Neither music, nor life, should be a lonely journey.

And if it is, the journey can change. 

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Fee's Homesong Blog

Fall And Rise 

The tides fall and rise
Without my say so.
They come and go
To and fro
The fall
The rise.
And though I may have my preferences,
There is no point,
No point at all,
To despise
The one over the other.

My own Fall And Rise
Is no different
To the tides.

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Help Me To Believe 

Help Me To Believe.

I need to get lost in your story, whether it be in the form of a song, or a book, or a film. As soon as I start to doubt….the moment something within the narrative seems unbelievable…. then the magic begins to disappear.

You could win me back. I’m a hard case but I know too well how difficult it is to maintain complete, unfettered focus in a listener, reader or viewer. And it’s very rare for anything to be THAT good. So, we have to be a little forgiving with the story telling, including our own.

But some stories are that good. Sometimes we are completely submerged in the imagined world that is presented before us.

I’m in complete awe of anybody who pulls off that trick.

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A Moving Target 

There is a daily blog that I read. It’s read by a few million I think.

Despite its many qualities and its resonance with me personally, sometimes, even fairly regularly, it gets repetitive. Sometimes I can predict what is going to be said.

I doubt it is possible to be creative and fresh all the time. However hard we try. I don’t manage to be that, I know.

But it doesn’t do us any harm to keep trying.

Inspiration needs A Moving Target.

Everything Immediately 

Sometimes I get “aah” moments. I see something that I’ve been doing wrong, or understanding incorrectly, or thinking about back to front for most of my life. A sense of “Oh, THAT’s It!…how WRONG was I?”

And at those moments it feels like I’ve moved on. I’ve found a “solution” to one of life’s many little or large dilemmas.

But it’s not as easy as that. Try changing any habit or thought pattern of a lifetime. In my experience that habit or thought pattern is very reluctant to let go. It doesn’t respect the new revelation. Not one little bit.

It’s easy, then, to feel like that revelation was an illusion. It didn’t solve Everything Immediately. What a let down.

Really though, all a new of way thinking can do is set the direction for change. It still takes time, patience, and lots of little steps in the right direction, to undo the past damage. And kindness towards our past and present selves.

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Couch Potato 

It really is quite hard to start a new habit. To get something rolling to such an extent that it has its own momentum. That’s a nice place to be, but it’s hard to get there. Once it’s started though, it can be equally hard to stop, in order to move in new direction. Or to look at the habit afresh, and carry it on in a slightly different way.

I’m talking about good habits of course. Bad habits are annoyingly very easy to start. But also, and equally annoyingly, even harder to stop.

We, like every living thing, are searching for the easiest, quickest route possible to staying alive, to feeling alive, and to continuing like that until the very end.

On that basis, your typical Couch Potato is living the dream. Yet from the outside looking in, we don’t see that as being a great, enjoyable, or fulfilling lifestyle. And I’m sure it doesn’t feel like that from the inside looking out either.

Modern humans are a strange conundrum. Mostly protected from living lives in pure survival mode. And yet missing out on many of the things that would help us live better for that very reason.

Answers to this conundrum on a postcard please. To the usual address.

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Tears and Laughter For Fears 

I’ve always been a subscriber to the dark arts of black humour.

Laughter, the first laughter in a baby, is a reaction to fear. It’s so closely related to crying, we don’t even realise it sometimes. Our tears accept and release the fears. Our laughter confronts it, and announces to the world that we won’t be brought down by whatever it is we may fear. We need them both. Although Tears and Laughter For Fears isn’t such a great band name.

Underneath it all lurks our fear of Death. That’s what we all fear deep down. Losing our grasp on Life once we have hold of it. Laughter is as an appropriate a response to that fear as tears are.

As with laughter and tears, life and death cannot be separated. They need each other. And we need them.

As the actress said to the bishop.

Change Is Here To Stay 

Change is here to stay. As they say.

There are indeed those moments when time seems to stand still. But the minute we grab on to them, try to hold them in our grasp, they’re gone.

It’s a dreich day here in Campbeltown. Yesterday was sunny and spring like.
Tomorrow, who knows?

Change Is Here To Stay.

And that’s all I’ve got today.

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Thank You 

People come together in grief.

It’s the one thing we all share with absolutely certainty. The end of things, once they’ve begun, is a given. We’ve been overwhelmed with the kind thoughts and condolences expressed in a variety of ways regarding my Dad’s sudden death.

I’m not the biggest fan of Facebook, but if all it did was to provide a place for people to say encouraging words to each other during difficult times, then that would be more than enough. And practically speaking the internet means we can easily keep people informed about the events in our lives.

Thank You, whether you’ve spoken to us, written to us, or just given us space. All of which are appreciated.

Life moves on very quickly. It is in constant motion. Whatever we are doing, or experiencing, it keeps creating. And we have no choice but to move with it. It’s not a bad deal really.

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One Of A Kind 

On Friday I had my early morning walk along the sea front up to the Field of Hope, and decided to have a wander round Campbeltown Cemetery. It’s beautiful there.

Later that morning my Dad had a fall at home which resulted in a broken hip. I travelled with him and the emergency services to Glasgow. On Saturday morning he went for his operation, during which he went into cardiac arrest and died.

That’s how quickly it happened. How quickly it happens.

My Dad, John Fee, came to live with us eight months ago, moving up from Newark where he was a distance away from all of his children. He had settled in well here, and been welcomed and made friends at the local church he attended. With a struggle, and a bit of encouragement, he’d managed to take an almost daily walk. Local neighbours, as is the way in Campbeltown, said they were keeping an eye on him when he was out.

He seemed to be happy here, and pleased to have us all around. I’m glad he came to stay, and glad that this happened here, where my sister and I live, rather than away from us all in Newark. In a way, for him, I’m glad things happened quickly. I know how bad things can get after a hip break.

It was tough to be with him over the last twenty four hours of his life but I’m glad I had that time too. I can tell you that he bore things well, even though clearly in a lot of pain. To any one in the vicinity his regular shout outs of “Jesus” might have seemed like a curse, but for him it was a prayer. His faith was the most important thing in his life.

It’s very hard, even for someone like me who likes being creative with words, to describe my Dad in a few words, or the complicated relationship I had with him. I’m going to cheat for once and use an old cliche - he really was One Of A Kind.

Dad used to read this wee blog of mine, but only ever commented when I made a grammatical mistake. And, of course, that is exactly the kind of thing I’m going to miss. You can be sure I’m checking this one carefully, but I can’t promise perfection anymore!

Last week I finished off a song I’d been writing (lyric below). It isn’t recorded yet, but I’d like to dedicate it to my Dad.

Rest in peace Arthur John Fee. Born 14th March 1939, Died April 13th 2024.

Moment In Time
These are the days of our lives (never to return)
This is where we will decide (what we’re gonna learn)
Every breath we’ll ever breathe (never to return)
This is what we have achieved (and it’s)

Just a Moment In Time
Just a Moment In Time
Just a Moment In Time
Just a Moment in Time

These are our hopes and our dreams (never to return)
This is the way that things seem (then the seasons turn)
Every second we live (never to return)
This is what we have to give (and it’s)

Just a Moment In Time
Just a Moment In Time
Just a Moment In Time
Just a Moment in Time

Tomorrow will come if we have our way
Now we open the gift called today

Just a Moment In Time
Just a Moment In Time
Just a Moment In Time
Just a Moment in Time

Our National Health Service 

Yesterday was a long one.

The fall my Dad had yesterday had caused a broken hip, and meant a trip up to Glasgow for an operation, which he is being carried out as I write. The medical services have all been excellent, but it’s a long drawn out process coming up from Campbeltown, full of protocols and procedures. Ones that at each stage needed, or had to be, repeated.

First the visit and initial assessment from the Campbeltown paramedics. Then the transfer to Campbeltown hospital. Then the transfer by ambulance again to the airport for the air ambulance. Then another ambulance to hospital in Glasgow. And then a host of different nurses in a busy hospital, and the wait for the orthopedic surgeon. And eventually to his ward around midnight.

It was all clearly disorientating for my Dad in the midst of very obvious pain. But mostly necessary, and he bore it all very well I must say. Hard to watch though.

And now the wait.

It bears repeating, even though it’s been said many times before. In circumstances like this, Our National Health Service is just an incredible asset to those of us who are lucky enough to live in these islands. Freely available to all.

I’m a great believer in doing, as individuals, everything possible to avoid having need for these services. But when they are needed they are superb. Everybody on our path yesterday was wonderful, upbeat, and patient.

So a big thank you to all of them.