Have you ever visited somewhere for the first time and had the overwhelming feeling that you’d been there before?

This happened to me yesterday. I’ve never been to Scotland before, I’ve never considered that I had any connection with Scotland, I don’t even have any long lost blood ties with the place. And yet when I stood inside a half collapsed ring of fairly average looking stones, something in me broke open. I’m a writer, but I have nothing in me to describe what I felt. The closet I can come is that it was like a reunion or a meeting. I had turned up for an appointment that I didn’t even know I had to keep.

And when I went to leave, I couldn’t. And that made no sense either. I didn’t want to go back to that other life. Each time I pulled myself together and tried again to leave, there was just a profound sense of loss. Even now, 20 hours on, I have a longing to go back there that won’t shift and if I’m honest, that scares me a little.

As I get older, it seems the world just keeps on getting stranger.

If there are any explanations out there, or any similar experiences, I’d love to hear them. I have nothing to explain it other than some vague fancy that we may have all been here many times.

This one goes out to all the rule breakers…

A friend of mine cautiously confessed a passion for rummaging through the stacked music archives of charity shops. He hastily added that the trick of it was to buy albums you’d never heard of, but kind of like the look of.

I was still a little hesitant, after all my neighbors had only just replanted their petunias.  What if I were to fork out 50p on a dark and gothic looking CD, only to discover that I had actually purchased a  Dubstep version of the Sound of Music?  He assured me that sure it was a risk, but the potential for a new music experience was huge.

For some reason it made me think about this place. I love reading all your blogs, WordPress is like a having a huge library of original, beautiful and rule breaking art.  And I just want to say thank you guys, all you writers, poets, musicians, artists, please keep doing what you’re doing because you are frigging brilliant.

Also, 1000 tears EP, by Cause for Concern. Found today, wedged between James Morrison and The Wanted.  Never heard of them.  Liked the album cover, love the music.  Who needs Pokemon Go eh?

The problem with ticks

Last Christmas I was given a wall calendar.  Due to what I can only surmise is some kind of Pavlovian response, I immediately stuck it up on my kitchen wall.

In order to add some excitement, I decided to not peek ahead.

And so the year went on.  With each new month revealing a different view of the South Coast.  By March, I was bored.  I decided to use it as a kind of prison style tally.  I would take a moment to review each day, and put a cross or a tick in the bewilderingly small message box provided, depending on how good or bad it had been.

Some days had big fat ticks, some had crosses.

What I began to notice was that the ticks were getting less, and the crosses more.  One month there were only crosses.  By July, I had added a new category of Skull and Crossbones to the review process.

Picaresque West Sussex soon resembled a flotilla of pirate ships.

I decided that the problem was that I liked drawing crosses.  Ticks were so chirpy and fleeting.  One little swipe and they were done.  A cross however, could happily accommodate every mood from mildly annoyed that my socks had been paired inside out, to wanting to rip off someone’s head and ram it in the juicer.  Ticks were dull affairs, crosses could be read in the dark… four months deep.

Once I scrapped ticks I felt a lot happier about my life.

This Christmas I was given another calendar.  July has a view of riders on the South Downs Way.  I’ve taken to drawing stick men in situ.  They are all Postmodernists.