Stop, start, stop – repeat.

So, my inner inkwell runs dry and I spend a week pouring every kind of thought onto the scabby surface to loosen something, anything.

As usual, the solution presents itself while I’m looking away: a friend is tweeting daily reports on his bike tour around South Africa and he mentions a local chocolate drink favoured by athletes called – wait for it – SteriStumpie. Yes, I know, what were they thinking, right?

While replying that I can’t possibly drink anything that sounds like a freshly-bandaged wound, it hits me right in the inkwell: I’m battling to say anything because practically all of my life, bar the past year, is a newly-bandaged stump that I can’t even look at. In case you think I’ve lost my mind, this move to the UK had to be a cold, clinical one: give away the possessions, pack what you can carry and keep looking forward in case they find you hiding in the check-in lounge blubbering that you don’t want to leave.

The result? I can’t/won’t access practically all my terms of reference in case this firm, but fragile, walk I’m walking falters and I can’t move at all. Here’s all I can do at this precise minute.

Wanted to talk about a colour, how just above the old, worn rooftops, the dun bricks and drab tar, this Spring evening sky is a jewel. I understand why they’d describe it as the vault of heaven – this sky arches over me in a luminous sapphire curve. And tonight I heard a nightingale pouring song into the midnight blue.


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