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imagination einsteinI t will take you everywhere.

M ust be true

A fter all, Einstein said it

G enius that he was.

I n all seriousness though

N o theft is greater

A nd more future harming

T han mining it from the depths of our children

I n the pursuit of malleable mediocrity

O r don’t you believe

N ew levels of thinking are what’s called for?

einstein new thinkingYou all know I love a good acrostic:-) It occurred to me this morning that imagination is a muscle, albeit an emotionally fuelled one, and as much in need of regular testing and flexing as any other, if it’s not to atrophy. As I was compiling a shopping list this morning my mind got busy comparing the due merits of doing what needs to be done versus doing what’s fun, and I decided those two things didn’t necessarily need to be so utterly separated. I began to compile an alternative shopping list, just in case I were ever to find that elusive one stop shop that sells everything…and I mean everything and anything. There were ten things on my normal shopping list, so I wrote ten alternatives too, the first that came into my head, which looked like this:

An everlasting water bottle that instantly and automatically refills (Ok, a bit boring and practical, I was just getting warmed up, but damn useful, you must admit)

A pocket sized foldable instant camp fire (Ok, still kind of practical, but a cool party trick…)

A flying unicorn (well, that was kind of inevitable wasn’t it, there had to be a cliche in there somewhere…)

A notepad that reads all your thoughts and automatically writes them down (ok, obviously this could be dangerous and needs an off switch, but very useful too for those of us whose minds are much faster than our hands can write, and what’s a life without risk?)

A talking dog (ok, I know you all think your dogs already talk to you but don’t pretend you don’t know what I mean, like REALLY talks…)

A fruit and nut tree (I’m imagining cherries, pears, apples, hazelnuts and grapes all on the same tree…)

A harp (have you every played one? I have a little…magic!)

A wood burning aga (but maybe I need to buy the cottage it goes in first…)

A word swallower – it eats the words you wish you’d never said and then erases them from the collective memory!

A pair of trousers that automatically resize and adapt themselves to the changing shape of my body!

So that’s me touching in with my currently rather neglected imagination and, though I can feel a bit of an inner ache, it stood up quite well to the exercise. Now I need to make it more often and regular, and see what it can really do. The dark, cold, indoorsiness of winter’s a great time for some serious imagination training:-) Hey, come spring I’ll be running (imaginary!) marathons:-)

Good Deeds Received

Had a lovely chat with a Polish woman who was working with me on the packing line at the factory, during which time we discovered a mutual love of poetry and she asked for my number so I could give her and her family some English lessons!

A friend invited me over for dinner and Saturday night TV:-)

My Dad sent me some fun photos during his journey back to Bali.

Had an incredible conversation with a friend which was getting deeper and more delicious by the second and then…I had to go to work! We pressed the pause button, and will no doubt pick up where we left off next time we meet.

Received a lovely text message from a friend who hadn’t seen me for a while and wanted to know how I was doing.

A friend emailed to ask if I still needed a contribution towards the fundraising I was doing for Beatha in Rwanda, and I managed to stop myself from replying no, it’s ok, I reached my target (she has already helped so much…) and instead shared that actually, yes, her help was most welcome. I realised from her joyful and generous response that it really sometimes is a gift to the giver to welcome their gift.

A friend and colleague invited me to hold a creative writing session with her group, shortly before Christmas and requested I infuse it with festive spirit! I’m looking forward to that:-)

Good Deeds Done

I helped out in Mum’s cafe when she heard at late notice that one of her colleagues couldn’t make it.

I called my friend Beatha in Rwanda immediately when I saw she’d ‘beeped’ me (i.e. left me a missed call so I could see she needed to talk). I will send the next monthly installment a little earlier than planned, as she’s been prescribed some new medication and didn’t have money left from last month.

I called my Dad as he was on his way to the airport to wish him a good journey back to Bali.

A good deed to my body – I made a commitment to myself to prepare and take with me healthy food for my tea breaks at the factory, as I’ve been eating far too many biscuits!!!!

Created and printed off some menus for Mum’s cafe so people can pre-order their pizzas over the phone.

Picked up some litter on my way to work.

Helped out a colleague who was getting a bit behind speed because the biscuits he was putting into the plastic containers being they were boxed hadn’t been stacked properly by the people who’d taken them from the oven.

Have a great week my friends and may that wild Imagination of yours take you places you’ve never even dreamed of…and then write me a ‘postcard’ in the comments below:-)