YAAAAAAAH. I got to bed at . . . a little short of 7 am Friday night/Saturday morning.* The rest of the weekend is a bit of a blur. I’ve kind of lost track of when daylight happens, it is so easy to mislay this time of year.** Meanwhile I’ve been playing phone tag with my removal man about getting the big stuff from Third House that Atlas and I can’t shift in his trailer up to the storage warehouse place; I missed Mr Removal Man on Friday and assumed that was it till Monday, but I got a phone message from him today that I picked up on my way out the door to go to church, arrrgh arrrgh arrrgh arrrgh arrrgh . . . phoned him as requested when I got home again*** AND HE WANTS TO COME TOMORROW AFTERNOON. I HAVE A FRELLING VOICE LESSON MONDAY AFTERNOON. EXCEPT TOMORROW I’M HAVING IT EARLY. VERY EARLY.† AND THEN I HAVE TO COME HOME AND DEAL WITH REMOVAL MEN?††
I need to sing††† and then go to bed. Fast.
* * *
* It was a slightly odd night out on the street.^ I would have put it down to the fact that it was only my second official night and I still don’t have a clue, but several of the others on the team, including Fearless Leader, mentioned it, that there was a restless unease in the (cold) air that was unusual. I was home by four a.m. but the adrenaline aftermath was bad; the only two at all really tricky incidents were near the end of our watch, and I was actually engaged in one of them—yeeeeeeeep—and came out of it having done the right thing but jangling. And . . . it’s going to take me a while to get used to seeing real live very drunk and/or drugged up people doing the kinds of things real live very drunk and/or drugged up people do, both the hostile and the happy, and also the mere absolutely absolutely legless. It happens on TV. It doesn’t happen, you know, here. Oh yes it does.
^ Although my HEATED WAISTCOAT worked brilliantly, I only turned it on after the break. Ah yes, the break, during which the weather apparently yanks the rug out from under the temperature which, obviously, plunges dramatically, like a keystone kop engaging with a banana skin. So when you come outside again, full of hot tea and a warm glow of self-satisfaction+, it’s like walking into the Yukon in January. I noticed this last time. I think we must snap a trip wire or something and the ice gods all leap to their feet and shout NOW!, and then bang their icicles of office together in solidarity before dashing out to do their worst.
Anyway. I didn’t turn my waistcoat on till after the break when I figured I’d need it worse and it did brilliantly. Except that it was so brilliant that I had it turned up only a third of the way . . . and it was dead in three hours. It’s supposed to last up to six hours depending on how high you set it, and it only lasted for three at one third power?? I may ask the seller a polite question.
I have a set of neoprene toe-socks—they only cover the front half of your foot, which is clever, because your feet don’t sweat that way—that were sent to me by a very nice person++ and I decided to use them Friday night. Another couple of degrees in the wrong direction and I’m changing over to the heated socks, but they worked a treat this time—while I was moving, tramping those mean streets and trying to look like I had the faintest idea what I was doing.+++ What’s interesting is that they don’t work a FILBERT sitting still in the monks’ chapel.++++ Next Saturday night prayer with the monks: heated socks.
+ I’m doing WHAT? And it’s WHAT time of night/morning?
++ You Know Who You Are
+++ Although I’ve now heard my more experienced colleagues answer that—er—diabolical question, Street Pastors? What are you?, often enough that I’m beginning to stop hyperventilating about what I’ll say# the first time someone asks me this in a way I can’t hastily pass on to one of said more experienced colleagues. One of our first training lectures had us trying to come up with an answer and . . . none of us covered ourselves with glory.
I haven’t entirely stopped hyperventilating. But I’m hyperventilating less. But there is also the first time I’m going to have to PRAY ALOUD to worry about. Noooooooooooooo. Usually you can give prayer requests to the Prayer Pastors back at base, it’s what they’re for. But occasionally someone you’ve been talking to asks you to pray for/with them, right there. Right now. Eeeeeep. I’m still in the early hyperventilating stage about praying out loud. I tell myself that I don’t radiate the kind of centredness and authority that would inspire anyone to ask me to pray over them. Reasons Not to Acquire Authority. I wouldn’t mind a little centredness though.
++++ The monks’ chapel is sooooooo cooooooold. By the time I’ve sat there an hour, muffled up in my heavy winter kit and a blanket, in contemplation,# when the abbot finally does his rapping thing and we’re all supposed to climb to our feet . . . I can’t. Although trying to find my way out of my excellent, steadfast blanket does not assist this awkward process.
# Lord have mercy, Christ have mercy, I’m so cold, Lord have mercy, Christ have mercy, I’m so cold. . . .
** Three weeks till the shortest day and then we start climbing back OUT of this pit.
*** And note that Peter is away till tomorrow afternoon so I’m having to do things like steam my own broccoli and cut up my own carrots.^
^ And Pav’s. Very fond of a nice carrot, is Pav.
† Way too frelling early. Just by the way. For someone who doesn’t expect to speak in complete sentences till after noon. Let alone frelling Italian complete sentences. The things one does just because one’s voice teacher is now a slave to the school schedule.
†† Hellcritters aren’t going to like it either. Hellhounds, who are in the 90 mile an hour couch potato category after all, are somewhat placated by Rides in the Car with the Hellgoddess but Pav eventually gets bored with yet another kong and wants to climb the walls and practise her trapeze artist routines for a while.
††† I’ve been having a fabulous time with the [Song of the] Nightclub Proprietress this week. Who is at least in English. For better or worse.
Yarrrrrggggh. I promised Blogmom a doodle update today. And I’ve had my head down over stuff today* SECURE in the knowledge that I had a dozen doodle photos to choose from as illustration for the unwelcome news that . . . yes, I’m still turning the poor neglected things out. I mean, no I’m not done, no, I didn’t put the final load in the post today. At the moment Third House is getting in the way of [ever snail-like] doodle production: the sad truth is that doodles are the first thing to be shoved back in a corner when life starts whapping me up longside the head again.**
I know. It’s been two years. Two years. In fact OVER two years.
I’m sorry. Which with £3 or so will buy you a Starbucks Gooey-o-rama with chocolate sprinkles and a paper parasol.
As I have said on more than one occasion on these virtual pages I WILL NEVER, EVER, EVER DO ANYTHING LIKE THIS AGAIN. But I will still ask Blogmom to set up a Doodle Shop when—and only WHEN—I get this ancient hoary backlog cleared. It’s not the doodles that are the problem: doodling, when I’m actually sitting there doing it, is fun. The problem is the doodler’s lack of a sense of time. Or lack of sense full stop.
So . . . I had twelve*** photos from which I would choose eight or ten to DEMONSTRATE that to the extent there was ever any touch to this silly business I haven’t lost it.† And when I stuck my memory card into my computer I discovered that I had had one of my UNUSUALLY CLUELESS MOMENTS, although I admit I have them rather a lot with this camera, and all but two of said doodle photos are dark grey and blurry. AAAAAAAAAUGH.
All right. That leaves two.
Oh. And Happy Thanksgiving.
* * *
* Well, and handbells. One of the many dumb things I feel guilty about is handbells, change ringing on handbells being one of the difficult frelling skills I have no frelling gift for that I’ve somehow managed to let myself get tangled up with.^ Having no (frelling) gift for it means I should spend more time studying and I, um, don’t. I don’t have time or I don’t have brain energy or I have too many dogs or [other explanations insert HERE]. But I like ringing handbells, except that it makes me feel even stupider than usual. So when Niall rings up and is insinuating my brain starts to explode. No! Yes! No! Yes! Noyesnoyesnoyesnoyes!!!! Niall, being Niall, only hears the yes part.
Niall rang up and was insinuating and heard ‘yes’. So we were going to ring handbells tonight. And then Colin’s builder discovered that the dumbleg trumwale^^ had morveldinky, and had to be FORKLED. RIGHT NOW. Which meant Colin wasn’t going to be able to get away early enough for handbells. OH THAT’S REALLY TOO BAD [I had no sleep last night and feel like death not at all well warmed over] I said, trying not to hiccup with delight.
And then I took Pav out for a supernumerary hurtle. She’s so self motivated that it’s rather too easy, when circumstances oppress, to decide that she expends enough energy in a relatively short space of time that merely getting underfoot counts to some extent.^^^
Pooka started barking at me as we were making our zigzag way home from Old Eden. Curses. Who invented mobile phones anyway.
It was Colin. The forkling had gone with unwonted dispatch. He was free for handbells after all.
So we rang handbells. THEY MADE ME CONDUCT. THEY MADE ME CALL THE FRELLING BOBS. AND THE EQUALLY FRELLING SINGLES.
^ Niall, you ratbag.
^^ It’s a particularly large and valuable dumbleg trumwale I believe.
^^^ No you may not eat my slippers. You may nest in the dirty laundry, you may not shred it. No you may not chew the corners of the furniture. No you may not chew any of the corners of any of the furniture. No you may not excavate the Ancient Magazine Pile under the kitchen table.+ No you may not wedge yourself under the tallboy++ to retrieve+++ the dustpan, the assortment of brushes, and Peter’s spare slippers.# No you may not torture hellhounds. No you may not torture me.
. . . At this point I frequently find myself thinking that it would be a lot simpler just to take her for an official hurtle and then feel justified in making her long down for a while.
+ This is a scary one.
++ I was HOPING she would get too big to do this.
+++ Retrieve, cough cough. Retrieve. Well, it starts with the retrieve.
# This list pertains to mayhem at the cottage.
** I know. It should be handbells. Although one of the reasons I don’t do my handbell homework is that if I have a few brain cells left at an unexpected time of day I don’t whip out a handbell method line, I whip out a pencil for a doodle.
*** No. Actually I had sixteen.
† Another way of saying this is that you can’t lose what you didn’t have.
All right, this is not jolly upbeat blog tonight. Anyone of a delicate sensibility, leave now.
While the following is not my malfeasance, it is malfeasance of a mind-boggling variety and I’m still brooding about what I should have done or what I could do if it happens again. Hellhounds and I turned into the churchyard this morning behind an elderly gentleman and a terrier. An off-lead terrier. Hellhounds and I lingered to let this unwelcome pair get ahead of us. Only a little smoke was coming out of my ears at this point.
As we strolled along the terrier . . . stopped and had a crap. Gentleman was well in front paying no attention. He turned back in time to see terrier finishing its crap . . . and began to turn away again. I had just enough presence of mind to say, I hope you’re going to pick that up. Oh yes, said this piece of walking faecal matter, I usually do, I just have to go get a bag, thank you! —cheerily. And walked away.
I stood there I think literally with my mouth open, hellhounds waiting patiently beside me. Fortunately the terrier was not mayhem-minded because I would have been in no shape to fend off barrage and foray. Okay, what should I have done? I did have enough time to have offered him a frelling bag out of my lavish store . . . and I didn’t (remember I had to make my feeble, as-usual-short-of-sleep mind up quickly) because I didn’t yet know what kind of a caprice the off-lead terrier might manifest, and Darkness is in one of his touchy moods lately. I could have said, yo, you miserable stinking lice-brained toe-rag, pick that up with your bare hands if you have to, before I loose the forces of Darkness and Chaos on you. I could have said, I want your name and address so I can frelling report you to the frelling dog warden.**
I did none of these things. I stood there. With my mouth open. Till Mr Disease Bacterium toddled away with his terrier behind him. And his terrier’s pile of fresh crap left farther and farther behind him.***
People are amazing. Not in a good way.
But speaking of dogs, as I so often am, a forum member recently put this in her tag line (if it’s tag line I mean):
“Dogs are our link to paradise. They don’t know evil or jealousy or discontent. To sit with a dog on a hillside on a glorious afternoon is to be back in Eden, where doing nothing was not boring–it was peace.” —Milan Kundera
Say what? This was another mouth-open occasion.† I copied and pasted this interesting remark several days ago to ponder upon. Now I adore my assortment of furry catastropes and as a pleasant fantasy I can see this as a tag line but . . . has Kundera ever met a real dog? They don’t know jealousy? He can’t have lived with more than one dog and watched them knock each other out of the way for the petting hand or the bit of raw liver or the best place on the sofa.†† He’s never watched the established regime watch beady-eyed every scrap of attention and/or food the young interloper receives.††† Dogs don’t know discontent? Listen to the yelping and baying if you get home later than they were expecting you to take them for their next hurtle. Darkness goes more for the enigmatic, but Chaos has a reproachful look that would melt case-hardened steel.‡ And evil? Eh. I belong to the love-wins camp of who God is. Evil is evil, but it’s also ultimately transitory.‡‡ Although I agree that dogs don’t know evil. They live in the moment—which is why they are such good company on a sunny hillside—but their focus is on themselves. You are a means to an end. Sure they love you. You’re still a means to an end. They cooperate with us and our weird ideas about leads and harnesses and coming when called and not eating garbage because we’ve made it worth their while. We’ve spent forty thousand years breeding them to be dependent on us and to believe they like it that way. They’re still mortal, and jealousy and discontent kind of go with the package as soon as your brain evolves beyond the medium-sized ganglion stage.
Maybe I’m not in a very good mood.
Maybe I should go sing.
* * *
* Sigh. It would be the first footnote that I cut, and forgot that I cut. I can’t face changing all the icons from the hysteria-prone WordPress window again. Sorry about that. THERE IS NO FIRST FOOTNOTE.
** Yes we do have one. She’s overworked. She covers like half of Hampshire. I went into this not long ago.
*** And if I see him again, what am I going to do? Good question. Since the terrier seems relatively harmless I can perhaps risk being somewhat . . . tenacious. What I wonder, because the creep is clearly by his accent posh, and picking up dog crap is for the lower orders^, if I asked for his name would he give it to me? How unplugged from reality is he? Does he have any notion of social responsibility and/or guilt? Or would he expect the dog warden to recognise his class superiority, pull her forelock, and go away?
I should call the cops. Someone on the non-emergency line could at least tell me what my options are.
^ In which case he needs to bring his batman with him on terrier excursions.
† Although at least there’s no need to call the cops. The asylum for people who are too sweet and hopeful and kind to live maybe.
†† He’s also never been at the animal shelter when someone brings in the previously-beloved family pet because it keeps trying to eat the baby. Yes, that’s bad socialisation, but it’s also jealousy.
††† One of the few reliable ways of getting hellhounds to express an interest in food is to feed the hellterror. Unfortunately the interest doesn’t last long enough to do much to improve calorie intake—but hellhounds are both there looking alert every time I bribe the hellterror into her crate with a handful of kibble, waiting for their, as it were, door prize of a square of fish jerky each.^ Which they do at least eat.
‡ Pav, who is on her side incandescent with jealousy of the hellhounds most of the time, specialises in screaming a wide variety of imprecations and hurling herself repeatedly against the door of her crate. Or running up my leg like a banana-harvester up a tree with a particularly succulent bunch at the very top.
‡‡ Not nearly transitory enough however. As too many of us know.
It was not going to be a good day. I didn’t get enough sleep and have been behaving like it. I managed to catch the edge of the loaded breakfast kong on the edge of Pav’s crate, thus spraying the cottage kitchen with soggy kibble and wet tinned rabbit mince. And then, bolting into the mews for an urgent pee, having been out hurtling and watching hellcritters pee* I unhooked my belt buckle** and with a sudden, sleep-deprived jerk . . . threw it in the loo. Inadvertently. Of course. At least it was Monday morning and right after Peter’s cleaning person had been here: it was a shining clean loo.***
I’ve also had a bad couple of days with the ratblasted ME and the hellhounds are only eating on alternate Thursdays when the moon is full. When the moon is full, the proper sacrifices have been made, their paths have not been crossed by any black cats, hedgehogs, rabid snails or mad gypsy fortunetellers prone to throwing the wrong babies into the fire†, and they have not been put off by the unseemly delight of a hellterror disembowelling a kong.
But Nadia makes everything better.†† I won’t say I had the most brilliant voice lesson I have ever had today—I’m still too post-ME floppy—but I’m having lots more fun, now I have something more nearly resembling a voice to play with.
This is like being a real [music] student
Good golly, miss molly!! And gorblimey *@#&$(%&^ (drat is about all I really fill that in with, but asterisks look more menacing), YOU ARE A REAL STUDENT and have been for a VERY LONG TIME!!!!!
Feh. I forgot you music teachers would be all over me for that remark. It is difficult to take yourself seriously when you have no visible talent at something that there are Joyce DiDonatos out there doing at stratospheric professional level. You can tell yourself you’re doing it because you enjoy it till you’re blue-with-spots in the face and that joy is important and fabulousness is not the only measure . . . but it’s still difficult.
I’m so glad you’ve been having and noticing progress with your voice! And I’m so glad everytime I read something about Nadia’s wonderful talent and helpfulness in getting you to find and use your voice.
A friend recently sent me an article from the NEW YORKER about Joyce DiDonato and I was completely riveted by descriptions both of her teacher and herself giving master classes: so much of what is quoted is exactly what Nadia says. Speaking of a teacher taking her students seriously, whether they’re ever going to do more than torture their dogs with their singing or not. But this is clearly why I am making progress. I have a good teacher. ::Beams::
But, goodness gracious, as Blondviolinist and I have said many times, you are a perfectly wonderful student. If you lived in the States (or I in England) maybe I would badger you into wanting viola lessons . . .
Snork. As a result of this frelling blog I now have several friends who play stringed instruments, and it’s like Oisin and his organ: if I were thirteen and talented I’d be taking organ lessons—and lessons on something with strings, probably either a violin or viola. I like both the size and the tone. The bigger stuff and the stuff you mostly strum or pluck doesn’t appeal to me as much††† although I have the standard romantic crush on harps.
go on You Tube and find a couple of PROFESSIONALS I like singing it and PAY ATTENTION.
And then tell us which ones so we can hear what you’re aiming for!
It came down to a choice between DiDonato and Cecilia Bartoli—and to my own surprise Bartoli wins by a seven-league-boot stride.
Voi che sapete is such a cliché and every mezzo voice student in the known universe has to sing it—I assume because it’s not disastrously difficult technically and because the story line is fairly straightforward. Even though it’s a trouser role, still, teenage [person] in love with every other teenage [person, possibly but not necessarily exclusively of the opposite gender] is a pretty obvious emotional arc that most of us can empathise with. You don’t have to be a frelling philosopher to get into Cherubino.
But the very straightforwardness of it I think is maybe a slight trap for the unwary. Or the ungifted or the clueless—but that shouldn’t include the professionals. And it’s interesting, listening to rafts of professionals. I didn’t hear a bad one, but I heard a lot that didn’t really have the fire in the belly that I would expect a teenage boy singing about love to have. DiDonato is almost too lyrical for me: too put together. The passion is all planed and shiny smooth. Bartoli, who in other repertoire sometimes eats too much scenery for my listening pleasure, gets Voi che sapete dead right for what I’m trying for—HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA—there’s fire in her/his belly and I’m not going to call it roughness, but as if the passion is going to break out occasionally, as she sings her beautiful accurate frelling professional line.
I suppose it’s also that I’m stuck with using what I’ve got: and there are a lot of imperfect voices out there that can put stuff over. I want to put it over. I need role models that suggest a way to do this. Bartoli gives me a little crack of light in the wall of my own . . . erm . . . limited competence.
(And I want to watch those viola lessons! ) . . . Maybe I could disguise myself as a really large stack of sheet music. Or a double bass.
:: falls down laughing :: Listen, you two, you’ve been hectoring me, in your kindly, well meant ways, for a long time now. Come to England, and we’ll meet on a blasted heath somewhere and do something . . . blogworthy‡‡‡.
Indeed, isn’t the Facing Down of Personal Demons exhausting? Reading this post was funny for me, because in my case I sing just fine (not great, by any stretch, but fine), but am lately facing similar issues – of fear about being heard, revealed, about speaking out – but mine are in re: writing. Sigh.
I so hear you. Nadia says over and over and over and over that singing is very revealing, that you have to get used to this. I am, I guess, getting used to it, which is why I’m finally beginning to make a, you know, noise.
Writing is also very, very revealing. But it’s revealing north by northwest: as I’ve said probably with even greater frequency than Nadia reminds her students that singing is revealing, my readers know a lot about me: they just don’t know what they know, because there’s no A equals B about it. Even the blog is consciously and emphatically shaped. But this is a rant for another night. . . .
* * *
* . . . every five feet because that’s the way critters are. I was hoping hellhounds were unusually bad because they’re entire boys, but Pav, an entire girl, is nearly as bad. Siiiiiiigh. I’m an if-it-ain’t-broke-don’t-fix-it person and I don’t whack my critters’ bits out without a reason but going for a walk/hurtle without stopping every five feet for a pee sounds pretty attractive—none of my spayed girls were ever this obsessive.
But watching some critter take yet ANOTHER pee I often think of Calvin having to get up in the night after Hobbes has been evilly whispering sweet nothings in his ear about running water. . . .
** It’s made to come apart in two pieces, and the open-and-close half to detach from the leather strap
*** I do not have a cleaning person, and the loo at the cottage is never what you would want to call shining clean.
† Il Trovatore, okay? I’ve been eyeing her aria again in my mezzo book.
†† As the mother of two small children, she would find this remark amusing.
††† Which is pretty funny, since up to two or three years ago I never really engaged with strings. And then I had a Transformative Experience listening to one of those solo violin Bach things driving somewhere in Wolfgang and was so ravished I actually had to pull over to the side of the road and listen. In hindsight I think this was a kind of practise version for the real Road to Damascus doohickey a year ago September—the Bach conversion was also pretty overwhelming and changed me. Although one of the less usefully wonderful side effects was that pretty much everything I had or have composed or had a stab at composing since then has looked like trash.^ Sigh. I’m having another go at setting a couple of lines from a favourite psalm. . . . Stay, erm, tuned.
^ This is not wholly Bach’s fault. But sitting by the side of the road consciously, attentively listening to genius seems to be where it started.
‡ And probably embarrassing.
It’s been a beautiful if cold late autumn/early winter day* and since you never know when the English weather is going suddenly to develop unending sleet for the next twelve weeks it seemed like a good idea to get everyone out for a Glorious Country Walk today. Which would explain why I am shattered. One of the rather expensive-in-other-ways aspects of no longer having a dog minder is that not only can I wedge in another Glorious Country Walk at a nonstandard time but I’m motivated to do so because with two shifts of critters seven days a week** it would be easy to go frelling nuts with only the standard local half-dozen hurtle possibilities. I find that I’m using the poor hellterror as a kind of advance scouting party: countryside we’ve fallen out of the habit of using in the last year, since the hellterror, and the second hurtle shift, arrived, I take her first, to look for new bad-tempered Mastiffs having moved into the neighbourhood. Because I can pick her up. And while you still get idiots who are brass-faced enough to tell you as their ****** dog is jumping all over you as you stand there with your critter in your arms that if you’d only put her DOWN you wouldn’t have a PROBLEM, generally speaking the owners of discourteous off-lead dogs are embarrassed if the frelling beast attacks you because you have uplifted your delicate little four-legged furry flower and are clutching her frantically you hope above drool and gnash level.*** Arrrrrrgh.
Hellhounds and I had a lovely extended hurtle out Jenny’s way and then farther into the sheepy hinterlands—you are slightly less likely to meet off-lead monsters in active sheep country. Slightly. I took Pav for a hurtle over a piece of ground I haven’t been to in yonks . . . and there appear to be no ill-natured Baskervilleans newly installed. Excellent. But it’s a longer stretch than I remembered and we were kind of each holding the other up by the time we got back to Wolfgang. And this might explain why when I let Herself out of her crate after dinner to do her dangling-from-the-chandelier thing at the mews† she trotted around a bit, had an uncharacteristically mild go at a toy or two . . . and then came and nested . . . in EXACTLY the place I LEAST WANT HER. I’ve been putting her long-down ‘bed’ to the other side of where I sit at the kitchen table with my computer because the side next to the bookshelves is also where all the wiring lives, the computer, the telephone, the electric fire, the glibberzinge. And my knapsack(s) with their interesting ends of knitting yarn and lovely velvety-textural laptop sleeve and so on sticking out the tops sit leaning against the bookcase.
So that’s where she wants to curl up like a normal dog instead of a perpetual-motion hellterror and have a snooze. Siiiiiiiigh. She had quite fifteen more minutes of semi-structured pootling before I was going to make her long down. And she went and frelling pre-empted me. Here I am, with a nice quiet well-behaved dozing hellterror in the wrong place so when she woke up enough to ask for a lap, well, clearly this was the easy way out.†† Except of course that she takes up most of the space on the seat of the chair, because I need both hands free to type instead of holding a hellterror in place, and I am hanging by a thread and RATHER UNCOMFORTABLE.
It’ll keep me awake long enough to torture you a little in anticipation of tomorrow.
Robin!! Did you HAVE to do that when I’m spending the night in a hotel room??
When I don’t sleep tonight I’m holding you responsible!
I dooooooo hope you aren’t in a hotel room tomorrow night. Mwa hahahahahahaha.
All RIGHT then…(glancing at the swords in the hall.) NOW we know where we are…(wondering where the dagger is. Yes, that one.)
Sigh. I do have some weaponry: I have a fencing sabre, which . . . well, it looks like something you take fencing lessons with, rather than something you repel burglars or Yog Sothoth or invaders from other dimensions with. And I do have a Blue Sword, I’ve told you this story, haven’t I? How it arrived in the post LOOKING like a sword, with a tactful little label on the obviously sword-shaped parcel-wrapping saying ‘ornamental arme’? (It was from a friend who makes swords in France.) But I envy you being able to say ‘glancing at the swords in the hall’. And ‘wondering where the dagger is . . .’
So how much of this, I wonder, is because Kes has refused to call her agent back (unless I missed that episode somehow while traveling or something.) Or has whatsisface the ex-husband sent trouble after her because of those rosebushes? And do hobs who are happy with their new householders ever go stick a knife in an invader’s ankle?
I am under the impression, although I have often been wrong in stories past, that Mr Wolverine is being held in abeyance for future atrocities. And I don’t actually think Gelasio is a villain. He’s just some dork in midlife crisis with bad taste in relationship hopping. Although I think possibly his second wife outclasses him as much as his first one does. We shall see. I hope. Oh, and the hob! Well . . . um . . . †††
Eeep! I know you are having fun with cliffhangers, but gosh! I don’t know how I’m going to wait a whole week to find out what happens next! You really weren’t kidding yesterday.
It’s only going to get worse, you know. I may have mentioned that it’s only going to get worse?
I wish you many more years of terrorizing your readers with cliff-hangers!
Thank you! Thank you very much! Heh heh heh heh heh.
I’m really hoping KES comes out in a hard-copy version for off-screen reading..
So am I.
I am now very glad that when KES is posted on the blog and I get to read it it is in daylight hours!!
Hmm. Now that is something I hadn’t planned on. Yo, Blogmom, is there any way to delay posting the blog in Australia till NIGHT TIME? ‡
As for KES – where do I even begin to comment on this? The world is ending! Hoofbeats and candlelight and Sid barking (and Sid’s collar change)
Well observed. Extra points.
and Caedmon rousing himself and Rose Manor shuddering and the driveway-rut universe descending and then… ?!?!?!?!
Yep. Definitely ?!?!?!?!
In true hellgoddess form, that was a frelling ratbag of a cliffhanger!
Can’t wait til Saturday – will there be resolution? Will our heroine finally find herself irretrievably swallowed up by the alternate reality that has been shadowing her?
We-ell . . .
(I should just mention, by the way, that if Murac and all the scaries get horses, Kes better be given a magnificent, swift and sure-of-foot steed PDQ. Maybe Merry transforms into a glorious fleet-footed steed? I wonder if Caedmon will play an alternate-reality part? Protector, maybe? Although Sid seems to be covering that part pretty well…)
Hee hee hee hee hee . . .
Halfway through the week now. Only 72 hours left until KES tightens the rack on us…
::falls down laughing:: Only twenty four hours now. . . . Is that the creak of rack-screws I hear—?
* * *
* Summer is in many ways to be preferred, because in the first place there are roses, and in the second place there is A LOT MORE DAYLIGHT^. But there is nothing like the long golden afternoon light of this time of year, especially when you are fortunate enough to be watching it lying over countryside—Hampshire’s, for example—that is pretty fabulous to begin with.
^ You will observe I have my priorities clearly in order. Even if perhaps the latter has a critical effect on the former.+
+ Note also that latitude has a lot to do with it. You do get more sensitive to daylight, and lack of it, as you get older, and I was still relatively (!) young when I left Maine. But the south of England, despite the friendlier climate#, is a LOT farther north and the swings of daylight-plus to daylight-minus are extreme. My fantasy of the castle in Scotland didn’t founder so much on the standard questions of money and so on, but on the realisation that Scotland has even less daylight in the winter. I don’t know how people in, oh, say, Lapland, or Barrow, Alaska bear it.
# Thank you, Gulf Stream, please don’t go away
** Which is twenty-eight hurtles a week, plus tiny round-the-block/churchyard/park sprints of about another two a day . . . this does not bear thinking about. What a good thing my arithmetic is really bad.
*** Cough cough cough. I like to think that it is a development of trust in my goddessy abilities that appears to make Pav enjoy these confrontations.
† The mews does not have chandeliers. I have the chandelier(s).
†† Clever little ratbags, hellterrors.
††† Mwa hahahahahahaha.
‡ No, I’m not a nice person. You knew that.