Comments for Jackie Morris Artist The balance of life as an artist and writer living and working in Wales: or, how to ignore housework. Wed, 27 Jul 2016 07:51:56 +0000 hourly 1 Comment on Big dog, little dog by Angela Sykes Wed, 27 Jul 2016 07:51:56 +0000 I love the cat (and dog) walk posts and the photographs are sublime. Please continue to share on the blog. Each walk and the images and thoughts from it are so different. Can’t wait for the book you are working on about the nature words.

Comment on A rock and a hard place by Jackie Sun, 24 Jul 2016 10:30:26 +0000 Thanks Helene. I could never pass a citizenship test. And if being British is to be like Nigel Farage, ignorant and bigoted and hypocritical then I don’t want to be British.
And yes. Falcon Boats are brilliant. They take you out to a better world. I just hope this world gets the protection and respect it needs in this post Brexit era.
I can never understand the ‘superiority’ people who speak only one language feel. I struggled at school, and have only English myself, but love hearing the mother tongues of others, the ways of shaping the world and phrasing. And the stories of people from far away from where I was born. And I love that the language of images can cross so many of the artificial barriers and boundaries set by people.

Comment on A rock and a hard place by Helene Sun, 24 Jul 2016 09:49:21 +0000 Hi Jackie,
I met you briefly in Bath last year when you were signing your book ‘Queen of the Sky’. I looked up your blog afterwards and love your photographs. Your new puppy reminds me of Bill:
Thank you very much for your balanced post. It’s thanks to people like you that foreigners like me learnt English and moved to the UK, and that we are still here: I just wished there were more of you! My workplace predominantly voted ‘Leave’, for all the wrong reasons: ‘France and Germany are exam factories, it makes it more difficult for British students to get into the uni they want and to get firsts’; ‘my daughter didn’t get a job in London because they gave it to a foreigner’ (same person as above, who incidentally has been renting rooms in her house to foreign students for years, and once tried to run a B&B in a sunny European country, and miserably failed as she didn’t speak the language); ‘if foreigners leave, house prices will fall, which means my husband and I can buy more BTL houses and flats’; ‘foreigners don’t want to integrate, they only marry among themselves’.
There was a lot more verbal abuse in the weeks leading to the referendum and immediately after, though it’s calmed down a little. Many British people think that you need to marry one of them or to get into a relationship with a Brit in order to acquire the right to stay here, so I am getting a lot more hassle from the men (not marriage material I am afraid, I do have fairly high standards  ). I am sure that if I was a big Black male, I wouldn’t get the advice to ‘get involved’ with a sweet English rose.
What strikes me is that a lot of the ‘Leave’ voters seemed to expect that EU nationals would leave straight away as a result of the vote, because they are not wanted here. I think that in our society people are too much preoccupied with what others think of them, and how popular they are with their peers. Take that gunman in Muenchen: if he had been able to brush off the bullying from his school colleagues (easier said than done, I agree), nothing would have happened. Young people especially seem to have very, very fragile egos, and little self-esteem, but I also know quite a few grown men and women who have extremely narcissistic personalities and constantly need their egos massaged. Some of my colleagues got really offended when I refused to be friends with them on Facebook: I am not in the business of collecting ‘friends’, and I am not going to leave the UK or resign from my job just because a majority of my colleagues and neighbours voted ‘for foreigners to leave the UK’ (which was not the question asked in the referendum anyway – maybe people should only be allowed to vote if they have passed a language and citizenship test?).
A couple of years ago, when travelling on the Eurostar, I met a British lady (ethnically an Eastern European Jew, with relatives who are USA and Israeli citizens – don’t think she was must impressed with the results of the referendum, especially as her work takes her to Europe quite a lot). She was an opera singer and had an audition in Paris the next day. I met her before the audition (sadly, closed to the public) and felt quite ashamed at the attitude of the other applicants. Basically, they were glaring at one another, visibly trying to destroy their competitors’ self confidence, give them stage fright, and maybe induce them to turn heels. After the audition, I apologised to this lady (who hadn’t glared back at the others but actually tried to be friendly and make small talk with them) and she said it was quite all right, the atmosphere at auditions was often tense, and she had worked on developing what she called a strong ‘sense of self’ so that she would not get intimidated in such circumstances. I think a lot of people out there need to develop a stronger ‘sense of self’, and I don’t mean by rejecting ‘others’ and clinging to nationalism, or an image of ‘how great Britain was in the past’. I think Farage and the likes pandered mostly to people who felt insecure and clung to their Britishness to give themselves an identity and a sense of worth. They can’t define by what they ‘have’ because they have little assets, they can’t define themselves by what they ‘do’ because they are retired or out of work, all that remains is what they ‘are’, i.e. their childhood, their roots, their family tree (just don’t go too far back, you might find quite a lot of foreigners in there!). They seem afraid of everything and anyone that is different, and as a result, they also fear change: they want everything to remain the same. Just try and get a colleague to sample some ‘foreign’ foodstuff or dish…
Do you know whether I would be a welcome guest on Falcon Boats? Unfortunately not this year (saving my weekends and my money for the Life in the UK and the IELTS tests). I really loved the pics of Ffion and the hawk (ever seen the movie ‘Ladyhawke’?), and if she can do a falcon overboard routine, she must be quite a capable sailor. Kudos to her for being a RNLI volunteer too.

Comment on Big dog, little dog by Jackie Sat, 23 Jul 2016 08:29:29 +0000 I think it was a she. So delicate, beautiful. Gorgeous fresh red. And she was swift of foot and canny too.

Comment on Big dog, little dog by Bernie Bell Sat, 23 Jul 2016 08:05:41 +0000 What a GRAND world we live in!
Thanks for taking us there, Jackie, you and the beasties, wild and ‘domestic’.

Comment on Big dog, little dog by Ruth Keys Sat, 23 Jul 2016 06:47:13 +0000 What a lovely blog post, it made me feel I was there with you. Ivy and Pi are a joy to hear about. Thank you for sharing.

Comment on Big dog, little dog by Terra at Terragarden blog Fri, 22 Jul 2016 23:20:44 +0000 I am so glad the fox escaped and hope he found a meal soon, after all that running. Also glad your dear dog made it home in one piece, no adders or worse. You will find inspiration for a painting here, for sure.

Comment on Words of Welcome by Bernie Bell Thu, 21 Jul 2016 17:03:51 +0000 Witter, witter, witter
Like I said about politics – it helps if it starts with a generous attitude when we’re young, at home. It’s harder for folk to learn, if that wasn’t the case, but still possible, with good intent.
I grew up in Bradford, Yorkshire, from 1955 to 1974. My group of friends included – Me – Irish parents, Mick – father Ukranian – left the Ukraine to avoid the Nazis – Philip – Scots descent, Kundi – Indian, Jani – Malayan, Nina – Malayan, Tony – Indian, and Peter – English!
That’s a good start for anyone when it comes to accepting people just as people.
And, you mention food – as a child, birthday parties meant absolutely delicious food of all kinds – especially as a school friend’s Dad ( Polish ) had set up a delicatessen when he, too arrived in Britain, fleeing the Nazis.
There have been waves and waves across the years, and each wave adds something to the mix.
And…. music, and….. and….. and……. and……………………
OK, I’ll stop now. It’s something I feel strongly about.

Comment on Words of Welcome by Bernie Bell Thu, 21 Jul 2016 16:42:47 +0000 And here’s a poem written by Mike:-

Relativity for Beginners

If East is East
And West is West
Then where, my dear, is here?
It’s North of South
And South of North
And far from nowhere near.

If Then was Now
Then tell me how
Tomorrow never comes?
And some time soon
Today has gone
And the future’s not begun.

If I to You
Am you, not me
Then tell me who are we?
To them, they’re us
And we are they
To us, we’re me and thee.

So Where and When
And who you are
Depends on where you stand
So take another
Point- of-view
And join me hand-in-hand.


Comment on Words of Welcome by Bernie Bell Thu, 21 Jul 2016 16:39:01 +0000 When I was a student, some friends of mine had a hand-made sign over their fire-place which said “If you lived here – you’d be home by now”.

And – a wee tale –
Years ago I went to Crete for a holiday. I stayed at a small family hotel. I had no Greek, and the Granny of the house had no English, and yet, we’d sit on the balcony, watch the world go by, smile at each other about certain things we saw happening around us – we just – understood each other, somehow. Kindred spirits.
I’ve managed in quite a few countries without my having the language – smiling and good intent goes a long way.
It’s easy enough, it really is, just good intent, smiling, not being afraid. Being what folk used to call ‘out-going’ – if you can manage it.