Fandango’s One Word Challenge (21 July 2020)

for Fandango’s One Word Challenge (FOWC), moorish.

Oh, hang on a moment…

D’oh 🤣

Different (1:4)

Diane Alsop was fortunate enough to be gorgeous, have a relatively well-off family, and better than average intelligence. She was the object of many a young boy’s affection but did not date anybody seriously. She had a flair for languages and managed to enrol on one of the few courses, at the time, available to study Mandarin.

A year-long exchange to Shanghai changed the course of her life. For there, she met Henry. Henry was also a student, just three years older than Diane, but was well on the way to becoming a political activist. Henry’s roots were in Tibet, and the issue was a sore point for him. That he was so switched-on, so up to speed with current affairs, who’d done what, to whom, and why, and why they told you something else – turned her on, he was so unlike other boys, who were more into their Walkmen. And so, began the holiday romance. It could not last, of course, and eventually Diane flew home to finish her studies. Diane duly qualified and started a job in London for a publishing house.

Henry, meanwhile, had managed to get himself into trouble. Evading the authorities, he managed to flee China via Hong Kong, and catch a flight to London. And who did he know in London?

The romance blossomed once again, and Diane and Henry duly married in the summer of 1988. Her parents helped them to rent, then buy, places close to them, down in Lewes, and during their early married life, Diane continued to commute up to London each day. Before too long, Diane found herself pregnant, and Anna was born on 29th October 1990. There followed a sister, born in 1994, by which time Diane had quit her job. As the sister grew older, she had chosen the name Zara – the hippest-sounding English name to come vaguely close to her original Chinese name.

Anna not only inherited her mother’s good looks, but she also excelled academically, shining even brighter than Diane. She was regularly “top-of-the-class” until a refugee, Katerina, arrived from the Balkans. Katerina was a whizz at numbers, but Anna more than held her own at anything English-language-related.

Being used to success, Anna lived a fair amount of life on her own terms. When she was 17, she decided that she would like a boyfriend, then set about sifting through suitable candidates! Ironically, it was probably that choice which cost her a place at Cambridge, but she was easily accepted at her second choice, King’s in London, to read Law. There, she had her first semi-serious relationship, with another student, which lasted just over two years. Not wishing to repeat her previous mistake, Anna ended the relationship just before her finals, and duly passed her degree with first-class honours.

Anna’s CV could now speak for itself, but she was not beyond a little help from Henry, who by now was a founding partner of a small think-tank up in London. A few words in the right ears, and Anna had an offer from Maynard Fleischmann, the tiny, prestigious human-rights law firm. The offer was not without strings, and the firm required Anna to take a year’s internship at a human-rights charity, whose CEO was husband of one of the partners at the firm. Even so, it was a good move.

Siblings, however, can be chalk and cheese, and around about the same time as Anna was starting her internship, so Zara was pregnant with her second child. Even when she’d gone to university in Brighton, she had never been far away. When she dropped out to have her son, it was handy to have her parents close by. Both Diane and Henry were doting grandparents.

With the preamble now complete, Anna met Paul in 2017. Let us begin.


Tick Tock Tuesay (21 July 2020) – Aswad/Celebrating International Readers

I thought I’d create a new challenge. It is a challenge primarily for me, because I’m new to this platform, and because you don’t really know me yet, nor I you. As my name suggests, I am recovering from a stroke, and I like to push myself in all kinds of little ways… including getting to know the Wonderful World of WordPress. Although this is something I will be doing, I invite you, if this idea takes your fancy, to play along with me and share with me some of your own selections.

My plan is: each Tuesday, until I run dry, I shall post some piece of art with which I have some connection – which has helped to mould me, which makes me tick. Okay, a piece of art is a bit vague – it might be a piece of music, a movie, a book, a painting, or ???? – so my phrasiology is deliberate. It might be anything – I will play this post by ear, so I’m not sure what I’ll think of each week. And, I’ll keep posting on the theme weekly until I run out of ideas.

My rules? Well, I’m not big on rules! My choice will be something with which I feel a connection. That’ll be the important thing, just having some kind of fleeting affection for something probably won’t be enough, unless I’m using my choice as an example of something bigger.

It will be one choice per week – I’m aware that long posts can be quite onerous to read, and I’m in no hurry to complete this so if I have two ideas, I’ll probably hold the second until the next week.

In that same vein, I’ve created this block as a Reusable Block, which I intend repeating for every post on this theme. The block ends with a full-width separator, so if you want to skip ahead each week it doesn’t really matter.

I probably won’t post any lyrics, or any kind of analysis – if you like my choice, the information will be out there for you. But I will try to briefly explain why I feel a connection to my choice, just to try and enhance readers’ understanding of what makes me tick.

I will tag my posts TTT and I will go looking for other posts with that tag. If you’d like to join in, please do the same, or comment, or pingback to this post, and feel free to reproduce my graphic. Lastly, I look forward to reading about what makes you tick.


As I said, I’m reaching the end of this series – this is pretty much my last post, but next week I’ll present a roundup. I wanted to take this opportunity to fast-forward to the present day. In just under a year of blogging on WordPress, I have been privileged to come across bloggers from all over the world, and people in every continent actually follow this crap! Unbelievable! (the locations and the following). I even hear useful snippets of people’s local news that I’d never get through our media.

So it’s Aswad again today. What can I say? I just can’t get enough of them. And, by the time I’ve finished this series, neither will you 🤣.

This track is from their most commercially-successful era. The track itself was only ever an album track, but the album was a big success. But even their commercial albums, you don’t have to scratch much beneath the surface before you hit some cracking good music.

I was going to make this my last post but I will come back next week, after I have worked out some final numbers.