Hello, my name is
Stefan Lewis-Fish and in 1999, which seems like an age ago now,
I created this website: "Chairman Fish's Big Red Book"
as a means of exploring various aspects of the inner me. That
may seem a little self-indulgent but I'd just been forced into
retirement after twenty odd years as a youth and community worker
in Northamptonshire and I needed a means of exploring when I
was then and where I was going. The book afforded that opportunity.
Now, four and a half years I've adjusted into new routines.
I am now 50 and living in Kettering with my wife, Catherine,
and three furry creature known as Pickle, Bubbles and Oscar.
through choice but mainly through physical circumstance I am
now housebound and bedbound. I can, and do, occasionally get
up but it is an expensive, tiring effort. From the throne of
my bed I can control my world, make and maintain contact with
others as necessary and I can still satisfy my creative impulses.
I can also worship my creator and love my family. I am content.
Pickle, a beautiful
tabby, is the Queen and head of the household, a position rarely
challenged by the others. Bubbles, though growing in confidence,
is a jellical (black-and-white) cat who tries to remain inconspicuous.
Oscar, a panther-like character, regularly goes for long walks,
vanishing for days at a time. He does occasionally come back
for food remains aloof, never seeking social contact.
Catherine has just
completed the first year of training to be an occupational therapist,
a degree course at the University College, Northampton. Her...
our, year started with a sadness of the death of her father,
Jim, after a long battle with prostate cancer. This was followed
by her mother, Olwen, dealing with a hiatus hernia and a nasty
fall. Both are just been on holiday at a Christian guesthouse
in Kent whilst I spent the time in Favell House, a respite unit
for severely disabled people, in Northampton. We have, both,
now returned to what tries to imitate normality!
Bethany, my daughter,
has just completed her languages degree at Sheffield and has
now taken up a post with Rolls-Royce as a graduate trainee logistician
in Derby. Though she hates commuting, she is now living in Walkley,
Sheffield with her partner Darryl. He is about to start working
as a lab technician at the Notre Dame High School in Sheffield,
a possible stepping stone to a teaching career.
For myself, after
a three-year rest, I have returned to songwriting and poetry.
I've not been completely idle having had a few more pieces published
by poetry.com and my biography paraded on the Internet by inspire.melb.net
and Australian magazine site for disabled people. I also, in
conjunction with Terry Caneand the National Youth Agency published
a training manual for youth and community workers in England
and Wales. It dealt with the new ways youth work is being affected
by updated disability discrimination legislation.
A new explosion
of creativity will hopefully provide me with ample opportunity
to irritate, aggravate or perhaps occasionally inspire my readership.
This fulfils the ambitionI mentioned in"Monkey's in the
grinder!" in Chairman Fish's Big Red Book. If you're not
asleep by now perhaps you can tell me if I've been successful.
As it is I've got a backlog of pieces to publish so I'd better
get back to it
In conclusion, I
hope you enjoy my work... especially the new staff on the "New
Songs" site and you might notice that I've changed
my name to Stefan. After 50 years I decided I needed a change
from being simply Steve. It would be great if you give me some
feedback by dropping me an e-mail. Just click on the signature
31 August 2004)