The Secret Alley

Do you know about the secret alley, off Smithdown and along the back of Garmoyle? What Lawrence Road turns into one it’s crossed Wellington and stops being a road? Well you do now, and it was looking both beautiful and useful this morning when I walked home along it, from picking up a delivery at …

On Boxing Day Afternoon

I like these two days. Even though Sarah and I don’t do Christmas we don’t usually do anything else particularly special. Unless you count living quietly together, reading novels and doing nothing at all that looks like work. Which we definitely do count. So these are days with space. To do the things we might …

On Christmas Morning

The neighbourhood and the almost ritual walk around it that has defined my year. In lockdown times walking into town has been only occasional but this walk, around the local streets, has been my meditation and my breathing space. From home down to Smithdown, along Penny Lane to Greenbank Road, through Ibbotson’s Lane, round the …

On the Arrival of Hope

In which hope arrives, and is then exercised Hope is a contagious emotion, and in a time of contagion I’ll take all the hope I can grasp. Like the hope and faith in the future I’ve been grasping all year from being so much in nature, the hope and belief in democracy I’ve nurtured and …

The Far End of Queen’s Drive

In all the lockdown shrinking of our worlds this year I nearly forgot to go and look at what happens to the far end as every autumn begins. This is the far end of Queen’s Drive, Liverpool’s major ring road. It starts all the way round the city in Bootle and for most of its …

Home Life During a Pandemic

2nd May – Week 6 Sarah’s not here with me this morning as I begin the writing of this sixth lockdown letter from home. And that’s because even though it’s a Saturday she’s at a funeral, and will be at another tomorrow, another on Monday, and on they go. Busier than she’s ever been, along …