Dear Diary; Each Step is Light

As Anadi and I walked the streets of London on Saturday, I felt more acutely aware than ever the truth of presence – of being where we are. Of acceptance that all that is, in this moment could be no other way; and that we make a difference in the world by our own presence.

We saw a helicopter overhead and surmised that there was protesting happening in London Town.

We decided to investigate and along the way saw many police officers – we asked what was happening…. We were informed that it was ‘The kill the bill’ protest… We walked miles but didn’t find the protesters…

I was aware, as we walked the streets together watching the world all around us, that freedom comes from within… If there is alignment within then all our actions make a difference… Whether we are on a path of protesting for something or sitting having a coffee.

External change comes from within and following that energy wherever it takes us

Following our own truth whatever that may be…

And knowing deep inside that Presence, is all there is.

In every moment there is limitless possibility – in every moment we can create 

We do create.

Our lives, unfolding with every breath.

If we are aware our our breath and we are able to feel the energy, the life force within us and all around us.

We can know deeply that we are that energy.

The energy that is creating always; it has created universes and is ever expanding…

As are we.

To return to the present moment, all we need do is take one conscious breath in, and breathe out anything we are holding onto – and then fully experience the space at the bottom of the breath before we breathe in once again.

In that space is the all pervading truth.

If we stay with this space then we are able to live beyond the duality of the mind

Which can dart hither and thither.

Instead we can direct the flow of this energy, and focus on what we want to think; rather than our thoughts thinking us…

It is this simple.

But as complex as the human mind with its diversity and madness when left unchecked.

And so with every step we take

With every breath we breathe

We can be still and know who we are.

The wars of the world of duality have always been here; trauma, drama, pain, anguish, division…

This is the normal state of madness of the mind.

The truth of who we are is silent

The witnesser to it all.

For a change in society – we must change within, because the irony Is that if we are trying to change the world, we have set off in the wrong direction

To change the world it is required that we are silent within

Totally present

Presence itself 

In each step

And then our path is revealed from this place…

We know when to speak or not to speak – to make a stand or not. 

Our path is clear from the inside out.

When consciousness flows through us we light the world

When we are a light unto ourselves then each step is clear 

Each step is light…

Whether we are shod or not!

Dear Diary; Our Soul’s journey

The sun is out, people are about, restaurants in the streets of London Town are full to the brim – outside anyway! 

Diners wrapped up warm out of the sun, coats and blankets and heaters ablaze…

In the sun the ambience resembling the South of Spain…

On Saturday we planned to breakfast in the Duke of York square and arrived to the sound of music,

People were gathered around two guitarists… ‘Oooh I said’, ‘let’s listen before we get our food’.

They started to play Zorba the Greek inviting the children to dance – and the child in me needed no further encouragement; she was off!

I danced to that tune, and then they announced ‘Sultans of swing’ by Dire Straits… I had to continue…

Dancing the morning away.

A little later we sat on the grass enjoying coffee and a small almond slice each… The queues for more substantial food snaked around and stretched back – so we chose to just sit basking like lizards with our ‘coffee and cake’…

But after an hour or so, hunger moved us to south Kensington where we immediately found a table in our favourite Lebanese restaurant – It wasn’t in the sun but… ‘The sun will arrive here soon’ I assured Anadi…

‘I watched the shadow grow as the sun moved further away’ – Anadi laughingly told me –  when my optimistic professions hadn’t come to anything! 

But we didn’t mind – we kept our coats on and enjoyed the experience… 

A breakfast outing that had turned into lunch…

Life unfolding in each moment

Fun in the sun – or not sun!

Fun

Life in motion

Happening now and now and now

Sunday

‘I’d like to see if I can run fifteen miles tomorrow, I had announced to Anadi over supper on Saturday night…

‘Okay, I’m up for that’ he’d responded…

The last time I ran fifteen miles barefoot was on May 12th 2018 when I arrived in Almuñecar on my birthday, having journeyed from the north coast of Spain to the south Coast without any shoes on!

I haven’t felt inclined to go that far since…

We jogged 200 metres from Anadi’s flat to relish our usual pre run pain au raison and coffee in the Duke of York square sitting at a table under a heater – perfect!

And then we set off…

A lap of Battersea Park, then along the river to the South bank, over Waterloo Bridge into Covent Garden and we were half way – I’m hungry I announced, and thirsty.

So we stopped for a mid run/ outing relax in the sun – Anadi drank a pint of lager ‘I feel like I’m in Greece’ he said… We adventured many miles there often stopping for lunch mid run/ adventure…

I enjoyed a juice and a little plate of Gnocchi with peas and spinach…

Barefoot running seems to amplify my hunger!

I ate my way across Spain…
After I’d been on the road three or so weeks, my appetite had grown – I would breakfast before setting off and have a second breakfast of tostado ( drenched in olive oil )con tomato y cafe con leche just 10k or so into the days distance! 

Covent Garden felt vibrant, sunny vital.

Humans together 

Being 

Together

Living 

In the flow of life

Life is consciousness

Consciousness is life

Dear Diary; A late Easter Blog

On Easter Saturday I made my way up the King’s road to find Anadi’s new flat – which by a miracle I did find – first time! Even going the wiggly (but shorter) back route.

We then made our way to the Duke of your square for a chilly but delicious outdoor breakfast…

Our legs covered with a shawl, we enjoyed the luxury of sitting at a table again…

The world opening up!

Anadi had been recommended that the Notting Hill food market is a fun place to visit … And so we decided to take our Saturday adventure there…

We made our way across Hyde Park and followed the sat nav’s instructions until we arrived – to find Notting Hill so alive with life and activity and vibrant energy – people being – food glowing – with vitality and colour, smelling so delicious.

I stood in front of the little shop that had played such a part in the film ‘Notting Hill’ and then wandered like Hugh Grant all through the Notting Hill market…!

I had bought Anadi some Tanqueray 10 Gin for Easter, knowing this to be a favourite, and also, that if I gave him a chocolate egg, it would most likely be eaten by me…!

Anadi was still on an Easter egg for Julia hunt – when miracle of miracles we stopped at a stall called ‘Trifling bitch’ selling cheesecakes and trifles and there we found my perfect Easter ‘egg’…

‘I was choosing a delicious chocolatey looking cheese cake and Anadi was telling the vendor he was still on an Easter egg mission…

‘I don’t need an easter egg now – this will be the perfect easter present’, I said

‘But I had a particular easter egg in mind’, Anadi was saying…

’What did you have in mind’?

‘Lindor’ – Anadi replied 

‘The cheese cake IS Lindor’ the man exclaimed!

The miracle of life – the fun of finding exactly what we want, but often not in the exact form we thought it might be… Which is why when asking for what we want in life, it is best to be quite general – because what we want can appear in ways we might not have quite imagined…

Like an Easter egg looking like an amazing chocolate Cheese cake with a Lindor Chocolate right in the middle of a chocolatey topping! 

We made our way back to Hyde Park and wandered past a group of protestors…

‘If you want to know what freedom looks like, that’s it’ a man called through a megaphone, pointing at me and my feet… 

I waved and smiled and my feet danced a little dance – and on we went…

Dear Diary;Transcend the Traps of the Mind

Thursday morning

Running on ouchie ground – one of the most profound meditations…!

Worth a try 🙂

It lends itself to being here and now

In the step

Feeling the ground beneath the soles, relaxing, breathing – being – as the prickly ground ignites sensations in the foot and all through the body

Now.

Good Friday afternoon

The atmosphere quiet and still – the street empty save for a few passers by; a family out for a bike ride, a couple wandering along, laughing – holding hands.

I sat in the sun on the step – the rays hot on my face – a little sun trap – only this morning Anadi and I had run in a day that felt icy cold… Into a bitter freezing wind, across the expanse of Hyde park green green grassiness. My feet are getting used to springs’ celebration with its mercurial magic make up!

Warm one minute, not the next!

No thought is possible; when we stay with the vertical line of presence and experience it fully

No horizontal thinking 

No past rumination or clinging on, or future fear – we can transcend the traps of the mind

Instead enjoying each step on the green grass, the smooth path turning to ouchie, the wide swathe of sand that sweeps through Hyde Park.

Feeling the earth beneath my feet.

A parakeet swoops in front of the magnolia bursting forth standing tall above the stream streaming and sparkling, which turns into a little waterfall.

Appreciating this beautiful park, which Henry  V111 acquired from the monks of Westminster Abbey in 1536, he and his court were often seen on horseback, galloping in the hunt for deer

They’re still galloping now

And so back home

Along the Kings Road

I left Anadi at Jubilee place to run back to his new flat and I carried on alone…

Running around without shoes on creates quite a sensation…

I passed a young boy – about eleven years… ’WOW’ he exclaimed, and then ‘Mum mum look…’

A young child asked loudly ‘Daddy – why isn’t that lady wearing shoes..?

I wondered what answer they received…

As I ran on

Some people look down at my feet like they are two little wild animals that have escaped…As if I ( above my feet) don’t exist… But sometimes they stop me, to ask what it’s like… ‘Aren’t your feet cold’? One man enquired this morning…

No, no, I laughed…

And on I ran.

In the joy of pure presence, that each step brings

Knowing that when we stay fully in the step the next will take care of itself

Dear Diary; Miracles Occur from this Place

‘Everything changes but God changes not’

I grew up with these words an integral part of my being…

I loved this hymn, we sang it often when I was at my junior school in morning assembly.

The words had a profound effect on me even as a young child… I was already aware of our unchanging nature which is always there – witnessing, watching…

Being

And as the years unfolded I learnt that when we experience the silence, the stillness within us and are able create the gap between the chatter of our mind and the concerns in our body – then we fully feel the flow of creation 

And know that everything is possible.

That we are eternal, there is no death… That we were never born and we can never die, and that we are here to experience the flow of life.

The source energy from whence we came is flowing always, the flow of life of which we all are a part of.

The hub of the wheel…

Us the spokes.

Sometimes we forget that we are all the hub and that we have created universes from that well spring and that we are the universes that we have created…

And so everything is possible.

We haven’t even approached tapping into the limitlessness of our potential, our energy that has the power of ten thousand suns…

Anadi and I were running about in the park this morning talking of these things. The magic of life. The power of fun, of joy of vitality.

It is all too easy to get consumed by the projections out into the world of despair and pain.

But when we have any awareness at all that everything is a reflection of us

So within – so without

Then all we must do is access the fun within the moments, and clear any pain that arises without attaching a narrative to it.

We feel to heal, as the emotions arise, we can clear clear clear – and resist the urge to loop the loop with our old stories – our old programmes and patterns; familiar but often without possibility 

So often we are pulled back into an abyss of fear and despair – just through reading a paper – or turning on the television…

If we do choose to read the news, it’s important to read it with a light touch

Believing nothing.

To your own self be true.

Watch your own inner barometer – when it strays away from the joy of the moment

This perfect shimmering moment, where all is well…

Then the process is simply to access again the barometer of fun, of the joy we feel in seeing the crocuses and snowdrops in the park, the magnolia bursting forth

The squirrels running

The green grass wet with delightful drops of dew

The sky blue.

A goose wandered leisurely across my path and I loved that goose, so perfect in every way.

For change in the world, for societal change we need a change in consciousness

to feel the joy, the love

To feel the fun

To connect to the vital life force within

Miracles occur from this place

Dear Diary; ‘I wish I’d lived True to Myself…’

Sunny spring day, warm too – a day full of vitality and possibility, a joyous spring day.

It knows nothing of distress or despair, depression or fear this day…

It just is, existence.

I lay on my back on a bench in the park… I was doing some crunches as part of the rather exacting circuit that Anadi and I have started to practise again on a Monday!

‘This is quite tough’ I had panted as we were half way through it… ‘Who set it?’ Anadi laughed…

But for a moment I was just lying on my back – I watched the little pink flowers on the tree above me…

Pink and lacy, fragile and bursting with life

Existence

We are it, we are part of everything – our unique vibration a part of everything -an integral part of everything – without us the world is incomplete, without our true expression, the world misses out.

When we know this we can be still, be at ease and be at home wherever we are.

Knowing that there is no need to stress or worry

Instead, we are here to just be, here and now.

A Labrador came trotting into the park, head held high, its gait strong and springy… A woman followed – a baby on the way, not long til it’s here…

‘He’s got a new friend coming soon’ I said as Anadi and I watched the dog enjoying the morning, the moment, as it investigated the park it knows so well, but every smell, everything new today…

She took out her phone and her dog stopped in front of her while she took his photo…

‘He posed for his photo’ I laughed.

School children started to amble through the park – some altercation happened between a teacher – who had appeared at the gate – with some of the young students, and then they were gone and the park was empty again.

The firm mud under my feet cool and delightful as the rope sped under me… My skipping seemed to have done a jump in improvement… 

Anadi and I laughed as we played together in the early spring sun .

On Sunday ( the day before) we ran about on the grass and in the woods in Richmond Park, Anadi took his Xero shoes off (sandals for barefoot running) and we both ran about with feet naked.

More playing.

We stopped to watch a small gang of male deer playing too; butting one another; running about; rolling in the mud…

How will they ever get clean? I queried…!

Life is a play, so why not play?

Have fun

Do what you truly want

The top death bed regret is this

‘I wish I’d had the courage to live a life true to myself, not the life others expected of me’.

Be yourself 

Or the world misses out

Dear Diary; Where are your shoes?

I stood in the cafe as I always have done, ever since 2011 – chatting to Armando – while he made me a smoothie and warmed my croissant…

Ten years have passed and the experience remains rich with connection and delight in seeing one another…

His drinks taste better than other drinks because of the love he puts into them.

His food more delicious.

I love going to see Armando in his cafe.

But whirling magic has happened… ‘When we are open you can sit there with your clients – in “your office” – as you always have… And you can give talks there too’ he continued, pointing to a room off the main cafe serving area that we were both standing in.

The flashing lights of magic grow brighter as we both find that we are having our conversation in a cafe in London…

For many years, I walked for about half a mile or so to Urban Ground cafe in Bolton road in Eastbourne from my flat near the sea…

Today I walked about half a mile from my flat near the river, to Chelsea Gardner Cafe to see Armando – we have been ‘beamed’ to someone new…

Now instead of the sound of the seagulls squawking as they swoop and fly high on the whirling wind, we hear the purr of Ferraris and Lamborghinis as they cruise by on the Kings road…

We discover that we both ‘landed in London’ in September 2019 – and here we are.

The magical threads of energy that weave and twist this awesome tapestry of life have seen our paths crissing and crossing back and forth. 

I am already looking forward to giving a talk there – in real life – with people all about, eating and drinking and hugging and sharing.

I wonder what talk I will give?

Maybe I will launch another book there too – as I did in Urban Ground once

And we will sit together again, my clients and me who like my ‘coffee shop’ offices…

And Armando will be there as he has always been.

As I wandered back down the Kings Road with my feast for lunch to eat in the Park, three builders stopped me ‘Where are your shoes..?’

We talked for awhile and laughed a lot too! And I described the joy and fun of wandering about without shoes on…

‘Living as you want to live’ one said ‘Thats good’

‘Feel the earth ‘ another said

‘Doing what feels good’ the third added….

And on I went with a smile on my face.

Love and let live…

Dear Diary; Becoming Running Barefoot

My feet asked to be naked again, and so of course I listened to their plea!

Through the winter months they were happily snug in vibram five fingers, but then the soul yearning began, to feel the earth beneath their soles – the pavements too; ouchie paths in the park – and the green grass – frosty grass, muddy grass.

There appears to be no reason for it, except for the joy, the fun, the freedom…

As Anadi and I made our way through Battersea Power Station on Sunday morning we started to overtake a small group of people…

‘Oooh aren’t your feet cold’ one of the men enquired and then continued ‘I’ve never seen anyone running in bare feet’… 

Anadi and I stopped running to chat; we wandered along with them for a while… 

‘She ran from the North to the South of Spain without any shoes’ Anadi said… 

‘And there was snow in the North of Spain in March!’ I laughed…

‘Of course it wouldn’t be odd In Africa – They don’t where shoes at all’ – the man mused, ‘I know, I was born there’, I replied – ‘Where ‘ he asked ‘West Africa’…

‘I lived there too’ he said 

‘It’s where it all began’ I replied….’I just love it – there’s no reason…’

When we do things for no reason at all, we are brought more immediately to the present moment, to the experience – walking bare foot lends itself to staying in each step… Being aware of each footfall. Noticing, feeling, touching being where my feet are.

The body can only be in the present moment.

The mind can skitter and scatter back and forth, a forgotten past, held onto, searched for, held and often relived again and again… A future point dreamed of or dreaded, by the mind… a persona created by an identification with thoughts…

But the body, is here and now. It can’t be anywhere else.

And so breathing in, we are here, now, experiencing the joy and vitality and the possibilities in this moment – and our feet as they touch the ground, there is only one step they can ever be in before they take another and another to arrive wherever they might be going

No where.

All our steps lead us nowhere at all, and everywhere – inwards to experience our true nature – and outwards in the experience of our unique energy with its powerful potential to shine bright and clear – often obstructed by the tensions and fears of the very thoughts themselves; or an attachment to an outcome that might never arrive, or give us what we hoped for once we have it in our grasp.

Journeying to a destination, a goal a new vision can be such fun, especially when we stay were we are, right here in the present moment.

Because everything goes in the end; except for our unchanging nature that was never born and will never die.

So the transitory things of life, are best enjoyed now, in this very moment.

Like walking in the park, every step precious; or stretching for excellence – for the pinnacle of success in our chosen field; here and now it is perfect – as we journey.

I met a musician once at Heathrow airport – about 15 years ago –  I was returning from the grand cayman and our luggage was lost – somewhere – I met the musician and a young woman at the luggage belt.

We waited together for three hours and became friends in that time, who have never seen one another again…

He had played as a professional musician all his life… He talked about how each event he practised for was a lifetime in itself… Each note he played, each day he practised, each concert he performed at was his favourite; was his whole life and then it was gone.

I recognised he was living what I knew to be true.

Each precious moment a note to be played, a step to be trodden, a breath to be taken.

Leading nowhere – and everywhere

And so I have taken my shoes off again and I am letting the steps take me where they will; becoming running, in the barefoot steps of freedom and fun… 

Dear Diary; Weeping Willow

I loved drawing and painting as a child, as many of us did… My friend Wends and I would plan ‘painting days’ during the holidays

I loved creating for my O level art and A level too…

On leaving school I worked for my running coach in the health and fitness business… I was on the verge of becoming an international athlete and so working for him seemed a way to support this journey…

I painted murals all over the walls of his gym

Athletes in motion from all different sports.

We moved a new property

It was huge!

Vast expanse of white walls my new canvasses –  more figures appeared, leaping jumping running throwing  – Lifesize – I loved creating these figures…

And then came my last piece.

A willow tree

It covered a whole wall in the relaxation area of the centre.

I cried all day one day, as I painted this willow, weeping with me.

My heart had broken, and as I cried and painted I promised myself that never ever ever would I let this happen to me ever again… Never again ‘would someone do this to me…’

It took me many years to heal the hurt within and open from the inside out

To stop looking outside for the healing or for more hurting.

I knew the inner journey was the route

But I still had to journey the journey in the so called outer realms and discover the long way round…

I had to live and learn through my own experiences, my own mistakes, my own life 

The cry the tears that lead to healing the hurt…

Another thing happened that day, when I finished weeping and the willow was etched on the wall – I stopped doing any art.

And I never ever started again.

Until now.

Whenever I work with on the phone ( rather than a video call)  I have always doodled… Recently the doodles have become more and more colourful and expansive.

I showed my client what had emerged during our conversation… ‘Why don’t you do those in a book’? She suggested

And so now I have my art book ! 

Full of colourful abstract pictures – it looks a little bit like my O level art…

But now, there is no reason at all, other than the joy of expression, the vitality of life  

Creativity

Us in motion

On the canvass of life

Dear Diary; Part of History

My sister Rosy was having a clear out

She got stopped in her tracks by a photo album of us when we were little

She sent me photos of the two of us with our mother and father – a couple of us out walking on the Jurassic coast near Golden Cap, one of us feeding the pigeons at Trafalgar Square… Me as a baby, sitting between my parents on the beach in Freetown West Africa where I was born.

Images of who we once were

Another life

So many lives lived even in one lifetime

A day later Anadi and I were on one of our Sunday adventures and I suggested a different route to usual… We were in St James park… ‘Let’s go along to the embankment’

Suddenly we found ourselves in Birdcage Walk right outside ‘The Institution of Civil Engineers”

‘Oh Wow’! I exclaimed…’This is where Daddy worked! He was the director of training and Education – he used to sometimes bring us here when we were little…’

I haven’t been to that  building for years and years and years – and then just ‘by chance’ I brought Anadi and I here on our run about, the day after I’d been looking at photos of that era…

The energetic play out of life is magical… No coincidences; energy vibrating and resonating and playing out on our own stage 

Bringing old photos to life

And so we ran on to Trafalgar Square too; where Rosy and I fed the pigeons

It never happened

Now 

And it’s all happening 

Now

And if we close eyes it all disappears and there is no thing at all

Just the Silence 

The stillness

Deep within our Being 

The eternal unchanging aspect, always there, even as the scenes of life come and go

The people are born and then die

The photos become faded and yellow – in the end no one at all will know who the two little girls with the pigeons all about them are or were…

All gone

I showed the pigeon photo to my young twenty something client  – I had just received them when she arrived for a session

‘Oh wow, black and white’ she commented…

‘Yes, I’m part of history’ I laughed…

Part of an era that is no more

I don’t exist then, any more

Now