Today sees my last day on the North Yorkshire break hastily instigated a week ago in a bid to escape the relentless stress consequential of living at my mum’s abode. Anxiety levels heightened by our increasingly fraught relationship, which’d reached a plateau where yours truly genuinely feared, if unaddressed, I’d undergo another heart attack.

That being said, I suspect spending four nights in a Thirsk cottage writing on my laptop, eating cheese and drinking wine is possibly not the most sensible countermeasure to avoiding further cardiac issues. With that in mind, the actual love I’ve for my cardio-vascular system is questionable at best.

All things considered, though, the serenity experienced in this agrarian, rural environment has definitely been cathartic. This heightened calm mainly manifesting from the fact I’ve been able to experience a few days without being subject to Mrs S commencing a sentence “We need to….” This the matriarch’s habitual prefix to request I undertake some task or other – A topic I broached in greater detail in the recent narrative The Royal We.

My time in the agriculture heartland enveloping much of North Yorkshire has unquestionably been idyllic. The subsequent tranquility, bar the sound of a tractor’s occasional circumventing of the cottage, the mooing*** and baaing of nearby animals, along with sporadic distant sounds of gunshot, my only aural companions….. The latter I’m assuming emanating from a nearby shooting range, not sourced by a combine harvester backfiring, or a farmer going loco!

*** – Bizarrely, this mooing even emanating from my canine companion Coco’s mouth. On the rare occasions she’s not eating, anyhow!….. Note to self – Explore if there’s any mileage in auditioning my lab/retriever cross buddy on the next season of Britain’s Got Talent….. I can see it now, Coco being introduced by Ant & Dec as the dog who can do impersonations of farm animals….. An metaphorical avenue perhaps worth exploring with dog lead and poop bags.


A friend yesterday text messaged submitting my residence within this scenic rural environment, along with its subsequently bequeathed serenity, must stir my creative juices, manifesting literary epiphanies aplenty…… I responded via the same medium ‘No, but I’ve had loads of f***ing ideas for blogs here!’

Seriously though, without wanting to sound arrogant, I find notions/ideas ordinarily flood to me regardless of the penmanship domain in situ. I’ve written these near 1,700 essays in a variety of locations. Literary locales including trains, planes, automobiles, oncology unit waiting rooms, neurologist waiting areas, my father’s hospice room, my seat at a Headingley Test Match and a variety of friends/family homes.

In not vain glorious enough to think, or even submit, I find identifying ideas for writing per sa unchallenging. However, I’d say epiphanies when writing these short partly fictional daily musings, do come relatively easily to me…. Does the literary quality matches the quantity? ….. Well, I’ll leave that enquiry for others to critique.

Anyhow, I need to conclude this chronicle at this juncture as Coco needs to go for a walk, and, who knows, possibly undertake more research for his farmyard animal impressions.

Thankfully, this short break has fulfilled my desire for a few days of tranquility. This impulse booking taken on a whim following the inception of heart twinges during a particularly fraught day in my mum’s company.

Consequently, as I sit now at my laptop with views of sheep, along with a car skirted by mud, I can almost hear my heart telling me “Thanks for the reduction in strain, Gaz!….. But for god’s sake will you stop eating so much f***ing gouda!!”

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