Clouds

Clouds. Surprisingly, the first image that popped into my mind at this prompt was a bright blue sky, with a wholesome white cloud.

A summer cloud, if you will.

It’s surprising. I would have expected my first thoughts to be dark, grey and miserable but my mind conjured out something beautiful.

I thought clouds and I thought blue sky.

I thought blue sky and I thought summer.

I thought summer and imagined staring up to the heavens.

I imagined staring up and began dreaming of free falling.

Of being caught by a soft fluff of white clouds.

The science student within me scoffed.

Impossible.

But I quietened her down for the sake of fiction.

What if the clouds could catch me.

What if I could lie within them, floating along.

Take a book with for company.

Tour the world, dodging planes and birds…

There would be marshmallows.

I don’t know why, there just would be.

My mind is… strange.

It brings me stories, illogical and impossible.

 

 

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Immigrant

She was an immigrant.

She came to her adopted home in childhood.

In the first few weeks, she was just like a Tourist. Five years old and wide eyed at this new world.

Everything was awe-inspiring.

The red buses.

The busy roads.

The new school.

The new friends.

She watched it like an outsider.

Until it became her own.

It didn’t take long.

Her original accent was quickly swallowed away,

Chased away by the laughs;

(Can’t you speak properly?).

She learned to speak properly.

Made friends at school.

Went to the park.

Went to the corner shop.

Used public transport.

Started calling this place, home.

She can remember the day her citizenship officially began,

remembers the small white office.

The friendly man.

Her mum holding up her hand.

Speaking words.

Pledging allegiance.

She wanted to do it too.

They said she didn’t have to,

with a laugh.

She was far too young.

She remembers being happy.

Remembers opening the envelope.

Staring at the red passport.

A tiny picture of herself inside.

Hair tightly pulled back into a nice, neat pony tail.

She remembers her cousins back on the other side of the world,

laughing at her excitement.

Teasing her.

This will always be your first home, they said.

She went back there of course, over the years.

To visit.

She doesn’t know when she stopped calling there home.

But she knows each time she went back,

she felt more

and more

and more

like a tourist.

Her adopted country was now her home.

And she studied there.

Volunteered there.

Worked there.

Paid taxes there.

Voted there.

She lived and laughed …

but she knew at the end of the day,

it wouldn’t matter.

It wouldn’t matter if she stayed for another five years,

or ten,

it wouldn’t matter if she stayed for the rest of her life,

she wasn’t born here.

She was an immigrant.

That word, thrown around like a curse.

And so to some, this place could never be her home.

(“Go back to where you came from!”).

She is

She’s tired of making decisions.

Having to choose.

Having to defend.

So instead, she chooses the weightlessness.

Lets the current carry her where it must.

Becomes slave to the winds.

And when it rages, she will rage.

She will thrash and she will howl.

She will break through the boulders.

Wreak havoc,

Unchain her emotions,

let them flood.

Let them be free.

And when she is spent.

She will continue on her journey.

She will glide smoothly.

Enjoy the sights,

the smells,

the sounds.

She will create her own music,

the soft whisperings

of a calmed river.

Some will ignore her.

Others will travel miles to get,

just a glimpse.

Some will protect her.

Others will strive to,

tear her down.

Some will herald,

her as purity.

Others will damn,

her as pollution.

She is neither.


In response to the prompt:Water

It would never be enough…

Opening Line

It was the first time, and it wouldn’t be the last.

She was only twelve, with a bob-hair cut, uneven fringe and a knack for making people uncomfortable.

Her dad said she stared to much.

“Wotcha staring for again, girl?”

Her mum said she read too much;

“Never gonna get yourself a lad that way, girl”

It was girl. Never, Emma. The name they had gifted her.

But girl, girl, girl.

She rolled her eyes at them a lot, when they weren’t paying attention – which, less face it, was quite often.

They hardly noticed if she was in the house or out. That’s probably what led to the first time. The fact that she knew no-one would be waiting. No-one would be worried. They would probably be too high of their heads to notice if she came in late. And it’s not like the teachers would care that she’d missed classes. It wasn’t that type of school – not a “have dreams, work hard” type of school. It was more, “these kids are doomed anyway, who cares what happens to them, as long as we get paid?” kind of school.

So she did it.

She caught the train.

And traveled.

Manchester to London. All by herself.

She sat and stared out the window. Stared and stared. Dreamed and dreamed.

(Hid, from the ticker inspectors, when the time came).

She never got off the train. Just traveled to London. Then waited for the train to return home.

She never spoke to anyone the entire day.

Never ate anything, save the chocolates she’d swiped from the corner shop that morning.

But she felt alive.

She had saw things.

Seen the city and the country through a small window.

Seen the business men and women on their way to work.

Seen the mothers cooing over babies, parents shouting at kids.

Seen teenagers bunking of school.

Couples fall asleep. Leaning on each other.

She had saw things.

And in her twelve year old mind she decided.

Enough.

It would never be enough.

This life her parents were living, it would never be enough for her.

She wanted to be a business women, typing away quickly and having important calls.

She wanted to be a mother, cooing over her child.

She wanted to lean on somebody.

So she would. She decided. She wasn’t sure how. She didn’t care how but she would get it. She would get it all.

And she did.

She most certainly did.

At twenty-four, the relationship came.

At thirty-two, she was managing director.

At thirty-five, a mother.

She had it all. She could afford train tickets now. Could afford a car to drive through those cities and towns. She had it all.

But still…

Every now and then.

She would tell a fib.

Just a small.

White.

Lie.

Nothing too serious.

She had important meeting. She had a family engagement. She had something or other.

And then of she would go.

On to the train.

And she would stare out that window. And she would watch the world go by. See the cities and the towns. She would watch and watch and watch.

She was just like those business women now.

She was just like those mothers.

She was just like those partners.

Enough.

She didn’t know, if it would ever be enough.

She sighed.

Maybe, she thought, maybe her secret excursions should last for longer.

Maybe one day, she she should get off at London.

Forget the return train, the husband, the baby, the business.

Maybe…


 

Written for the discover challenge prompt – this prompt has led to the creation of a whole story line in my head. My mind is filled with Emma stories! Now just to get them typed out…

So we’re leaving the EU

So we’re leaving the EU.

For most of the duration of the referendum campaign I was confused. Lies, fear, warnings – that’s all there was. I was angry. I had (very naively) thought that the government would educate us – present us with the facts; here, these are the things the EU does well; here are some of the not so good parts. Now make an informed decision.

Unfortunately, that didn’t happen. People were deprived the right to an informed choice. Listening to the news and reading the newspapers, all I found was what felt like threats from the remain camp and disputed “facts” from the leave side. It was only after I did my own research and started fact checking, that I made up my mind – I was voting remain.

But this wasn’t until very close to the day of the vote.

For the majority of the time leading up to the vote, I really doubted that I would even turn up to the polling station. I didn’t want to vote for something I wasn’t sure about.

The news called it”the most important vote of a lifetime” but a lot of the time, it felt like a game being played by ex-Etonians.

Schoolboy friends suddenly enemies.

How many times did I have to read about Michael Gove and David Cameron, no longer having family get togethers. Their wives were no longer talking, reported one newspaper.

Or else it was about how Boris Johnson and David Cameron had been rivals since their school days. Finally, Boris was making his move. 

And then thrown into this mix of ‘elite rivalries’ was the xenophobia.

Nigel Farage with his bus printed with lies and his smug racism.

Immigrants are too blame for everything, apparently.

Can’t get doctors appointment? Blame the immigrants.

Lack of housing? Blame the immigrants.

Can’t find a job? Blame the immigrants.

It doesn’t matter that the NHS is underfunded or that doctors are under pressure. It doesn’t matter that our government hasn’t been building enough homes since the 70’s. Forget that unemployment is actually at its lowest.

Forget all that. Any problem you have – is down to immigrants.

It made me mad.

I don’t fully agree with everything the European Union does. I do believe it needs reform. But it has also made lots of very valuable contributions to this country.

Maternity pay, protection of the Cornwall coast, science research funding (to name very few).

There were so many things that could have been discussed during this referendum but the focus was only on immigration and EU regulations.

And yes, there are a lot of EU regulations. However, leaving the EU doesn’t necessarily mean we won’t have to follow these. If the UK wants to do trade with the EU (which it really, really does) then it will have to follow EU regulations for its exports.

And honestly, does anyone really believe we’re going to get access to the free trade market, without free movement?

*Sighs*

I have a lot of emotions regarding Brexit.

I feel angry.

I feel sad.

Angry because of the way the campaigns were held. Angry because Nigel Farage could say the campaigning had occurred “without a bullet” (and so soon after Jo Cox’s murder). Angry because I’m listening to stories of racist attacks  occurring with greater frequency. Angry because the economy is decline. Angry because it looks like the next PM will be someone leaning to the right. Angry that Brexit is being described as “independence day” – the irony of this is just… Ahhh! The UK was not colonized people – it did the colonizing.

I am sad too. Sad because of the way the campaigns were held. Sad because Jo Cox seems like she was an amazing MP, but we never hear about MPs like her until tragedy strikes. Sad because it seems like a lot of people were uninformed. Sad because as angry as I am at the result… it make sense in a way…

When life is hard and people give you someone to blame. Tell you this is the cause of all your problems. This is the way to improve your life. You take it. It’s easy to take it. And I think that’s what a lot of people did.


Daily post: Deprive

Of making the most of opportunities

It’s strange how so much can change in just over a week.

Last week, I saw an advertisement for what seemed like an exciting opportunity. It was the day of the deadline.

I’m usually the type of person to mull over things, assess pros and cons, do as much research as I possibly can, before I make a decision. For once though… I was slightly spontaneous. Slightly, because I still  did do a little research but for me at least, this was spontaneous.

As soon as I sent of the application though, my stomach began to churn.

I’m a stickler for details an I didn’t know exactly what I had just applied for me. What if it was something completely outside of my comfort zone? What if it was too tiring to take on another thing? What if…what if...

The ‘what ifs’ swam around my mind until I concluded, that actually I was being quite egotistical.

What even made me think I would be chosen?

Seriously, I had impulsively applied – I had rushed the application in a mad excitement – surely, I wouldn’t get it.

So it was fine.

I could stay in my comfort zone. All was well.

But then by the next morning I thought, but no, I really want this.

Only for a couple of hours later to think; no, I don’t, I would be terrible at this. 

Basically, my mind was in an argument with itself.

And then somehow I got called for an interview.

And my brain, heart and stomach went into turmoil. I couldn’t decide if I wanted to be successful or not. Actually, I think that deep down I knew that I did want to be successful but the doubts about whether I would actually be able to, made all that passion to succeed hide away.

I had to take a couple of hours of work for this interview. How stupid, I told myself. Taking time out for something that would never lead anywhere.

But you have to try, another part of me was saying, you can’t not.

So the day came.

And it didn’t start of well.

I missed my bus.

So I had to walk.

I was already late so I assumed I wouldn’t get there in time.

Then when I got to the area where I was supposed to be, I realised I didn’t know where the building was.

I also realised my hijab was slowly unravelling. I’d lost a pin on the way.

The button on my blazer had broken off.

I felt a mess.

But when I looked up, I found that the building was right in front of me. I looked at the time and somehow I was ten minutes early.

Suddenly, I became resolved to do the best I could at the interview.

And I did – and I was selected.

Initially, when I found out I was selected I was… happy, excited, amazed before the self-doubt began to plague in – you won’t manage this, you can’t do this, it’s not for people like you. 

Those thoughts overtook my mind.

Luckily, though I managed to (mostly) squash them down.

A couple of days later and I was already beginning this new project. And it was amazing. I can’t put into words how happy I am that I applied. I met great like-minded people, I’ve already learnt so much and I know I will continue to do so.

There’s definitely going to be parts of this job that I know I will struggle with. That will force me out of my comfort zone but actually, I’m…looking forward to it. I want to be challenged and I want to be pushed into improving my skills. Sometimes of course, that enemy of mine, self-doubt, reappears and question why I was chosen. I shouldn’t have been, right? But more and more, I’m squashing those negative emotions down. I’m going to make the absolute most of this opportunity.

That said, it’s not easy.

This past week I’ve worked over six days and well-over 40 hours. As a result, I am so, so exhausted.

This also explains why I haven’t been blogging as much and why I didn’t complete the quotes challenge. It’s about 4 days late I think but here’s my final quote:

Missed opportunities are what sleepless nights are made of...: Inspirational Quote, Motivational Quote, Lifequote, Favorite Quote, Life Quote, Noregret, Wise Word

I know for a fact, that had I not applied for this opportunity, I would definitely have had regret.

Go do them. Adventures in Missions www.adventures.org World Race www.worldrace.org: Charm Things, Bucketlist, Things You Ve, Thought, Inspirational Quotes, Good Advice, Bucket Lists


Thanks again Anjali for the Quotes Challenge nomination (I’m so sorry for the delay!).

My three final nominations are:

Faithmillie

The rules:
  1. For three consecutive days, you have to post a quote.
  2. Acknowledge the blogger who has nominated you.
  3. Each day you have to nominate three different bloggers.
  4. Let the bloggers know you have nominated them.

 

The Quote Challenge – Day 2

Today is day 2 of the quotes challenge. Thanks again Anjali for the nomination – I love quotes 🙂

The rules:

  1. For three consecutive days, you have to post a quote.
  2. Acknowledge the blogger who has nominated you.
  3. Each day you have to nominate three different bloggers.
  4. Let the bloggers know you have nominated them.

Today’s quote:

The above quote by Neil Gaiman is one of my favourites about writing. On the good days, writing really can be just as easy opening my laptop and typing away. I love these days. Unfortunately, they are usually few and far between. More often my head is filled with words that just won’t come out, sentences already formed that my hands refuse to type…(I’ve talked about this more in my ‘mind-writing’ post).

Writing really can be that easy and that hard. And I love it. The good days when writing is easy and therapeutic and cathartic, always make up for the other days spent staring at a blank screen…

Anyway, today’s nominations are:

A Writer’s Refuge

Mia Xing

Elan Mudrow

Looking forward to reading your posts!