Take This One to Heart!

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vision

When I was fourteen growing up on a council estate, attending a very second rate school, the only career opportunities I’d heard of were factory work, shop assistant or office (the highest possible goal being to marry the boss!) I felt inside there was more, much more to life. My father then loosing his job meant leaving school without even GCSE level qualifications. (Think without a High School diploma for US folks).

Yet I was later to not only gain a Fine Arts degree and study post grad, but I became a teacher, traveled the world and even helped found a school! I sometimes have to remind my kids (who tend to have upper middle class aspirations) that I was born poor hence my social viewpoint is very different.

None of the kids I grew up with ever reached higher than shop or office. Not that there’s anything wrong with that, but I do wonder sometimes how much untapped potential there was wasted because some were way smarter than me.

What made the difference was vision. I dared to get a job in downtown London. I mixed with a different crowd and slowly became aware of my options.I owe so much to the many folks that helped me along the way, taught me how to tap resources and had faith in me.

Always shoot for the stars!

Age and Simplicity.

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As I get older I find I need to pace myself, I see so many needs in the world around me I always want to do more, yet now my kids are grown and flown the nest I find different limitations. My body kicks in and reminds me that whereas I may feel 21 in spirit I’m expecting a bit much of it after 63 years of pretty intense wear and tear. One useful thing I’ve learned is to take time to “aim straight” if you have less energy to call on you have to make it count!

As a long term teacher I found the key was always to digest the material myself first and bring it down to the simplest terms. To teach concept rather than method (grasp the concept and the rest will follow.)

I’ve found  that in my life too “truths” are always simple. As the modern world gets increasingly complex simple truths (like you reap what you sow, money can’t buy real love etc.) can tend to get buried under mounds of in put both good and bad.

I feel a need to search them out again from time to time, dust them off and put them again in a place of prominence. I wonder for this generation will they be able to find and discern the real gems of life amidst so much overwhelming intellectual and media debris? I hope so for they make such difference to the quality of life.

The 60’s (Both of Them!)

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hippies
The 60’s brought cataclysmic changes into my life. It was the time I ceased to try vainly to adhere to the “norms” to conform to be accepted, and began to live the life of that strange and wonderful person – myself. It spanned from my first grown up movie (the Beatles “hard Day’s Night”) watched with my mum as I was too young to go alone, to my entering into the fabulous new world of fine art and college degrees.
It entailed much smashing of stereotyped barriers (poor girls from council estates didn’t do that stuff) discovering and exploring whole new worlds of endless breathtaking vision formerly concealed from my eyes. It was a time of freedom, adventure, learning, and above all discovering others like myself.

Now all of that is long, long ago. I have entered another kind of “60’s” a time when my “batteries” don’t recharge like they used to, when even in retirement I have to pace myself. Once again the questions come. How do I want to invest the time remaining to me here?
Wild adventures no longer have the same appeal, besides I’ve done that. Yet, though my body has aged (and frequently reminds me of my limitations), my heart and spirit remain the same, looking for new challenges, new creations, wanting to wring the best from each day, to learn, to explore, to interact.
This is a new time of re evaluation, another new beginning.

The 60’s (Both of Them!)
The 60’s brought cataclysmic changes into my life. It was the time I ceased to try vainly to adhere to the “norms” to conform to be accepted, and began to live the life of that strange and wonderful person – myself. It spanned from my first grown up movie (the Beatles “hard Day’s Night”) watched with my mum as I was too young to go alone, to my entering into the fabulous new world of fine art and college degrees.
It entailed much smashing of stereotyped barriers (poor girls from council estates didn’t do that stuff) discovering and exploring whole new worlds of endless breathtaking vision formerly concealed from my eyes. It was a time of freedom, adventure, learning, and above all discovering others like myself.

Now all of that is long, long ago. I have entered another kind of “60’s” a time when my “batteries” don’t recharge like they used to, when even in retirement I have to pace myself. Once again the questions come. How do I want to invest the time remaining to me here?
Wild adventures no longer have the same appeal, besides I’ve done that. Yet, though my body has aged (and frequently reminds me of my limitations), my heart and spirit remain the same, looking for new challenges, new creations, wanting to wring the best from each day, to learn, to explore, to interact.
This is a new time of re evaluation, another new beginning.