Friday, 29 May 2015

Reading, Writting & Storytelling

As a child who didn't want to learn how to read and whose mother had a hard time to get me through the first grade tutorial book, I can say that just a few years later, I managed to become a real book worm. 

I loved and still love libraries. The smell of the books, the smell of the pages. I could read through the whole night if the book was right and if the story was interesting enough.
I remember the first book that I read all the way through in one sitting - ‘A Rose in Winter’ by Kathleen E. Woodiwiss. I read through the whole night. The only light I had was the street light outside my balcony window. I finished it when my alarm clock went off and I had to get ready to go to school. Nice. Being awake all night... I don't need to explain how I felt that day.
During my High School years I tried myself out as a writer. Why? In spite of my teacher who - for reasons unknown to me - hated me for the whole four years. I just prayed to finish High School ASAP to be rid of her. As my writing never satisfied her I started to send my stories to different magazines under a penname. And they were published with quite good reviews.
In my last year of High School I brought home another 'not quite good grade' for my essay. That was enough for my mother. She went to see my teacher - although I asked her not to - and threw some of my published stories on her desk. How she reacted, I don't know. Neither of them said anything to me.
"I don't care what they say about your stories. For me, you don't know how to write!"  That was all I got from my teacher the next day.
OK. That was it. It didn't stop me. I wrote for me. For my soul. And then for my friends, who encouraged me. I contacted some magazines and was published again.

When I met my future husband, he who encouraged me to find a publisher and publish the novels as books. Still I wasn’t sure if I was good enough.
Then one day I got a phone call. It was a lady from a publishing company who had got my contact information from the magazine I wrote for. She was interested in publishing my novels. I sent her one of my unpublished stories and after a few weeks she proposed a meeting.
They came to the meeting with an already printed book. She put it in front of me on the table. It was really unbelievable. Without thinking I signed the contract. It was pure luck I wasn’t fooled.

I was so proud. Although I’d used a penname so my actual name wasn’t on the book - I was so proud. I sent them a new novel and, a few months later, my second book was published. Wow! I sent them a third one. They published it too. 

And then… things went wrong and we discontinued our association.

I wrote several stories after that, but never tried to contact another publisher. I didn't see the point. Again, writing became a hobby that I loved.

Then my life changed, became busy and I never had enough time. I still don’t. But stories were, and still are, in my head, and they wanted out, so I had to find the time to get them down on paper.

A couple of years ago, I found one - unfinished. I had started to write it a long, long, long time ago. I’d tried to finish it two years ago on our summer vacation. Never did. So, I printed out what was written and gave it to one of my colleagues at work, who likes to read as much as I do.

Two weeks later she came into my office and cursed me, laughing. She went on and on without telling exactly what I did wrong. I was shocked.
"FINISH IT ALREADY!" she said.

“I will Polona, I promise…”

Thursday, 28 May 2015


After twelve years I have to face the fact that it's time to let go. To be honest, I feel awful. I feel like I'm losing a friend. And actually, I am.

We were together every day for at least two hours. We experienced many things together. Saw different places. It made me feel that I could be free. OK, so that wasn’t a true feeling, but it was nice.
But as it happens... it's time to let go. There's no other way. I don't know where you're going, and I don't want to know.

It gave me everything it could. I just couldn't ask for more. 

Time spent together: twelve years, two months and two days.
Places seen: half of Europe
Miles driven: 254,000 (or 408,300 km)
I know it sounds strange that I’m almost mourning for my Clio and I never thought I would, but I am. If I told you our whole story, you might understand the attachment I have, but I won't bother you with that.

I have to face it - it's gone and I’ve got a new 'friend'. I’ll need some time to get used to it, but I’ll be fine. I know it.


Friday, 22 May 2015

Sometimes... some days...

are not what they supposed to be. What they promised to be...

Those days are not fun, they are not bright, but I must live them through just like the other days... the 'fun' days... the 'bright' ones...

We all know it's hard but at least I have no choice. I have to get through those days too. There is no other way. At least acceptable for me.

My so called 'mantra' is hidden in this poem... Whoever is the Author, I thank him/her from the bottom of my heart.

Wednesday, 20 May 2015

Let there be light

For as long as I can remember, I have always preferred daylight or natural light in the evenings or at night. When I was a teenager, my parents (basically my mom) had problems with me, because my room was full of different kinds of candles. 

Small ones, tall ones, scent-free and scented, pure beeswax or just plain. Each candle had its own candlestick and yes, probably you've guessed it already, I lit them every evening no matter what. I avoided electric lights like the plague. 

Basically this shouldn't have been a problem at all, but... yes there’s always a 'but' somewhere in the story, isn't there? My room had a wooden ceiling and, well, my parents were frightened that I might just burn the house down... which I luckily didn't! 

As I said, I was always fond of natural light (although I'm not a morning person) and I am still fond of natural light. The house my family live in has big windows - French windows in the living room - to catch as much sun as possible, not just during the summer, but during the winter too. 
When I’m working at the computer, the only light I use is the light from the screen and nothing more, I don't need anything more. 
Probably one day, I’ll pay for this, but till then, I'll use as little electrical light as possible. 
My OH is fond of those energy saving bulbs. Geez, they get on my nerves. The light is just too bright, too unnatural, and, as I'm the only reason we haven't changed all the bulbs in our house, the kitchen in the winter is like a lightshow in a disco - OH always turns on the energy saving bulb, which, of course, I turn off and then turn on the 'old' one. And then he turns off the old one and turns... well, you get the picture. =)

But there is one more wish on my wish list, one I haven't fulfilled yet. I had and have many candlesticks, lamps and candles, 
although I don't light them so often now I'm a mom. I don't want to go through the same agony as my mom.
But there is one lamp I wish so much to have, and yes, I want the real thing, the proper size, and not just a souvenir to stand on my shelves...

 (photo taken from a web site:
It’s a ‘shoemaker's lamp’. 
These were used - mainly - by shoemakers as early as the 16th century, during the long winter evenings. 
The way this lamp works is simple. As you see, the lamp has four (or one or two or three) glass balls, filled with water, hanging on leather straps. In the middle is a lit candle - later they used kerosene lights instead of candles - and by angling those glass balls and by lifting/dropping them, light can be channelled to exactly where it’s needed.

There aren’t many of them left - the only authentic one is in a museum in our country.
I’ve looked everywhere - searched the internet and flea markets - but man, they are rare. Then finally I discovered that one wood workshop makes replicas. Unfortunately the proper-sized one is… not so cheap.

One day, though, I'll have one.