One good thing about this enforced home stay is that even the mending pile, suddenly offers some welcome relief from the monotony of the daily routine. We’re doing ok, we have room to disperse and not be in each other’s pockets unless we want to but even so the ‘openendness’ of the whole affair can drive you crazy if you let it.
Better to keep busy.
So, mending pile… the dressing gown with the seam coming apart? Done. The pyjama top with the ripped button hole and lost button? Fixed. The tracksuit bottom with the broken zip? Good as new.
It didn’t even take that long, just a bit of faffing with different threads and the sewing machine… and then how about fishing off the two sashiko mat that have been languishing on a shelf since last year. At least. Might have been longer. Who’s counting? Time has no meaning at the moment… it’s been suspended… we’re living in a Winnie The Pooh type reality… never mind Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday, Sunday… it’s today… it’s always TODAY… aaaanyway…
Ta daaaaaahhhhhh! Drum roll.
Cute eh? So cute that I’ve decided to start another one because if we unbalance too much the fragile equilibrium between finished projects and unfinished projects… well, who knows what would happen to the world, and let’s face it… we’re in trouble enough as it is!
And a big pat on the back to me!
I might as well begin another one… it’s not that I have to be somewhere else, right?
I always approach with a little caution a book that has been hyped a lot by the media, in part because ‘hello? can anything really be that good?’ but also because I like to make my own mind about things and hate to be follow the herd, especially when it comes to books
This book it’s definitively like marmite: you either like it or you don’t, or in my case you’re kind of ‘meh’ about it. I couldn’t never have a whole slice of bread with marmite… but a bite? I can do that.
We follow the ‘love story’, can we call it that? maybe it’s better say the ‘relationship’ between Connell and Marianne, from when they attend the same school to their life at Trinity College Dublin and beyond. Ups and downs, break ups, friendships…and don’t expect a romantic novel… it’s NOT a romance. There’s a lot of sex, but not the graphic kind, there are a lot of repressed emotions, mistakes, and miscommunications ( a lot of those )… but still… something is lacking for me.
The truth is I just didn’t like the characters… so many times I wanted to scream at them ‘enough navel gazing… get on with life’, which was not very sympathetic of me, I realise that, but c’mon!
It’s a well written book, it really is, and it has some beautiful and some excruciatingly accurate observation… but it just wasn’t for me. Perhaps I’m too old – the writer is 27yrs old… so her experience of being 20 something is/has been different from mine… Or perhaps it’s just a matter of taste, I don’t want to diss it… it just… left me cold and a little annoyed.
It’s foggy out there and I like it. I grew up in the middle of Italy in an area famous for fog so thick that sometimes you can only see a few metres in front your car and the gentle grey fuzziness of this morning is making me nostalgic.
I bought a pair of clogs. I love clogs… I have a few incarnation of the same wooden sole principle in the forms of boots and sandals, but now I have proper clogs… like the ones I had as a child and I’m feeling stupidly happy about it. They’re incredibly noisy in this house of ours with its wooden floors and high ceilings, even the the half deaf dog grumbles thinking there’s somebody knocking at the front door. But I’m happy and I’m considering wearing them with hand knitted socks for the full ’embarrass your teenage children look’, what do you think? a step too far?
In between the two hockey matches last Saturday, Mr M and I visited Gloucester Cathedral where there’s this amazing installation in the Lady’s Chapel (the one behind the Quire at the back) by a company called Squidsoup. ‘Where there is light’. It was made in collaboration with the Cathedral, and its aim is to ‘generate awareness and understanding of the plight of people seeking refuge from war, oppression and abuse. It is in support of the amazing work of GARAS (www.garas.org.uk) and it presents the moving testimonies of four refugees and asylum seekers from Sudan, Syria, Iraq and Pakistan’. It is well worth a visit.
Is it me or Lilli the Ferocious Beast looks a tad depressed? (highly docked photo, hence the bad quality, sorry … it’s GREY out there….)
The day started with a beautiful, peaceful sunrise on the beach
And then we got an email from British Airways saying that, for security reasons, our flight was delayed till further notice and, please, it would have been better if we didn’t even go to the airport yet. We then found out that our flight, on its way here from the UK had been diverted to Istanbul due to the US stopping passengers flights over the region and the UK following suit.
Scary stuff, even it meant an extra day in the sun.
They boys had a fun day, I got to do some of my college work, and we were lucky that we didn’t have to wait all this time at the airport but we could stay here in resort and have lovely food etc. etc. Silver lining and all that.
Also we saw a camel. Swimming.
How weird and cute is that?
… and from Kemil, the swimming camel, and me, it’s goodbye for now!
I blame it on the boys that jumped off a mountain…
BUT… I did feel like I was missing out on something so after a short deliberation I came to the conclusion that while there was no way I could hurl myself off a cliff, I could though start from the bottom and go up… and sooooo…
I am not really sure of what made me buy this book. The cover is beautiful, yes, but I’m not that shallow. It just ‘called me’ and I simply answered.
I was intrigued by the byline ‘the coming of age of hyperintelligence’, I’ve been struggling how to make sense of getting older, of the meaning of life (ha!) and struggling to put into context the ‘computer’ age we’re finding ourselves in… is it good? or bad? is it progress? or the beginning of the end? People seem to be split into two opposing camp on this regard and I find myself firmly on the fence; I remember a world that functioned well enough without it, the slower pace, more human contact but let’s be honest, our life is much ‘easier’ now, everything at the touch of a button etc. etc.
So I thought perhaps Mr Lovelock, he who gave us the genius that is the ‘Gaia theory’, might have an interesting view on our future… and of course he has. (The Gaia Theory posits that the organic and inorganic components of Planet Earth have evolved together as a single living, self-regulating system. It suggests that this living system has automatically controlled global temperature, atmospheric content, ocean salinity, and other factors, that maintains its own habitability. In a phrase, “life maintains conditions suitable for its own survival.” . It’s not airy fairy stuff, and you can read more about it here).
First of all let me say that he turned 100 this past July. One hundred – and I’m sitting here less than half his age feeling about double.
Anyway, this book gives another innovative and new theory about the future of Life on Earth. What if, and I’m giving you the quote from the sleeve because it’s beautifully explained:
There’s a lot of more in the book itself, and it’ll blow your mind. Or maybe you’ll think it’s just rubbish. It’s only a theory, after all. But I like it. A lot.
What if, truly, technology is part of evolution, not detached from it? What if we are just a little cog, just a step in the process, like the dinosaurs were… Lovelock says at the end of the book ‘we are now preparing to hand the gift of knowing on to new forms of intelligent beings. Do not be depressed by this. We have played our part. […] That what we are, we are (Tennyson). That is the wisdom of the great age, the acceptance of our importance while drawing consolation from the memories of what we did and what, with luck, we might yet do. Also, perhaps, we can hope that our contribution will not be entirely forgotten as wisdom and understanding spread outwards from the Earth to embrace the cosmos’.
It is not a depressing thought. At least I don’t see it as such… it means we’ve HAD and still have a valuable place in this mystery that is evolution… that without us, and our intelligence ‘all this’ wouldn’t have happened in this way. That has the be reassuring right?
PS my toaster has just launched the bread onto the floor for the dog to grab it … welcome back to earth.
Yesterday was not… but we had decided on a day out at a National Trust property and a little weather warning wasn’t going to deter us…
Hughenden Manor, was from 1848 to 188, the house of Benjamin D’Israeli, who was twice Prime Minister at the time of Queen Victoria. During the 2nd WW was a top secret map making site for the Air Ministry. Today it’s a wonderful home in the middle of a wonderful park the inside of which has been left virtually untouched for hundreds of years. Queen Victoria’s photographer took pictures of the house and the National Trust was able to recreate it for our benefits. A real time capsule.
The car park is a little walk away from the house, a well signed path through a gorgeous wood…
… past the cutest (and wettest coffee shop courtyard)…
And then you catch a first glimpse of the house in all its red brick glory.
Once a day there’s a free tour and it is totally worth getting there for it, they give you so much information on the house and its inhabitants… fascinating.
first of all let’s admire the Victorian floor… sigh…
As I said the grounds looked gorgeous… but only from the window, thank you very much… it was blowing a gale and it raining cats and dogs all day…
You can find more information on this property and all the other fabulously kept by the National Trust here.