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Good God (or The Devil) is in the detail

My home is in France.  I will reside in the USA until mid-October. My heart breaks for this place.  Of course my heart breaks for France.  It’s my status quo.  That my heart is breaking is hardly surprising.  Here, numerous lives wasted by guns.  In France, just about to lift it’s highest possible security alert after the abominable attacks last year, 84 literally mown down and numerous others injured many left in a life-threatening condition which you can seamlessly translate to ‘if they live they will have a steep slope to climb if they are ever to live a full life again’ in Nice on 14 July.  A bloodbath on 14 July in France, by the way, is akin to a massacre on 4 July in the USA..

And then there are those others.  The copious blood spilled in numerous locations which cannot have escaped your attention, lives exterminated, bagsfull maimed in other places.  None of it is justifiable to a reasonable person let alone a pacifist.  None of it is right to a rationalist let alone an  idealist.  All of it bids to erode my inate and possibly foolish optimism.  But I will not let awful un-lawful acts rule my life.  I will strive to find a way through.

How so?  How on earth? First I must comment that what happened in Nice is in all likelihood not a terrorist attack.  You can play with the semantics, of course and you can tell me that most nutters root back to religion, politics or any combination therein that feeds their sick souls but I don’t count that.  An organisation has taken the most half-hearted responsibility for the 19-tonne truck deliberately barrelling down le Promenade des Anglais just when it was bound to be full of revellers gathered for le Fête Nationale.  They were clearly going  to.  Fear bolsters up their macho resolve, so to claim responsibility is almost inevitable.  Some sort of tenous connection makes us all feel even more scared.  When I was growing up in England it was the IRA – any mention had us quivering in our boots, soiling our knickers and feeling very very insecure.  The world moves on.  Though I must say that I fear that the IRA never really went away.  And the recent British Brexit vote that narrowly resolved to leave the EU (or UE if you are French) will add fuel to that nicely  weakening fire.   So claims are made and responsibility often falsely attributed and we all quake and shake and wonder if we can really really go out of our front door safely and if our babies and their babies and their babies not even thought of are ever EVER going to be safe.

I put two notions to you.

The first is this.  We have become an increasingly tiny planet.  By this I do not mean that the world has physically shrunk from a big fat fully inflated and energetic basketball to a teeny weeny, possibly depressed  ping-pong ball but rather that we know what goes on in every crevice and we feel a part of it where once we did not.  Media and especially social media shout and scream at us even when we sleep – buzzing and bleeping and flashing that something is happening.  I remember Gerry Anderson’s ‘Thunderbirds’ – I remember those puppets being woken by the bleep-bleep of a catastrophe.  And they went out and resolved it.  Solved it.  Made it all right again.  Kept us safe.  Now we all bleep and buzz and ring and weep.  It is not healthy.  We cannot absorb it all.  Leeloo in the 1990s sci-fi film, ‘The Fifth Element’ starring Bruce Willis, of all people, could not absorb it without breaking down with the sheer emotion of it, and she was manufactured to be the savior of humankind – it’s too  bluddy much for one person, one creation, to take in:

The second notion is born of my idealistic nature.  I think that if we can, and do spread love and decency and kindness and tolerance eventually (not in my short life-time), eventually the world will see sense.  I will leave the notion of spilling blood to others.  But I will give you this thought.  This weekend I had a situation that should have ruined my relationship with my husband.  This weekend I was told I was hated by his son, by one of his son’s closest friends.  This weekend I could easily have told my husband I wanted to terminate our relationship because of his closest kin, his spawn. But I didn’t.  I squawked and I cried and I shouted and I threatened but I stayed.  Out of love, I stayed.  I am imperfect.  If I can reach into my vat of love, we all can.  I say this because I am absolutely unperfect.  Blemished and scarred and not at all pure.  So it stands to reason in this tiny brain of mine that we CAN all tolerate if we firstly want to and secondly  put a little thought into the process.  Here’s the thing, we can all be decent just because we want to be decent.  It is absolutely in all our hands and minds and hearts to want to change and to stop being selfishly driven by our own needs and to accept that we are all particular and that none of us is  a better particular, a more worthy particular than any other.

The picture is in response to the Weekly Photo Challenge ‘Detail’ – my title is a bastardisation of the known (‘The devil is in the detail’) and the less known but proper (‘le bon dieu est dans le détails – ‘The Good of God is in the details‘).  With my mish-mush belief system I can take from both and manipulate you as all good terrorists do.  What I will bring to you is the detail of harmony, peace and tolerance – not things that just magically happen but things that require work.  My picture illustrates this through the idea of a diversity of lichens co-existing on a rock.

If this is my rock then let it be known that every religion,whatever colour,  LGBT, men, women, straight and yet to be determined, able bodied, disabled, are welcome,  Don’t rock me and I won’t rock you.  Fact.

DSCF7784

PS:  I find it interesting that ‘The Devil is in the detail’, most notably attributed to 20th Century German Architect Ludwig Mies van der Rohe is the accepted venacular over the original le bon dieu est dans les détails which is attributed to Gustav Flaubert (author of my beloved Madame Bovary) who died twenty years before the turn of that century.   God-Devil.  Good-Bad … personally I think we are better placed attempting to be good ourselves rather than bathing in books and falling back on them when their language will surely fail us so long after they were supposedly penned.

111 Comments Post a comment
  1. Yes, be decent and help people as best we can…but identify and stand up to wickedness whatever form it takes and encourage other decent people to do so too. Too often the wickedness endorsed by the powerful goes unchallenged.

    Liked by 1 person

    July 18, 2016
    • You are absolutely right, Helen – that is a post in itself. We live in a world riddled with greed and corruption. Those that sit at the top of the pile and have the power to change use their power to augment personal their pile. I promise I do challenge, I promise I do shout loud but here I preferred to encourage others to be decent to one another. I value your commentary immensely.

      Liked by 1 person

      July 19, 2016
      • It worries me when the reaction of decent people is to retire into what they increasingly seem to call their ‘bubble’.
        We don’t have the right to do that while innocent people are having not just their ‘bubbles’ but their lives broken asunder.

        Liked by 2 people

        July 19, 2016
      • Damn right. We do have to be accountable – every last one of us and we do need to shout and holler that we are as mad as hell and we are NOT going to take any more. My pacifist remarks come from a bleeding heart and I am not naïve enough to believe that love conquers all simply that by dint of caring we can each start to make a difference. And the first difference is to take the greedy s of serving leaders of the world by the throat and frogmarch them out of power

        Liked by 2 people

        July 19, 2016
      • I’ve never been a pacifist…too long to wait for the wolf to lie down with the lamb….but I agree whole heartedly that we have to begin by caring for each other and supporting each other.

        As for the leaders of the world…oh for the days of the anarchists and their infernal machines when you could get close enough to the brutes to get at them…

        Liked by 1 person

        July 19, 2016
      • And so says all of me!

        Liked by 1 person

        July 19, 2016
  2. That was a post and a half…….You are brave to rant.
    I wrote an unprintable rant, in fact I’ve penned a few unpublished rants over the last month or two re personal pain and mass stupidity.

    And the family “thing” hurt; I’m sure

    I like the lichen analogy

    Liked by 2 people

    July 18, 2016
    • Thank you – occasionally I just let the gut go …. I’m glad you liked it. The unprintable should possibly be made into a book …. lichen is lovely and it seemed to illustrate the point here.

      Liked by 1 person

      July 19, 2016
      • I’m no writer , but mostly I have to say what I feel.Sometimes I can’t help it but say how it is , sometimes I water it down.
        An early follower told me I was guilty of burdening readers with my angst and indulging in OTT melodrama!

        They also said that our house was a dump, should only take a couple of weeks to fix ; and so poky and small they wondered why we bothered? But they were happy to send their building team over to modernise it any time .

        Thye went on to sell their dream home abroad anyway, beacause (1) they couldn’t afford it and (2) they did not seek the appropriate local planning permissions and *****d off the mayor.

        Liked by 1 person

        July 19, 2016
      • Hahaha! How narrow minded and foolish some are ….. You are a highly sensitive person so I imagine that stung like whipcord to the face but guess whose sorry now – I generally dress things less rawly in my words because that’s my way and because at some level it pleases me to be able to clothe and cloak but this one was different. The Brains was skittle horrified actually but realised I needed to vent or explode 😱

        Liked by 1 person

        July 19, 2016
      • Yes, I did wonder if putting that out there might have been a tad too much for your beloved.
        There again, surely it’s better to vent than sit on it.
        I long since decided that (blogwise and otherwise) I can’t please everyone (Lord knows my younger and less battlescarred self tried to ) so if they don’t like it they can go read something else

        Liked by 1 person

        July 19, 2016
      • He took it well and understands better now what I needed to say and was bottling up. I still need to learn to stop trying to please everyone …. My fathers dying wish was that I stopped trying to hard and I’ve been trying (irony intended) to get there ever since …. 13 years, 2 months and 9 days worth so far

        Liked by 1 person

        July 19, 2016
      • TMAI

        Liked by 1 person

        July 19, 2016
  3. You make a good point here, that we can rub along and make do and even go back to the way things were before, on condition that we want to. The people who murder and maim don’t want to rub along or live in peace. The ones like the Nice lorry driver who are just weak-minded, unpleasant individuals with a profound grudge against society, don’t want anything but their moment of glory. The same could probably be said of the child killers of Columbine and god knows how many other shoot ups in the US. The sting in the tail with this one though is that these cretins are being used by the radicals, terrorists, murderers, to provoke a backlash against Muslims in general, as it inevitably will. And when that happens, we’ll have the entire Muslim world baying for blood. I hate this manipulation, of Muslims, of non-Muslim ordinary citizens, by extremists (ISIS and FN sympathizers) who see political opportunity in a blood bath. If we are murdered, it will not be for some worthy cause or even misguided idealism, but because some political groupuscule stands to gain from innocent deaths. I want to find a hole and crawl into it. I’m sick of people and their stupid, bloodthirsty ideas.

    Liked by 2 people

    July 18, 2016
    • I can’t argue a word you say. And for the record I am sick and tired too. I think most rational decent people are. That the Muslim community has become the go-to target absolutely incenses me. But I do believe that we can’t right the wrongs overnight – I’ve marched too many marches, protested loudly too many times to be naïve enough to think that I can right the big fat wrongs. So I feel that petits pas are the only thing I have, we have. And we should use those little steps to move forwards starting with our own back yards.

      Liked by 2 people

      July 19, 2016
      • I prefer to think of them as the Maghreb community. People who define themselves by a religion rather than by who they are as an individual are setting themselves up for group targetting. I really believe that if people would stop pigeon-holing themselves and just take each person as they find them, asking no questions about their private life, we’d have a much more open and understanding society.

        Liked by 1 person

        July 19, 2016
      • Hallelujah and pass the tambourine ….. One of the worst aspects of this so called modern world is its increasing trend to make niches and segregate and it is not being done to sections of the community rather they are doing it to themselves

        Like

        July 19, 2016
      • I’ve never understood the logic behind integration through segregation. How can you expect newcomers to fit into a host society if some well-meaning association jumps on them and invites them to carry on as usual? They think it means talking about other religious festivals at Christmas time, and having class tastings of couscous and peanut sauce. The folklorique aspects of other cultures.

        Liked by 1 person

        July 19, 2016
      • So true and believe me living here a while magnifies the feeling ….

        Like

        July 19, 2016
      • You wouldn’t think there was such a thing as a common or garden human being on the planet.

        Liked by 1 person

        July 19, 2016
  4. Wait. Did I read that correctly? You let a problem with a stepkid get in the way of, in fact nearly end, your marriage? That’s no good. All three of the previous stepkids hated me. When push came to shove, in the form of an ultimatum by two of the kids, Robert pushed back. He was happily married for the first time since their mother died and he was going to stay that way. How they dealt with it was up to them. The current stepkids are letting their still-living mother manipulate them into always being just a little too busy for their dad. We shrug it off. If the kids wise up, we’ll be there. If they don’t, tant pis, have a good life.

    Too many kids live in some sort of fantasyland where, if they just drive off all other contenders, Mom and Dad will get back together. Hey, Mom might even come back from the dead. You never know. Your job, and hubby’s, is to be the adult, make it clear that it’s not going to happen. You — he, really — must make it clear that they can huff and puff but they can’t destroy the new marriage. Love is not enough. In this case you need a husband with enough backbone to stand up to his kids.

    Sorry for the rant. Clearly this has been a big issue for me. But really, “Accepting the New Parent” should be some sort of required class for kids. With half of all marriages ending in divorce, there needs to be an acceptance of this situation, an understanding that this happens, is even likely to happen when they become parents, and should be dealt with fairly and with acceptance of the situation and the parties involved. So there.

    Liked by 3 people

    July 18, 2016
    • Please don’t apologise. This is almost word-perfect the very rant I had when the camel’s back broke yesterday. I’m happy to say my husband echoes everything you say and puts his happiness which is reliant in no small part on our marriage, our love, our life together, first. I have four daughtes all of whom have embraced our marriage. The boy needs to join the fold or but out. He was told this yesterday. There is much more to this but it is not appropriate to give the detail here. I suggest that one day you and I sit down and break bread, clink glasses and swap notes. I have long realised you have experience that I could benefit from and not just as an architect 😉

      Liked by 2 people

      July 19, 2016
      • Absolutely, let’s do that. When you move here, let’s work something out.

        Liked by 1 person

        July 19, 2016
      • I will pm you my email and French numbers – I’m back for 6-9 months from November so there’s something to aim for 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

        July 19, 2016
  5. I agree with much that you have written. I think the mass shootings would stop if the press simply stopped covering them. Columbine started it all and the media frenzy let’s these wanna-be’s think there is glory in their acts of violence. Stop the coverage and take away the glory. As to your other point, the Beatles said it best “All You Need Is Love”.

    Sorry for your rocky weekend.

    Take care

    Liked by 3 people

    July 18, 2016
    • Spot on in every word you say. The media has blood on its hands and should be wholly ashamed. Of course if we stop buying it and take away it’s market that would kill it! The Beatles did say it and we need to listen to that simple truth 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      July 19, 2016
  6. Powerful sentiments, beautifully expressed. I’m sorry your stepson is (perhaps inadvertantly) trying to drive a wedge between you and your husband. I’ve been one of those stepkids and I look back on my behaviour only now and realise it was driven by fear and some jealousy. You are strong and very capable of being “the adult.” I hope things get better for you soon. For the planet, I hope too, but I’m less optimistic. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    July 18, 2016
    • I know being a stepchild is not easy. I have four daughters and I felt it my responsibility to ease them in. The real villain here is the ex. Playing with your children’s lives and emotions is deplorable and the fact that he is thirty years old makes not a jot of difference. In this relationship, he is still the child 🙂

      Liked by 2 people

      July 19, 2016
      • Yes; age doesn’t really make a difference. My siblings and I were in our teens/twenties and really should have known better. I’m fortunate that over time I’ve repaired the relationship – something I’m grateful for now that my parents are quite elderly.

        Liked by 1 person

        July 19, 2016
      • Actually I think it’s harder for older children. My eldest daughter was a baby when her father and I split up and her sisters were aged unborn to 5 when their father and I separated. I have noticed that adolescent and adult children take it far harder in many cases and it makes sense even in the simplest terms.

        Liked by 1 person

        July 19, 2016
      • Yes; I guess that older children are much more used to their parents being a unit. We knew for a long time our mother was unhappy and would leave, so the separation itself wasn’t a problem, and I was very fond of my step-father. It was just my step-mother I had difficulties with. But to be honest, my relationship with my father has never been great. Better now than ever really.

        Liked by 1 person

        July 19, 2016
      • I’m sorry that you had to go through it all and though glad to read that your relationship with your father is improved it is sad that it has never been great. I often wonder whether the statistics for divorce will continue to rise with our children’s generation or whether the fact that you are aware of the pain it causes children, who in the parental relationship are always children, might mean a more considered approach to keeping families afloat. My eldest daughter married last year and her husband also comes from a broken home, my second daughter has lived with her partner, himself the child of a ruptured marriage for 5 years and the younger two have had long and significant relationships with the children of divorced parents …. None of them has so far produced a child. They seem less reckless in some way for which I am both proud and sad.

        Liked by 1 person

        July 19, 2016
      • Thank you. My mother struggled through many unhappy years, waiting for “the children to grow up” before leaving my dad, and in many ways the eventual divorce was a relief for everyone. My Dad is very conventional and very set in his ways; he and I clash over the fact that I simply see the world differently and he struggles to understand that. I haven’t married, but have lived with the same partner for 25 years, and we have one child. His parents are still married — although both have dementia and don’t live in the same place now. I think there was a time when I would have married my partner, but that’s long past. I can’t see the point any more, and I doubt it’s ever really been something he wanted. I think your point about the children of divorce approaching marriage differently is a really interesting one. I guess we’ll have to wait and see.

        Like

        July 19, 2016
  7. Oo that is a lot of thoughts. I do follow the news. I want to know what’s going on. It’s a fine line between keeping up with what’s going on and at the same time not give energy to negative vibes, that would produce more destruction.

    “What I will bring to you is the detail of harmony, peace and tolerance – not things that just magically happen but things that require work.” Great sentence, and a great contribution to the photo challenge.

    Liked by 1 person

    July 18, 2016
  8. Salut ma soeur, I can’t say much, and you understand why. Thank you for writing what I would have if I could have on my own blog.
    There are reports of anger and backlash in France and others feeding off this fire, but it has all got too much for me now. The hatred and the retaliation and the suspicion must stop, and it can only stop with us as individuals. So I am going to take a leaf out of an old book, and turn the other cheek, as the alternative is to take an eye for an eye and that leaves the whole world blind.
    Ma pauvre France suffrit autant en ce moment

    Liked by 1 person

    July 18, 2016
    • France is beaten and entirely un-necessarily. I thought of you as I wrote this, of course. I am glad you feel I spoke for you too. I am not glad that inevitable backlash is happening. It doesn’t help, it can’t help. But perversely I can understand. Helplessness has the power to make anger run amock.

      Like

      July 19, 2016
  9. Ah Osyth, I have run out of things to say about our current situation but I thoroughly agree with your post. I suppose if we lived during World War II we might have had similar feelings? Life will go on and social media will not go away.
    I am very sorry that you heard some immature gossip about your husband’s son. Even if it is true, it might have been a one-off remark from a young man who maybe misses his father? Time and love (and perhaps talking) will hopefully make things change in the future. Hugs Kerry xx

    Liked by 1 person

    July 18, 2016
    • Hello Kerry, my 88 year old mother lived through the Liverpool May blitz and her family lost 3 houses in total, and she told me that some evenings you could ‘see the eyes of the bomber pilots that had come to kill you in their cockpits’, but she told me that people never once thought that it was the end and knew that one day it would end. She says that she does not feel the same about this current situation, she feels as many of us do that we are only at the beginning of something world changing if not ending.
      Paris has not recovered, yes everyone gets up and gets on the metro, they have no choice,
      but inside themselves people no longer feel or indeed have the same freedom,
      Very sad and I as I write there are reports on tv of last night’s axe and knife attack by a DAESH supporter in Germany. I felt anger after Charlie Hebdo, Horror after Bataclan and just deep deep sadness and incomprehension after Nice, and am afraid that if this happens again with tempers already flaring that France could erupt. It has been brewing for years and I have noticed a palpable change over the last 8 years that I have lived there. Maybe akin to Germany before the war And the new rise in Nationalism throughout Europe (look what has just happened in the UK) it is a very delicate situation. The FN had 47% support in the last pole (making them the clear front runner over the other three major parites), when they struggled to have 7% when I moved to France.
      Like I said in my response to Osyth, I don’t agree with fighting violence with violence, you cannot fight an ideal, and the masterminds encouraging these misguided individuals are dangerous, well organised, ‘charismatic’ well funded, gangsters.
      Very sad times, we just have to try to hang on to what is good and ride the storm of what is evil.

      Liked by 2 people

      July 19, 2016
      • Hello Linda
        I hope my response to Osyth’s post did not seem blasé to you. Having lived in Cairo during the second Gulf War and grown up as a minority Catholic in a Protestant city during the IRA’s reign of terror, I truly understand the seriousness of today’s world crisis. If you look at my blog you will see many references to much needed gun reform here in the US, the lack of mental health resources in the community and my experience of living in a Muslim country. I choose the balance the extremes in this world by kindness, volunteering in the most ethnically diverse city in the USA and through blogging (but not Facebook). I grieve for all the innocent victims of terrorism.

        Liked by 2 people

        July 19, 2016
      • Not at all Kerry. I do not live in the US, but agree with you that from an outsider, gun reform does seem a step in the right direction. Ironically a mother and teenage daughter were shot by their husband / father in the UK yesterday who then turned the gun on himself, so where there is intent there will always be a way around it. But I think these occurrences are much less frequent here.
        I agree with your ethos, it was just that I feel (and many others) that these events have a more sinister and far reaching feel than the Irish situation for example, that although horrific (I have knowledge of personal tragedy also from this situation) but there was an achievable goal, if politicians got their act together. But the goal now is just to kill as many ‘infidel’ as possible in whatever was and it is global. France is bearing the brunt atm but as we have seen in Belgium and Germany and on the streets of the UK, Europe is a powder keg. And it continues, I do not know how much news filters through, but a mother and three small daughters’ (youngest aged 8 is fighting for her life) were stabbed while eating breakfast on holiday in a small holiday resort near to Montepellier in the sousth of France, because a Moroccan origin man thought that they were ‘too scantily dressed’.
        I felt very threatened in Paris when working in certain areas, and would never go out with bare arms, even in temperatures in the high 30’s or 40’s, and if wearing a dress it was never above the knee, I would tie up my long blond hair in the most discreet fashion and avoid bright coloured clothes, to blend. You have lived in Cairo, so you know how ‘threatening’ Arab men can be to a white woman – but I was living in a European capital.
        I am off to my mother’s in rural Wales this morning with no wifi, so will check out your blog at the weeekend.

        Liked by 2 people

        July 20, 2016
      • Thank you for your response, Lindy, and I hope you have a serene time with no social media in Wales. I lived there when I first was married. It must feel very threatening in France and most of Europe just now. Most Americans are very scared of the next terror attack but not just from ISIS related crimes.

        Liked by 1 person

        July 20, 2016
      • Exactly – I find America to be a fearful place which is so sad because it is one helluvan amazing country 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

        July 21, 2016
      • Interestingly Kerry, I have just read that there were 211 either failed or completed terror strikes in the EU last year. 103 of which were in the UK (the highest number in any one country) But what is MOST surprising is that 67% of these were in Northern Ireland – so the IRA still outstripping DAESH as our biggest threat!
        These figures are for 2015 – I am sure that France has now gone to ‘top of the leader board’
        151 people were killed in terrorists attacks and 360 seriously injured – all in France in 2015 compared with with 2014 where only 4 people were killed, so the trend is unquestionably rising as over 130 have been killed this year so far.
        I think that there is a lot of ‘jumping on the Bandwagon’ like the guy who ran amok in the nightclub in Orlando.
        On a nicer note – where in Wales did you live? I lived in North wales for 27 years (but was born in Liverpool and am temporarily back there atm)

        Liked by 2 people

        July 21, 2016
      • Hello Lindy. I am truly surprised by Northern Ireland and saddened by all of it. We lived in Flint in a railway cottage on the estuary. Fabulous views.

        Liked by 1 person

        July 23, 2016
      • I came through Flint on the train on Thursday – Yes, these figures have just been reiterated that by far the most foiled terrorists plots last year were in Northern Ireland – chocked me too. I was aware that things over there are not as stable as they have been in recent years (and the prospect of ‘Brexit’ is adding fuel to the fire – but I am still so emotionally raw after this that I cannot discuss it it’s implications.) But I was not expecting to read this. The security forces are doing a grand job, stopping these plots from becoming headline news.
        P.S. How romantic to have lived in a Railway cottage

        Liked by 2 people

        July 24, 2016
      • I am absolutely gobsmacked by this statistic, Lindy. Kerry – I imagine you as Phillys in The Railway Children now (she was always my favourite of them)

        Like

        July 24, 2016
      • Me too I was astounded, but it is true.
        Yes Phyllis – Sally Thomset – just don’t get me started on ‘Daddy my daddy’ or I will be blubbing all day.
        I have just given you a big plug on my latest meagre post – recipe is well worth trying though – easy peasy xx

        Liked by 1 person

        July 24, 2016
      • I’ve just commented …. thank you for the plug – you are very kind indeed but I knew that! I will be trying the recipe (probably for my mum when I trip the light fantastic to England in 10 days – she adores plums as do I) xx

        Liked by 1 person

        July 24, 2016
      • We missed the largest earthquake in recent history in North Wales (1983?) because we lived in a railway cottage and just thought it was another train rattling the house… 🙂

        Liked by 2 people

        July 24, 2016
      • That’s too funny … 😀

        Liked by 1 person

        July 24, 2016
      • Ha ha ha – I was a student nurse in Ysbty Glan Clywd and all the beds (that were chained to the walls) moved in the ward and water on the bedside tables shook.

        Liked by 2 people

        July 24, 2016
    • Kerry, I know how strongly you feel about reforming the gun laws in the US, I know how strongly you feel about countries taking responsibility for those in need of mental health care and indeed how strongly you feel that as a race we need to embrace the reality that mental illness is not something people invite in but rather something that can strike absolutely anyone at all. One in three in fact in the UK and I imagine the statistic is the same in the US. We do need to soldier on, we do need to understand but not be cowed by the growing issue with attacks both large and small. I think you and Lindy will actually find you have a lot in common and I am grateful to you both for airing your views with such eloquence in this place. In terms of my stepson – there is much more to it than I have written. There has been a dreadful rift with his father which has left me determined to try and bring them together – my husband has been very brave but terribly hurt by what has been happening. The young man (and I might add over 30 years old) concerned told me not to bother because my stepson refuses to accept me. I never give up – warty old bags like me are made of sterner stuff and I’m happy to report that in fact I think we do have the very faint beginnings of some future reconcilliation between them. This makes me happy. We are presently at Charles de Gaule waiting for our connecting flight to our local airport in Auvergne. It will be interesting to see what differences I perceive actually being here rather than reading in the same way as I correct my European friends often for their perception of what is happening in the US rather than what I am experiencing actually being there (all be it for a relatively short time). The world needs more like you. The world needs more like Lindy. xx

      Liked by 1 person

      July 20, 2016
      • Hello Osyth. I am so glad I have offended no one. So happy to hear that there is a glimmer of hope in terms of reconciliation. I, too, have been guilty of immaturity with family members when I was older than him – emotions can run high. Have a wonderful time in France reconnecting your soul to the place you love. K x

        Liked by 2 people

        July 20, 2016
      • Thank you lovely Kerry! My favourite quote at the moment (possibly out of desperation) is Sister Julietta of Norwich ‘all shall be well and all shall be well and all manner of thing shall be well’ …. it soothes me muchly as does ma belle France 🙂 xx

        Liked by 1 person

        July 21, 2016
      • That is a lovely quotation. 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

        July 21, 2016
      • It actually does my soul good to remember it and say it out loud xx

        Liked by 1 person

        July 21, 2016
  10. Osyth, this is an amazing post. I like the sentence ‘What I will bring to you is the detail of harmony, peace and tolerance – not things that just magically happen but things that require work.’ You are so right, the good things require work and I think some people just do not want to put the work in. As you know, I for one work everyday to bring harmony, peace and tolerance and all things good to everyone and myself. This is important for all of us to do – and there are many of those that do just that. You and I and others, we will challenge those that are not good and we will win and this world WILL be a better place because of it. You and I and others – that is all it takes to make a better world. Thanks dear, totally enjoyed this post – hugs to you my friend. 😉

    Liked by 2 people

    July 18, 2016
    • Thank you so much Terry. You have nailed it. I get so tired of people proclaiming that they can’t make a difference. We can. We can all make a difference – a tiny one but we are all made of tiny particles and look how amazing a mass of particles can be when put together into a decent person. You are an exemplar or what I am saying and I am so so grateful to be able to call you my friend 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      July 19, 2016
      • Osyth, you are truly a friend to me – I appreciate you and am grateful as well. Happy Day my friend! 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

        July 19, 2016
  11. We do have a lot of work to do , all of us . And there is no escaping it or postponing or leaving it to some others to handle it , if we don’t want our civilization to end pretty quick .
    I believe your Ps: deserves to be an Ante scriptum for its importance .
    —-
    And hooray for you to have been able to – in the heat of something bad – keep in mind that your love for each other stands above all else (even if it takes a lot of work) .
    Turtle Hugs.

    Liked by 1 person

    July 18, 2016
    • Thank you dear Turtle. We do have much work to do but together I honestly believe we can and you are right, if we don’t we will face ruin which is entirely pointless. We all have bad stuff but it is important to keep perspective and to find the silver linings. I infuriate my daughters for this belief but I see it seeping into their FaceBook posts and conversation so I know it is right!

      Liked by 1 person

      July 19, 2016
  12. This world is screwed up. Everyone has a gripe or complaint about someone else, or they wont listen to me, or I have my rights, or I’m Islamophobic, or a bigot etc…! Everything gets blown out of proportion, with the exception of some things that need coverage, and we wonder why this group kills that group, this religion go’s after that one. Civil conversation will not happen as long as one side or the other wont listen. Many people have made up their minds about a given subject, and nothing you say will change it. Then you get politicians and other leaders stoking the fires of ill will, then stand there and ask us to be calm! It’s nothing but a power struggle, many sides vying for the hearts and minds of the masses. The real problem is that many people fall for it! Mark Twain was right, I also prefer dogs.

    Liked by 2 people

    July 18, 2016
    • I love what you wrote – you absolutely nail the problem and you and Mark are right … give me dogs any day 🙂

      Liked by 2 people

      July 19, 2016
  13. “If this is my rock then let it be known that every religion,whatever colour, LGBT, men, women, straight and yet to be determined, able bodied, disabled, are welcome, Don’t rock me and I won’t rock you. Fact.”

    How I love this – I cannot begin to say – I am happy to share my rock with any other peace loving person anywhere.

    Liked by 2 people

    July 19, 2016
  14. Osyth, you are in a strong position, in your dual residence at this time, to air your views which are eminently sensible. May your return to France be peaceful

    Liked by 1 person

    July 19, 2016
    • Thank you Derrick – I’m glad you think so. I do t want to be a passive passenger skating on the veneer of either place. I value your thoughtful, intelligent presence in this realm we write in.

      Liked by 1 person

      July 19, 2016
  15. lindywhitton #

    I wrote a long comment then clicked the wrong button!,, Maybe all I need to say is may we all live, love and make happiness around us. Welcome all to my peaceful rock.

    Liked by 1 person

    July 19, 2016
  16. Another well written piece and you certainly generated a lot of comments on it. I tried to read them all but gave up as there were too many!!!

    I am glad you made the point that the events in Nice, though tragic, aren’t a terrorist attack. We seem to see terrorism in everything these days even when it is simply the act of desperate people. We all need to deal with the root causes of why these people are so desperate that they want to kill so many people and often it is simply giving them decency and a good job.

    I read a piece by a French (from Quebec) analyst who said we are letting the terrorists win because we are closing our borders and going back to sentiment of fears of those that are different from us…just think of Trump’s speeches, Brexit based on the fear of immigrants, the extreme right gaining ground in France and Austria. It feels like we are back in the late 30s…Hopefully, we will get back to understanding that openness and acceptance of differences are the key to us being safe. (Suzanne)

    Liked by 2 people

    July 19, 2016
    • Suzanne, thank you. Of course for your compliment but more especially for your well founded and grounded observations all of which are spot on. I would love to read that piece – it certainly echoes much of what I feel. How sad that my mother, born in 1932 is seeing signs that the world she was born into, watched loved ones die in the hope of changing it for the better is being reborn. The rhetoric of fear is winning over the simple notion of compassion and extending a hand and a heart to those who need it

      Like

      July 19, 2016
  17. I agree that it hard to take it all in but even more frustrating when news reports are edited, incomplete, cheap, lazy or biased.
    I also agree that the Brexit vote was a massive bonus for Irish nationalists.
    I would hazard a guess that my own flesh and blood son has told his friends that he hates me. Don’t take that as gospel. Christ, teenagers are a hazard.
    I hope the rant has helped. I find that spilling your guts can be a tremendously liberating experience. Xx

    Liked by 1 person

    July 19, 2016
    • I generally don’t rant on the blog but this time I just couldn’t hold it in! My stepson is a knotty problem but all will be well. I always tell the children that so I have to believe it!!

      Liked by 1 person

      July 19, 2016
  18. Your post in wonderful and your words powerful. I tweeted it to share.

    Thanks for going by my blog, by the way, this beautifully textured shot is perfect for Tuesdays of Texture, a weekly feature I host on Tuesdays. You can share by linking your post on the comment section on mine. Or just tell me and I’ll do it for you 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    July 19, 2016
    • Ooh – I love the sound of your textural Tuesday’s …. Count me in – I’ll follow you so my birdbrain has a chance to remember. Your generous comment about my post is appreciated hugely …. I only have words and this is quite off-piste for me – I generally don’t get so personal. I loved your shot – I don’t EVER say anything I don’t mean 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      July 19, 2016
  19. Your post in wonderful and your words powerful. I tweeted it to share.

    Thanks for going by my blog, by the way, this beautifully textured shot is perfect for Tuesdays of Texture, a weekly feature I host on Tuesdays. You can share by linking your post on the comment section on mine. Or just tell me and I’ll do it for you 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    July 19, 2016
  20. What a gutsy spill of thought and feeling, Osyth. You ‘rock’ the world with your heartfelt sentiments and clear-eyed views (which you know I share!), never more so than regarding the so-called terrorist in Nice. As our world gets smaller (and yes, that is effectively what happens when we know what is going on everywhere in real-time), it should get easier to live together on that lichen-covered rock. Like you, I oscillate between love and despair. Keep fighting the good fight (and turning a deaf ear to the stepson and his puppet-master…). We need you back in France! xo

    Liked by 1 person

    July 20, 2016
    • And you, my dear are a constant breath of fresh air. As it happens I’m sitting at CDG waiting for my Hop! to Clermont …. so let’s get the gloves on and fight that good fight tout ensemble 🙂 xx

      Liked by 1 person

      July 20, 2016
      • Bon voyage! Happy to have you back. 🙂

        Like

        July 20, 2016
  21. Nicely put!

    Liked by 1 person

    July 20, 2016
    • Thank you Franck. Thank you very much. And I haven’t forgotten I need to reply to your request on your own blog about Russia … just been a bit preoccupied with this sort of stuff …

      Liked by 1 person

      July 21, 2016
      • Off course, and I understand; it has been quite a year; what worries me the most though is people seduced by the “Chiméres”of the far right. Keep cool and chat soon!

        Liked by 1 person

        July 21, 2016
      • It scares the hell out of me 😦

        Liked by 1 person

        July 21, 2016
  22. So, the words came amidst the tears. So happy they did. A memorable post Osyth. Bon Voyage. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    July 20, 2016
    • Nous sommes bien arrivés! I, like you, just hope upon hope that maybe we will have less of these to write

      Liked by 1 person

      July 21, 2016
    • Nous sommes bien arrivés! Like you, I just hope that we might have less of these to write/paint one day soon

      Liked by 1 person

      July 21, 2016
  23. A ‘rant’? Nah… I don’t think any of us have been graced with what a rant from Osyth would be like.
    I am so proud of your VOICE and how you have chosen to use it.
    To begin a change there has to be a starting point. That point has to be supported by the strongest of foundations. A foundation that an individual can always come back to.
    –“I promise I do shout loud but here I preferred to encourage others to be decent to one another.”–
    Your words in that one sentence is the foundation of Humanity. Decency is the feeling that joins the behavior we should be teaching our children from day one.
    Our purpose in life doesn’t need to be grandeose or a mystery. Purposely treat people with decency and respect, and it will ignite the love and belonging we all want.
    We are never too young or too old to be taught or reminded of what it’s going to take to “bring it all together.”

    OYSTH, THANK YOU –

    Liked by 1 person

    July 21, 2016
    • I can add nothing to that, Jane. You have absolutely nailed the issue and the grains of the solution. I am very glad you enjoyed the post and can only thank you for your kind words about my ‘voice’ and of course add that yes, you are absolutely right – this is not a rant – a rant from me is rather more volcanic!

      Liked by 1 person

      July 21, 2016
  24. Osyth,
    You’re aware of the many causes of harm, so this would be for anyone passing by.
    Harm of any making is contagious. It has no borders. Self harm is the most prevalent form. To end one’s own life, to end one’s own life and take one other’s life with you or to end one’s own life and take multiple lives with you. It’s contagious because the act receives ATTENTION. The fear and anger and self doubt will finally be heard. At what cost? Harm and Terror are not created by physically and emotionally healthy human beings.
    Terror is Terror, whether it’s home grown or foreign grown.
    I know this is going to sound and look like a very small seed of hope that will have to germinate before any growth is seen, but for everyone in this world that has vocally expressed care and concern repeatedly, it is the time to start walking your talk. Do something. We don’t need a bunch of Einsteins running amuck, we need the show of compassion and encouragement for our fellows. From that grows the courage needed to stand up for yourself, for the person standing next to you, for your country and beyond. It’s like riding a bike, you never forget how.
    We’ve turned into people that want immediate results. We want it done yesterday.

    This is going to take time, again. This is bringing the memories, I gotta go.

    Liked by 1 person

    July 21, 2016
  25. Wonderful post Fiona! You are always honest and passionate!

    Liked by 1 person

    July 22, 2016
    • Thank you Lynn – your comment means so much to me. I seldom get quite so personal but this time it seemed appropriate and world events are just heartbreaking. Too much hatred. I heard a man speak yesterday who said the only thing that fighting hate with hate does is to produce more hate. The only thing to fight hate with is love. If you just give love to someone who hates you at the very least they end up looking like the bad guy and certainly that is the advice I gave my children and still do. It would be nice if this human family we all belong to were able to follow the advice of wonderful mothers of which you are one of the very finest and most inspiring I have ever come across. Keep being you xx

      Liked by 1 person

      July 22, 2016
      • You are so kind dearest Fiona! Always taking the high road and being your best does pay off and anyway as you said it makes you feel good too! much love

        Liked by 1 person

        July 22, 2016
      • Right back at you – let’s keep sharing and spreading love … it’s all we can do (and be the best we can possibly be) xx

        Like

        July 22, 2016
  26. Yes, this rock represents a multi-dimensional leveled blogger who really embraces all kinds of differences and wants us all to stand on this rock, believe in its love for all. Fiona, I got teary-eyed about the tiny world and how we are all part of each other, maybe I just discerned this. . . but we all have so many more reasons to love one another and create a peaceful planet. Big Hugs for this very important message you are sending out across the world.
    So sad again for France, for Texas, for lots of little places who have hatred and animosity living next door to them. . . hugs for them!!

    Liked by 1 person

    July 22, 2016
    • And hugs to you because you are a deeply compassionate and lovely caring lady and we need you cloned a squillion times! Absent the possibility of cloning, you and I and all those that believe in good and harmony and love and peace need to keep spreading the word through our actions and disallowing hatred even when we really really want to spit fire!!! xx

      Like

      July 22, 2016
  27. Good Morning my friend….first, let me say straight away I have sat down to read your post and have been deterred by life, more than once….hump!! How dare they!!! but on this quiet Sunday morning I have found the house quiet, silenced my phone since the text that woke me from my friend on New York time..LOL….and am enjoying my first cup of coffee, nibbling on a biscotti from a wonderful bakery out of town and enjoying catching up….I enjoyed your post….and like you there are many who are thinking that some of the terrible violence taking place in around the world, France, Germany, was not ISIS terrorism, I was sitting in a pub the other evening waiting for my friends to arrive and was by now way means of eves dropping heard a most heated conversation at the table in front of me….I heard them debate the attack in Nice and Germany….they felt that the blame was to easily given to the most easily, accessibly and most likely group….ISIS….they felt that the lesser of evil groups in the world, whomever they are hating, maybe are on a rising, using the ISIS as a cover to do more evil, stay in the shadows and still reek mayhem unscathed….. no matter who it is its wrong and beyond my small brain to comprehend the reason for such senseless deaths…we could all debate until the cows come home, or were blue in the face, it won’t change what has happened….it sickens me physically to think about it…..my heart is heavy and sad for the world…..and to think that our political BS may be adding fuel to the fire enrages me…..I am embarrassed to be an American, I have never thought before, but its hard not to be….okay, I am starting to get on a roll in my head so I will tone it back at this time…..but I call BS on always blaming all the evil on just one group..

    Okay my biscotti is gone and I am on to the scone, its yummy to, asiago cheese, mushrooms and spinach…..very good…I love the early morning hours listening to the birds welcome the sun, and on the weekends we are the path for hot air balloons….a couple have passed out back of the house….feels almost like time is standing still….no wind, no noise pollution, just the birds starting their day….and occasional caw from a crow demanding attention I am thinking…LOL

    ok I am back to the post….I am so sorry you had to endure the wrath of one of the kids ( and his friend he brought for support to help yell you down)…I realize I wasn’t there, and I have no idea about the circumstances, however, I am a mother of 2, and did date and have a few serious relationships that were not meet with love from the kids….and yes, my son declared his hatred for one of my men folk verbally…..now that we have grown older and have gotten past those years…my son recently told me he didn’t really hate that man, just what he stood for, in his eyes he was interfering with his life, especially the one with his mummy!! He felt threatened and didn’t know how else to handle it, being a young man, emotional, and unwilling or rather unable to mature wise, sit down and discuss the problem…instead shouting out like a 5 year old seemed so much easier…..tantrums and stomping was all he knew to do…..I am so glad that you have decided to stay and work it out, yelling and screaming, notin wrong with that when you need to be heard and the person is refusing to listen….and so not like you to raise you voice…..I am glad that you stuck it out….we as parents, as you well know, can not and should not control our kids feelings and whom they may like or dislike, I am sure your husband loves you even more for staying, his love for you or his child should not change, it is the child that must come to grips with his issues…..I am sure you have not been underhanded or mean in anyway, and perhaps of this and the love between you and your husband it has sparked a bit of fear in the, I like what you called him, spawns heart, not knowing how to handle his fathers love for another than himself, of course this is all speculation, but I am betting I am closer to the truth than I would like to be…..leave him to his wounds, brush yours off and hold your head high, you are a good woman, wife, mother and yes step mother…..you have to be a good person, only good people love dogs….and Bean will attest to that!!!

    The picture is one I can relate to….I have 13 huge rocks I had put around our property and I hand picked each one because they had lichen grown in them…..its like an oxy moron of life….LOL I even feed my lichen buttermilk to help sustain its life…..lol

    Enjoyed your post….if you feel the need to get it off your cheese, so to say, Skype I have good listening ears and great understanding…..

    Until we meet again…..Namaste my friend….keep smiling….xxkat

    Liked by 2 people

    July 24, 2016
    • So many things covered in your comment and covered eloquently and with great intellect. The terrorism – I’m interested in your evestropped conversation. Very interested. It feels like a truth to me. But as we say there is nothing we can do about it except be the best and most decent we can be. There is of course much more to the situation with my stepson and none of my making. Ironically, I think most in the know would say I’ve been the good guy. We will skype at some point and I will share the background with you. I’m in France and on to England in 10 days so better when I am home in New England – heare that …. home! It is home at the moment thought I am loving being here of course. The Bean by the way agrees with every word and is also interested that you feed the lichen buttermilk …. she is partial to buttermilk in scones, soda bread and various cakes and particularly chicken! Namaste to you too. I’m smiling well xx

      Liked by 2 people

      July 24, 2016
  28. Dear Osyth, I’m of the same mind – if we spread kindness it will increase twofold. And we must keep trying to combat all of he heinous bloodshed taking place around us.
    On a personal note, the world is full of unkindness. You are disturbed by your step-son’s behavior and rightly so. Charley’s 35-year old daughter hates me and would love nothing more than to break up our marriage. She is a mean-girl at heart and incredibly self-absorbed. Add a selfish, materialistic, manipulative mother into the picture and it could not be bleaker for Abbey to ever change. But we have done quite well together in spite of her attempts to make our lives difficult. So, my advice for you is, stay close to your wonderful husband and never let anyone come between you. Anyone! I’ve discovered that some children can be selfish and cruel and can refine those qualities to an art as they age. They are the “entitled”, their parents exist only to administer to their needs (which are not the simple ones put forth in your previous blog post). I’ll leave you with this thought from Word Porn: I love it when toxic people stop talking to me. It’s like the trash took itself out. (I hope that made you smile.) Your friend, Clare

    Liked by 1 person

    July 26, 2016
    • Thank you. Just thank you. For the word porn which did make me smile (like the proverbial Cheshire Pusscat) ….you are so right about the rest and the manipulative mothers should be ashamed. But I promise I WILL do as bidden – my life would be a hollow shell without that man of mine and he is sticking close as close to me as I know your Charley does to you. Take care and as ever, I send you love. Just love.

      Liked by 1 person

      July 26, 2016
      • Osyth, I am most relieved to hear all of that and must tell you that Charley’s daughter almost succeeded in forcing him to make a choice between us. I was willing to bow out gracefully but he refused to hear it. Thank goodness, because later on, neither of his kids were around when he needed them most -during all of his operations and treatments. They were too busy with the mundane things that make up their daily, self-absorbed lives. He’s reminded them that he would not be here today except for my constant care and support. His daughter’s retort is that he’s alive because of the medicine. No surprise there because not being involved, she has no idea what it takes to battle a terminal illness and come out a winner. I hope she never has to find out that it isn’t “just the medicine”. But, I know, like her mother, that someday she will turn to her husband and tell him he isn’t good enough for her, that she’s found a better partner. And she’ll leave him and their children for the life “she deserves” fracturing them forever. And then, she’ll manipulate her kids against anyone who might love him in the future. I know this because, Abbey has become her mother! And I’m very sad for her children. Stay together, enjoy each other and avoid the toxicity. Love to you both. Clare

        Like

        July 26, 2016
  29. Hi O and what a post. You should “rant” more often when it produces such eloquently expressed and sincerely held diverse views from your followers. This is probably the first post ever when I’ve read every comment and counter-comment from a-z and am left feeling reassured that despite both personal and world-wide problems there are still good, caring folk in all parts of the world. Labels of religion, race, gender or of any kind put us in a corner which we then feel we have to defend. Drop the labels, look at the person and what they say and do and the world might just become a little happier and a tad safer. Thank you for your post.

    Liked by 1 person

    August 2, 2016
    • Thank you … In truth I was quite overwhelmed by the response but thrilled that it so clearly strikes the same chord with so many. I’ll save the rants for some judicious seasoning along the line … 😉

      Liked by 1 person

      August 4, 2016

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