Search This Blog

Tuesday, 27 December 2016

Y stands for Yogi,

Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, (Yogi means great Seer) was a great Seer and travelled the world teaching Transendental meditation.




 'Transendental meditation'.....has been described as both religious and non-religious and mainly rooted in Hinduism. The meditation practice involves the use of a Mantra (especially in Buddhism and Hinduism). It is a word or sound that is believed to have a special spiritual power.

 A personal Mantra is sometimes repeated as an aid to meditation or prayer. 



   Association with the Beatles.


 The Beatles went to study with him in Bangor North Wales, before travelling to Rishikesh in India (1968) to devote themselves fully to his instructions.

 Ringo Starr and his wife Maureen left after ten days, Paul and his girlfriend Jane Asher left after five weeks and John and Cynthia Lennon, George Harrison and Patti Boyd, left sixteen days later . During their stay they were led to believe that the Marahishi Yogi had made unwanted advances to the actress Mia Farrow it is widely believed that instigated their return home, In 1968 the Beatles renounced their association with him.

.

Years later George Harrison accepted that nothing improper had taken place with the actress and gave a benefit concert for him and his Natural Law Party;

 He later apologised for the way the Mararishi Yogi had been treated by saying "We were very young in believing the alleged attack had taken place but it was total 'bull shit'!

 Cynthia Lennon later wrote that she hated leaving on a note of mistrust when the Mararishi Yogi had been so kind to the Beatles.

 Later the Mararishi was asked if he had forgiven the Beatles he answered, "I could never be upset with angels.

Some of the Beatles music inspired by Indian strengths are illustrated in ,

'Across the Universe' which has Indian influence and especially John Lennon chanting "Jai  Guru Deva".

 Then there was 'Within You Witout You' another mystical sounding piece.

 My particular, favourite song  written by George Harrison was 'My sweet Lord' this had hints of Indian chants where George expressed his love for Indian gods.... 'Hare Krishna Guru Brahma.'


RIP. George Harrison. 

I firmly believe that the spiritual guidance of Marahisi Yogi upon George inspired him to write the famous songs  mentioned in the above paragraph.


Wishing you all a peaceful and happy New Year.

My sincere thanks to the ever YOUTHFUL Denise who cleverly devised Abcw and to the Administrator Roger who has read his way through many a fine YARN, along with his deputy leslie who is frequently YRAPT  with interest at the wonderful tales of yore.
 Finally thanks to the team of helpers who YARELY  visit YOUR  sites too!

Best wishes for 2017,
Di,
Abcw team. 

 


Tuesday, 20 December 2016

Xanadu

Kubla Khan  by Samuel Taylor Coleridge.



In Xanadu did Kubla Khan

A stately pleasure -drome decree;

 Where Alph the sacred river ran

 Through caverns measureless to man Down to a sunless sea.

 So twice five miles of  fertile ground 

With walls and towers were girded round; 

 And there were gardens bright with sinuous rills,

 Where blossomed many an incense- bearing tree

 And here were forests ancient as the hills,

 Enfolding sunny spots of greenery.

 But oh! that deep romantic chasm which slanted


 Down the green hill athwart a cedarn cover!

 A savage place! as holy and enchanted

 As e'er beneath a waning moon was haunted


 By woman wailing for her demon - lover! And from this chasm, with ceaseless turmoil seething.

 As if this earth in fast thick pants were breathing,

 A mighty fountain was momently was forced:

 Amid whose swift half-intermitted burst

 Huge fragments vaulted like rebounding hail,

 Or chaffy grain beneath the thresher's flail: 

And mid these dancing dancing rocks at once and ever

 It flung up momently the sacred river 

Five miles meandering with a mazy motion

 Through wood and dale the sacred river ran,



 Then reached the caverns measureless to man, 

And sank in tumult to a lifeless ocean:

 And 'mid this Kubla heard from far,

Ancestral voices prophesying war,

  The shadow of the dome of pleasure

 floated midway on the waves;

 Where was heard the mingled measure

 From the fountain and the caves.

It was the miracle of rare device

  A sunny pleasure-dome within caves of ice!

 A damsel with a dulcimer

 In a vision once I saw;

 It was an Abyssinian maid

 And on her dulcimer she played,



 Singing of Mount Abora,

 Could I revive within me

  Her symphony and song,

 To such a deep delight 'twould win me,

 That with music loud and long,

 I would build that dome in the air,

 That sunny dome! Those caves of ice!

 And all who heard should see them there,

 And all should cry, Beware! Beware!

His flashing eyes, his floating hair!

 Weave a circle round him thrice,

  And close your eyes with holy dread

 For he on honey-dew hath fed,

 And drunk the milk of Paradise.







And so I will say goodbye and wish you all the Seasons Greetings, Merry Christmas one and all.....My thanks to all the team that keep ABCW running particularly Denise Roger Leslie and all Santa's little helpers....
Best wishes,
Di.
ABCW team.


Tuesday, 6 December 2016

V for

Visions of Christmas of Times Gone By. When I think of Christmas my thoughts invariably venture back to my childhood in the 1950's.  

One of my Visions of Christmas takes me back to one Christmas Eve when my brother and I trudged through the snow to sing Christmas carols in ou local church choir. I can always remember the magical atmosphere that enveloped us as we merrily sang 'Ding Dong Merrily on High' and other favourites.


On this particular Christmas when the carol service had finished our dad was waiting at the church door to escort us home because it was snowing heavily, We arrived home to a welcoming  mug of  hot chocolate and delicious warm mince pies, which our elder sister Norma made. (Sadly Norma died at the end of December 2015).

 Then, it was off to bed to sleep and perhaps, dream of the gifts we hoped Father Christmas would bring us.

Visions of Christmas Day brings my brother, me and big sis Norma, sitting in front of a roaring log fire opening our presents, whilst our dear Mama and Aunt May busied themselves in the kitchen preparing the dinner.



Delicious Roast Turkey with all the trimmings for dinner served at 1pm prompt! (That's if Mama and Aunt May hadn't demolished the sherry bottle, there was a lot of laughter emanating from the kitchen)..


 I can Visualize this particular day quite clearly because we both received roller skates and of course couldn't try them out because of the heavy snow, perhaps we should have asked for ice skates!


Vision of my brother and I skating on our roller skates. We had to wait a while before we used them as it was a long snowy winter and indoor roller rinks didn't arrive in our town until the 60's.

I hope you enjoyed my childhood 'VISIONS' !

Thanks to Denise who initially had the VISION to create ABCW and to Roger our Valourous administrator together with Leslie his well Versed assistant.
Finally many thanks to the team of helpers who
pay weekly Visits to abcw memes.


Tuesday, 1 November 2016

Q for

A little silliness using  the letter Q that I have hastily put together, having just returned from holiday.

Questions.  Do Querulous Quabs Quack and if they do would they drive you Quackers ? 

Q was a Quince that hung upon a garden tree;

 Papa, he brought it with him home And ate it with his tea. (Edward Lear). The quince.

 Quince, is generally grown in central and southern Europe and Asia. Also parts of the US, including Portsmouth, New Hampshire and Newbury, Massachusetts.

 Round about 1275 Edward 1 had Quince planted at the Tower of London, 
They have a tough outer skin which makes it difficult to peel so are better- baked whole.
 They can be used in jellies and jams, and are delicious served with roasted ham and cheese.


Quartz a favorite gemstone.























Why does the QUAIL have a stumpy little tail ?

  My thanks to Denise the Quintessence of ABCW,  also to Roger for doing what he does, Quietly, along with the help of  Quick-witted Leslie.

 Finally not forgetting the helpers who happily take their Quota of 'visits' with good grace.

 Best wishes, Di.abcw team.

 

abcw team.



 

Tuesday, 4 October 2016

M for Manx .The Isle of Man.

Map of the Isle of Man.

In the middle of the Irish Sea between England and Eire (Island) is a beautiful verdant Island called The Isle of Man; people born on the Island are known as 'Manxmen/woman'. The island is 52kilometers long and 22 kilometres wide; with an area of 572 square kilometers. At the last census, there were approximately 30,000 residents, about 2000 of them claimed to be able to speak or have a sound knowledge of the Manx language.
The Isle of Man Ferry from Liverpool.

To get to the Island from Liverpool England, it is 2hours by high-speed ferry or flying from Liverpool John Lennon Airport which takes about 40 minutes.

The Manx flag bears The Legs of  Mann, the official flag since 1932. The three are known in Manx as 'ny tree cassyn (the three legs). The triskelion is an ancient symbol used by the Mycenaeans and the Lycians. The Islanders have their own parliament known as the House of  Keys which is based at a place called Tynwald Hill.


 The Isle of Man famed for the wonderful kippers they produce . There is an abundance of herrings in the seas around the island and for centuries they have been fished out of the emerald green waters and taken to the smoke houses and then to be smoked and turned into kippers.

 

The delicious silver herring .Herrings don't have to be smoked, the Scottish people are fond of them coated in oatmeal and sauteed  in butter, I like this too but there's nothing as good as a MANX kipper. 



Kippers are Herrings that are split and cleaned then put on poles in a smoke house then gently smoked over wood chippings and a special ingredient, that is a strictly kept secret amongst the smoke house people.


Delicious grilled Kipper....Yum Yum !

There is so much more to write about this delightful island but sadly time eludes me so I shall write more in another thrilling instalment whenever i have the opportunity.

My thanks to Denise who MAGICALLY devised ABCW, also to Roger who MANAGES to what he does with such MAGNITUDE ably assisted by Leslie and the rest of the team who METHODICALLY help with visiting and commenting on other sites.
Best wishes,
Di,
ABCW team.
 



Wednesday, 28 September 2016

L for LOVE

I have been in 'Love' so many times (or so I thought) that a friend of mine told me that 'I wore my heart on my sleeve'. She was probably right although, I didn't agree with her at the time! My first teenage love was a boy called Tony, we used to meet most nights and ride our bikes around the neighbourhood, generally Laughing and doing the things teenagers did in the sixties. Sadly my parents and his totally disapproved of this romance because we were of different religions. I was Church of England and he was Roman Catholic, the more they protested the more determined I was to see him.


Boy Soldier who went on to become Regimental Sergeant Major

  One day, we were sitting by the lake in a local park, my beau turned to me and told me he loved me and wanted to marry me but also, that day, he had enlisted in the British Army. He wanted to build a career by going through the ranks and hopefully, gain a commission. Then, when the time came we would marry and I would become an army wife. I didn't think  much about marriage then as I was too young, aged 14 and still at school. He asked me if I would wait for him and of course, I said yes, so off he went to training camp which was based in Germany. He came home on leave and I felt very proud of him, he looked so handsome in his uniform; The  only downside was that his lovely blonde curls had been cut off into a regulation short back and sides.


Sadly, as we both matured it seemed that we had little in common and drifted apart. I started a new career in a major city bank, and he married a girl who was also in the army.

He was based in several places but scarily, was in Northern Ireland, at the time of the IRA uprising;

 I found out that he had been badly injured in a booby trap bomb and sadly for him he was pensioned out of the job he loved so much, serving his Queen and country.He did recover quite well from his injuries and went on to having a successful career helping wounded servicemen into rehabilitation.

 I must say that whenever I see a man in a military uniform my heart flutters a little and my mind wanders back to when I was, 'just a teenager in Love'. 



A poem about Love by the America writer
Mary Angelou;  It's called 'Touched by an Angel'.


We, unaccustomed to courage
excites from delight lives coiled in shells of loneliness
until Love leaves its high holy temple
 and comes into our sight
to liberate us into life

Love arrives
 and in its train comes ecstasies
old memories of pleasure
ancient histories of pleasure
Yet if we are bold Love strikes away the chains of fear
from our souls

We are weaned from our timidity
In the flush of Love's light
We dare be brave
And suddenly we see
that Love costs all we are
and will ever be
Yet it is only Love
Which sets us free.

My sincere thanks to the   Lovely Denise for devising ABCW thus giving so much pleasure to many and also Roger the Lexicographer for doing what he does, ably assisted by Leslie who Lightens the work load.
Finally the band of Lively helpers who assist with the visits and encourage new contributors to keep on writing on ABCW.
Kind regards to all,
Di,
abcw team.

Wednesday, 21 September 2016

K for Rudyard Kipling

Last week, 
 I wrote the introduction for ABCW about the Jungle Book stories written by Rudyard KIPLING the English writer and poet,
I thought it only fitting that I should to tell you a  little more about him.
One of his most poignant writings was called ......


RUDYARD KIPLING as a young man in India.

      .... ....IF.......

If you can keep your head when all about you
are losing theirs and blaming it on you,
If you can trust yourself when others doubt you,
But make allowances for their doubting too;
If you can wait and not be tired of waiting,
Or being lied about, don't deal  in lies-
Or being hated, don't give way to hating,
And yet don't look too good, nor talk too wise;

If you can dream-and not make dreams your master;
If you can think-and not make thoughts your aim;
If you can meet with triumph and disaster
And treat those two imposters just the same
If you can bear to hear the truth you've spoken
Twisted by knaves to make a trap for fools,
Or watch the things you gave your life to broken,
And stoop and build 'em up with worn out tools:

If you can make one heap of all your winning
Ans risk it all on one turn of pitch-and-toss,
- And lose, and start again at your beginnings
And never breath a word against your loss;
If you can force your heart and nerve and sinew
To serve your turn long after they are gone.
And so hold on when there is nothing in you
Except the Will which says to them:  'Hold on!'

If you can talk with crowds and keep your virtue,
Or walk with Kings - nor lose the common touch,
If neither foes nor loving friends can hurt you,
If  all men count with you, but none too much;

If you can fill the unforgiving minute
With sixty seconds' worth distance run -
Yours is the earth and everything that's in it,
And - which is more - 
You'll be a man my son !

Lieutenant John Kipling British Army  Regiment of The Irish Guards.

Ruyard Kipling's beloved son who lost his life in the Battle of Loos Atois In France during World War One; He was just eighteen years of age.

 Kipling was distraught with grief because he introduced his son Jack (John)  to a close friend in the Irish Guards and was accepted into the regiment at Kipling's request.  Jack had already been turned down by the Royal Air Corps and the Royal Navy because he had such poor eye sight and desperately wanted to serve his king and country.

Insignia of the Royal Irish Guards which would be worn on the sleeve.

After his son's death Rudyard KIPLING wrote,


"If any should question why we died, tell them, 

 because our fathers' lied" !


As we complete the penultimate round of abcw, I  hope to write more about RUDYARD KIPLING, his amazing works and life.

My sincere thanks to the KINDLY Denise the founder of   abcw, also to Roger our most KNOWLEDGEABLE Admin. Man. Also to The Pedalogue Leslie who is blessed with the 'KNOWHOW' to support Roger and his team of helpers who KNUCKLEDOWN each week and visit others by  reading and encouraging their 'contributions to ABCW.
Best wishes,
Di,
ABCW team.



Wednesday, 7 September 2016

I means ' In all Honesty'.

Propositions by Stephen Dunn.

Anyone who begins a sentence with  "In all honesty"........ Is about to tell a lie. Anyone who says "This is how I feel" had better love form more than disclosure.

 Same for anyone who thinks he thinks well because he had a thought.


Rodin.....The Thinker.

If you say "You're ugly to an ugly" to an ugly person-no credit for honesty, which always must be a discovery, an act that qualifies as an achievement. If you persist you're just a cruel bastard, a pig without a mirror.



Somebody who hasn't examined himself  enough.

 A hesitation hints at an attempt to be honest, suggests a difficulty is present.

A good sentence needs a clause or two, interruptions, set off by commas,

 evidence of a slowing down, a rethinking.

Before I asked my wife to marry me, I told her I'd never be fully honest.  "No one she said, had said that to her"

' I was trying to be radically honest', I said, but in fact had another motive.

 A claim without a 'but' in it is,  at best, only half true.


IN ALL HONESTY,  I was asking in advance , to be forgiven.

I really enjoyed this  INTERESTING piece of work and I do hope, You do too!

My sincere thanks to DENISE for creating ABCW and to  ROGER ably assisted by Leslie in the smooth running of this meme. Also many thanks to the team of assistants who help with the visits.

 Best wishes Di,ABCW team.










 





Tuesday, 30 August 2016

H stands for HUMPTY DUMPTY

HUMPTY DUMPTY.......sat on a wall,

  Humpty Dumpy had a great fall,

  All the king's horses and all the kings men,

All the kings horses and all the kings men.

 couldn't put HUMPTY together again.  







HUMPTY DUMPTY ......

Is really a character and literary allusion,

  He has appeared,  or been referred to  in many works, including Lewis Carroll's 'Through the Looking Glass'.

  He is typically portrayed as an 'anthropomorphic' egg.


(Anthropomorphic:  Having human characteristics or ascribing human characteristics to nonhuman things.)


In 1996 the Colchester Tourist  Board's website revealed, after years of research that  HUMPTY DUMPTY  was in fact a giant cannon which was colloquially known as HUMPTY DUMPTY.



Colchester Castle.
town centre.

Colchester was a walled town with a castle and several churches and was protected by a city wall.

HUMPTY DUMPTY  (the giant cannon) was strategically placed on the wall to protect the town from the enemy. However a shot from a Parliamentary cannon succeeded in damaging the wall beneath HUMPTY DUMPTY,  causing the cannon to tumble to the ground.

The Royalists or Cavaliers ("All the King's Men") couldn't put HUMPTY together again.

The story goes that attempts to raise the giant cannon again proved impossible.


HEARTFELT thanks to Denise for devising ABCW, to Roger our HARD working administrator, Also to Leslie, who with many others, HUGELY HELP the smooth running of ABCW meme.
Best wishes to all,
 Di.
ABCW team, xxx.

 


Tuesday, 9 August 2016

E-for Equestrian.

I love horses and all that is involved in the Equine world.

 I have been sitting in my favourite reclining chair just wracking my brains for a suitable subject, then...... Lo and behold.... Before my very eyes....on TV the coverage of the Equestrian Events in the 2016 Olympics Games.......Inspiration at last!

One of the British entrants competing in the dressage section.
Horses have been used through the ages for many purposes. When I was a child we used to have our freshly baked bread delivered daily by a large covered cart drawn by a huge shire horse called Bob we used to give him a large juicy apple off one of our Grandpa's trees. When the Cart horse had finished his deliveries Grandpa would diligently follow in the horse's big clodding shoe steps and shovel the loads of steaming horse manure into a bucket, he then would spread it around the garden on his various fruit and vegetable plants and particularly on his prize winning rhubarb. Needless to say my brother and I would not eat the lovely rhubarb pies our granny used to produce.

Shire Horse similar to Bob the Bread Horse.

In the UK we have many Police Horses that are used in crowd control at sporting events and protecting and escorting Royalty etc. Our Equine friends are also used in many sports including the most famous of all Horse Races; Where I live the world famous Grand National is staged annually at the Aintree Race Course.

 The famous horse called Red Rum who was from Liverpool and was trained on the wonderful beaches going from Liverpool up to the Lancashire seaside. 

               Red Rum won the Grand National three times.



Red Rum cantering along Formby Beach, during his daily training




Red Rum's Grave at Aintree Race Course.



My sincere thanks to the Enchanting Denise who devised ABCW, also to the administrator Roger who in his Endearing way, has Encouraged us all, and along with help from Leslie whose Erudition has helped Each one of us to keep contributing to this Excellent and most interesting Blog site.  Last, but not least the team of helpers who work with Exactitude in helping  with the visits to other sites.

Best wishes,
Di.
ABCW team.















Tuesday, 12 July 2016

A stands for Abou Ben Adhem,

Abou Ben Adhem ( may his tribe increase)!

Awoke one night from a deep dream of Peace,  And saw within the moonlight in his room,

 Making it rich, like a lily in bloom,


 An Angel writing in a book of gold:-

 Exceeding peace had made  Ben Adhem bold,

 And to the presence in the room he said,

 'What writest thou'?:- The vision raised it's head,

 And with a look made of all sweet accord,

 Answered,'The names of those who love the lord.'

 And is mine one?' said Abou. 'Nay not so,' 

Replied the Angel. Abou spoke more low,

 But cheerily still; and said, 'I pray thee, then,

 Write me as one who loves his fellow men.'

 The Angel wrote , and vanished. 


 The next night,

 It came again with a great wakening light,

 And showed the names whom love of God had blest,  And lo!

 Ben Adhem's name led all the rest.


ABOU BEN ADHEM was a Muslim mystic  (Suffi) from Persia and was venerated as a saint, his father was a prince of Khurasan. One day when ABOU BEN ADHEM was out hunting with his favourite horse and dog,     they were in hot pursuit of a hare, he heard the voice of an unseen speaker . I felt dread and stopped, then I began again and urged my horse on.          Three times it happened....... Then, I heard the voice again,

                                    It was the voice of God saying,

 "It was not for this thou was created,

 It is not for this thou was commanded to do"

 I felt dread, stopped then began again and urged my trusty steed on. Three time it happened, eventually I dismounted, as I did I encountered on of my Father's shepherds.

 I took from him his woollen tunic and put it on and gave him my mare and all that I had with me in exchange.

It was then I turned my steps towards Mecca!


My sincere thanks to the AMAZING Denise for devising this AWESOME site, also to the AMIABLE Roger along with his ADVENTUROUS ASSISTANT Leslie who deal with the Admin. (No mean task!) Last but not least the team of helpers who visit around the ARDENT ABCwednesdayers!

Best wishes,
Di.
ABCW team.






 

Tuesday, 28 June 2016

Y stands for ?

Ya Boo !

 Can You believe it ? I've wracked my brain and thought and thought, then Yawned and Yawned, Yet, I still can't think of a suitable subject starting with the letter Y ..... I thought of the lovely poem, 

 Lochinvar by Sir Walter Scott which I learned to recite, when I was quite Young.....Having checked, it seems that ballad is eight verses long, on reflection I really can't believe that I actually learned and recited all eight verses.



Lochinvar.

 Lo! Young Lochinvar is come out of the West.

 Through all the wide border his steed was the best.

 And save his good broadsword he weapons had none.

He rode all unarmed and he rode alone.

 So faithful in love and so dauntless in war.

 There never was a knight like Young Lochinvar.


As the poem is rather long I shall give you a short synopsis of this delightful prose.

Lochinvar was a gallant young knight who had asked for the hand in marriage of the Fair Ellen. Her father, however, disapproved of Young Lochinvar and refused. In the meantime Ellen was betrothed to another, when Young Lochinvar heard of this, he left the field of battle to save his beloved Ellen. 


Sadly, when he arrived at her home she was already married . Being a noble Knight he asked her to dance with him, then, when the opportunity arose,  he took her up into his arms, swept her up onto his trusty steed and rode off into the night. 



         

Should you wish to read all of  this delightful prose by  Sir Walter Scott. (and I hope you do) please just google it. It is fiction but loosely based on fact during the time of a famous battle in Scotland.

Thanks to our ever Youthful Denise for devising ABCW and Roger the XYZ guy who puts so much into the running of this Yum Yum meme.... I love it .

Best wishes to all  our ABCW  friends,
 new and present..
Di xx

 

Shaky and Silver Linings.