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This is a place we visited on 2nd September 2017.

This is a place we visited on 2nd September 2017 to mark twenty years since the death of my father.

This place, where he had spent the early years of his life, unknown to us. Where my father’s father had parked their wagons. Fertile land where the family could grow. Quiet land where the family could sleep.

Father’s barefoot games. Here in the ruins of Tilty Abbey, sacked by King John’s men on Christmas Day 1215 — because it’s our land.

Why did we come here? For a photograph, to write home? To dream of home? This was a gypsy home, but the records won’t show it.

A sacked site is a sacred site. Between 1500 and 1800, an uncountable amount of ‘Gypsy edicts’ were passed across numerous European countries declaring the Roma people homo sacers. How did my father’s father know this land? How did he judge it safe?
Never to go home again,
for this was home!

 

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Copenhagen, November 2017.

In the past twelve months I’ve lived in three different cities. I finished my Masters degree in August and almost immediately began an English teaching qualification (which I’ll  also finish in two weeks). It’s often felt like this is all happening to someone else, although I don’t mind this feeling. Something is two steps ahead and leading the way, but it might well be me.

Rising Slowly (I)

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There was some fog in parts of south west England by dawn on the 8th, following a night when some light rain fell across Ireland and west Scotland, and also elsewhere in parts of England and Wales. The day was largely dry – but with some further light falls of rain across Ireland and west Scotland – and in a few other areas. Except in parts of south west and central south England it was a rather cloudy day and quite mild in some south areas of England. (Hurn 19.3C, Lerwick 10.4C maximum, Lerwick 4.1C minimum, Giants Causeway 5.0 mm, Exeter Airport 8.1 h.)

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The 6th dawned with warm, misty conditions in many parts of Ireland, Wales and Cent and S England; minimum temperatures overnight were in the range 15-18C in many parts of Cent S and SE England. Much of England and Wales had sunny spells during the day and became hot, locally very hot. Thunderstorms affected some areas, especially East Anglia and NE England during the day, and Lincolnshire and NE Midlands in the evening. Scotland and Northern Ireland were mostly quite warm and fairly cloudy, with some widespread rain overnight and in the N and W during the day; the rain moved slowly E’wards during the day. (Heathrow 32.2C, Fair Isle 12.8C maximum, Altnaharra 5.1C minimum, High Mowthorpe 35.4 mm, Jersey Airport 13.8 h.)