A Charmed Life


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always my princess

It was Sunday afternoon, I was stood with my mother in the carpark of Pak’nSave Johnsonville when I heard the news. I have no recollection of how I heard; might have been on the radio, or a fellow shopper but the words registered: Princess Diana was dead. All I remember after that is silence. The two of us loading the car with our groceries in silence, the wordless drive home, every now and then our eyes meeting in silent acknowledgement that it was true. The tears would come but for the next hour or so it was just silence. Shock in silence.

That was 20 years ago this week.
20 years! Looking back on my own life next month I hit my own 20 milestone, as it will be 20 years since I left New Zealand. I have lived a whole lifetime in that time, the world’s landscape has changed drastically and there is now an entire generation who know nothing about that Diana magic.

And she had that magic, there can be no doubt about that, she had IT whatever it is. She was my consummate princess from the moment I met her in February 1981 when she became engaged to her prince and for the next 16 years I was my mother’s willing accomplice in all things Diana. There are so many Diana moments throughout my life; from pouring over magazine articles, to collecting merchandise, watching the wedding (I was eight and it the first time I was ever allowed to stay up past midnight) to going to an exhibition in Sydney of her dresses, seeing Diana at Government House on the Royal tour of 1983 to paying my respects at the British High Commission in Wellington the day after she died and at Kensington Palace when I would later visit London.

She was worthy of it too – my love – our love. She was beautiful and she rocked a tiara, she was a people person and she cared deeply for humans especially the downtrodden, she loved her two boys and she brought them up to be compassionate AND she was as flawed as the rest of us and she never presented anything but, she was real and as such her death felt personal to millions of us, the global outpouring of grief we witnessed in the aftermath of her death is testament to that. And 20 years on her legacy continues on through her lovely dynamite boys William and Harry and the service they do particularly in their focus on difficult issues like AIDS and mental health.

That day at the British High Commission in the condolence book I wrote “I am heartbroken at this reality, gone way too soon beautiful Diana, you will be missed so very much, rest now angel” and as I am sat here writing these words thinking about her I am also reminded of the times we live in, and this thought crossed my mind – it isn’t so much that she is missed though she is, it is more that the world could do with more of her kind of caring right now.

Diana – the Queen of People’s Hearts, always my princess 1961-1997

Sat Nam

And… I am loving Twin Peaks, in my very bias opinion it is the BEST television to have graced our screens since… well since Twin Peaks screened 25 years ago but before this series started I was wary about how David Bowie’s character would be used if at all. I wanted Agent Phillip Jeffries to be included but casting another actor would have been a disservice to our beloved Starman, so bravo Mr Lynch for the dedication (S3 E14) and the inclusion of Phillip Jeffries  – superbly done in Twin Peaks style. Cannot believe its ending already, only two episodes left, oh my days!#andWhoistheDreamer  Okay so P!nk has always rocked but how awesome was that speech on Sunday.  If you haven’t heard it, please click here, we need to be hearing and speaking this kind of speak more and more for this is how love wins #WearetheChangeMakers And lastly sending prayers of blessing and protection for those in Mumbai and Texas. May all be guided to safety and may the rains be calmed by the hand of God #OneLove

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imagine

I am an emotional person. I feel very strongly about everything often to my detriment. I have never been able to see any kind of upset or joy and not feel affected. I’m a crier. Big time crier. I actually had to learn emotional intelligence to get a grip on my emotions, even still, at times life happens and I find I get lost in the emotion of it all. When I’m in that state there is no point in trying to write anything of consequence so I tend to stay away from that which leaves me raw for the purpose of this blog.

Today I’m breaking this rule.

Today I’m writing about something that is happening right now.

Today I need to be emotional, in fact we all need to be emotional.

‘Imagine there’s no countries. It isn’t hard to do. Nothing to kill or die for. And no religion too. Imagine all the people. Living life in peace…’

John Lennon was bang on with his vision of how the world should be. Just think how beautiful it would be if we made every decision with love. Utopian it maybe but, just for one second imagine how it could be. We are living in perhaps the worst humanitarian crisis since World War II and as global citizens we cannot plead ignorance, dwell on a feeling of helplessness nor think ‘it doesn’t affect me’ because on a human to human level it absolutely does affect us. Each and every one of us.

Who hasn’t had a visceral reaction to the image of three year old Alan Kurdi. This beautiful boy who drowned along with his mother and brother; leaving behind a father to now grieve this loss as well as having to cope with being a displaced person. It would break the best of us. This is just one story out of millions. I feel heartsick.

I don’t know the best solution to resolving this refugee crisis; there seems to be a lack of ownership globally, the work of NGOs like the Red Cross is being stretched by financial constraints and the political games being played and the band aid solutions that are coming out of everywhere are… well they’re band aids then what! All I know is that these people deserve to exist as much as you and I do and we have a moral responsibility to make sure this happens.

So bear with me, here’s where I get all whoo whoo. If what we speak about we bring about, it gives then if we focus on peace and love for our fellow brothers and sisters then it must be. So please let us raise our vibration because….

♥Prayer works
♥Meditation works
♥Mantras work
♥Hope works
♥Peace works
LOVE works is all that matters

AND If you can do so donate what you can; clothing, time, and of course much needed funds. There are so many reputable NGOs out there working miracles – Oxfam GB  Unicef UK  UNHCR US  NZ Red Cross  Red Cross Aus (you can click on any of these should you wish to donate now).

‘You may say I’m a dreamer. But I’m not the only one. I hope someday you’ll join us. And the world will be as one.’

I hope that day is today. Ubuntu. Human to human.

Sat Nam

Also this week: My very first spiritual/self help teacher Dr. Wayne Dyer has left us for his next adventure. In memory of him let me share a quick funny story about how this inspiring man came into my life. Many many moons ago my father paid for me to go on a motivation seminar, Dr. Dyer was a keynote speaker. Impressed with his words I bought his book. That night there I am all snugly in bed and excited to read my new book I pull it out of the carry bag it came in, imagine my shock when I read the title of the book Your Erogenous Zones. In those days I was very much an innocent I didn’t even know what a vibrator was, as such I was so embarrassed I hid the book away and didn’t pick it up again for years and when I did, I had to have a laugh… you see I had read the book title incorrectly it was actually called Your Erroneous Zones, which of course made so much more sense in relation to his presentation. D’oh! Anyway I devoured the book and became  a fan. I will miss the conversations between him and Abraham. I’ll let Dr. Dyer have the last word as its completely relevant to today’s post ‘I fill myself up with love, and I send that out into the world. How others treat me is their path: how I react is mine.’ #InstantKarmasGonnaGetYou 


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but say a prayer – pray for the other ones

BandAid30I loved this song the first time around. That it was factually incorrect didn’t matter, I got swept up with the romanticism of it all; that this song was written as a response by someone heartbroken by the sight of millions of children starving to death and the lack of aid from governments around the world; that it brought together the Brit pop stars of the day – to see George Michael, Simon Le Bon and Paul Weller in the same room was such a joy for my eyes to behold; that they were singing about feeding the world.. well Africa, if you follow my blog, you know I love Africa so in every which way it could it pulled at my heart strings and I made sure I got a copy – the vinyl version.

The second time round I wasn’t overly enthused but I still bought a copy, only it was a cassette tape this time. Nor did I rate version 3.0 but kudos for trying to shake it up and yes I went along to my nearest HMV and bought a copy on CD.

This time round, I’m just not interested and even worse it has made me feel old; I don’t know my Pixie Lotts from my Paloma Faiths or Ellie Gouldings, and don’t even get me started on the guys… thank the Lord for a few oldies. And Tracey Emin’s unoriginal artwork is required why?

All the reasons that made me rush to buy original are totally gone save for one point, the most important – it is for charity. I love the idea of a charity single, if you are going to pay for music anyway, knowing your purchase is going to help someone who is in need is always a beautiful bonus, but you should like the song at least a little surely. Plea to Sir Bob ‘as much as I admire your commitment to Africa and totally agree to do something is better than the alternative, next time please please please write a new song; come this Christmas I will be listening to your original version as I have done for the last thirty years.’

If I do buy the new song, it will be via download and then I would have the four versions in four different formats: vinyl, cassette, CD and download. The world has changed much in thirty years and yet people in Africa still need our help. As a global citizen, please remember in this season of giving you can help stop the spread, please donate to an Ebola Outbreak Appeal if you can, I have included some links to make it really easy for you.

For UK: British Red Cross or Oxfam
In NZ – Save the Children
In Aus – Australian Red Cross

or you could buy the new version of the song and make up your own mind.

Sat Nam


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a time for giving

holly1Tis that time of year again. We post the Christmas cards, we don our novelty jumpers, we buy the Christmas presents and we get busy with getting merry. It is also that time of year, if you are like me you feel a little guilty; for every charity reaches out for your help and you can’t avoid them for there are the ads on tele, letters through the mailbox, the emails, and the very worst one – the phone calls. I find it near impossible to say no to someone on the phone. The very nature of Christmas is of course about giving, but how do you choose who you give to. In the UK I always feel for the homeless and the elderly at Christmas as it is winter here, but so many people need our help locally then there is the bigger picture (Syria, Philippines) to consider as well.

Chrimbo1.jpgI found this website while I was shopping GetGiving. For all you UK peeps if you didn’t already know about it, it is a site where you can shop online and a percentage of what you spend at certain stores can be donated to a charity of your choice, at no extra cost to you. You probably already shop at most of the stores anyway so you might as well give a helping hand at the same time.

Love