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Showing posts from January, 2019

Somewhere Over the Rainbow: Life Lessons we can all learn from The Wizard of Oz

The Wizard of Oz has just finished showing at Storyhouse, Chester, I didn't get around to seeing it, but was thrilled to see it got rave reviews.I've always had a soft spot for The Wizard of Oz, it's the first musical I remember going to see as a child, I immediately fell in love, though I was terrified by the Wicked Witch of the West.
Based on Frank L. Baum's book, there's a reason people keep coming back to The Wizard of Oz, inspiring Wicked-another one on my list of shows to go and see, there are lessons contained within which, though subtle are very effective.
Dorothy lives with her family including her little dog Toto, early on in the film a huge storm ensues where - in her world, the house takes off with the force of the wind and lands far from home.Dorothy wakes up after banging her head to discover she is in another land.Her family are nowhere to be seen, though Toto is by her side .
Before long, we meet the terrifying Wicked Witch of the West and learn Do…

Reality TV: Celebrity Big Brother, Pop Art, and how we can all be Famous for Fifteen Minutes

Celebrity Big Brother recently announced its last series.It's fair to say, like The X-Factor, it is way past its peak.I haven't watched either for years now(and currently don't have a TV), YouTube is my key to catching up on the visual treats everybody is talking about these days.
However, I remember when the first Big Brother -a reference to George Orwell's novel '1984' one of the cleverest books I have ever enjoyed by the way-launched back in the summer of 2000. Me and my friends had finished Sixth Form and were working summer jobs, saving the pennies for starting Uni that autumn, and partying like there was no tomorrow. None of us had real responsibilities, just a long hot summer in front of us, punctuated by this new TV show everybody was talking about, reality TV not at that point even a genre or phrase used in popular culture.
Me and my friends had got our A-level results the day the Nasty Nick episode was aired, some thrilled, some disappointed.We had b…

Independent Chester: My Top 5 recommendations

I love city life, but I do feel in many modern cities now, there are so many chain bars/restaurants/coffee shops, everywhere starts to look the same. I come from a small town in West Somerset, and although like most places now they have the usual chain coffee shops, and supermarkets, it's the independent places which I find give the best service, are often the best kept secret, a jewel in the crown as it were- plus if you support a local business, you are really making a difference to your town/village/city.
I have lived in Chester since 2009 -can't believe it will be 10 years next year- and although it is a small city, it is packed with things to do, places to try, and people to meet.I've always found people in the North West so friendly and warm, and Chester definitely has a different vibe to cities like Liverpool or Manchester.I adore all three, but scratch beneath the surface of Chester and you'll see there's far more to Cheshire Life than Chester Races -tried…

From Woe Woe Woe to Ho Ho Ho: Mental health update

I've always loved Christmas.  Even though I eventually found out *spoiler alert* that Santa Claus wasn't real(which I subsequently told my school friends straight away, bet their parents hated me), the magic never went away for me.  And it was never really about the 'stuff', I was never the sort of child to ask for lots of expensive presents, I was always happiest in activities which allowed me to engage my imagination, like reading books, going off on adventures with my friends, and writing stories(my mum says when I was about five I wrote a story about a man whose hands were made of saucepans -not surprising given my obsession with food!)

I think my Grandparents on my Mum's side both grew up in Children's Homes, they always made such a fuss about Christmas, we never had a lot of money but they taught us that it was most important to all be together, though my Grandad did always forget to take the price off things, which my Granny would made sure to tell him a…