My latest blog for Claret Press is more personal than usual and contains a very old photograph of me with my husband Atam. Katie Isbester has titled it

How Love Mixes Us Up and Makes the World a Better Place!How-Love-Mixes-Us-Up-and-Makes-The-World-a-Better-Place/c16ee/57cac090da69896edc4d9d35

Our wedding 001

In my blog for Claret Press, I draw attention to one personal experience from my so called ‘mixed ‘marriage. As I pointed out to the Daily Mail journalist in 1969 , I married  a particular individual not an ‘ Indian’.  We are each of us unique and I try to approach each person I meet as an individual and try not to colour my judgment with stereotypes .

The press always refer to Barrack Obama as ‘black’ but to my knowledge he had a black Kenyan father and a white American mother so that makes him mixed race.  But above all he is uniquely himself enriched by the connection to more than one culture.  Can anyone explain to me why children of mixed marriages tend to be defined by the ‘foreign’ part of their inheritance where ever they live in the world ?In trying to pigeon hole you, people are not necessarily  hostile. It is often done with good intentions but is it essentially a racist perspective? From my experience, racism is not ‘white’ it is ‘human’.  Are there questions all human beings should ask ourselves about how we view others?

On Barrack Obama’s inauguration  The Observer  published two contrasting articles. One talked about why Obama is ‘black’ but the other reported on a group of successful young mixed- race Britons. Talking together in a London bar, they wondered why Lewis Hamilton and Barrack Obama are described as black when they are not; they are of mixed race. The inspiring thing about this group who have founded ‘The Torquoise Association’ is that they regard themselves as enjoying the best of both worlds. That is what I find inspiring. They can lead us to think of the human race as one people.


Caroline Huang Mc Laughlin who has recorded the audio book of Brushstrokes in Time  identified with it in a deep and personal manner.

It will be released by Essential Audiobooks (New York) inOctober


On Thursday 15 September,  I will introduce the Oxtopian Michael Smith the author of many best- selling non –fiction books. Michael will talk about ‘Foley the Spy who saved Ten Thousand Jews.’ It is thanks to Michael that Foley is getting the recognition he deserves so it is an honour to introduce him.  At the risk of sounding sentimental, what motivated Frank Foley? I’m sure he wouldn’t have called it love and empathy but I do.   The talk at the Victoria Arms is a Writers in Oxford event. Members come free but visitors are made welcome but  asked to contribute £5!

What a privilege the castaway series has given me:  the opportunity to interview 118 inspirational people from almost every background imaginable.  Icolyn Smith was born to a subsistence farmer in Jamaica and with no savings at all apart from a store of love and determination she started the Cowley Road Soup Kitchen.  In contrast Lady Fiona Carnavon’s upbringing can only be described as privileged.  But seeing her passion for reading and the kind of book she reads I encountered empathy.

On Wednesday I introduced Helen Peacocke who as food writer of The Oxford Times wrote a recipe every week for 25 weeks and contributed the recipes for Green Power: The Sprulina Cookbook.  Helen said the best food is prepared  with LOVE.

The question is ‘Can good ever come from actions motivated by hate?’