08/01 Direct Link
Day two and we're 20 miles down. It was really really hot, scorching to boot. I think I may just have an Essex tan. Wil ate too many blackberries and Dan threw an apple and hit Baris in exactly the wrong place and Callum tried to pee at the side of a motorway. Then Matty pushed Dan in a ditch and Wil and Callum got abducted and locked in some guy's basement and Baris chased Wil up the road with a stick after Rory asked him to use it as a motivator. We can hardly breathe for laughing.
08/02 Direct Link
The thing that makes this different from DofE is that I get a nice hot shower and a camping chair at the end of every day and I don't have to cook any of my own food because Julie and Danny are here to look after us. We stopped to get ice cream and Wil bought us all an apple and himself a transformer magazine (he then proceeded to try and get his free meteor blaster). We walk from about eight in the morning till we can't walk anymore, and usually get to camp around nine-ish. Happy Bunny Bean.
08/03 Direct Link
The funniest thing I've ever seen: two boys (Wil and Callum) walking along Harwich pier with their explorer scarfs tied round their heads like bandanas. A typical Essex girl makes a mocking face at them and Wil turns round and yells "I've just walked 81 miles for Macmillan cancer support, have you?!" and then both boys turn and sprint up the pier towards us, away from this girl and we all fall about laughing. But we've done it and we run on bleeding feet to the finish line and collaspe on the grass and smile and smile and smile.
08/04 Direct Link
What I said about bleeding feet? Not joking - I've got bloodstains on my socks. We stayed up late at the prospect of not having to wake up the next morning, chatting and laughing and yawning. Julie insisted on taking pictures, which she's now captioned (they're really funny). Mum came and got us after breakfast. We laughed the whole way home too. "Leap like a salmon!" "don't lie!" *cue funny voice*
It's been fabulous fun, plus I do have, for the first time ever, a tan!
With probably 1000 raised for charity.
I'd do it all again... but not right now.
08/05 Direct Link
The bad news is that they're going to America and I will not see them for three years. The bad news is that by the time they come home their education will have been ruined forever. The bad news is that Alyssa will come home with an American accent which will be really annoying and her cute 8-year-old-ness will be gone forever.The bad news is that they might not come home. The bad news is that I will miss them growing up.

The good news is that I now have their car...
08/06 Direct Link
Smoothies. Scrapbooks. Sunshine. Solidarity. Same. Stuck. Still. Super. Save. Single. Solumn. Solace. Sing. Soul. Son. Simplicity. Suction. Success. Sent. Struck. Snake. Slither. Slide. Slip. Stumble. Stack. Storage. Space. Star. Suns. Saturn. Sex. Stupid. Silent. Shiver. Shock. Sharp. Sweet. Superb. Splendid. Simon. Says. Stop. Suck. Stick. Sail. Some. Skinny. Scold. Scorn. Scithe. Skip. Skid. Skull. Skeleton. Shot. Shooting. Scape-goat. Scoundrel. Scunner. Scamper. Skuttle. Skittle. Sky. Scooter. Strop. Stomp. Strut. Seal. Send. Scream. Shout. Shudder. Slit. Slice. Sickle. Sick. Suddenly. Something. Storm. Shower. Shrimp. Shred. Shed. Shoulder. Shambles. Stone. Silly. Secrets. Surreal. Susurrus. Scrape. Scoop. Strawberry. Sacred. Scared. Smooth. Shrill. Smoothie :)
08/07 Direct Link
My favourite room in the whole house? The kitchen. It's my favourite room in any house. The kitchen is where I feel safe and comfortable. Sorry girls but it's true. I also love cooking and harbour a vague liking for washing up. I never said I was a feminist. If you ordered me to wash up I wouldn't, but left to my own devices... well. It strikes me that if you are looking for warmth and smiles and perhaps a cup of tea (to which I am partial) then the kitchen is the place to be. I like it here.
08/08 Direct Link
What would you do if I told you that the finest angel I ever saw wore dark curls and a clown's face? He ran with the wind and flew with the stars and you could see it in his eyes when he spoke of his dreams. Ever trying to get home. Ever trying to fly away. I only saw the angel. I forgot to look at the man. The angel blinded me with his darkness and his warmth. The angel is safety. The angel is hope. The angel will change the world. What would you do if I told you?
08/09 Direct Link
You are beautiful. Your eyes shine when you smile. They don't shine like stars and you don't look like you're being lit from inside by, say, a lightbulb. I think it's just the way the sunlight catches your iris and makes it a little brighter than usual. Plus your smile is very wide today and smiling releases happy endorphines (I think) so that's probably got something to do with it. All in all you look like the average teenager who is high on hormones and enjoying the weather while it lasts. Same as everyone else. You are beautiful. You should know that.
08/10 Direct Link
Dreaming. It's a funny old world isn't it? This terracotta street of mine: it's long and on a hill and cobbled and every tuesday a donkey plods down it carrying a cart full of produce for the market that sits in the square at the end. From the top you can see the sea. There's a doorstep and an old man sits on it, watching the world. We are somewhere in Italy I think. Maybe it's the place I'll go when I'm old, when my skin is brown like leather. It's very orange here. Come sit old man, at my place of rest.
08/11 Direct Link
I thought I could hear voices. Alone in the house with all the doors and windows open because of the paint... and with the skies moody and grey and nobody home for hours and I'm upstairs and I hear voices. I can hear someone. I turn the music off and listen. There is it again. There is a voice in my house. In my empty house.
So I creep downstairs and it gets louder and louder and someone's left the radio on and it's fine and there's no one here but me and I sink on to the floor and start to cry.
08/12 Direct Link
...and then the rain came. Slick and sudden it thundered on my windowsill and made me look up from my studies. Each droplet a hardened bullet of water, splashing heavily on the gound and forming swirling puddles within moments. I watched it for a while and listened to it's comforting sound. There is nothing more peaceful than a rain storm. I padded barefoot to my bed and lay down with my eyes open, listening to the steady rhythm of the whispering raindrops, ever so beautiful, ever so sudden. And the pretty horses came to me as I slept.
08/13 Direct Link
Golden slumber burning in a field. Warm and rich and noisy, all whispering crackles as the leaves shriveled and burned with a blue flame. A coffee table on the grass, filled with bottles and glasses and little bowls of peanuts. The children played with the dog and laughed as the fire grew higher. I ran home with the pretty horses to send you sweet dreaming. The flames seemed to lick the stars before bedding down for the night in a soft pile of embers. Fire gazing at midnight, cool air and full moon in my hair, the golden slumbers reflecting off my eyes in the dark.
08/14 Direct Link
It seems I have done nothing but bake this summer. First we made doughnuts; a simple dough with orange and lemon zest. The sugar was a wonderful christmassy concoction with nutmeg and mixed spice and vanilla and cinnamon. We ate lunch while the dough rose then rolled it out and cut it and let it rise again. Lucy didn't want to waste the zested lemons... so we made a lomon cheesecake too. While the cheesecake was cooling we fried the doughnuts and sugared them and made strawberry sauce - then lay it all out in a magnificant spread and had afternoon tea.
08/15 Direct Link
I should get on and do it really. Throw out all the junk, move the furniture around and paint the room white. Then I could get everyone over... together we would paint the room. Signature pictures, handprints, faces - we would paint them all. We'd fill the walls with memories, stories; I could get everyone to write their name on the ceiling. And when we were done I would make tea and serve cake and we'd laugh until they left and I would lay down to sleep that night and smile at the pretty pictures on the walls and the windows.
08/16 Direct Link
A thousand tiny lights, like candles on a river of oil, flickering and floating through the dusted room. Swirling in a mass of confusing order, entering the soul through the eyes of the mind. Running pale hands along paler faces, red hearts beating. Jagged breaths and cracking lips, the steady shallow pumping through veins, the growing of fingernails and hair cells, desperately multiplying. The liquid noise of blinking, the gurgling of a tightened stomach, the creaking of a stiffened joint where the bones grind together as they move.

The body's symphony, original and creative in its own right.
08/17 Direct Link
This feeling isn't fear, cold and sharp and simple. Nor is it excitement, warm and clean and clear. No, this is anxiety - squirming and sickening and silent. I feel nervous, awkward if you will... I don't know how to respond to this situation. Should I stay or should I go? Are these words merely common courtesy or a way of expressing an acute desire to see me? I guess I'll just have to wait and see, but the wait is long and the view's no good. What would they think if me? An obvious betrayal, a sign. A word, nothing more. All we've got are questions.
08/18 Direct Link
Laughing, as I remember us sitting there, soaking wet the pair of us as the rain continued to pour outside. Your hair kept falling in your face, covering your dark brows and darker eyes. We must have sat there for two hours at least. I felt like I couldn't stop grinning, and you explained to me the concept of nervous laughter because you're good at psychology (even though you're glad to see the back of it). I got a mug. Thank you. I enjoyed listening to the changing tones and well chosen words. I enjoyed sitting with you, some place out of the rain.
08/19 Direct Link
I'll describe today with an image.
Think of this; a man on an old tractor, late afternoon sunlight streaming, the steady chug of the engine as he heads across a field that is filled with the remnants of golden corn. Two girls sit on the wheel arches, bumping up and down and screaming with laughter. The breeze pulls their hair back from their faces and the sun shines through - golden green coupled with a bluer than blue sky. See, I told you it'd be sunny. They're wearing shorts, loose shirts and wellingtons, perched on the side of a tractor, in a golden field. Happy Days.
08/20 Direct Link
Friday the 5th of Jluy
Dear Diray
today we went out shopping it was grat fan Alex cried evry minute of the journey it was fun But I did not want fish fingers for my lunch.

Saturday the 6th of Jluy
Dear Dirry
today I went swimming I did well. it was grat fun. I even did a sumersolt. I went to dramer afterwoods we did a shpw it was grat. Annette came rond It was funny.

Oh my. I wish you could see the handwriting. These are extracts from a diary by the way - I was quite young.
08/21 Direct Link
Sunday 7th of July
Daer Diry
We got up elye today. We played polly fisher it was greet we went down to Brekfeast yummm. after Annette went Home I was sad but then Holle came round. Then I had tead yummm. Then I went to bed.

Munday 8th of July
Daer Dirry
today I went to school it was grat fun at school I had lunch. yummm. Then I went to gun I was grat. Then I went home.

Been doing a little research - I was about seven when I wrote this.
08/22 Direct Link
I love you. Took me a little while to figure it out, but I did. And it's true.
I guess I got distracted. I lost sight of what I really felt, how I really feel. I lost sight of what I was looking for. I must have... changed. Reading and re-reading what you wrote - I remember, like it was the first time. You mean something to me. I care about you, and I will never let you get old and lonely, that's a promise. I am not in love with you, but I love you just the same.
08/23 Direct Link
There are so many things we still need to do. Not things I need to do (although there are plenty of those) but things that we need to do. Just because there isn't an 'us' anymore, doesn't mean we can't have a 'we'.
So I'll make a list:
We still need to travel the world in a boat
We still need to paint pictures on the pavement
We still need to hoppity skip
We still need to find all the ducks

We still need to dance in a field.
08/24 Direct Link
Some kind of nervous anxiety is twisting away inside of me. Something is eating my mind away, the darkness is coming to play today. Memory is missing, I feel like I'm listening, sounds are now invisible, why is this so livable? Tick tock tick tock words on a clock face, I should be running but I can't find my own race. This is so confused. I'd rather be with you.
Please try to put this to a tune, it'll make much more sense if you do, I wish you could hear me singing now. Figuring out how.
08/25 Direct Link
We sat in the sunlight kitchen, baby on his arm, tea between my hands, sounds of a household all around us and I had a sudden thought; this is us. In ten, twenty years, that baby will be his baby. Her children will open the drawers and she will give them a breif word before turning back to us. We will have the same conversation, we will even look the same.
Another goal achieved - my results are in and I'm happy. I wonder how long it will be before I end up looking at this image in my head.
08/26 Direct Link
Party. Cold, wet, happy. Fairy lights and chocolate cakes and doughnuts and mouthfuls of mint if you didn't drink the pimms through a straw. I am not the best fan of pimms. Half a glass and nothing else, not even a can of coca-cola ftw. A bouncy castle‼ How old we are. How old. Music ♫♪ that's talent right there that is. I don't like drunk people. It makes me feel lonely. I also don't like fights. They make me feel lonely too. Please stop fighting - she didn't mean those things she said. I promise. I promise to be better.
08/27 Direct Link
A mirror, found in an Aladdin's cave all done up with brick lined staircases winding down into dusty and forgotten cellars, reflecting a rainstorm. Skies heavy with darkening moisture and the occasional roar of Thor himself parading overhead. The reflection looks back from the mirror and dances to the sound of a record jazzing up from below and the shouts of laughter from the television, warm light heavy and soft in the darkness... and all the while the butterflies circle each other in the growing sunlight, fighting or loving, we can't be sure, but what's the difference anyway? I dreamt that you were on a train.
08/28 Direct Link
She found him on, how can I put this, the internet. No, not quite the internet... some strage form of communication called BBM, something to do with having a Blackberry. He wanted to meet up. She didn't know who he was, didn't know anything about him. It would have been stupid to go.
She went. She went. Went and sat in his car, went to meet him by herself, didn't tell anyone. I'll cry for her, my stupid stupid friend who won't listen. She's stupid. Lucky she's still alive. Stupid girl. Stupid stupid stupid.
08/29 Direct Link
They're fighting. Silly girls. Why are they fighting? They're supposed to be friends.
I live in a very nice world. Rose tinted. I don't notice the bad things I guess... I can be pretty unobservant when I need to be. I miss out on all the petty rivalries and little arguements and I try to never take sides. I aim to see the good in people. I'm renown for it. I can alter my personality, my mannerisms to suit people I'm with. I aim to please. But it does upset me when they fight. They're supposed to be friends.
08/30 Direct Link
Fate. Fete. Village fete. Fun in a village kind of way, I know everyone, it could be anyone. Cake and crumbs and cups of tea, and everyone wrapped up against the cold. Fate. You started talking to me again. Got me going again. I did a silly thing. I don't know you well enough. I'd like to know you better - that's why people do these things, isn't it, to get to know each other better? I don't know. Fingers crossed. Nerves. Silly mistakes and misconceptions and misunderstandings. I hope I haven't missed anything. Fete. Cold, wet, happy. Fate. Not sure.
08/31 Direct Link
I think I'm done.
I think this might be it. It seems more than a few old friends are leaving now. I think this might be the end of Annibell.
Oh, I'll keep writing. New name, new stories. New person, new me. I think that it's better this way - I won't be held down by the expectations I've come to create. A new branch of creativity.
You'll have to see if you can spot me. I'll still be here but with a fresh coat of paint. Still watching, still writing. Thank you. Thank you and farewell my friends.