Thursday, 26 December 2013

A little time in the morning.

It's nice to have a couple of days away from work and dare I say away from home. I don't get the chance that often and to be honest when I do, I'm not the first to embrace it. However, it's Christmas time and at Christmas time we get the chance to put our feet up and simply chill for a while.

The last couple of days have been spent doing exactly that and this morning was for sure one of the high points.

A number of months ago I decided to have a go at Tai Chi. Since them I've plodded a happy little road training as often as I either can, or can be bothered. I made a decision not to put to much pressure on myself around training and to simply try and see what happens.Turns out that was the way forward for me.

Now I train two or three times a week and really, really enjoy it. That being the case, this morning was a real high point in my training. This morning I spent some time in a frosty garden in the middle of the county side with the birds singing while I practiced. It was a memorable experience. I enjoyed it and will surely do it again. And that is the key for me, I really enjoyed it.

Tuesday, 24 December 2013

It's Christmas

It's been a funny old couple of weeks. Big changes at work have put the pressure on as is usually the case. Life has plodded on its merry way and of course the wonder that is Christmas has taken all our money and left us penny-less. However, all this seems to pail into insignifacance when I look into the eyes of my son Jack. Right now as he is tucked up safely in bed waiting for santa, things are ok. Ok is ok.

Friday, 29 November 2013

Qi Gong blog six

Well, thats that, five days of Qi Gong training done and now I'm sat in Manchester airport waiting for my flight back to Bournemouth, back home. It's a funny old thing sitting in airports watching everyone run round like complete nut cases. One of the benefits after a week of fairly intense Qi Gong is I find myself fairly calm and relaxed. Until of course someone decides to piss me off, then it might change.

It's been a strange week for me up here. I'm not the kind of person who likes to be away from home. That together with the training I've been on, has left me at times a little on the sensitive side. Those who know me well know I'm a sensitive bunny at the best of times.
Still, so far so good.

Having to wait five hours for my flight hasn't been the best of things. I did ask for a seat on a earlyer flight and had a brief  moment of glee when I was told there were a few spare seats. However, as is sometimes the case, this moment of joy was short lived when the smiling customer service joy giver informed me the transfer would cost an extra £42. The original flight was only just over £50 so I decided to say thank you and sit back down. Lovely.

Thursday, 28 November 2013

Qi Gong blog five

Another day in Manchester and day four of Qi Gong training done. One more day tomorrow then it's homeward bound for me. To be honest, apart from missing my family, It's been quite good up here. However, I'm done now and Bournemouth is calling.

Tonight was good. I'd made a call last Sunday to a friend of a friend who picked me up and took me to a C.A. meeting. A good old Big Book study with what is possibly the cutest  little dog in the world running round. I've grabbed a few meetings since coming up here last Sunday and I say without doubt, I've been made welcome every time. Turns out Manchester is ok, at least in the meetings. Thats good enough for me.

Wednesday, 27 November 2013

Qi Gong blog four

Blog four on day three of Qi Gong training and all seems to be well. We were given to news today that in order to teach what we are currently learning we need to train for a total of one onehundred days over the next three months. Once we have done this we can then be assesed  by our teacher who will either give us the go ahead to teach, of give us more training to work on. This should keep me out of trouble for a while.

In other news I really enjoyed getting to a meeting tonight and yet again seeing a couple of fellows I've not seen for a long time. It's cool in a mighty way. Also cool in a mighty way is that I'll be heading home before much longer.

Tuesday, 26 November 2013

Qi Gong blog three

Manchester has a train station, its quite a big train station and as a result it has a few of those flat do your walking for you kind of escalator things. You know, the ones you find in airports, and for that matter it would appear train stations. They are, I believe a great thing. After all, anything that is prepared to do your walking for you must surly be a great thing.

However, I find myself having an issue with these wonders of the modern age. Or at least some of the people who use them. Why, again I say why is it that people feel the need to walk on these things? More importantly, why do they huff and puff when someone like me simply stands still and lets them do the job they were employed to do. Nevertheless, I will continue to fight the good fight and come hell of high water I'll continue to stand still when ever possible. Sounds quite reasonable to me and I'm sure to the inventor of the travalator.

The rest of the day has seemed to plod on quite nicely. Qi Gong training day two went well and to be honest I'm looking forward to making use of what I learn. The area is a bit on the rough side though. Lots of flat blocks stood empty and cold wating to be blown to bit coupled with old derilict mills make for a bleak view on many different levels.

This really serves well to underline just how blessed I am in our little council flat tucked away by the woods in Bournemouth. I'll be glad to get home, I like being home. Chatting to my family on face time is cool, but I like being home. So, all in all it's been a good day. A good day apart for the "incident" at costa coffee. Lets never speek of it eh?  

Monday, 25 November 2013

Qi Gong blog two

Day two in Manchester and day one of the Qi Gong training I'm here to do. It's been good although the woman training us is of the Chi Kung ilk rather then Qi Gong. I'm told its six and two threes and everyone if free to use the translation they please. For me its a Qi Gong thing. 

It's been great talking to Jack on FaceTime today. The wonders of the modern age, that I can have a face to face chat with my son two hundred and fifty miles away is indeed impressive, at least for me.  Still I find myself counting the days till friday when I can get home to my family. 

So thats about as simple as it gets tonight. I was grateful that the Tai Chi I've been practicing for some time has given me a decent footing for the coming week, grateful for a free lunch and grateful to see a real life tram for the first time. Odd things that they are.

Sunday, 24 November 2013

Qi Gong blog one

Over the next few days I am gona be in Manchester training. training and maybe blogging just a

little bit. Being away from home is not something that comes easy to me, in fact I hate it. Saying good-by to Jack and the wife this morning was horrible, simple as that. 
The rest of the day has been fairly ok tho. The flight up in the Buddy Holy death plane passed without incident. Although a misreading of my ticket had me sitting in the departure lounge two hours early. The travel lodge is as a travel lodge is, and I'm fine with that. And the Indian takeaway I had for supper has left me feeling sick and blotted. 

I made my way to a meeting tonight and found myself pleasantly surprised to see an old friend. Oddly enough an old friend who happened to be one of the guys who carried the C.A message to me a fair few years ago. Turns out he is here doing the same training as me. This is a good thing I believe.

Lastly to the highlight of my day split in two. Firstly I called home and Jack answered. We had a great chat about the broccoli friends and his day.  I love talking to my son. Then when he went to bed I called Michelle and we chatted. I love taking to my wife. Day one has been ok. Maybe tomorrow I'll learn some Qi Gong.

Tuesday, 19 November 2013

Who knew

Today I reached the grand old age of 46, quite a thing when you think about some of the things I've got up to in years gone by. Such a thing that I really need to tap into a bit of gratitude for making it. However, it would seem that for me this is not as simple as it would seem. The reason? Quite simply because absolutely no one has stopped in there tracks to wish me a Happy Birthday. Friends and strangers on the street alike, no one seems aware of this great day. Shocking!!!

In truth, why should they? In further truth, what difference dose it really make. The ones that matter, matter. This morning Jacks first words were "Daddy, today you are 46, happy birthday". My wife got up, gave me a kiss and wished me happy birthday. Soon after I had a text from my wonderful mother in law doing the same. This is what's at the core of it, this is what really matters, what in reality makes today such a great day for me. Who knew eh?

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Monday, 11 November 2013

Time to stop.

Sometimes it can be so hard to simply stop, stop and take a little time to breathe. Seems to me the key to doing this. is doing this. No need for a particular place, mat, hat or practice. Just stop, just breathe, just enjoy.

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Sunday, 10 November 2013

A moments silence.

I guess some of you will have realised that today was remembrance Sunday, poppy day. That day when once a year a token gesture is made and two minutes silence is held for those who want to take part. I know about it every year but in truth its never been a practice I paid that much attention to. Until today.

Today I was at my Sunday morning Tai Chi class. It had, as is usually the case been a great class. Great apart from the fact that every five minuets an announcement was coming over the tannoy system loudly proclaiming that at eleven there would be two minuets silence. Nevertheless, the class continued onward practicing forms and learning little by little.

When eleven finally stuck it turned out to be a truly stunning experience.  As a class we seemed to flow through the sequance of moves as one, the silence  not only in the studio we were in, but also through the entire leisure centre enabled a feeling of oneness that for me, felt wonderfully calming and quite simply right.  The internal martial art that is Tai Chi worked so well with what was going on at that moment in the outside world, so well.

And then it was over, the crackling tannoy once more broke into action and the moment passed. It was a nice moment, a moment that for me was most wonderful. A moment of silence.

Thursday, 7 November 2013

Just a little knob

Funny how the little things stay with us and that sometimes if we wait around long enough, it all turns out ok in the end. A number of years ago  me and Mrs D put together a pair of Twelve and Twelve scrolls for our local F&E committee.

This in its self was a nice little bit of service and as is mostly the case with service, i enjoyed it. Enjoyed to a point, until one of the wonderfully rounded knobs fell from one scroll.

I then spent years, years mind you seeing those scrolls up at various C.A events with a knob missing. Needless to say, this has caused me much distress. However, tonight that all changed. Tonight the scrolls returned to the Dobbo household and I was able to attach the knob that has for so long been missing. It was a truly momentous moment, a feeling of deep satisfaction has once more come over me. Tis cool.

Monday, 4 November 2013

A few of my favourite things

Just sat thinking about some of my favourite things. So, in not particular order......

  1. My family.
  2. Putting my feet up.
  3. A relaxing bath.
  4. My Bandit 600.
  5. Working and reworking the Twelve Steps.
  6. A great job.
  7. Sitting with Jack.
  8. Laughter.
  9. Tai Chi.
  10. Home cooked food.
  11. Getting into a cold bed.
  12. Music.
  13. Three good friends.
  14. Another chance.
  15. Home.
  16. Riding my pushbike.
  17. Hot chocolate.
  18. Great in-laws.
  19. Fresh baked bread.
  20. Whistling.
  21. Motor sport.
  22. The Thursday night Ringwood meeting.
  23. Onken yogurt with blueberries.
  24. My iPhone.
  25. The Simpsons.
  26. Our new shower.
  27. Family guy.
  28. Not smoking.
  29. Walking in the woods.
  30. Family photos.
  31. Spiritual growth.
  32. Kissing my wife.
  33. Driving.
  34. Eggs.
  35. Acupuncture.
  36. Our home.
  37. The right to be wrong.
Seems to me that I could quite happily carry on and on, turns out Ive got quite a few favourite things.

Sunday, 3 November 2013

Up and down, and up again.

It's been an interesting day thus far. Up nice and early I got to spend some time with Jack and ease myself into the day, lovely. Then I jumped on my push bike and had a great little ride to Tai Chi. I've not been for a little while and to be honest it was really, really enjoyable. It really drove home the importance of a good teacher and that practice alone at home will only get you so far. My very cool morning was topped of with a nice ride home. So far, so good.

Then came the challenge. Serendipity SAMs is an indoor soft play area near where we live. I've blogged before about such places so my views are, and always have very clear on these damed hellholes. With this in mind I set of with the family ready for it.

However, as us often the case, things can come from strange unexpected angles. Turns out serendipity SAMs was kind of ok. Jack had loads of fun, the volume was reasonably low and the had a build a bear thing. All good so far. All good that was until I want to get a cupa. After paying nearly £4.00 for two cups of tea I was told no sweeteners were available and I'd have to have sugar. I pointed out not only am I diabetic, I'm also extremely disgruntled. The prophecy was fulfilled, bastards, I knew it.

Suitably pissed of sat back down, moaned to the Mrs and set about drinking my piss poor unsweetened tea looking as miserable as I could. However, as I sipped away I started to think I'm really quite enjoying unsweetened tea. Obviously not enough to openly admit it to Mrs D who is sat right next to me. But nevertheless I'm enjoying it. Maybe I might stop on the way out and say thanks to the girl behind the counter who told me to have sugar.

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Wednesday, 30 October 2013

A mental place to be.

It's half term and currently I find myself sat twitching in the corner of a soft play area in Adventure Wonderland thinking how totally mental the world around me is. For anyone out there who has never braved the madness that is soft play, you will never know. And that's a good thing.

For the rest of you, well safe to say I'm sure you understand. Still, despite the bedlam all around and the occasional involuntary twitch, I find this a strangely satisfying place to be.

Why? You might ask. In truth simply because I get the chance to watch my son have the time of his life. Right here, right now and right in the moment. And that is worth all the madness in the world.

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Saturday, 26 October 2013

Just Commuting

I've always liked bouncing around on a pushbike so a few months ago I made an informed desision to ride my bike a bit more and use it for work a few times a week. This I have to say has on the whole been a really rewarding thing. The only fly in the ointment seems to be the good and possibly Godly motorists of Bournemouth. They, it would apper are not as considerate as might be hoped. In fact, from time to time they seem to be total knob heads. Seldom blessed with the gift of either common sense, or sight.

I'm not what you would refer to as an undercover cyclist. Bright orange helmet (yep, thats right helmet) brighter green mighty glow bike jacket, enough reflective material to be seen from space, and still the bastards cut me up. I drive a car and ride a Bandit 600 as well so I  understand how hard cyclists are to spot on the road. Not hard in any way.

So, after much deliberation I have come to the conclusion that a plan for survival must be hatched if I am to make through the winter commute. From the moment I clip my clip-less peddles in I need to move into combat mode. Combat, make it in one peace, all drivers are idiots mode. Only then might I make it. If you should seen me happily trundling to, or for that matter from work, I ask please, please, keep out my fucking way. I thank you.

Saturday, 28 September 2013

I intend to blog

I like to blog, I really do. As a result I have over the years rambled and written on many an issue, and loved it. But, not for quite a while. This I feel  needs to change and I am happy report  I have recently shifted into the intend to blog phase.

Thats all.

Friday, 19 July 2013

Remembering Anne

Anne Smith (Dr. Bob's wife) March 21st, 1881 - June 1st, 1949 June 1950 AA Grapevine

"She greeted strangers, and listened for their names."

Somehow we believe Dr. Bob's beloved Anne would prefer this simple tribute beyond all others. It was written by one who knew her well. It came from the bottom of a grateful heart which sensed that extravagant language and trumpeting phrases would serve only to obscure a life that had deep meaning.

It is doubtful if now, only one year after her passing, that, the true significance of Anne Smith's life can be realized. Certainly it cannot yet be written, for the warmth of her love, and charm of her personality and the strength of her humility are still upon those of us who knew her.

For Anne Smith was far more than a gracious lady. She was one of four people, chosen by a Higher Destiny, to perform a service to mankind. How great this contribution is, only time and an intelligence beyo nd man's can determine. With Dr. Bob, Lois and Bill, Anne Smith stepped into history, not as a heroine but as one willing to accept God's will and ready to do what needed to be done.

Her kitchen was the battleground and, while Anne poured the black coffee, a battle was fought there which has led to your salvation and mine. It was she, perhaps, who first understood the miracle of what passed between Bill and Dr. Bob. And, in the years to follow, it was she who knew with divine certainty that what had happened in her home would happen in other homes again, again, and yet again. For Anne, understood the simplicity of faith. Perhaps that's why God chose her for us. Perhaps that's why Anne never once thought of herself as a 'woman of destiny' but went quietly about her job. Perhaps that's why, when she said to a grief-torn wife, "Come in, my dear, you're with friends now - friends who understand" that fear and loneliness vanished. Perhaps that's why Anne alw ays sat in the rear of the meetings, so she could see the newcomers as they came, timid and doubtful...and make them welcome.

There's a plaque on the wall of Akron's St. Thomas hospital dedicated to Anne. It's a fine memorial. But there's a finer one lying alongside the typewriter as this is being written - letters to Dr. Bob from men and women who knew and loved her well. Each tries to put in words what is felt in many hearts. They fail - and that's the tribute beyond price. For real love, divine love, escapes even the poet's pen.

So, in the simplest way we know, and speaking for every AA everywhere, let's just say 'Thanks, Dr. Bob, for sharing her with us.' We know that she's in a Higher Group now, sitting well to the back, with an eye out for newcomers, greeting the strangers and listening for their names!

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Wednesday, 3 July 2013


I've not blogged for a while, not for quite a while to be honest. Mostly this is down to the fact that I am fundamentally a lazy, lazy Bastard. That and the fact that I don't really think anyone reads the ramblings I have chosen to write. However, flicking through some of the relatively new blogger info listings I found I've had Fourteen thousand two hundred and seventeen views since I started blogging. With that I mind I might get back at it for a little while.

What's with all the numbers?

Ever looked at your phone and noticed the time was 11.11 or maybe 2.22, 4.44 etc? I've always been drawn to sets of numbers like that and have even been know to pull over on the side of the road when a particularly  pleasing sequence of numbers show themselves on my cars odometer. Over time I've even taken to thinking of such events as little God moments, a time to stop, to reflect, take a breath and plod on. In the past this has been known to happen to me as much as two or three times a week. Till recently that is.

Over the last couple of weeks I've been noticing these kind of sequences four or five times a day!!! I cant get away from the bloody things and to be honest it's starting to freak me out just a little bit. Day after day 10.10, 5.55 etc,etc,etc. Then last night, I wake to Jack shouting in his bedroom and rush in to find to poor little tike throwing up all over his bed. Happily, or maybe not so happily cleaning up puke my other half suddenly springs into muffled action asking if everything is ok then pointing out that its 3.33.

I watched a film called white noise a few years ago that span my mind about 3.33 in the morning, if you've seen it, you know. If you haven't, you don't know. Either way, I have to wonder what, if anything all this signifies. I still like the idea of little God moments through my day (and night) maybe I just need to take time to listen a bit more.

Sunday, 3 March 2013

10 years on

On the third of the third two thousand and three in  Camphil prison in the isle of wight I took what has been up till now, my last ever mind altering substance. My wildly generous cell mate gave me the tube he had just used to smoke his gear. I suppose it must have had the slightest trace of drugs in it, though you would have never know this to be the case. Seconds later and with the smell of nasal hair and singed eyebrow in the air, my drug taking career came to an end. This has proved to be a truly amazing and quite frankly mind blowing thing.

Life now is in many ways unrecognizable to what it was ten years ago, in many ways unbelievable to what it was ten years ago and in one or two ways slightly similar. The Twelve Steps, the fellowship of my choice and the power I've hooked into have set me up in the greatest  way possible. Ten years on and I'm ok, and ok is, well,  ok.


Saturday, 19 January 2013

It snowed!!!

We don't see a lot of snow down here in the south. Bournemouth is about as far south as you can get without getting your feet wet and as a result we spend most of our time in shorts. At least thats what we would have you think.

Most of my family come from the north east and when we get a little sprinkling of snow and start with our pissing and moaning, they tend to smile and mumble things like "soft southern Bastards"

Truth is, that may, or may not be the case. To be honest I don't know, and I don't care. What I do care about is that we had a little bit of snow and it was good.

Friday, 11 January 2013

It's been a while.

Months, months it's been since I last put anything on this blog. There was a time way back in the day (when ever the day was) that I used to post on here quite a bit. Guess I don't have that much to say nowadays, that, or what I have to say I don't particularly want people to hear.

So, a quick update. The wife is still good, Jack continues to grow up and is quite frankly fucking amazing. I got a new bike (that I love) a new job (that I love) and the happy world of recovery continues to plod along very nicely thank you very much. I'm gona try and blog a bit more again, I liked it.