In answer to some comments:
Sprite: yes, I was at the thread and yarn show at Ally Pally -- my housemate had a stand there.
Chrissie: I think of punctuation as breaths or pauses -- a comma is a short pause; a semicolon is longer; a colon is longer still; and a full stop is longest of all to mark the end of a thought. I use semicolons in lists, too, if the items are more than one word. I try to write as I would (like to) speak -- my lips probably move as I type! I think a lot about the rhythm of prose, which is probably why I scatter semi colons so generously.
Sandy Kessler -- I think Blueridge Muse must have found the ideal place to live!
1. Walking through the park I pass the Turkish Oak. Its large leaves have nearly all come down and they cover the ground so thickly that the grass is not visible. A mother and two tinies are flinging handfuls of coppery leaves at each other and giggling hysterically.
2. On our way to breakfast I make Fenella walk up the steep street to the park so she can see the leaves. 'I can see them from the window,' she says. But when we get there, she gasps.
3. Over dinner we bat ideas back and forth for a steampunk-hollow earth game. Tim and I are all up for a trip to the Antarctic -- 'And there'll be dinosaurs, and they're going there to rescue a previous expedition that got lost and to bring the word of god to the natives...'
'It's set in Hertfordshire,' says Nick, who is running the game.
There's a pause while we digest this improbable fact. 'What, there's an entrance to the hollow earth in Hertfordshire?'