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May 4th Local Election

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Well the votes have been cast and are in the process of being counted.

Already we know that the Tory’s are leading in number of seats gained. A fair few from UKIP but even more from my party Labour.

I cant say that I am surprised by the collapse in the UKIP vote. Their Reason Detra  was a referendum on leaving the EU. Which thanks to David Cameron they got. And being the smaller party in favour of leaving the EU they were pushed to the sidelines in the sidelines int eh campaigning, and weren’t even the first to be spoken to when the result went their way.

The man who is Mr UKIP has stood down from the leadership. Ok not straight away their was a little tooing and froing where he was leader, then he wasn’t, then he was, then he wasn’t again.

Now UKIP’s leader is a man who’s bullshitted about having mates die at Hillsborough. Is under investigation for election fraud after claiming to live in a house that hadn’t been lived in for years to stand in a by election. A by election caused by Tristram Hunt stepping down after being offered any historians dream job.

So UKIP are being sent so far wholesale back down the hole they came from. And, to be honest it has been a long time coming and more then welcome.

As for leader the vote has held so far in wales and only dropped 65 seats in England as i write this.

Not a lot of seat given there’s over a thousand up for grabs this election. But, enough that councils have been lost and as I write one new Regional Major is a Tory.

I have to be honest here, I didn’t vote for my party this time. The first time in my voting  The person standing for my party in my area is someone I have no respect and in fact don’t like. I voted for an independent candidate. A woman who has held both local and county council seats for our area for over twenty years. A massive feat given that normally to get elected in our area all you have to do is wear a blue rosette.

I personally have know this lady for most of the time shes held her seats. My mother was elected to the local council in the same election and as the only Labour councillor she was basically an independent and worked very closely with all the independents. And this lady was the best of the bunch. Slightly annoying and in your face, but worked bloody hard and got the job done.

So on a local level I deemed my vote was best to go to the person who has a long track record of doing right by her constituents and gets things done, over someone who only joined a political party in their dotage and claims that peoples homes don’t exist cause their not easy to get to.

There will more then likely be another long post about the election when its all said an done, but in the mean time I’ll be Volunteering in my local Citizens Advice Office with one eye on the results and one on the training I’m doing to become an advisor.

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Going grey

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As a woman it is expected that you go kicking and screaming into the world of having a head of grey hair.

Not me. This year I turn thirty, and i am in the position of no longer being able to pluck the grey out without seriously reducing the amount of hair I have. I noticed the first grey hairs in my hair when i was 24. lucky they were at the nape of my neck so easy to hide till they where long enough to pluck without taking other hairs with them.

As the years have past the grey has taken over more of my hair and now stands out amongst its nearly pitch black brethren. At first when I noticed the grey migrating to where everyone can see it i was heart broken. I love my natural hair colour and the various different colours it goes in the summer sun.

But then again I’m thirty in just over three months and my twenties haven’t been the pleasant happy go  lucky time i thought they would be.

I suffered a horrible pregnancy and labour. Had post natal depression that has since been re classed as psychosis due tot he fact i cant remember a large part of the the first three years of my sons life.

I have spent eight years fighting to get mentally stable again and during that time not really taken good care of myself so of course i’m showing signs of ageing before my time. even more so before my time when you consider people have trouble believing that i am nearly thirty when they see me face to face. Most say they would believe about 25-27 not nearly the big 30.

anyway back to the subject. Grey Hair.

I thought it would be a disaster getting it. its an old person thing that you don’t wan to admit to.

Well i was wrong. As it turns out now I’ve gotten used to having the grey there i quite like it. I’m lucky in the fact that a lot of it has grown in as more streaks of grey like highlights then all over the place.

The grey in my case is also much thicker then the brown hair. I always believed that grey hair would be thinner and break easier then non grey hair. well in my case the opposite is true. So why would i want to damage it by colouring it.

Plus there’s the fact that if i colour my hair to hide the ever growing number of grey I’ll lose getting to see my hair become all natural shades when bleached by the summer sun. After a while of being in the sun i have reds come through, blondes and all the browns hair can be. so its a little like getting lots of different colour streaks put in, only i get it for free after just a few hours in the sun.

I guess what I’m really trying to say is I’m in the winter of my twenties with 20% grey hair and love it. No one will push me into getting it died just to keep to social norms for people my age. My hairs in great condition right now and I want to keep it that way not damage it with dyes.

Racism

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I’m not proud to say it but i am a little racist.

I’m this way because of experiences i had trying to bring up a baby in a mostly Asian town.

So before I moved to Rochdale and had my son, i wouldn’t have thought of myself as racist. I grew up in a white town and was a teen before the first non white family moved in. I didn’t have feelings one way or another about race. how could I as I didn’t have any experience to basis any opinions on.

So fast forward a few years I’m twenty one heavily pregnant and living in Rochdale. Muslims past my house to go to mosque, and there where times when gangs of teens heading there threw comments my way. “Slut. Whore. you should give your baby to a proper family.” just some of the things said.

I was twenty one and in a committed relationship. we’d been together nearly three years when we moved to Rochdale, and been engaged for two.

I mostly ignored the comments thrown my way. I had bigger things to worry about. Things like have we got enough nappies and are the baby grows going to fit the baby when he comes.

After I had my son, I had an hour with his dad while a bed was found then both of us where wheeled away as it wasn’t visiting time. I’d have to wait six hours to see my family again.

Again didn’t think much of it. rules are rules, and after nearly a two day labour I didn’t feel like talking to anyone anyway.

That night another new mum and baby where wheeled into the ward. An asian mother not much older then myself. with them came ten family members. seeming shouting at the top of their lungs. the midwife asked them to keep the noise down and left them to it.

two hours and many complaints by me and other white mothers later, to which we where told we can’t kick them off the ward theyd cause to much trouble, I called my other half and made him complain. within moments of him calling who ever was in charge of the hospital that night the family where finally made to leave.

The rules should be the same for everyone. My son wasn’t even 24 hours old and for most of that he’d been wide awake and very gassy.

Soon that family slipped my mind I was home an trying to get used to breast feeding every hour and half on the dot.

fast forward seven months and my son and I are at a mums and tots group run by the local sure start centre. There was an even spilt of white families and Muslim families. i know this because they weren’t mixed. the white families at one end of the room and the Muslim ones at the other.

My son at the time s was starting to motor along on his own and as long as he wasn’t in danger of being hurt i left him to it. He and a Muslim child not much older then himself wanted to play with the same toy. They were happily sharing the toy when the boys mother in the full body covering came over grabbed the toy and her child and moved them back to their side of the room.

This made my son cry and me very angry. I tried to talk to the woman but was ignored and a few minutes later i was told off by the staff there for causing a problem.

I admit I might not have been as polite as I could have been. Telling the woman that her actions are why children grow up to hate her and others like her. My son was just playing with her child and they were making friends.

There where times when I’d be out shopping on my own or with my son and the male Asian shop workers would serve men in the line behind me before they served me. or would ignore me when i asked when something was.

I was spat at in the street by Asian’s, women, men and children. once it hit my son in his pram. I caused a scene then an there and amazingly nothing happened to me or the family even though there where police officers across the street.

Over three years living in Rochdale i experienced a lot of racism aimed my way, to the point where i would only enter a shop if there where white staff working there. I didn’t feel safe if there was a gang of Asian boys near me on the street, where as i felt completely safe if it was a gang of drug smoking white boys.

Something i never thought would happen as i grew up thinking gangs of white boys where quite scary and to be avoided.

So in short after my experience in Rochdale I am Racialist and don’t like being around Muslims. I know that not all are like what I experienced in Rochdale, but that was a town over run with people acting like that and it has coloured my view of all Muslims.

So what got me writing this post? The BBC is running a season about race and how attitudes to it affect people. And it got me thinking.

75% of people say they are in no way racist and wouldn’t like to be with anyone who is. But race crime is up and far right groups are on the rise. So people are lying in public about not being racist but are behind closed doors.

I know my saying in public that I am a racist after my experience’s isn’t something that going to win me many friends. But, i cant lie about it. I feel safer around white people. My son never had a new friend taken away by a white mother. To date I have never been spat at  by any one who wasn’t Asian, or been ignored in a shop by someone who wasn’t Asian.

I don’t like feeling this way. Or the fact that the experiences I’ve had had led me to feel this way. I get on with the Asains who run my local take away across the road. But it took a few visits before i felt comfortable in there.

One of them asked my why I didn’t seem comfortable there one day, and I told them about my time in Rochdale. They listened and then told me that, that was part of the reason they and their family had left that area and set up shop where I live.

They saw people being mistreated for not being the same and even being mistreated themselves for not being as uptight as others.

With the boys at the takeaway I know I can ask them any question about their faith and the lives of their families in the mid east. They want to teach people that not all Asians are bad and often enjoy the same things as any one else. They want me asking questions of them. They see it as their job to teach people things.

I have to say through them in a mostly white town I have learnt more about their faith and community then I did living amongst it in Rochdale. I hope that they’ll still answer my questions in time to come and help me turn my thinking around on all Asians.

If my experiences in Rochdale had been like the ones I’ve had in that take away then I wouldn’t have any racist thoughts or feel less safe around Asian gangs then I do white.

Work in progress here, but I’m prepared to put the time in as i don’t want to carry on thinking the way i do.

And, in the end it’s up to all whatever their skin colour or faith to say yes we’re a little or a lot racist but we want to change. We want to get on with one another and feel safe no matter what. Until then race and faith crime will probably carry on rising  and more people will find themselves in the position I have. With racist thoughts because of what they themselves have experienced while trying to live their lives in a peaceful way.

Rumours from Labour Party Conference

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this year i couldn’t get to the conference so anything i say on here has come from others who were and i will not be mentioning names.

Will fact that can be proved is that the leader didn’t use his special room behind the stage. He must have said he wasn’t going to use it before the conference started as there wasn’t the normal bowl of fruit on the table, which people working behind the scenes often pinched from.

After corbyns speech when he left the hall , a small steward was squashed by the press against a wall and had a big burly man stand on her feet while trying to film the leader. she was shouting you bastard and hitting every inch of him she could reach and he didn’t even flinch. She said if it wasn’t for the guy standing on her feet keeping her upright against the wall she would have been trampled under foot.

Simon Danczuk was a hot topic at the conference given on he first day he was on tv calling out all his peers as stupid and johnny come lately’s. And was in pretty much every right wing paper saying the same and trying to play the victim.

It was said that labour mps when they see him heading their way turn tail and hide from him. And that he is known for throwing punches in the commons when he doesnt get his own way.

This is a man who’s said he wouldn’t support anything the leadership try to push through then throw a tantrum when someone who hasn’t been in parliament as long as he has is given a job in the shadow cabinet

If he wanted a job he should take his cue from proper party members and keep your private misgivings to your self and not spread them around the right wing press.

As always there was talk of who out of the singles there was hooking up with who. Nothing much there apart from again a rumour that danzcuk was having it a way with a pretty young thing from the north. It turns out that one was true as it has been widely reported in the press today that he is indeed shagging a blonde lass from leyland.

Unbelievably given the rumours in the press there wasn’t any talk of trying to get rid of corbyn. People where more concentrating on putting on a united front and working towards getting an agenda together that will help voters choose to vote labour.

Even though there wasn’t a proper debate on trident, a lot of the people there where talking about it and seemed to have the same view as corbyn on getting rid of it. the money that is poured into keeping trident could be put to much better use in the nhs or our school system.

A lot of people where looking forward to helping out in the Scottish and local elections that will be happening next year. There will be a lot to put in place before hand and a manifesto to write.

All in all most people left with a feeling of unity and a new hope for fighting for the people in up coming elections.

Again i must say what I’ve written is rumour and I haven’t been able to find a proof of most of it but thought it was interesting stuff anyway

It’s been a month

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It’s been a month since I last wrote a short story for my son.

I’ve wanted to but I’ve found myself blocked.

While in part its cause I get an idea but can’t get it down on paper before I forget it, It’s mostly because I’ve had a lot of pain to cope with.

I Have been struggling with Sciatica and two teeth we’re doing everything we can to avoid root canal in.

Being in pain that strong pills don’t help with really isn’t conductive to writing. Today is the first day I’ve been able to sit and spend any time typing at the laptop.

After writing an earlier longer post today i had to go lie down for a while while the knee pain from the Sciatica eased before trying again.

So a brief bit about Sciatica.

Its Bloody horrible. No matter what you do when it’s at its worse you can’t get comfortable for sleeping or just resting. Forget walking. That just sends pain up and down your leg and spine.

Sciatica is caused by trauma to the sciatic nerve, could be a bump or a slip disc, or any number of things. In my case it was trying to do exercise. That’s right exercise causes bad things to happen.

I’m quite a bit over weight and want to lose it and get fit. So to that end since i can’t afford to join a gym or go swimming on a regular basis I’ve been using things around the flat as aids to exercise. I buggered the nerve jumping about to music, on a cushion so Mrs downstairs didn’t come up and complain again. Possibly not the wisest choice, but it was getting the heart rate up and i could feel it working muscles that don’t normally get much of a workout.

So treatment for sciatica. Well apart from getting the good painkillers there isn’t much you can do for it. Cold and hot packs don’t really do anything but make the area their applied to feel hot or cold.

Bandaging legs, like above doesn’t really do much. It doesn’t help with the pain, but if you feel weak at the knee it does help make you feel a little more stable while up and about.

Sleep, that’s for the weak and not in pain. I spent three days not sleeping before I got the really good pain killers, But as soon as they wore off I was awake again, hunting for where I’d dumped my specs so i can see where I’ve dumped the pills and bottle of water to wash them down with.

Thankfully things are looking up. I’ve been able to cut back on the pain killers and sleep is almost back to normal.

Here’s a couple of links about sciatica

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sciatica

http://www.nhs.uk/Conditions/Sciatica/Pages/Introduction.aspx

I hate dialogue

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I hate trying to write dialogue.

Trying to use it to get important points across and move the story forward.

I know its an important part of any story and helps pull the reader into the story and care about the main people in the story and the things that are happening to and around them. Going back to an earlier post on being dyslexic I think i should say that last sentence was changed as no matter how hard I tried i couldn’t spell the word i wanted right. Even the spell checker couldn’t get close to the word I wanted to us with the way i was trying to spell it.

The best writers out there manage to give the protagonists their own voice. one different to the one they use in the prose of the story. Different to the one they use in their normal every day to day dealings with people.

Tome reading back what I’ve written it sounds a lot like how I would say things and not the best way I could put information across at that.

I really admire writers who manage to write really good dialogue. Authors like Terry Practchett for instance. The dialogue he uses in his work is so spot on and truly helps to get the reader into the persons mind. Granny Weatherwax for instance is a very strong protagonist who when you read her lines you know its her saying it with out having to read she said it.

Or Sam Vimes. Another very strong protagonist that again you read his lines and know they could only be spoken by him and no one else.

Yes Pratchett has had thirty years practice at getting it right compared to my thirty days doing almost nothing but trying to do it right. so there is a huge gap in experience there.I always thought that dialogue would be the easy bit of writing as I talk a lot myself and like nothing more then listening to others talk. hearing the way they chose to put their sentences together and the words they chose to put their point across. Even people in the same family use different ways to say the same thing.

But writing it is much harder then I thought it would be. for all I enjoy listening to people talk I can’t seem to get my head around writing it.

It doesn’t really help that due to the Dyslexia Imp who likes messing with my brain when writing means i find myself changing the way I write as i can’t get the words i want to use spelt right.

Hopefully the family and friends I’m using to edit the stories I’ve drafted so far will help give the people their own voices in a better way then I can. We’ll just have to wait and see.

Trying to be an Author while Dyslexic.

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I’ll admit it took me a long time to learn how to spell dyslexia and i had to double check the spelling just now.

What a stupidly hard word to pick for a condition that in part means you have a tonne of trouble spelling.

Dyslexia affects different people in many different ways. I’m not going to go into all the ways as this post is an all about me post. Or more importantly how I’m finding trying to write stories while the dyslexia is on full “I’m gonna screw up your work mode”.

So a little bit about my form of dyslexia. I’m number blind. I have to work extra hard to do even the most simple of sums, often coming up with different answers to the same sum in a short period of time.My six year old son is better at maths then I am. And i can honestly say I couldn’t be happier for him. So far it looks like he has escaped the pain of any form of dyslexia. Fingers crossed it carries on to be the case.

I was in high school before i was told I had an unusual form of dyslexia. My reading age at the age of 12 was nineteen. I was reading at a Higher level then the school catered for. but being number blind and having very poor writing, spelling and grammar skills meant that i was dyslexic.

Cue lots of extra lessons at school to help me learn how to work around the problems I have. I had to go back to day one of school. Relearning how to make the shapes of letters, put them together to make words and learning how to take a deep breath before trying to spell things.

It was amazingly frustrating to be going back to the beginning, to a level lower then my six year old brother was working at at the time. But looking back now 17 years after i started the extra lessons I couldn’t be happier that i had the chance to do them.

I still have the problems but I’ve learnt ways to deal with it. And have the confidence to try to get past them to write stories and books for kids my sons age.

So spelling. Thank god for spell checker. Although there was more then once i totally broke it. To the point where my dad to break out his tools to fix it again. I can laugh about it now but at the time it was beyond anything i felt i could cope with.  How many people can say they broke spell checker to the point where the PC tower had to be taken apart to fix it?

Even now I get more red lines under wrongly spelt words then I care to admit too. If I didn’t have it on this blog then no one else would be able to read it with ease. But often i don’t know I’ve spelt the words wrong. To me it looks right and no matter how hard I look I can’t see where I went wrong.

But, I can tell when someone else has spelt something wrong. I may not be able to tell you how it’s spelt wrong or what the right spelling for that word is, but I know it’s wrong.

Grammar. What can I say?

Well to me I often don’t see it on the page. I often have no clue how to use it properly. How to structure a sentence so it reads better and makes more sense. Just where to put the punctuation in or which one I should be using.

Not a great problem for a budding author to have. But again there’s grammar check programmes out there. And like spell checker I have broken a few. So I often don’t use it. Instead relying on the editing skills of friends and family.

I have problems with getting the words out on the page. Often writing the same word two or three times. Not knowing that I’ve done it till either i read it back or someone else points it out. The notebook I’m using to write the stories in first before putting on the computer is full of useless repeated words crossed out.

For me it’s not worth giving into the dyslexia. I have all these ideas for stories that want to be told, So no matter how long it takes to get the words on paper, in the right order spelt and grammared properly I will overcome this bugger of a condition and get the stories out there. Hopefully they’ll help someone else with the condition see that despite it you can write for others to enjoy.

Every time I feel down about it and not getting very far writing I just remember that I have a little boy who’s waiting to hear the next story and tell me how I can make it better for him. Who gives me more ideas for stories, and asks for the ones i’ve finished the first drafts of to be read to him again. with or without the changes he doesn’t care. He’s just in love with the world I’ve created for him using his favourite mystical creatures. Dragons. In ways he’s never seen them before doing things he didn’t know they could do.

So if friends and family get fed up of editing for me I’ll just have to find new people to take up the mantel of helping me out.

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