About Simon Perks

Writer, trail runner, hill walker, astronomer, kayaker, paddleboarder, nerd, tea drinker, lover of the sea, labrador wrangler

The Russian invasion of Ukraine highlights how dependent on others we have become

As the unprovoked Russian bombardment of Ukraine’s cities, towns and civilians continues, we look on in horror at the carnage that unfolds daily in front of our eyes. In disbelief that such terrors can still be wrought in Europe in the twenty-first century. But beyond the awful human toll of this war, it highlights also the worrying extent to which we have become dependent on other nations for the food, fuel and other things that sustain us.

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Oh, Russia

I’ve long had a soft spot for Russia. Or, more specifically, for her people. Since I studied there in my youth, I’ve felt a deep-seated affection, verging on kinship, for this complex – and so frequently misunderstood – nation. Add now, as my heart goes out to the brave people of Ukraine, I cry also for the people of Russia. For a nation whose potential seems destined to remain forever unfulfilled.

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In praise of the domestic arts

When I talk about the ‘domestic arts’, I’m not just talking about the ironing. I’m talking about everything that goes into the management of a household and the nurturing of the family that resides within it. From the construction and maintenance of a dwelling to the growing and preserving of food, from the management of the household budget to the raising of the next generation. And, yes, the ironing. These are all essential skills. But we’re losing them.

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No clout whatsoever

There are a couple of storms working their way across the UK at the moment. The first swept through yesterday and the second is due to arrive tomorrow morning. So we’re currently in a rather breezy limbo, trying to make sure that everything’s battened down tight in preparation for the hurricane-force winds to come. But thanks to Ozzy, my younger Labrador dog, we still have time for moments of levity.

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The power of personal recommendation

If you need to find a tradesperson, the internet is there for you. Whether it’s a Google search, an online directory or one of the many ‘accredited tradesperson’ websites that have sprung up over the last few years, there’s no shortage of options. What there is, however, is a shortage of knowing which of the resulting names and phone numbers you can trust to do a good job.

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