Hobbies, interests and pastimes. Essentially, the sorts of things you'd like to do with your life by way of earning a living, if you had the choice and if the world was fair.
What could possibly be more interesting? I mean, your very own history! Quite why everyone isn't into this hobby I really have no idea. Not sure why I like it so much - just historically curious, I suppose.
History (especially ‘local’)
Everything that's ever happened. That's what history is. No, history is not boring. It is exciting, full of surprises and provides endless tales of wonder, woe and wickedness - and is our greatest teacher. And here in the North-East of England we seem to have more history than most.
My unrealistic sporting ambitions aside (see below), I should most of all in life liked to have been an archaeologist, I think. Utterly blown away by the thought of unearthing and actually touching the distant past. Can't let an archaeology TV show go by without catching it. Time Team rules, OK!
I don't need to tell you that I'm one of those folks who just has to write. Love to chronicle, catalogue, journalise, research, edit, compile - and usually to do with history. Not overly keen on fiction, though I have dabbled.
History, genealogy, sport, autobiographies, popular science, travel, philosophy (not too heavy, though) - but go easy on the fiction, if you don't mind (quite like short stories). No.1 Hero: the genius that is Mr Bill Bryson. I order you to go out and buy his entire collection of works now. Go on. Others would include Richard Dawkins and, for sheer wordsmanship, Philip Pullman (yes, I know, it's fiction).
For the sheer occasion, footie beats everything else - well, sports-wise, at least! Enjoyed playing the game as a youngster (oh, if it wasn't for that injury...), and have endured forty years of glory-less misery as a follower of a certain North-East team which shall remain nameless. Horrible. Now an armchair fan (out of utter frustration).
Though football is my first love, cricket is the greatest sport there is. Love the nuances of the game, the intelligence of those involved on the field and off, and the stats, too! More than anything else in the world I would love to have opened the batting for England, and remain, in fact, available for selection.
I utterly adore the British Isles. Can't get enough of each and every bit of it. Can't be bothered with foreign parts - too much still to see and do here at home (and it's much prettier). Try telling that to my wife, though. Surrounded by some wonderful countryside here in the North-East of England, but Lakeland is heaven on Earth. Why does my wife prefer the Spanish Med over the Central Fells? Women are strange creatures.