We all know it is possible to be absent in a room, though physically present.

One can sit there and one’s mind can be elsewhere entirely.

Thing is, it doesn’t do to be absent too often. Think of it as Bilbo’s ring. Put it on too often and you begin to disappear.

If someone paid me for writing this stuff, I would do it during my working day. But because life has become almost impossibly full, it has been making me absent at the worst possible time: my time with my husband.

This, as those of you who know my rather exceptional spouse Phil, simply cannot continue, and I think it will have to mean that I cannot go on writing quite as I do now.

One of the things that gives me greatest pleasure is making links and writing about them, visiting places and ferreting out the tales behind them. Life is rich.

But it’s poorer without your soul mate, if you are one of those who has been lucky enough to be gifted with one.

So: this post is a spacer whilst I deliberate what is the best way forward. An apology for being absent at the blogs of all my great friends in cyberspace. A heads-up that daily Shrewsday may not necessarily continue.

Thank-you, friends. I’ll keep you posted.


84 thoughts on “Absence

  1. very important to be there in the real world on a regular basis, especially for the soul mates and other kin – I am sure you will come to some satisfactory way in the middle – there is no need to blog everyday or even once a week – in fact I often find I have to skip reading some of the more regular postings otherwise I wouldn’t have enough time to do all those other things in the world – will see you when we see you Kate 🙂

  2. Bless you and your soul mate, Kate. You are so right to put the things that are less important aside. Take all the time you need and your devoted followers will still be here whenever you are able to return 🙂
    Many thanks for all you have gifted us with and many affectionate blessings to you and yours, Bia x

  3. Go love him up, definitely. Meanwhile, your readers can catch up on all the posts we haven’t had time to read–you are a whirlwind of productivity! I’m looking forward to a Netflix-style binge, starting with all the Big Al and Macaulay stories (thank you for categorizing them), and then some virtual vacation time at places I will never see in person, or for that matter as clearly as I do through your lens. It’s important to take time to savor both love and literature.

  4. Kate, your blogging productivity is a thing of wonder. Nobody else I follow blogs at this length, or with this amount of research. It’s only amazing you haven’t run out of steam.
    Enjoy time in the real world, with the people who make you you.

  5. It’s all about priorities and, for whatever it’s worth, Kate, I am in the same mindset as those who’ve commented here already today. I’m particularly in agreement with Barbara Sullivan (wish I’d said that). Will look forward to whatever you share, whenever you’re able to do it.

  6. I have always wondered how you manage. I barely squeeze out a post a week. Frankly Kate, you’ll lessen some of my own guilt while giving yourself a well-deserved break. Best to you and yours.

  7. That makes sense. I could not have and would not have written a blog during my working life, whenever that was. As a working photographer I was absent from family life for a great deal of the time, so I’m not missed. In fact, if I was around the house too much, I think Jenny might leave:)

    1. To be honest, the post a day has been a survival tactic, Roger. I seem to maintain equilibrium a lot better if I dwell on something other than my own life. But quite when this becomes untenable escapism, I’m not certain.

  8. I’ve been in awe of how you manage to keep up. I’m a little relieved for my sake to find it’s come at a cost – and glad for your sake that you know when to find a new balance.

    I look forward to enjoying whatever that new balance of yours is. Until then, have a glass of red together for me! And maybe we should go and have one together as well.

  9. It is always a pleasure to read your posts and appreciate your photos, the pleasure will not be lessened if we only see them every so often, Real Phil needs some real Kate. 🙂

  10. Quite right. And, as always you think about others even us who live in cyberspace. While you are with Phil, we can read again so many wonderful posts not properly taken in before. See you again when you have time to be back.

  11. Definitely Phil first! And if we see you a bit less often (quiet sob), we will appreciate your voice all the more when it hails us again. Create your balance and be happy! Even more astounding writing may come of that.

  12. I have marveled at your prolific postings… And enjoy them greatly! You are wise – and brave – to follow your inner promptings, and put your marriage first. I hope the outcome is surprisingly joyful, both in terms of your relationship and your writings!!!

  13. Blogging has to be, in my opinion, manageable and fun. I have had a few days off here and there recently, and I am enjoying posting when I do much more. My stats may be lower, but so what? They’re just stats.
    When life makes time again, and if it’s what you want to do, post.
    Have a great autumn, and a photo now and then would be nice!

      1. Let me know when you do. like you, I am having a lesser presence online.
        Thanks for the link, I shall follow it up. 🙂
        How are your animals dealing with the fireworks?
        My ginger ninja is hiding under the bed. 😦

  14. Having had the honor to meet you, Phil, Maddie and Felix – or, the Fabulous Shrewsday Foursome, when you crossed the pond to visit NYC last summer, I can say with authority that you and Phil are the coolest couple and I am so glad that you breeded twice because your kids really rock, too. When we were hanging out by the fountain in Lincoln Center Phil took the loveliest “gotcha” shot of you. Only a soulmate could have frozen such a perfect moment. You’re an established, respected and appreciated presence on the blogosphere, Kate. You deserve to take a break to focus on the truly important priorities. Take care my friend.

  15. I can’t click like at your taking time off, though I completely understand it. Having met Phil, he is a keeper, and I hope your You time feeds your spirit and recharges your soul.

  16. Nope. Not acceptable. You must clone yourself so that one Kate can meet the needs of herself, Phil, Maddie, Felix, Big Al, Macauley, the Cats, her parents, her job, the Princesses, her sanity, her personal hygiene, her sister, her diet, her health & well-being, etc..

    And WE can have the other Kate all to ourselves here in the blogosphere! Because, after all, if it’s NOT all about US . . . it should be! :mrgreen:

  17. Kate … I cut back on my time on Facebook this past summer for just this reason. I really wanted to focus more on my writing and with my family. I’m still trying to strike a balance. Best wishes to you in whatever you choose. I do enjoy your posts, but I understand.

  18. Kate dear – your output in the year or so I’ve known you has been nothing short of prodigious. I’ve often wondered how you managed it and am sad to find you hadn’t been gifted several extra hours every day. Do what’s best for you. Remember, on the plane, when they tell you to bring down the oxygen mask, take a good breath from it and then begin to share it your baby? I never heard a more appropriate metaphor for this simple truth (something men don’t seem to struggle with to a lesser extent that women, I fear, but something I’ve found to be profoundly valuable in my life.)

    I’m smiling, thinking you and the incomparable Mr. P. might do something mundane but memorable together in this ‘spare’ time together (and I’m not talking about the smutty stuff!). 🙂

  19. As someone who has just now managed to catch up on your last 4 or 5 postings, and who has whittled her own posts down to two or three a week, I thoroughly understand from whence you write, Kate. Also being a lass who landed a very fine lad, you need to do what you need to do. Here’s hoping to read another post someday soon – soon enough.

  20. I am sure you’ll find just the right way to nourish the writing soul but stay in the real world, Kate. I’ve marveled at your ability to keep it all going at such a pace. Life ebbs and flows. ox

    1. Debra, your words have gone with me during this week. Because the writing soul is important too. Thanks for those wishes 🙂 Hope those lovely grandchildren, and that beautiful tortoise, and the railway, and your incomparable dog are all well x

  21. You are missed! One does need to strike a balance – but that does not mean the all-or-nothing policy often adopted. Even if you post once a fortnight …
    I do hope you find a chance at some time to catch up with the final bits of Ginger William, one of the stories I have most enjoyed retelling.

  22. I regularly find that I have to regulate my various activities and the regularity of my posts varies accordingly – as do my visits to the sites of my fellow bloggers. I always wonder about those who are able to blog every day, especially where some deep research has been done to produce the specific post. So Kate, take some time out and formulate a plan to go forward that allows for family time as that is much more important than anything else. Just write when you can and I know your readers will enjoy whatever you offer 🙂

  23. Follow your heart Kate. You can’t go wrong with that. We will appreciate you that much more when you do have occasion to share some time with us. Well done you to have the courage to live your life rather than just write about it!

  24. I’ve always been in awe of your being able to come up with quality posts every day, Kate, something even in retirement I’ve been unable to do. So I do appreciate your determination to prioritise what’s important to you.

    And it does mean we still get quality Shrewsday posts that we can savour and look forward to — just a bit more spaced out! Anyway, well done you.

  25. Kate, I second all the wonderful comments about the quality and frequency of your posts. Even this post of yours raises some fascinating issues. Surely the interaction between the virtual reality of our blogs and the actual reality of our lives is worthy of further discussion. The frequency of your posts has affected your relationship with your life partner. A blogger recently traveled half way around the world to stay with me for a week much to the consternation of my life partner! What tangled lives we bloggers weave!

  26. Here’s the thing, I don’t consider myself a writer, a poet, photographer, artist, designer, tree hugger, on through to farting machine………I am simply a man with a dog, but the dog up and died then I got another – you are Kate, go forth be whatever that is, do whatever it takes -we’ll be fine, you be fine to.

  27. I have missed so many posts…this is so touching and heart felt Kate. While life on this side of the pond dissolves into the fray of unemployment and, well, all the other stuff, I see this post and realize that so many of us share unique, yet common threads. There are important moments when others become our primary concern. I so appreciate your writing…

  28. Oh Kate, I am another that marveled at your schedule! I can imagine the effort – and ‘absence’ – involved in churning out posts of the quality such as yours, on a daily basis. No apologies needed. Happy that you seem to have found a balance 🙂

  29. You are absolutely right, of course. And I’m another who is in awe of your wonderful abundance and quality of posts. How you did it on a daily basis is beyond me, but you’ve certainly given us a library to delve into. There are many I missed b/c, yes, other things got in the way. We’ll all simply catch up bit by bit, and look forward to your new posts whenever you’re able to create them.

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