Hot Cross Buns In January – Not Such A Good Idea

Just when you think you’ve successfully navigated the worst time of year for homesickness that bitch ups and hijacks you! And it was something so small, so insignificant that I didn’t see it coming…
One of my Dad’s favourite things to eat is a hot cross bun. He positively delights in putting those little beauties in the toaster until they’re lightly browned, then spreading some butter on them and sitting down and enjoying them with a cup of piping hot tea.
One of my son’s favourite things to eat is a hot cross bun… He needs it lightly toasted with plenty of butter on top and he will enjoy it with a glass of chocolate milk. Yesterday he lit up with excitement in the local supermarket when he spotted a packet of hot cross buns. Of course I bought them for him and smiled smugly to myself thinking – “breakfast is going to be easy tomorrow.” I had no idea what was going to be served along with it.

A Simple Hot Cross Bun – Seems There’s More To These Delicacies Than Meets The Eye!

This morning I watched as my boy smiled in delight as I presented him with his perfectly prepared hot cross bun. I listened as he “yummed” his way through it.  I grinned at him finding such happiness in something so simple and then I clutched my tummy as a bolt of homesickness shot through me so intense that it took my breath away.
I turned and fled to the kitchen before my son could see the change in my demeanour and dragged in a deep breath as a longing and yearning for home washed over me like a wave and, in that instant, threatened to drown me.
I held onto the counter top for strength as I wondered where the hell this had all come from.  I waited for it to pass but it didn’t.  Images of home assailed my senses instead.  The soft sand between my toes on Keel Beach, the smell of a turf fire, laughing with old friends and my Dad’s smile.  And that was it – I realised what had set me off – the inextricable link between generations epitomised by a simple smile.
My boy has his grandfather’s smile and this morning I’m sad that he hasn’t seen enough of that smile in his short life.
Don’t get me wrong  – I’m not belly-aching (even though I literally was!) I’m not complaining about my life – I’m incredibly blessed to have these opportunities to live in other countries and I’d be a miserable old bitch if I couldn’t explore this incredible world of ours.  However, there are times when you need home.  I need to go home.  I need my kids to spend time with their grandparents.  I need to see my father’s smile.
Now all I need to do is figure out how to make that happen

Fathers, Forgiveness And Acceptance

I logged on to the internet today and saw a story going viral that could be straight out of the pages of my novella Over Your Dead Body.

Over Your Dead Body - the story of one man's need to resolve the past so he can have a future

Over Your Dead Body – the story of one man’s need to resolve the past so he can have a future

http://www.amazon.com/Over-Your-Dead-Roisin-Black/dp/1500859389/ref=sr_1_2?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1428030687&sr=1-2&keywords=over+your+dead+body

It makes me so sad that this boy and so many others who come out have to go through this terrible rejection.  I was also struck at how the son doesn’t hold the father’s cruel words against him and hopes they can still work out a relationship.  I was stunned at how the son is obviously way more mature than his own father!  I applaud Tyler’s bravery and hope he finds as much happiness as he has found support from around the world.  I also hope his Dad finds it in his heart to get over himself and his bigotry in order to work out a loving relationship with his son.

[Reporting from http://www.dailymail.co.uk]

“You are so brave, many admire you”: Outpouring of support for 15-year-old boy who was told his coming out was ‘worse than death’ by his FATHER in Facebook messages posted online

A teenager has received support from around the world after he revealed his father had called his coming out as gay ‘worse than death’.

Vancouver-born Tyler, 15, posted the Facebook conversation he had had with his dad on his Tumblr account, in which he is told that news of his sexuality is an ’embarrassment’.

He reveals that he first told his news to his sisters, who were extremely supportive, and then came out to his mother, before telling his father.

Photo of fifteen year old boy who is gay

Tyler

In response to Tyler’s news, his father wrote back: ‘We took care of you since you were a baby. We loved you, took care of you when you’re sick. Lost many days and nights in all your fifteen years.

‘Now this is what we get in return, shame and embarrassment.’

He continued: ‘If only you didn’t reject God and His teachings in your life you could have been strong enough to stay from evil and scums that surrounds you. Stay away.’

In further messages, perhaps in response to Tyler’s Tumblr post, his father went on: ‘Take out your post from social media.

‘You embarrass me from all the people I knew.

‘I’m going to puke. Whatever you do it reflects on me. People will ridicule me, insult me, and I might turn out to be a criminal. I have enough of all this bulls***.’

Image of social media exchange

Some Of The Exchanges

He concluded: ‘You are trying to ruin me. This is worse than death.’

Discussing his father’s messages in an interview with Huffington Post B.C., Tyler, who lives with his aunts, said: ‘I’m hoping there’s still the possibility that he could change, even if it takes a while.

‘Maybe he could accept me, because that’s all I want… I just want him to be there for me.’

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/femail/article-2997096/I-m-going-puke-Father-reacts-15-year-old-son-comes-gay-Facebook-messages-calling-embarrassing-news-worse-death.html#ixzz3WDMzyP8d

The Candle In The Window

Well here I am facing into my third Australian Christmas and I have to admit to not being altogether thrilled about it.  It’s one thing when you sign on for the big adventure, when you agree to up sticks and travel to the other side of the world and in the bigger scheme of things you are fine and enjoy all that your new place of abode has to throw at you.  However, hiding in the seams of the bigger scheme are those times when you just can’t get your head around where you are.  Christmas in Australia is one of those times for me.  The Aussies love their summer Christmas  – as they should but for me it’s just not Christmas.

Photo of snowman made from sand

The Snowmen Are A Little Different In Australia

Christmas for me is so many things.  It’s about home, open fires, over the top decorations, seeing family and spending time with friends, wrapping up against the cold, walks in frosty forests or on wind-swept beaches, sharing wonderful food, having a few drinks in the local pub, impromptu sing-songs, fun and laughter.  The west of Ireland is an incredibly special place to be at Christmas time.  Decimated by emigration over the years it is a time when people come home and it is this that creates an amazing buzz.  People are happy to be home and those who are at home are ecstatic to have their family members back even if it is for only a few short weeks.  Christmas Eve in any of the west of Ireland towns is a day for last minute presents, picking up “the bird” and joining the old friend you just ran in to for a drink or two.

Photo of bottle of jameson whiskey

A Few Hot Jimmies Will Put You Right

Later on in the evening most people make their way home and their journey is lit by candles twinkling in the windows of all the houses.  This is a tradition that dates back to ancient times and is rooted in the old Brehon laws of hospitality – whereby a stranger knocking on the door must never be refused.  In later times it was understood to symbolise the lighting of the way for Mary and Joseph as they searched for somewhere to stay before the birth of their child.  Nowadays it is seen as lighting the way for Mary and Joseph but also for those who are returning home.

Photo of Cabdle in Window

The Candle In The Window

One of my favourite things to do on Christmas Eve is to stand, in the darkness, at the window of my parents house, high up on the hill, and look out across the island as it twinkles in the night.  It’s a beautiful sight and one I’m looking forward to seeing again, just unfortunately not tonight.

Wherever you are this Christmas I hope you enjoy it – Roisin.