Author Archives: NomadWarMachine

If trees could talk⤴

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I walk past this tree every day on the way to my office.

In the early morning the quad is quiet, with maybe a crow hopping across the grass or a cleaner scurrying about between the buildings.

Later in the day it is busier – students eating lunch on sunny days, academics sitting on benches chatting, tourists marveling in the architecture and taking photos of each other.

What sights has this tree seen? What happy memories do people hold of being in this place? Graduations, weddings, exams, meetings. School children on day trips, alumni back for nostalgic visits, those that work here – like me – wandering out to catch our breath and pause for a moment.

 

 

Daily Create 2018 Challenge⤴

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My June 2018 30-Day The Daily Create Challenge Art

For the second year running I am taking part in the I am Talky Tina Certification in Creatorist Badge, so this page is to collect my daily Creates together and make sure I get my badge. (I am excited to find out that I might get my 2017 badge soon!)

Postcard doodles⤴

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It’s been a busy month, and inevitably I’ve not done everything I planned to. But one thing that I have done over the last couple of weeks is to start doing my daily doodles on postcards. Of course, because I sometimes find times to doodle at work and other times at home, I only have half my stack here. But here’s some of the ones I like from this month – now safely stashed away to send in the future.

Postcard questions⤴

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Time flies, especially recently. But today I came home to find  a card from Kevin, and that prompted me to sort through my collection and write some to CLMOOC friends.

Our theme this month is questions, and as I thought through some to write on my cards I felt myself relax and forget about all of the marking that looms.  Kevin asks a good question:

I wonder …

Be More Kind⤴

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A timely earworm for me this week as I am marking philosophy exam scripts. The lyrics are actually about our broken society, but the title of the song speaks to me as I try to decipher scrawly handwriting and make the best sense I can of the jumbled thoughts written under pressure. Education could, and should, be more kind, in my opinion.

This semester has been particularly hard, with the strike action and weather leading to lost teaching time – and the need to be lenient yet fair while marking seems all the more important. This way of assessing students doesn’t seem at all kind to me.

Shetland⤴

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Back from a quick weekend break to Shetland. The views from our hotel window in Lerwick was amazing:Niall spent a lot of time looking at divers and working out what they were:

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We didn’t see many Shetland ponies, but here is one:

Shetland pony

No puffins, either,but many, many fulmars:

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and a bolshie seagull, waiting to cross the road:

Who are you looking at?

Lots of sheep:

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Hundreds of guillemots:

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And, as we headed back to the airport, we had to wait as the air ambulance crossed over the road:

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A beautiful place for a short break:

Shetland

Don’t kill the messenger⤴

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It’s no surprise to find that Jeremy Hunt is talking rubbish again this week. In a Guardian article we hear that he is proposing a universal social media limit for every child. Sound good? Maybe – except that there’s no evidence to suggest that this policy is necessary.

Politicians – pfff. Not worth wasting typing time on. But there’s an undercurrent here (of course) about controlling the masses, and I suspect Hunt and his cronies are trying to attempt to control our non-state-controlled means of communication. Of course social media can be misused, but the frequent dissing of social media, and the emphasis on studies purporting to show how social media is bad for us, in one way or another, just annoy me. Social media is so important to me – it’s how I communicate, participate, and learn. I was reminded of this earlier when Verena asked the following question:

Like anything else, it depends how it’s used. But don’t kill the messenger if you find others using it badly. For some of us, it is our community, our affinity space, our home.

Loveday⤴

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Spring is coming, finally. It’s been a hard winter and I think the blooms are 2-3 weeks later than last year, but looking out at my garden I see an explosion of forsythia blooms, and our narcissi and daffodils are cheerfully poking up under our fruit trees. Last October, when I was down for one sister’s 50th birthday, my youngest sister and her daughter gave me a pack of Cornish daffodil buds called “Loveday”. I don’t mention this much, but that’s my middle name (dad’s Cornish, and when mum was looking for names for me she came across this as a Cornish name). I never expect too much from our bulbs – what with the frost and the squirrels, but so far four have bloomed. Here’s one – I think it’s beautiful.