One of our newspapers The Evening Standard is running a campaign to tackle illiteracy in London. According to the paper, one in three children do not own a book and how one million working adults cannot read in the city. I am shocked that so many people are being held back in the world by not be able to read and saddened that so many either do not want to read or do not have access to books to do so.
I grew up reading. Books held shape the person I am today. I constantly read through my childhood and teens. I remember reading whilst eating breakfast. Books transport you into another world. They allow you to imagine, to analyse, to dream and to see different places and different things. I find it heartbreaking that some children don’t have a chance or don’t want to discover books.
For me, learning to read is as important as learning to walk and talk and yes even breathe. Everyone should have the support they need to be able to read. Even if they never embrace books in the same way I did, everyday life must be a constant struggle if you can’t read – even using a computer requires it.
I hope this campaign helps. I hope people who struggle with reading step forward to get help. I hope parents encourage their children to learn. I hope children leave their video games and pick up a book instead. I hope all children have access to books. And I hope books never lose their power to inspire.
Can you imagine not be able to read?
Posted by Victoria-writes on September 29, 2011
London is currently in the midst of night-time rioting. Thankfully my place of work in North London hasn’t been too badly affected and I live outside the city so haven’t seen anything first-hand and hopefully won’t! Watching it on the news and reading it in the newspaper, it’s shocking to see so much chaos and destruction. And pretty scary too. It gave me goosebumps just hearing about it.
The riots started after the police killed a man in Tottenham and a peaceful protests got out of control. The violence has spread throughout London with opportunists and criminals taking advantage and destroying whole areas. Looting is a big part of the problem too. Everyone is calling for the army and water canons to be used as the police appear to be losing control.
Hopefully the streets will become peaceful again soon but the lasting effects could be severe as massive clean-up jobs are needed and the Olympics loom on the horizon.
Have you be affected by the riots? How do you feel about them?
Posted by Victoria-writes on August 9, 2011
Currently the news over here is alight with the story of super injunctions – male celebrities getting the courts to place an injunction on the media reporting their affairs. A famous footballer recently got one taken out to save his affair with a Big Brother contestant from coming out but Twitter revealed his name anyway and now an MP has named him in Parliament so all the press are naming and shaming Mr Ryan Giggs.
I am disgusted that you can pay thousands to a judge to cover the fact you are a cheater but the women involved have their names dragged through the mud. Whatever you think of Imogen Thomas sleeping with a married man, she wasn’t cheating he was the one with the family yet the law protects him. The law should protect victims not footballers who can’t keep their trousers on!
Why do these men always cheat? It seems like there isn’t even one footballer who can’t help himself despite having a wife and kids. They seem to be praised for being “men” not blasted for being bad role models to all the young football fans out there. But it’s not just footballers, there are apparently quite a few injunctions in place by various celebs too scared to face the music over their indiscretions.
If you don’t want the world to find out you cheated, don’t do it in the first place! If I was their wife I’d name and shame them myself and get the hell out but I suspect Mrs Giggs will stick by her husband and his millions.
Do you think the court should allow these injunctions?
Posted by Victoria-writes on May 24, 2011
Growing up, you’re taught history at school and you often wonder what it would have been like to actually life through it. It almost doesn’t seem real - just pages in a book like a story. My two main subjects in history at school were the Tudors and WW1 and WW2. The wars although far more recent still didn’t feel real because I wasn’t there. There will be moments in my lifetime that future kids will learn in school and it’s amazing to think history is being written as we speak.
For me, the two biggest events in my lifetime that will go down in history have come back on the news in the last couple of weeks, making me think back to those moments.
The death of Diana – the scenes in Paris were shocking and tragic and Britain mourned a loved princess. I remember watching her funeral and the sadness that poured out from people, it was so moving. Last week we had the Royal Wedding – Diana’s son marrying Kate. Diana’s absence was felt by everyone I think but the couple made sure she was remembered by Kate having her engagement ring and one of her favourite hymns being sung. Westminster Abbey was the setting for her funeral and his wedding, both key points in our royal history and two days that will never be forgotten.
September 11 – watching this tragedy unfold on TV was numbing, it was like watching a film, unable to believe it was really happening. I’ve been to New York twice – once the Twin Towers were there, the second time they had gone. Walking around Ground Zero was so strange, a building site that hid the horror of that day. With the news that Bin Laden has been killed, so many thoughts are returning to that day. I can’t begin to imagine what it’s lie for people who lost loved ones that day and I just hope they have some feeling of closure now and can find some peace. Whether that peace extends out around the world remain to be seen.
What will our future children think and feel when they read about these moments? What will their world look like? Let’s hope our history helps them lead stronger and better lives and lessons are learned in the future. Because if one thing comes out from these events, it should be love.
To end with, I’m going to use the quote that Lisa shared in her post today:
“I mourn the loss of thousands of precious lives, but I will not rejoice in the death of one, not even an enemy. Returning hate for hate multiplies hate, adding deeper darkness to a night already devoid of stars. Darkness cannot drive out darkness: only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate: only love can do that” – Martin Luther King, Jr.
What moments of our time stick out for you?
Posted by Victoria-writes on May 3, 2011
It was a stressful start to “Blue Monday” – officially the most depressing day of the year. We all have that feeling – Xmas and all that festive cheer is long gone, our money supply is short and the weather is bad!
To top off the general dissatisfaction, I arrived this morning for work to a very wet London. When it rains EVERYONE heads for the tube so my station was shut due to overcrowding. I then splashed my way to a bus stop, which was shut so had to go to another one further along. Got on a bus only for it to be diverted then the driver took a wrong turn so an extra 30 mins was put on my journey. I was consequently late for a meeting with my boss!
My Blue Monday was indeed blue.
I arrived at work stroppy and saturated and not looking forward to a day at my desk. I totally understand how this would be a miserable Monday for people but I am determined to cheer myself (and hopefully all you out there) up!
Here’s some things for us all to smile at……
Posted by Victoria-writes on January 17, 2011
I admit it – I’ve watched Eastenders for years mainly because it’s nice to watch numbly after tea and is always guaranteed to make me feel better about my own life. But now I’m seriously considering dropping it off my TV viewing all together.
This week its hit the news all over the UK for it’s cot death /baby swap storyline, sinking to new depths of despair, this harrowing storyline is enough to put anyone off their evening choccie.
Ronnie Mitchell has been through so much tragedy I can’t believe she can still get out bed in the mornings. It’s beyond the usual soap saga and just seems like a desperate attempt by the producers to tug at our heart strings. My only hope is that they clear it up quickly – give Kat her baby back and get Ronnie some much over due help.
Come on Easties – lighten up for all our sakes!!
Posted by Victoria-writes on January 7, 2011