Post-Christmas, it's been chilly in England and Dude & I have made the most of it, exploring the winter wonderland of the Rec and Mounts. Last weekend, he was thrilled to discover that some of the puddles there had frozen over and he had a fine old time, walking on the ice and breaking bits of it up with a stick. I remember doing the same thing when I was a kid but this time - not wanting to slip on the ice (blimey, how old am I?) - I stood off to the side, watching him and it was great to vicariously enjoy his delight.
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As regular readers of this blog will know, I value my friendships. This week, there was a programme on BBC Radio 2 that featured Sir Roger Moore (one of my all-time heroes, as if you needed reminding) and I was touched by the fact that several people contacted me to let me know.
Equally heartening was the picture my friend Gard Goldsmith posted to Facebook, featuring himself pointing at a box of Mark West wine (yep, it's a real thing).
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I got an email this week from an editor, inviting me to appear in a themed anthology he was putting together. That's always a very nice thing to have happen and, since I intend to do a lot more writing this year than I did last year, I chose my element of the theme, thanked him profusely and then thought 'oh bugger, what if I can't think of a story?'
Almost as soon as I thought that, I got an initial image that steadily grew during the day and when I went out for my evening walk - bundled up against the cold, Jarre pounding through my headphones - the whole thing slotted together nicely over the 3 miles. It's always lovely when that happens (I wish it did more often, truth be told), let's hope it translates to the page as well.
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"Drive" continues to pick up good notices and mentions in Year End Reviews, which makes me very happy indeed. I'm keeping the section in My Creative Year post updated with the news.