The call of the sea (in search of sunshine and hot showers)

It’s nearly time to run away to sea again, working my passage as art tutor on cruise ships – P&O Oceana to begin with. It will be the first time I’ve spent Christmas alone with strangers; I don’t think I mind. It will certainly be different to any Christmas I’ve had before and we’re at sea that day, so I’m hoping for calm in the Atlantic on 25th December!

teaching 1
Hard at work last winter on board ‘Aurora’

Taking the Christmas booking seemed like a good idea at the time, but I’m regretting it a little now. There are six days to go and I still have an impossible amount of work to get through before I go, partly because it’s just a busy time of year and partly because I’ve taken on as much as possible in December -my earnings are going to be almost zero for the next few months and I need to be sure I can cover my bills and commitments until March.

Work in progress – ‘Pin Mill’ design for a mug (to match coaster) and also for brochure about art courses at Pin Mill Studio next summer.

Even my lists have got lists; the studio floor and every surface is covered in heaps of stuff and I haven’t even thought about what I need to take with me. I’ve only written two Christmas cards so far and been nowhere near any shops (though plans for shopping are minimal – the world seems particularly sorrowful at the moment and there are some good charities out there who can use my cash to better effect than shops selling stuff that no-one really needs).

There will of course be blog posts and sketchbook diaries from various places, internet depending. If it’s cold and nasty weather back at home I will try not to go on about how nice it is to be warm.

Not going as far as New Zealand this time… I’ll be crossing a different ocean.

Meanwhile, it’s 7.30am on a chilly morning, my mug of tea is empty and it’s time to stop procrastinating, switch the electric blanket off and Get Up. My shower isn’t working at the moment (boiler needs a seeing to), but I lit the fire an hour or so ago so that the temperature in the cabin is conducive to my morning ritual with bowl of hot water and flannel.

I’m keeping this post short as I need to get to work, but I have a link to offer – Julia Jones’ latest blog post on Authors Electric is particularly thoughtful on the subject of dementia care.  Julia’s latest book ‘ Beloved Old Age and what to do about it’ is a great Christmas present – both helpful and beautifully written, as well as surprisingly uplifting   (and the cover design was something a bit different for me – no blues involved!)


That’s the sensible part – my offering is far more frivolous. I’ve not done a lot of songwriting recently, but a few wander into my head occasionally even when it’s full of other things – one of the benefits of having no TV I think! Usually I write my own tunes but you’ll know this one. In the meantime, I shall crack on and look forward to a couple of weeks of having a proper bathroom and hot showers every day!



Where have all the teaspoons gone? 

There’s none left in the drawer 

Where have all the teaspoons gone 

I’d like to know

Once there were six and now there’s none 

I can’t find a single one

How come they’ve disappeared 

How come they’ve disappeared 

Where have all the biros gone

There’s none left in my bag

Where have all the biros gone

I’d like to know

A broken pencil’s all that’s left

And now I’m feeling quite bereft

How come they’ve disappeared

How come they’ve disappeared

Where have all the odd socks come from

In my laundry bag

And where did all their partners go

I’d like to know

I wear a matching pair each day

Now each one is a lonely stray

How come they’ve disappeared

How come they’ve disappeared

Where has all the money gone

That I earned last week

Where has all the money gone

I’d like to know

All I did was pay the rent

Fill the fridge but it’s all spent

How come it’s disappeared

How come it’s disappeared

Where has all the white wine gone

That I bought today

Where has all the white wine gone

I’d like to know

I only poured a little one

Now the blooming bottle’s gone

When will I ever learn

When will I ever learn

Where has all of my life gone

That I lived so carelessly

Didn’t value what I had

Till it was gone

Where on earth did my life go

And when it’s over will I know

Where did those teaspoons go?
Where did those teaspoons go?

8 thoughts on “The call of the sea (in search of sunshine and hot showers)”

  1. Ally says:

    I really deep comment on life, the universe and everything. May I purloin for my folk?

  2. Carole Grant, Tjalk SilkPurse says:

    GREAT blog and poem/song. Enjoy the call of the sea. There is no price tag on life on the water nor on cruises! Merry Christmas from Frosty Canada!! x

  3. Lesley Walker says:

    Heartfelt blog! Enjoyed reading it! in Cyprus now – lovely to be back and be welcomed by people who remember me.

  4. Colin George says:

    Hope you have a lovely time Claudi and come back saturated with new ideas to paint and songs to sing. Have a brilliant Crimbo!!

  5. Marion Shirley says:

    Merry Christmas Claudia. I’ve spent four of the last five Christmases with strangers and they’ve all been great. Thank you for your work on the Gaffer cards; we sold more than half the first box. And do say how warm it is. It’s essential to know it’s still there somewhere! Merry Christmas and a happy new year.

  6. Chris Kel says:

    Have a lovely Christmas and journey. Really enjoyed reading the blog

  7. Coral Feenan-Hill says:

    Merry Christmas Claudia.. another great adventure, have lots of fun. Looking forward to reading all about it.. xx

  8. Have yourself a merry little Xmas! Enjoy the sea, new company and comfortable food, bed, hot shower and all that jazz….. Take care, keep on writing, drawing & play music! Love, Else

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *



◄ Back to blog home