Reverb day 15: gems

“Watch the sunrise at least once a year, put a lot of marshmallows in your hot chocolate, lie on your back and look at the stars, never buy a coffee table you can’t put your feet on, never pass up a chance to jump on a trampoline, don’t overlook life’s small joys while searching for the big ones.”

What small pleasures gave you moments of intense joy in 2015? 

What more could you cultivate in 2016?

Being at tree-top level

My desk is on the fourth floor of a London office: just at the right height to look out into the intense green canopy of the plane trees.

Baths after long walks

Nothing so delicious.

Cygnets riding on their parents’ backs

I shall walk beside the Cam in the spring.


Brighton is not my favourite beach – too stony – but one takes one’s seaside where one can find it, and divesting myself of my tights to go paddling before a conference in October was, oddly enough, exactly the right thing to do.

Tiny square of ginger cheesecake

Whoever thought of serving it in pieces one inch square is a genius; it’s perfect.

Making the Christmas cake

Dark brown soft sugar. Black treacle. Nutmeg.

Opening a treasure box of beads

Sapphires! (Real sapphires!) Garnets! Bloodstone! Deep red glass stars! So many beautiful things.

Swinging at King’s Cross (no, not like that…)

If you go out of the rear entrance of King’s Cross station, there’s a huge thing like a birdcage. It has a swing, and it’s a proper adult-sized swing, and you can swing on it without worrying what the passers-by are thinking, because it’s London and they’re either not looking or pretending they’re not.

Drink to me only with thine eyes

I’ve been teaching myself to play the piano, and I’m just getting to tunes that I know and want to play. I am fortunate enough to have such a lovely piano that it sounds absolutely fantastic.

Shooting star on Christmas Eve

After midnight mass, so I suppose it was Christmas morning, really.

Watering my feet

Hot summer days, achey feet: in the bath with the shower head, or outside with a watering can.

Next year?

Notice things. That’s all there is to it.

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