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Life with Lavendar in London town

Friday, 24 June 2016

Goodbye To All That

Since the results of Brexit have come through with 51.9% of the UK voting to leave the EU, I feel that the terra firm upon which I stood so recently is rapidly disintegrating beneath me. I am on unstable territory.

My frame of reference. The place I call home. The axis against which I based my choices on where in the world to live has irrevocably tipped over. For good. And I know I am not the only one to feel this way.

In the months leading up to the Brexit referendum, the sensationalist scare tactics used by both the Remain and Leave parties left me cold. However I was in no doubt that I would vote in. To leave the EU, an alliance which I regard as having immeasurably more benefits than disadvantages for the world at large, seemed to be sheer stupidity.

When the polls called it a neck and neck race, I think most did not really believe we would ever leave the EU. Or maybe that was just me. With my head in the sand. In a state of denial.

After all, why would a UK citizen vote for insularity over cosmopolitanism. Competition over alliance. Borders up rather than bridges built. Why would someone think it is stronger to stand alone rather than together?


Nationalism is a dangerous tool to wield in a world which needs to work together. Our generation is a global one and the technological access we have cuts down borders of geography, distance and time. None of us are isolated from one another if we choose not to be and if we have the access to technology. It is political artifice to create a golden vision of insularity and sell it as strength.

It is a lie.

Which is common enough in politics but this lie is one that British citizens will be suffering the consequences of for generations to come.

And me. All the reasons I love living in London are to be tested. The feeling of being a part of the world at large. The freedom of access. The inclusivity, diversity, dynamism and integration are all under threat. It may not be all doom and gloom but at a visceral level, this just feels wrong.

As John Donne wrote in fricken 1624:

No man [sic] is an island entire of itself; every man
is a piece of the continent, a part of the main;
if a clod be washed away by the sea, Europe
is the less, as well as if a promontory were, as
well as any manner of thy friends or of thine
own were; any man's death diminishes me,
because I am involved in mankind.
And therefore never send to know for whom
the bell tolls; it tolls for thee

Will we ever learn?

Tuesday, 14 June 2016

Over and Out

About four years ago, I wrote about a blog post about re-entry into the paid workforce after having had a baby. I did not foresee that the beginning of a part-time working life  (plus baby, plus Masters degree) would mean the end of blogging.

I don't know why I did not see this. Even a blind person would have seen it.

It was a busy four years. I met some truly wonderful people in my workplace. My boss was tops. I went to work beaming most days. Happy and full of bad jokes which I shared with anyone around me.

Then disaster struck! Nine months ago, the project I had been developing with my boss was suspended indefinitely. I had nothing to do. Left with little choice, I applied for an internal vacancy which on paper looked like a great challenge. More responsibility. More money. More days.

When they offered it to me, I felt uneasily relieved. I wasn't happy about spending less time with Dragon but I did welcome a new challenge. It was a trade-off.

A great deal is made of intuition by holistic practitioners and Psychologies magazine.

Follow your gut, they say. Or is it,  Listen to your gut. ?

Regardless, the true answer to all life's mysteries is to be found within your abdomen

During the handover for my new role, my stomach had a lot to say. The primary message seemed to be:


Did I listen?  Did I follow?

No. I did jackshit and instead adopted a Protestant work ethic facade hoping that my stomach was wrong.  That I was just imagining that the new job did not resemble in the slightest what I had hoped it would be.

An oldie, but a goodie

Six months later, I quit.

It wasn't all for nothing. Being in a soul sucking, toxic workplace highlighted to me what I wanted to do. I started writing a book to keep myself sane. And I started writing here again. And many more places. I just started to write.

It was the only way to get my stomach to shut up.