Independent motion – can you help?

What would you give to make a dream come true if you woke to find yourself living a nightmare?

What would you feel if you could never again walk on a beach? Or go out alone in the snow…feel the stillness of a wood or cross a field?

And then, you found a way…

In 2009, my son was a successful young man with a bright future… until he was stabbed through the brain in an unprovoked attack and left for dead in an alley.

He was found almost immediately by passers-by who saved his life. By the time we arrived at the hospital, Nick was being prepared for emergency brain surgery. We were allowed to see him, for a few minutes, to say goodbye. He was not expected to survive…

Over the past couple of years, many in the blogging community have come to know my son and know that survive he did, defying all the odds and going on to achieve wonderful things in spite of the physical challenges with which he lives. You may remember the magic of May Day. Or perhaps his skydive… the London to Brighton cycle ride… or the Triathlon, all of which raised thousands of pounds for charity.

Some of you follow Nick’s blog and, though he has been quiet recently, will have read about the reasons for that as he prepares for the biggest adventure yet, doing the impossible once again and proving that ‘impossible’  really isn’t, if you set your mind and heart to something.

One of the biggest problems for Nick going travelling is getting around. As he cannot see well enough to drive a car and cannot walk, he has to use a wheelchair. The trike allows Nick to get out and about, but it is specialist equipment (he’s been waiting all summer for parts to fix it) and too big to transport. He is also limited to decent road surfaces. He cannot self-propel in a normal wheelchair (except in circles) because of the reduced mobility and coordination down his entire right side, so he has to use a large and heavy electric wheelchair that causes many transport problems, can break down and means carrying heavy chargers and batteries that airlines don’t like. And it can’t manage a small step or a high kerb. This has been the biggest sticking point and looked set to prevent his dream from coming true. The only other alternative has been a manual wheelchair and someone to push it.

Until we came across the Mountain Trike.


He hired one to try it out. This is a serious piece of kit… a cross between a mountain bike and a wheelchair, it can go off-road and up mountains. It can handle sandy beaches, ford streams and cope with muddy tracks and cobbles. And it is a manual wheelchair with an innovative propulsion system that Nick can use, even with reduced mobility. It doesn’t need batteries, can be fixed by most bike shops in an emergency and, crucially, doesn’t need anyone to push it. He can go out into the wild places alone for the very first time in seven and a half years.

It even has a luggage rack.

Nick is giving all he has to fund his dream of travelling. I have set up a Go Fund Me page for him to try to raise the cost of buying the Mountain Trike. It will change his world and open the world to him.

You can visit the campaign page HERE and read the full story.

Please help if you can, by donating if you can or, if you can’t…and not everyone can… by sharing his story and the campaign.

You can also Pin Your Tweet to help get the word out too!

Thank you.

If you have any difficulty donating via the campaign page, please contact me at


Posted in adventure, Nick Verron | Tagged , , , | 224 Comments

Golden Hours…

The Silent Eye

Image and text from the ‘Ash and Seed’ weekend…



It is difficult to conceive, perhaps, the birth pangs of a Giant which stands for a land mass…



Or indeed our part in the long course of such millenial process…



Straddled symbiotically betwixt earth and sky…



It may be our role to link…



‘Nadir’ with ‘zenith’…



And in comprehension, walk on…

View original post

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Ani’s Advent – making Christmas


Dear Santa,

It’s funny, you know, you spend all year making Christmas, don’t you? But you don’t get to spend it at home. You’re running round the world making Christmas for everyone else. I wonder who makes Christmas for you? And what the best bit is for you… maybe putting your feet up with a cuppa. I can’t imagine you’d fancy another mince pie by the time you’re done. I hope you have your family there to come home to.

What makes Christmas for me is seeing everyone. It isn’t always on the same day… but I  see all my two-legses over Christmas. ‘Specially my boys.


When I very first came home with her, it was one of my boys who cuddled me in the car and kept me safe. I was frighted… I was only little… I’d never been in something that roared before. And I’d just left my Mum and my family. My boy looked after me though.

I’ve never forgotten. He’s always ready for cuddles when he comes… and he sends me nice things to eat sometimes. Really, I’m his dog, but when he left to live in his own place, I stayed with her so she wouldn’t be lonely. I was s’posed to be his assistance dog, ’cause he got broken…but maybe she needs me more. It is nice to see him though and I still assist… I know how to play with him and which bits don’t work so well. He says I don’t need to worry… but I still like to be gentle and look after him.


My other boy, who is a bit younger, had already left home. He comes to see me too. I don’t feel I have to be gentle with that one… and he hasn’t worked out how to say no to ball-throwing, or cuddles, yet🙂


A couple of years ago, we got another one for Christmas too. I sniffed and sniffed when she first came home with her eyes leaking. This new one wasn’t a boy though… it was a girlie two-legs pup and she looked a bit like you… the boy said she was the best Christmas gift ever.


I think he has a point, you know. Having your two-legses around you makes Christmas special. Or maybe it isn’t just two-legses…maybe it is what they stand for… and what they really give you. Not tennis balls and cheese… though they are nice too… but the other stuff you can’t wrap up.

Maybe that’s why you don’t mind if you miss your Christmas… ’cause you are busy taking love to everyone else. Maybe it isn’t about getting presents at all…maybe the presents are just symbols for something else…that someone cares enough about you to think of you?dec2012-051

It’s complicated all this two-legs stuff. Couldn’t you put something in your sack so they’d all just know they are loved anyway?

I suppose you’d have done it by now if you could.

Much love, Ani xxx


Posted in Christmas, Dogs, Love | Tagged , , | 4 Comments

Sky-Saw II … Stuart France





Reblogged from Stuart France

Posted in albion, Ancient sites | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Needed #midnighthaiku


Image | Posted on by | Tagged , , | 2 Comments

Black tinsel

dec2012 027

I was reluctantly obliged to shop today and saw black tinsel on sale. It seems somehow a rather odd departure from the usual cheery red, green and gold. But then, there is a lot of that about. The Christmas countdown has taken hold, shops are heaving, houses show pretty lights peeking through the curtains and Jingle Bells seems to be playing in every store. I wonder how long ago it was that political correctness deemed it inappropriate to play carols in public places? That seems to have sneaked in. Yet isn’t it rather hypocritical to be afraid to acknowledge the religious element of a religious festival, whilst encouraging people to spend every penny they have, and then some, on the festivities.

I wonder too how many still feel a sense of reverence as they place the carved symbol of the Babe in the crib? I may hurriedly stuff the decorations in boxes come Twelfth Night, but the little wooden nativity is always carefully laid away. The doubt of evidence and political correctness have clouded the faith of many with a vague, uneasy sense of guilt. And that, to me, is criminal. Faith and its expression are and should be a deeply personal thing between the heart and the Awe that touches it, regardless of the Name or story we believe in. Does it matter whether the date of a birth is accurate? Faith doesn’t need hard evidence… it knows an intimate and personal truth beyond facts, one that lights the heart and guides the hand.

Of course, it hasn’t always been ‘Christmas’. The turning of the year through its darkest point towards the light has been marked for longer than the two thousand years of the Christian era. Midwinter rites, fire festivals, times of turning and looking forward have marked the dark of the year and may be amongst the oldest communal celebrations and rites. On all continents and in probably every culture through known history and beyond, this moment in the solar year has spoken to us in symbolic terms and given rise to expressions of faith and hope of brightness to come. Mōdraniht, Yule, Saturnalia, Hannuka… festivals of motherhood and light, celebrations of birth and the unconquered Sun… many now forgotten or labelled simply ‘pagan’, many unrecognised by the wider world, discarded and discounted by those who choose to wear other labels.

Continue reading here


Posted in Christmas | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Ani’s Advent – Trouble

ani-015-2Dear Santa, here we go again,

It seems like I’m in trouble.

I ate the fish food in the tub

And burst my Christmas bubble.


She says you’ll probably still come,

That one small slip won’t do it…

The problem is, I have this thing…

If I see food, I chew it.


I’ve only ever chewed one shoe,

When I was left alone.

And she just tutted, then dug out

A shoe to be my own.


I’m six years old now and that shoe

Is still there in my toys,

I have a sniff of it sometimes…

Reminds me of my boys.


I don’t chew anything of hers

(Apart from the odd tissue)

But any food she leaves in sight

Appears to be an issue.


She’s pretty good, as two-legs go,

She keeps me from temptation,

But when the fridge door fails to shut

There’s cause for celebration.


There was the ham she’d freshly cooked…

And then the Christmas dinner…

And when I saw smoked salmon too

I was on to a winner…


She wasn’t pleased that Christmas day,

But you’d already been

And brought for me more tennis balls

Than I had ever seen!


She doesn’t stay too cross for long,

She has this look, though, see…

And when she says my name, I wish

The earth would swallow me.


But soon she gives me cuddles

And I see that smile and then

I know that she is still my friend

Though I’ve been bad again.


So Santa, if you will still come,

I really wish you would

Put something in your sack for me

To maybe make me good.



Dear Santa, it’s her two-legs here…

Although she is a hog.

Don’t listen to her just this once,

I love my naughty dog.



Posted in Dogs, Humour, Photography, Poetry | Tagged , , , , | 19 Comments

Wood ‘n’ Stone… Stuart France


“Witches ‘n’ Warlocks”…



“Life ‘n’ Death”…



“Life in Death”…

Continue reading here

Posted in albion, Ancient sites | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments