49 Days In 1988. Week 1: Dinner With Death

London – January 6th, 1988.

Alan was dead. I couldn’t believe it, but it didn’t stop my housemate, Stephen, cooking dinner and inviting me to eat with him and his boyfriend, Kev.

Tears spoilt our appetites,  but we all agreed that Alan would have wanted us to laugh. So we laughed and cried together while chicken in a white wine sauce went cold on our plates.

I only wished I had talked more to Alan. The fact that he tried to take his own life, last August, was a warning to all of us. But he was so difficult to talk to. He’d deny there was anything wrong and try and change the subject as quickly as possible.

I felt sorry for Kev. He’s younger than Stephen and I and hasn’t been on the scene very long. While we were doing the washing up, Stephen mentioned to me that Kevin was terrified of what his work colleagues would think when they found out he was gay. I told Stephen to tell him that he’s in a safe place now that he’s living in London. It’s strange, but the city seems to protect us from what goes on in other parts of the country.

However, we still need to be careful. We’re not safe on every street in London.

#London #music #bloggers #city #LGBTQI #LGBT


Welcome to this brand new feature on Hugh’s Views and News. In this feature, I will be sharing snippets from my diary of 1988. We’ll also take a trip in Hugh’s Music Time machine to hear some songs from the 1980s which have been chosen by some specially invited guests.

This week my guest is newly published author Marjorie Mallon. Like all my other guests, Marjorie was also asked to choose a random date. She chose January 6th; so the first entry from my diary for that year comes courtesy of Marjorie.

Marjorie’s book, The Curse Of Time: Book 1: Bloodstone, was published in August 2017.

#books #authors #interview

Click here to buy the ebook. A paperback version will be available in April this year.

Marjorie’s song choice from the 1980s is Babooshka by Kate Bush.

The song was released in June 1980 and spent ten weeks in the UK charts, where it peaked at number five.

With that black veil over her face, Kate looks as if she was ready for dinner with Stephen, Kev and me after hearing about Alan’s death. Do you have a favourite song that has a connection with death or the afterlife? Share a link to it in the comments. Thanks for the great choice of song, Marjorie.

Connect with Marjorie

Blog – for information about new releases, photos of main characters/character interviews, book reviews and inspiration: https://mjmallon.com

Facebook Group #ABRSC: Authors/Bloggers Rainbow Support Club on Facebook

Instagram: Instagram

Twitter: @Marjorie_Mallon and Twitter: @curseof_time

Facebook: Facebook: m j mallon author

Tumvlr: Tumblr: mjmallonauthor

Marjorie has devoted the past few years to writing over 100 reviews on her Goodreads Review Account, and on her blog to help support traditional and indie writers.

She moderates a new Goodreads group for the Authors Bloggers Rainbow Support Club #ABRSC read and review which is specifically for independent authors. Click the following link to join the group: https://www.goodreads.com/group/show/383127-abrsc-read-and-review.
#author #books #interview
Author, Writer, and Blogger, Marjorie Mallon
Marjorie was also the recent winner of the Carrot Ranch #7 flash fiction rodeo contest. Click here to read her winning story. Congratulations, Marjorie.
The Curse Of Time was also featured as my book recommendation of the month in October 2017. Click here to read the post.
Thank you to Marjorie for being my first guest of this brand new feature.
Click here to go to week 2 of this feature.
© 2017 Copyright-All rights reserved-hughsviewsandnews.com.

Click here to follow my music magazine on Flipboard.

 Don’t forget to buy your ticket for The Bloggers Bash on May 19th, 2018. Click here for full details.


75 thoughts

  1. Hugh that was such a touching entry from your diary. How did keV survive, was it okay when he came out?
    I love this new feature great idea, and brilliant to have guests to pick the music and dates. I do love Marjorie’s choice fabulous Kate Bush.
    My favourite, well two favourite songs about death are from Shakespeare’s sister’s
    https://youtu.be/AX-MyKQlndo in 1992 and Daniel by Bat for lashes from 2009.
    https://youtu.be/9yEjT_pIkhU. Looking forward to more of this theme.💜💜💜

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I’m afraid I’m going to make everyone wait to find out what happens to Stephen, Kev and me, Willow. Their stories will unfold during this series over the next 48 weeks. I know, I’m cruel aren’t I? 😀

      Thanks so much for linking those two songs. I really enjoyed them both, although had never heard the Daniel one before. The video was strange to watch, but the song (and it’s music) was excellent.

      I did invite you to be a guest on this feature, but it was while you were away. The invitation is still there. Just contact me via email or via the ‘contact Hugh’ button on the menu at the top of my blog if you’d like to be a guest one week.


    1. Thanks, Cathy. I only rediscovered this dairy a few years ago. It’s brought back many memories – good and bad. My music feature from last year was a huge hit, so I wanted to include music again in this new feature. I’ve a few guest spaces left if you’re interested in being a guest one week. Contact me via the ‘contact Hugh’ button on the menu at the top of my blog if you’d like to be a guest one week.There’s no pressure to participate, so please don’t be afraid to say ‘no thank you.’ 😀

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Hi Hugh,
    Now with the first post, I love your idea of combining your diary with the music selected by your guest. I think it is a brilliant idea. I must say you had my curiosity raised waiting for the first post.
    I too have a journal I started back in the 80’s. Mine was started for therapy, but then evolved into more. I wasn’t always faithful keeping up with my entries. There are huge gaps. In writing the current book, I took some of those journal entries and rewrote them to be incorporated into the manuscript. I look forward to more of your diary entries and of course your guest selections. Hugs.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks so much, Chuck. I only rediscovered this diary a few years ago. Then the idea came to me a few days after discovering it. With the 51 Weeks of music feature coming to an end, I wanted to include music in a new feature and combine it with guests and some of my own writing. Hence, a new idea was born.
      I’m looking forward to featuring you as my guest later on in this new series. I’m so pleased you like this new idea of mine.
      Hugs to you.

      Liked by 1 person

    1. I almost chose this song to feature in my 51 Weeks music feature of last year, Robbie. However, I ran out of weeks. Thanks for sharing your reasons why you chose the song. It’s a song I still often hear being played on the radio. His voice is amazing and really fits what the song is all about.


  3. I started a diary several times as a child, but never followed through. This was a poignant piece, Hugh. It sucks that people need to be afraid to be who they are, hopefully, one day we’ll learn.


  4. This is a fantastic idea, Hugh. I am always fascinated by people’s lives and look forward to learning more about you from your diary excerpts. A sad start to 1988, Alan’s death obviously had a profound affect on you and your friends. The song I have chosen that makes me think of death is this one. What a powerful song it is! https://youtu.be/3YxaaGgTQYM


    1. What an ‘edge of your seat’ viewing that video was, Judy. I think we’ve all had those dreams where we’re falling and then we wake up just before hitting the ground. Some say that if you carry on dreaming and hit the ground then you’ll die. Thank goodness I always seem to wake up.
      I knew the song but never seen the video before. A great choice.
      I’m glad you like this new feature and I’m looking forward to you being my guest later on in the series.
      Stephen, Kev and I will be back next week.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Yes, I have had those dreams before as well, Hugh and they are really frightening.
        I am looking forward to being a guest on this series too. You have come up with a cracking idea and it is great to be part of it. 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

  5. What a great new series, Hugh. Your diary entry is such a sad one. Dreadful for Kev to be so afraid of his colleagues finding out he was gay. Things have got better although there’s still more to be done. Loved Marje’s choice of music!


    1. Thanks, Mary. Yes, things were very tough for gay people even in London in 1988. There were still police raids on clubs and bars and some gay men especially were harassed by some in the police. Things are very different now but, as you say, still a lot of work to be done.
      I look forward to having you as my guest in this feature later on in the series. And I agree about Marje’s choice of music. A great piece of music.


  6. Love this idea, Hugh. Brilliant! Stories based on snippets from your diary is awesome enough, but mixing it with songs from the era…creative with a capital C!
    Looking forward to the next weeks in this feature 🙂


  7. Terrific post, Hugh. This promises to be a fabulous series. The Kate Bush video is wonderful, and it left me searching the Internet for large 6-stringed instruments! Couldn’t find any that resembled the one Kate is whirling around 🙂 ❤


    1. I love your comment, Tina. I guess back in the 1980s those large six-stringed instruments were popular, but how you found one I’ve no idea. I guess it would have been a case of checking out all the stores on the high street. I wonder if Kate still has hers?
      Looking forward to welcoming you as my guest in this new feature in April. 💕

      Liked by 1 person

  8. Wonderful to see Marje and her book featured here Hugh. And as for this new diary series. I just know I love it already and something tells me it should become a book! ❤


    1. Thanks, Debby. I’ve actually already started a book based on my life in London in the 1980s but haven’t touched it since I started to blog. It’s sat patiently in the archives of the iCloud. Blogging has kept me so busy and it’s where I’ve wanted to go. However, if this new series is a success then I may just go back to that book. 😀

      Liked by 1 person

  9. How wonderful you found your journal and are sharing it in this way! The 80s were tough time for being LGBT, in light of the new stigma of HIV. Seems like a different world now, from my perspective at least. Congrats to Marje for being your first guest in your new series, Hugh! Once again, your generosity in sharing others’ works knows no bounds 🙂


    1. It was such a lucky find, Terri. I was banging my head thinking about a new feature to replace my 51 Weeks music feature, from last year, and suddenly came across the diary buried deep in the back of a wardrobe. Considering we only moved house just under two years ago, I’m surprised I didn’t discover it back then. It was probably me that did not pack or unpack that particular box. Who knows? Anyway, the idea for this feature soon came to me after I rediscovered the diary and now I’ve lots of guests lined up to share their choice of music with us. I enjoy promoting other bloggers and writers, especially those who support me so much. It’s my way of saying ‘thank you.’
      Looking forward to having you as my guest in this feature later on in the series.

      Liked by 1 person

  10. Hugh, your new feature is brilliant. I can’t wait to read (and listen to) more. Thank you so much for sharing your very personal diary with us. And thank you for inviting me to be part of this feature (I truly had no idea what you had in store when you asked me to give a date and a song choice). Did any two guests name the same date…or the same song?


    1. Thanks, Donna. I’m glad you enjoyed week one of this new feature and my ideas around it. They came to me when I rediscover my diary from 1988. A great find (I hope). 😀

      I’m looking forward to welcoming you as my guest later on in the series. Yes, some people did clash with dates and songs. One particular date was very popular, but it was ‘first come, first served’. Fortunately, where we did have clashes, nobody then went on to clash dates or songs again.

      Liked by 1 person

  11. Fantastic and personal new feature, Hugh. It sounds like you were confronted with death, fear and intolerance at a young age. I love eighties music. Why did you pick 1988 for the diary entries? I was 13 that year. While starting a diary at ten, I did not do it daily until a year or two after that. I wonder what I find, if anything, on January 6th (Three Kings Day) of 1988. Too bad those treasured books are at my parents’ place in Belgium at the moment.


    1. While I was thinking about a new idea to replace my 51 Weeks of music feature, I came across my diary from 1988 while doing some sorting out, Liesbet. Within minutes, the idea of this new feature was born. It was a lucky find and I’m glad I decided to check out what was actually at the bottom of a wardrobe in the guest bedroom.
      The date of January 6th was picked by my first guest, Marje. Had she gone for the day before (or the day after) we would not have had such an intresting entry. I hope you enjoy the new feature as it unfolds over the next 48 weeks.
      Oh, and next time you’re home in Belguim, find those diaries and bring them back with you. They may produce some new writing ideas.

      Liked by 1 person

  12. I read this last week and forgot to comment. It’s interesting to hear more of the Hugh story. If it was me in 1988 it would all be about Smash Hits, double denim and roller skates lol. Do you really still have the same physical diary or are these from your memories in your mind?


    1. Yes, I have the actual diary. I found it at the bottom of a wardrobe a few months ago. It’s brought back so many memories and gave me the idea for replacing the music feature I run last year. I hope you enjoy the rest of it. I’m looking forward to welcoming you as my guest on this feature later on in the series.


  13. Hi Hugh! This is a marvelous idea! Very interesting entry. It’s amazing that you found that old diary and are now able to read the things you wrote then. It’s like going back in time and talking to your younger self. That’s amazing! Nice to see Marje and her book here too. 😀 xx


    1. Yes, it was a lucky find, Vashti, especially because I was looking for an idea to replace the music feature I had run in 2017. Reading the diary is bringing back lots of memories, although some of the names in it don’t mean anything to me. However, they may just come back. I need to eat more fish because I’m sure my mother once told me that eating fish was good for the memory. 😀
      Looking forward to having you as my guest on the time machine.


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