Tag Archives: Autobiography

On My Bookshelf – Swallows and Amazons

My favorite childhood book was never on my own childhood bookshelf. I borrowed Swallows and Amazons by Arthur Ransome from my local library and enjoyed it so much that in subsequent weeks I checked out all the other books in … Continue reading

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The Night I Met Mick Jagger

Bubbling with the exited anticipation of teenagers, my friend and I rode the number 66 red double-decker bus into Romford. It was February 25th 1964 and we were headed to the Odeon Theatre to try to catch a glimpse of … Continue reading

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How St. Nicholas Became Santa

When I was a small child growing up in England we didn’t have Santa Claus and we didn’t hang up stockings or set out cookies on Christmas Eve. Instead, following the tradition of my mother’s Flemish homeland, my sister and … Continue reading

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Surprised by Patriotism

  To celebrate July 4th I dig into The Dabbler archives for a piece I wrote some years ago recording my gradual acceptance of the American holiday and some memorable celebrations over the years. One July 4th I was surprised … Continue reading

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The Dagenham Idol

                    A few years ago I received a mysterious Christmas gift from my San Francisco brother. I opened the long, narrow box to find a crudely formed human figure made of … Continue reading

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On My Bookshelf – Rupert Bear

Strictly speaking this book is no longer on my bookshelf, though for many years it lived with a collection of old children’s books in my daughter’s former bedroom. Back in the 1980’s when my children were small my mother brought … Continue reading

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Confessions of a Hedgehog Collector

My obsession with hedgehogs began with the gypsies. Every summer when I was a child the gypsies, in their colorfully painted caravans, made camp in a nearby field. We would creep through the trees to spy on them playing explorers … Continue reading

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