In the early 1980s, my mum was in her sixties and looking after my stepfather with encroaching dementia. They lived 200 miles away from my home. We were not archetypally close, and she wasn’t a “mumsy” woman, she had always stayed professional in style throughout our childhoods, her appearance as important as it was to us as teenagers. She had
It was Christmas Day in Melbourne, Australia. Claire was working the breakfast shift at a backpackers hostel. She realised that one of the guests had nowhere to go and would be on her own.
Last year my mental health deteriorated. A lot. A lot of major life events, I suppose were the trigger (marital breakdown, dad diagnosed with cancer). Though the fallout with those around me
When I was 18 I worked in Sri Lanka for a year. Towards the end of my year, I was on a bus in the deep south and I didn’t feel very well. Then it all went black. What I remember next is drifting in and out of consciousness in a hut
When in the late sixties some friends came to stay as they were between homes, my husband and I had 3 young children and had not ever had a holiday. So it was arranged that the friends would babysit for a long weekend. We hitch-hiked from Norwich to Liverpool as
I was in my dream destination, Rio de Janeiro, for an art project. I was so excited and tried to pack in a lot of sightseeing. I visited this busy market area with electronics, fabrics, knickknacks and all else.
It had been a long day of errands across London. I was at my favourite Camden Town sushi bar sitting on a high stool enjoying a glass of wine and my favourite sushi meal. All of a sudden I couldn’t breathe. My head started swimming and I had an excruciating pain in my chest.
Retrieving my boat from the river, I forgot to apply my handbrake to the car. Unfortunately, it rolled into the river. I was in a very difficult situation. Several on-lookers did nothing to help. One boatman came to help and
When my big orange dog was badly bitten — grrr — two lovely friends gave him some big bag of anchovies wrapped in yummy ‘hammy’ chews. This made him very happy, he forgot he had a sore leg. It was very kind and
It is hard to explain the situation in northern Nigeria, but where I lived was quite remote, no other expatriate in my village and no electricity. So, it was very dark and quite bleak being on the edge of…
I was issued a brand-new iPhone from work. It was glossy and gleamy, and as slippery as silk. So slippery that in fact it slipped right out of my trouser pocket in the back seat of a London cab. I was so focused on my clients that when I left the car after paying the cabbie, I did so without
I was very heavily pregnant and living in Surrey and walking my two dogs on a common near our house there. I don’t know why but I suddenly passed out and obviously let go of the dogs! Next thing I knew