith in God or even life after death a very challenging thing indeed. 

But supposing for a minute  just suppose that all of  a sudden all the mysteries of God and the afterlife were exposed and we finally knew the truth. Imagine that this truth was that we survive death, we have a soul and that lives forever in heaven.  Now what would be the point in knowing this..really? I mean, it would make us question whether there was a point to THIS life the one we're living now. Would people ignore the value and sanctity of life and abuse it even more than we do already? Would there be more suicides, more murder  because people wouldn't value life? If life is eternal what's the point in a physical existence? So maybe there's supposed to be a great mystery to it all. If there is a God I think he wants to be shrouded in mystery.

Talking of mysteries and all that I'd be very interested in your  thoughts about something that happened to me recently. Now I know all the rational arguments for this . As I said before I sit on the fence with spiritual beliefs and I can see both sides of the argument but hear me out.   

The day after my brother died I had a very weird dream. I dreamt I was on a train. When I boarded it I was drawn towards a group of people who were looking at me. I was particularly drawn to one of the women in the group so I sat opposite her. I said to her that she looked familiar yet I didn't know her. She had the most amazing blue/grey eyes ever. She just smiled and the others smiled at me too. As they all got up to get off at the next stop I asked if I could come with them. I don't know why I asked this but there you go. They replied "No, we're getting off here at Otley but you'll know where to find us when you need us".
I was so intrigued by this dream I wrote down every detail  when I woke up. It's important that you know that bit because otherwise the next bit wouldn't make sense.

I also discussed the dream with my partner. Why would I dream about Otley  of all random places? I know it 's a place in Yorkshire but that's all I know. I've never been there.

Now SIX MONTHS later I see a bereavement councellor-Steve we'll call him. He like me is interested in writing and he wrote a radio play which is the true story about the death of his wife.  He directs me to his website and on there I saw pictures of his wife. When I saw them I was stunned. She looked exactly like the woman on the train. Then some time later  Steve gave me a CD of his play. I listen to it and on there he goes into detail about one of their last holidays together-it was in Otley. Again I was stunned.

Even though Steve is a staunch athiest he enjoys talking about strange occurrences so it was during one of these discussions that I rather audaciously told him about the dream and the photos. He found it very interesting and said he had to admit that this was an amazing coincidence particularly as his wife had always encouraged him to take up councelling and help people.  

"You'll know where to find us when you need us" they had said to me.

Thank you for reading my navel-gazing ramblings. I know it's all a bit freaky and Shirley Mc Clain but I just can't help questioning stuff these days. Maybe it's a phase that I will pass through. Anyway I think it's always better to think too much than too little! !
Oct 1st

The Mayonnaise Jar

By Kenty
(Received this in an email today - thought I would share)

The Mayonnaise Jar

When things in your life seem,  almost too much to handle,
When 24 Hours in a day is not enough,
Remember the mayonnaise jar and 2 cups of coffee.

A professor stood before his philosophy class

And had some items in front of him.
When the class began, wordlessly,
He picked up a very large and empty mayonnaise jar
and proceeded to fill it with golf balls.

He then asked the students, if the jar was full.
They agreed that it was.

The professor then picked up a box of small pebbles and poured
them into the jar.   He shook the jar lightly.
The pebbles rolled into the open Areas between the golf balls.

He then asked the students again if the jar was full.  They agreed it was.

The professor next picked up a box of sand and poured it into the jar.
Of course, the sand filled up everything else.
He asked once more if the jar was full. The students responded with a unanimous 'yes.'

The professor then produced  two cups of coffee from under the table and poured the entire contents  into the jar, effectively filling the empty space between the sand.  The students laughed.

'Now,' said the professor,   as the laughter subsided,
'I want you to recognize that this jar represents your life.
The golf balls are the important things - family,
children, health, Friends, and Favourite passions -
things that if everything else was lost and only they remained, your life would still be full.

The pebbles are the other things that matter like your job, house, and car.

The sand is everything else --The small stuff.

'If you put the sand into the jar first,'  He continued,
'there is no room for the pebbles or the golf balls.
The same goes for life.

If you spend all your time and energy on the small stuff,
You will never have room for the things that are important to you.


Pay attention to the things that are critical to your happiness.
Play with your children.
Take time to get medical checkups.
Take your partner out to dinner.

There will always be time to clean the house and fix the creaking door.

'Take care of the golf balls first --
The things that really matter.
Set your priorities. The rest is just sand.'

One of the students raised her hand and inquired what the coffee represented.

The professor smiled.
'I'm glad you asked'.

It just goes to show you that no matter how full your life  may seem,
there's always room for a couple of cups of coffee with a friend.'

Sep 25th

Work and Play: Life Seems Focused on The Former:

By Meta Tam When Hi Non
The world seems like it's becoming a complex maze of confusion, annoyance and completely lacking in those simple ideas of the world being a strange and wonderous place, still to be seen and experienced--running across the world until you're out of breath and nothing else matters. The world or the ideas we embrace seem to dictate that you're hopeless if you're not working....the world is about experience and I want to see every last thing it has.

See Peru for all its glory, walk the coast of Franch, see the Great Wall for everything it is, walk the streets of Tokyo, see the little oddities that don't get mentioned and get to see life without a thought of where everything is going.....simply smile and run with it until it finally ends.

But that's idiotic, the world's to complex to let that happen--but I'm going to see the world and wonder what's next regardless of how long it takes.
Sep 21st

Who did it First?

By Meta Tam When Hi Non
A whole world and it seems weird to ask "Who said that was that?" I'm not talking about an invention, TV series or something I saw online and now hunt for desparately to see one glimpse of it again--always save something to your favourites when that happens--I'm talking about the whole "who gave that emotion or action a word to call it by in the first place?"

What person called anger anger? Who thought love made a good word for it? How does someone not get the credit for coming up with the word? Where does it happen for a word to come into existent?

A few question I'm unlikely to get a real answer to in my lifetime and in anyone elses, unless there's some kind of cult keeping track of the words and it's just been a well kept secret. Maybe you'll go crazy if you know how it came to be? Maybe ninja kitten hold the secrets? Or maybe I'm twitching at the one and people are taking a huge step to the right cartoon style?

Who knows, but in this day and age Urban Dicionary acts as a keeper of words to come from the minds of many or The Meaning Liff--perfectly surreal logic. Surrealist logic makes sense when you're willing to look at it and think "I get it".