favourite coffee mugs

I drink a lot of hot drinks throughout the day, coffee and herbal teas mostly. I have a wide variety of mugs I like to use, and a couple of strange rules have arisen. First, most of my mugs are strictly divided into coffee or tea mugs. There’s no cross-contamination between the two. There is…

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brilliant

It’s the end of St. Patrick’s Day in Ireland, a day of celebrations and parades all over the country. It’s turning into a fun holiday, far from the pitiful parades of yore, which involved tractors with ghetto-blasters strapped to their sides blaring out The Clancy Brothers, dingy floats advertising the local supermarket, shivering school bands…

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memories of Japan

In the autumn of 2007 Martin and I travelled to Japan. It was a country both of us always wanted to visit, and it was a memorable trip. My favourite part was our short seclusion in the Buddhist village of Kôyasan, which is located high in the mountains south of Osaka. It was founded twelve…

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atwood interview

There’s a very interesting interview from yesterday’s BBC Radio 4’s Women’s Hour with Margaret Atwood about her seminal text, The Handmaid’s Tale, which is twenty-five years in print this year. In the past Atwood has dismayed those of us who enjoy genre writing by trying to disassociate herself from science fiction, but thankfully when the…

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cook knit sew

My mother recently gave me a small time capsule of items from when I was a kid, including this book Cooking, Knitting and Sewing For Girls. Oh, the memories! I went through a classic Irish convent education, which meant I was in an all-girl environment and taught by nuns and non-religious teachers. In primary school…

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Huguenot memories

Yesterday I posted images to my Flickr photo stream of my recent trip in Dublin. All of them were taken with the camera in my mobile phone (a Sony Xperia X10 mini – an Android smartphone). Looking through them I thought about my time living in Dublin, and the photographs I took using my first…

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Soho Ghost finalist

I can now mention that my photograph, entitled “Soho Ghost”, is a top ten finalist in the Cities of Night contest, being run by ChiZine Publications. The contest was created to celebrate the release of Philip Nutman’s short story collection Cities of Night, and the brief was to supply a subtle, creepy, evocative photo of…

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