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JANUARY: “Ecology is bigger than one field and one farm. We need to work across many farms and many valleys." English Pastoral, An Inheritance by James Rebanks

Spot the pond! “Brought a load of coals from Blyton 9th January" "Tom started school 26th January" Catching rabbits 26th, 27th, 28th January Took a load of tates to station for Roberts 29th January" This was the life of a Lincolnshire farm labourer in 1886. On New Year's Day 2023,  we were playing games and eating rather too much. George North, the 1886 farm labourer, was "leading manure" - and he noted in his "Bad Boy's Diary" that the weather was "fine and mild". Games and food. Leading manure. I know which I'd rather be doing!  Where does the time go? In the Industrial Revolution from the mid 18th century through to the mid 19th century, many felt that their lives were changing too fast - and they had little or no control over their destinies. Few with power were listening to their pain. Today we are losing control yet again. Those of us who want to help improve our planet for future generations are powerless. Thi

About the Blog

In January 2017 I started a blog. There were 12 blogs altogether - one for each month of that year. When I had finished, my daughter and I edited the blogs and I wrote two more chapters so that my first book was formed. It is entitled "Child Of The Isle" - like the blogs - and covers aspects of my childhood in the Isle of Axholme - then a quiet corner of rural Lincolnshire - through the fifties and sixties.

I miss the blog thing. And I have enjoyed putting the book together. It follows that I should have another go. I am now attempting to answer all those people who have, over the years since we first moved to Orkney in 1986, asked the question, "What's it like up there?"  We lived in Orkney for 10 years, moved back to the Isle of Axholme for a while, then to Barrow upon Humber, and now we live in Caithness.  We meant to return to Orkney but we stopped off in Wick. We've been here since 2009 but I have never forgotten my roots and I am still searching for more information about my ancestors from Axholme and from other parts of Britain - some may be from further away but that is a work in progress. I intend to weave memories into "What's It Like Up There?" So, each month, for 12 months, I will take a topic and write about it from my Caithness viewpoint, referring back to other times in my life.