Thursday, 27 August 2015

Are you rooting for Redheads?

Redhead King and Queen 2015

(Photo courtesy of Redhead Convention website)

As a fun loving, grown up redhead, I was fascinated this week to read about the Redhead Convention. ‘A wacky festival of ginger loving madness’, Crosshaven, County Cork, Ireland.  It’s a relatively new Convention created initially to celebrate the joys of being redheaded. It began as a creative and fun way to celebrate the birthday of … you’ve guessed it … a redhead! 

Over the years redheads have had a tough time due to their hair colouring. Somehow the colour attracted wisecrack comments and occasionally thoughtless and insensitive comments, ‘Ginger’, ‘Rusty’ and ‘Carrot top’, to mention a few.  Of course, as a child such names were unwelcome and uncool.

As a teenager, I hated red hair.  I simply wanted to blend in with the brunettes and the blondes.  I didn’t want to be different.   Thankfully my red head was less carrot colour and more auburn hue. My cousin painfully endured a bright, curly mop of carrot coloured hair, much to his dismay.  It just wasn’t cool in the 70s even when perms became the fashion.  Blondes may have had more fun … but redheads didn’t.  Invariably redheads were easily identified when bunking off school! Redheads were so much easier to spot and identify especially when up to no good.

I’d moan about red hair.  I recall my poor grandmother trying to comfort me by saying that when I grew up I would enjoy and appreciate my beautiful, long flowing locks of red. She recounted tales about the wonderful Maureen O'Hara (of The Quiet Man with John Wayne fame) and how her beautiful mane of red hair caught the attention of the Hollywood screen.  But I was no Maureen O'Hara despite my love of theatre and Irish dancing.

As the years passed I did grow to like my red hair … the long flowing locks are shorter and easier to manage now.  I’ve learned to embrace the ‘redhead difference’ and what it brings.  I’ve read that Maureen O'Hara celebrated her 95th birthday this month.  She continues to sport a mop of red hair.  I wonder if she knows about the Redhead Convention? 

It might be fun to get together and attend next year’s Redhead Convention in Co Cork, Ireland.  If you’re a redhead, note the date in your diary - August 2016. Sounds like a great opportunity for us redheads to get together and celebrate.  Perhaps we’ll see you there?

Maire Rua 

Tuesday, 26 May 2015

Need an element of fun?

photo courtesy of Tess at Magpie Tales

Psst … she’s 'ere


Her, wi’ the hat, the big bag and the brolly.

If she thinks for one minute, I’ll be skipping along the rooftops of London and singing about flying kites and stuff, she’s got another think coming.

Ah don’t be a spoilsport; it will be great fun on a Friday evening.

You know I’m scared of heights.

But she will take care of us.  She can do magic you know.

Dunno, don’t you think we’re past the babysitting stage?

We can pretend she’s our daft auntie.

A daft auntie’s voice croons from the front hall. ‘Supercalifragilistic …’

- I’m out of here!

Wait for me bruv!

Tuesday, 14 April 2015

How do you develop your Creative Self?

picture courtesy of TheGreenDragonfly

I’m in creative mode at the moment, not really sure why.  It could be the longer days, the sunshine, and little pots of colour in my garden.  It could be the sowing of seeds for the allotment.  I love this time of year. Everywhere looks fresher and brighter.   Perhaps it’s the rose-tinted spectacles I’m wearing or the sunshine lighting up the garden?  It’s good to take stock now and again and that’s what I have been doing. I love having my desk where I can look out into the garden, although it can be a distraction too. 

Earlier today I’ve been interrupted by the activity of Mr. & Mrs. Blackbird helping themselves to an endless supply of worms from my garden. Lovely to see them back again and I wonder if they will produce another family like last year’s little brood.  The activity of the blackbird chicks kept me entertained for ages … didn’t get a lot of work done, but they made me laugh lots at their antics. 

In January,  I committed to developing my Creative Self, you know that part within you that cries, I wish I could do that!’ I’m in awe of ‘crafty people’, that is, people who can bake, sew and do wondrous things with needles and threads.  Some of them have a gift for creating fashionable pieces and making things that can actually be worn and admired in public … but not me! In the dark and distant past there lurks aborted sewing projects from Mrs. P’s domestic science class at a certain school in Ireland. I’ve heard the school is no longer there and I do wonder what became of an unfinished seersucker fabric nightdress?  Probably buried under the rubble when the school was demolished for houses.

So this week I’m off to partake in a crochet workshop organised by my talented friend Joanna.  I hope to learn more about the art of crochet – one needle and a ball of wool.  How hard can that be?  Very therapeutic, I’m told.  Good fun and homemade shortbread guaranteed. I’m conjuring up some great images of fashionable pieces by me. Could that be those rose-tinted specs again?

Sunday, 29 March 2015

It never pours but it rains

Him: It always rains in Manchester.

Her: Always?

Him: Well nearly always.  Could be worse I suppose.

Her: How worse?

Him: Snow - take a look at those hailstones over there!

Her: You've had too much to drink this evening ...

(Thanks to Tess at Magpie Tales, this picture reminded me of student days in Manchester many years ago! Happy days.)

Saturday, 14 February 2015

Love is ...

Stopping for coffee in different places can prompt all sorts of creative writing. 

Rose Lane
The confetti bride,
Stood in silent wonder,
Contemplating a life,
Her life, her story,
Her time.
Her chance,
Maybe her last chance?
Of love with the man she abandoned
Forty years ago.
Scared now, like then,
Excited now, like then.
Salvaging the regret
Of impulsive youth,
A love
Held within a broken heart
For forty years!
In the garden centre
They meet again
Next to the cherry blossom
The last bloom
Of the season.

Happy St Valentine's Day. 

Wednesday, 11 February 2015

Stairway to heaven ...

picture courtesy of Magpie Tales creative writing group

The domestic goddess has many chores,
Washing, cooking and vacuuming floors.
Cherubs and kittens, playful and sweet,
But today they're getting
Under her feet!
There's clouds to fluff and harps to shine,
A coffee break?
 Not a chance this time!
Must be ready,
Can't be late,
Oh no, 
Already a queue at the pearly gate!

Sunday, 25 January 2015

Dance like nobody’s watching …

They danced
  One, two, three, one two, three
Swaying to the rhythm,
Singing with the radio,
Moving with the melody,
Holding each other tightly,
They danced as one,
Oblivious to all,
Even me,
Mesmerising each other,
They danced
On the dull patterned linoleum,
And in love.

Sunday, 11 January 2015

Two suitcases high

picture provided by Magpie Tales

Happy New Year Everyone.  My first Magpie write of 2015!

There she goes again
A high-pitched scream
From the drama queen.
Shrieking and shouting
Like she is about to be
Mauled by a wild, ferocious tiger,
Or a crazed and demented crocodile
That has slithered across the polished floor.
Two suitcases high,
But not out of my reach,
The shriek pitch heightens to raise the alarm,
But no one hears, except me.
Her cries echo into the night.
Yet no-one comes to her rescue.
Tee hee,
What presence I have,
What power I hold
As a mere little mouse about the house!