Dirty Harry*

Wake up drenched with sweat but freezing.   “Is that sweat or wee in your bed,” Mum says, at 6.45am or so, when we get up in time for 8.15am Spin. “Sweat, this time,” I say, pulling on my padded-bottomed cycling shorts, fluoro gym top, Mum’s white snow-boots, trousers, scarf, gloves and goat .  “So […]

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Bad Blood*

“Hi, I’m Tanya,” I say, arriving at the new Spin studio at the farm.  “I booked this morning and…” “Hello,” the instructor says, an Italian inflection in his voice.  He’s  short, looks in his late forties and has a moustache.  Clad in tight cycling gear – he looks the part. “Oooohhhh want!” I say, my […]

Waterloo Sunset*

“But you said you’d take me to the garden centre,” I say, sitting next to Mum on the sofa.  Need to get out of the house and do something.  Can’t just sit here. “We can go at two o’clock,” Mum says, looking at the crossword, pen poised above the paper. “That won’t give us long […]

Pain And Gain*

“You’re early,” my trainer says, smiling, at nine o’clock this morning. “Yes,” I say.  “The panther’s gone.  Been awake since six thirty nine and…” “I’m just going to put my bag in the office,” she says, tying her long hair up.  With her hair down, she could be any pretty girl.  Hair up, she’s transformed […]

Time, Murderer, Please*

“So, I’m having trouble getting to sleep at the moment,” Seb says when he calls last night.  “I’ve just got so much work to do and I fall asleep but I wake up every hour and…” “Maybe it would be a good idea to get back to boxing and the gym?” I say.  “That will […]

Even Dogs In The Wild*

Sitting on my bike at the gym gazing out of the window.  Outside, the sky is grey and leaves blow in the wind.  The ground is covered with brown and yellow leaves. Missed my training session this morning but am here now: better late than never.  Have left the parentals for twenty four hours to […]

Death Bed*

“I’m just going to find some clean gym clothes – the purple set – and then when you leave I can go to the gym,” I say to Mum.  We’re at the flat.  Mum is helping me to change my bed.  In fact, Mum is changing my bed and I’m sitting on the floor, watching. […]

Tears Of The Giraffe*

“I had such a lovely time,” I say to Seb. We’re sitting in his car outside my gym at 11.50am this morning. “Me too, my lovely,” he says, kissing my shoulder. “It’s been so nice just spending time together.” “I hate this bit,” I say: not wanting to say goodbye, not wanting to get out […]

A Nasty Piece Of Work*

Waking up with a start from my afternoon sleep, I realise that it’s 5.19pm. Squeezing myself out from under the panther who’s sprawled across the bed, I sit up. Argh. It’s home-and-self-care-day today, which means: 1. Put away last week’s washing that is still on the airer. 2. Hang up washing in the machine. 3. […]

Hickory Dickory Dock*

“I’m exhausted from the gym, my lovely,” Seb says when he calls at 8.30pm last night. “What did you do there,” I say, sipping my hot chocolate.  Apart from turning up at a time when it’s open at last, so well done for that. “Well, I started at my toes and worked up,” Seb says.  […]