lividlili words | travel | life

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Sprung diddly ung

Without banging on too much in the land of cliches, can I just let you all know that spring has sprung-diddly-ung and it’s absolutely marvellous! Twelve hours of sunshine, warm sun, bright sky, cold beer. Before you know it we’ll be back at the sandpit bar laughing at kids falling...

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30 Years of Sundays

When Bogdan reads the classifieds, he sucks air in loudly through his teeth. Occasionally, when he finds something interesting, he’ll make farty noises with his lips. Ana, who has sat by his side for 30 years of Sundays, carries on with her knitting as her fury rises and rises until...

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From the First to the Last

Wilson takes his first breath on a Tuesday and suffers existential jet lag for the next 12 years. When his soul catches up with his body, he begins to wonder if it was worth the wait. He takes up smoking. After 3 semi-serious girlfriends and several one night stands (not...

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Jane Eyre at the Bristol Old Vic – Pt 2

“I can’t understand why this isn’t packed,” said the lady next to me, who was having a fabulous night. “I’m going to tell all my friends to come!” We were at the Bristol Old Vic, watching the second and final part of Sally Cookson’s Jane Eyre. In the first show...

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The Stone Cat

The stone cat sits outside the veterinary sciences building, a serious sandstone sentinel guarding the entry. Every student rubs its nose as they walk past. They have been doing it absently for 30 years. Massey was less absent than most. She walked up to the stone cat and said “you’d...

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The Invisible Woman – movie review

It should have been my dream movie: Ralph Fiennes, Kristin Scott Thomas, Charles Dickens, inappropriate love… but it wasn’t. I went to see The Invisible Woman at the gorgeous Little Theatre in Bath. The film tells the story of the affair between Charles Dickens and the (very) young actress Nellie...

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Women in Beer Ads

Many years ago, I wrote to Carlton United Breweries asking why they never showed women drinking beer in their ads. I pointed out that I and my friends were all professional women with good jobs, well-travelled, politically interested… and we all drank beer. Why then were we so grossly excluded...

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The Leaderboard

I met up with Jed down at the Swinging Abbey. He was already a beer ahead and immediately started waxing lyrical before I’d even sat down. “I’ve been thinking about religion,” he said. “Me and the missus went cycling on the weekend and we went past the Jehovah’s Witness Kingdom...

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Urgent Need for Latrine Light Innovation

The Humanitarian Innovation Fund (HIF) is offering a prize of $20,000 for an innovative solution to one of Africa’s biggest WASH problems: suitable lighting at night to make toilets safer. When people are forced to leave their homes by conflicts or disasters, they often relocate to refugee or displaced persons...

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Reading Women

Quite by accident this year I’ve almost entirely read books only by women. * Many internets-people have declared 2014 to be the year they read more women writers. Some are even going so far as to say they’ll only read women writers. Having usually been someone who says “I only...