My last post was about the satisfaction of doing things for yourself rather than paying someone else to do them and I’m still thinking about making things. A doctor friend once said he envied my job at the BBC. The reason? Not the glamour! I was, he said, doing something useful. How could a doctor think that making TV programmes was more useful than saving lives?
“You make things,” he said, “Tangible things that people use and enjoy.”
“You save lives,” I pointed out. This was ironic. My decision not to study medicine at university after doing the A levels for it is one of the biggest regrets of my life.
“I put off the inevitable,” he said. “I make people live a bit longer, but inevitably we’re all going to die!”
A rather gloomy thought. But whilst I am still alive, I am going to make the most of being alive and one of the things that undoubtedly brings me most pleasure is making things. I love making things. And I love making things in all sorts of different ways.
I’ve recently returned to the BBC to make three more programmes and I am feverishly excited about them. But work isn’t the only way in which I make things.
This blog is one of my creations. There’s my books, Easy Wedding Planner, Freedom from Loneliness and the now out of print Music!. Books going out of print isn’t the only reason my creations don’t last too long. I love making loaves of bread and decorated cupcakes but they disappear very quickly from our cupboards.
Recently my creations have involved Vistaprint: T-shirts with the Help100 logo on them for a friend and me to wear when we’re running a 10K in the summer; postcards advertising my Freedom from Loneliness book; fridge magnets– one with an inspirational Bible verse on as a gift for friends and another with the Inspired! logo on; and a mug with Inspired! on with its little owls that I am too frightened to use as I don’t want to break it.
Not all my creations have involved Vistaprint though. I made a big picture of puffins on a cliff done with inkgel pens over several months. I created a film for Youtube advertising Freedom from Loneliness.
Some of my creations have been small and simple. A birthday card for a friend that is more personal than a bought one because the picture will remind her of a conversation with had recently. Even a meal made from scratch rather than out of a packet or an entry in my diary is an act of creation and brings me pleasure. There’s nothing quite like that feeling of saying, “I made that!”