Full tilt living
Another insane day, starting last night when it took hellhounds TWO HOURS to eat their supper.* Today has been conducted at breakneck speed with a lot of shouting**, and with a pause of fraudulent calm in which to ring handbells.*** I then shot around getting two frelling shifts of hellcritters rehurtled, banged them into the mews on my way out of town, said a brief hello to the familiar-looking fellow who lives there, and tore off for choir practise. As I pressed the pedal to the metal† I was thinking, I dropped out of the Muddles last time because I couldn’t take the strain and that was before I had a baby hellterror.†† Gah.
Choir practise was fun. Except for the chilblain part I enjoyed it immensely.††† And I’m sorry I’m going to be missing the carol sing on Saturday just because I have some dumb old opera to go to.‡ I have no idea why I seem to be surviving the exigencies of the Muddle practise template better this go-round than I have previously—or whether this desirable alteration will last. Maybe chasing hellterrors de-furs the arteries. Maybe the thought of having a pee behind a tombstone in sub-freezing weather has stiffened my bladder’s resolve. Maybe God wants me to sing, in which case he might have given me a better VOICE.
And now if you will excuse me a little early, I have to get up tomorrow morning early enough to squeeze my double hurtle in before I leap into Wolfgang to go ring a funeral at the abbey. The funeral isn’t that early, but I’m assuming I need to allow about six hours to find a parking space. The gentleman couldn’t have waited to die till after Christmas?‡‡
* * *
* Too Much Information Alert: I have a curious range of dog insanity. Hellhounds, as we know, don’t eat. Hellterrors, on the other hand, don’t crap. She will do almost AAAAAAAAANYTHING to avoid having a crap. She is certainly not going to Perform anywhere but her exactly designated areas, two each at cottage and mews, and she pretty much has to be nailed to the spot to do it at all. And she still wiggles and twitches and fidgets and scratches and tries to run back to the door at the slightest sign of weakness from the attendant hellgoddess. This leaves me in the undesirable position of trying to guess if she’s due, and thus know to stand in an indomitable manner and insist. If I guess wrong . . . she craps in her crate and flicks a corner of the blanket over it.^ ARRRRRRRGH. I hope this is a phase she is going to grow out of soon. The thing that floors me is that she knows that she will get a handful of kibble the moment she has Performed, and, as frequently mentioned, she LOOOOOOOOVES FOOOOOOD more than anything, even Chaos.^^ There are no signs of discomfort, it comes out fast and easily once she’s stopped ding-donging around and does it. The slight ray of hope is that I think I’m beginning to differentiate general hellterror vivacity and I-need-to-go-OUT dangling from the ceiling. Housetraining is based on the idea that a dog doesn’t want to make a mess in its den, even if it has a freshly-washed blanket to flick over it.
^ This includes her travelling crate, which is barely big enough for her to turn around in.
^^ I’m not even in the contest, except as provider.
** One of those days when my zero metabolism has been handy. Oh, was I supposed to eat something?
*** Have I told you that our new recruit, Jillian, whom you have heard of in other, tower, contexts, is STICKING WITH IT? She is not coming to her senses. I think tonight was her fourth at the grim rockface of handbells. Yaaaaaaaaay. And I’m playing another suck—I mean, I am encouraging another abbey ringer who has expressed interest to come along some evening and have a go. Tea and biscuits included^. Mwa hahahahahaha.
^ And there is a loo. And a lovely radiant Aga.
† I did nothing of the kind. I drove like a little old lady. I am a little old lady. Also I’m not liking the roads. We’ve had hard frosts every night for most of a week and there’s a lot of water lying around in a mischievous and troublesome manner. Tonight, for example, it’s supposed to warm up, but it didn’t start warming up till bits of road and pedestrian hurtleways had already frozen . . . and then it started raining.
†† Nor did I have a twenty-five minute commute to my home tower.
††† The chilblains, the FATALLY BANAL John Rutter song^, and a big sullen wodge of Stainer. Still, no playlist is perfect, and we’re also singing Good Stuff™.
^ I swear there is a John Rutter machine. You turn the crank and it grinds out vaguely music-like noise the way the M25 grinds out low-grade evil, in a quote I can’t immediately find from the Nice and Accurate Prophecies of Agnes Nutter, Witch but which I’m sure you all know.
‡ I am not missing this one. Not. http://www.metoperafamily.org/metopera/liveinhd/LiveinHD.aspx ^
Although it had better be fabulously sung since I’ve seen this staging before and think it’s silly.
^ After Saturday this link will take you to the next opera, I suspect, and the individual opera pages are 404 not found as I write this. But it’s Aida this Saturday.
‡‡ They will find in his papers the day after tomorrow instructions that he would like bells rung for him in a small village in Yorkshire.
Please join the discussion at Robin McKinley's Web Forum.