Browsing about, I happened on the work of illustrator Sow Ay, which I dug.

So, aye… The word ‘mindful’ gets thrown about quite a lot at the moment, conceptions of ‘presence process’, thinking ‘right now’. Some aspects of That Sort of Thing work well for me, anyway.

This cartoon by Sow Ay is a nice reminder that one may be feeling good, all over it, even, but not to take that for granted.

Not drinking alcohol reminds me that my brain works in certain ways, quite a lot of which can be positive, but there’s a lot of excitable over-thinking, unsolicited extrapolation and fret as well. I’m getting to appreciate that the brain waves are easier to stay afloat on without a body full of booze.

Today? I was shovelling a tonne of compost on to the veg patch, which I suppose works as a metaphor but was, also, an actual tonne of actual compost on to an actual veg patch… alongside other first-day-of-holiday, warm-sunny-weather-in-late-winter hyphenated pottering. Lots of time with the kids. Oh yeah, Leeds won as well. It was A Good Day.

Not taking it for granted, no sir, not saying I’m full of understanding… but yeah, recognising when it feels good.

Thoughts tumbl, round and within York Walls.

Awesome clear whitish-blue sky, whitish stones, taking the anti-clockwise turn from Victoria Bar.

Following five minutes repose listening to the organist practising in St Mary’s. The sun coming in through the window by the altar casts a shadow that looks like Jesus.

Never noticed it before, but today the Terry’s factory seems designed to mirror the Minster.

I love Baile Hill. On the apex of the knoll today: an abandoned pack of Cutter’s Choice and some filters in their cellophane tube, fallen out of someone’s pocket next to the little plastic bag they sat on. Remnants of a fire, a charred can of Stella, three fireworks tubes. King of the fucking castle. Standing arms up like a star, toasting the lights.

Joan Baez, Ball/Barber/Bilk, bringing big names beginning with B to the Barbican.

Town centre is hell on toast on Saturday. Just off the wall at Monkgate and instantly doing the tourist three-step. One two, one, one two, one… two… and through and through.

Pubs all the way down Goodramgate heave with shoppers and drinkers. Two weeks without massive infusions of booze, my head’s buzzing with delight that I only briefly want to join in.

In Travelling Man, I melt into a glowing puddle of pleasure at the printed products, managing to restrain myself from buying, like, every comic in the whole world. There’s a trio discussing what costume the guy should wear to get his discount into Thought Bubble. I decide to start taking 2000AD again. It’s been years. I do like a nice cultural signifier in my basket.

On the radio in the shop: NWA’s ‘Express Yourself’. That’s the second time today I’ve heard it. God’s Jukebox, clearly indicating that all is proceeding correctly.

Dander for coffee at Dusk. £2’s too expensive for a double espresso, but Dusk wins because it’s not Costa, Subway, Caffe Nero, Patisserie Valerie or Starbleuchs. AND they have good music, a selection of broadsheets and attractive hipsterish staff, alright, well done.

On Coney Street, some cosplay entrepreneur, inexplicably issued with a busker’s license, is accepting money to let people, mainly children, stand next to him and hold his weapon. ‘Aren’t you a little shit for a Stormtrooper?’

Back up the road, still audible, the slightly out-of-breath clarinet proper busker is making me very happy as he wheezes through ‘I’m Alive’, the Hollies tune. He’s accompanied by a tinny amplifier playing the song. I sing along out loud as I walk on, a big daft smile on my face.