Sunday, November 30, 2008
2. We go to Nick's favourite shop to choose him a Christmas present. The owner laughs at us, and tells me the story of the wife who came in and said: 'I'd like a book about a type of aeroplane called a Spitfire. Have you ever heard of it?'
3. He looks down at his plate and says: 'It never fails to amaze me how you can take some leftovers that have been hanging around in the fridge for half a week and a few old vegetables and make a wonderful meal.'
Saturday, November 29, 2008
2. The taste of a minted lamb chop.
3. Nick's (female) colleagues have told him he deprived me by not taking me to see Wall-E. One of them has lent us the DVD. We watch it, and fall in love.
Friday, November 28, 2008
2. Two women with a baby use the free wifi to chat on a laptop with someone back home in the Philippines.
3. I ring my father to give him some news. 'Anything else?' he asks.
'Nope, that's all.'
'Well it's a pretty good all.'
Thursday, November 27, 2008
2. Hot drinks from the machine have gone up by 5p. Teapots appear like desk mushrooms and the fridge is full of milk bottles.
3. Sleeping and waking twine in the first part of the night, and so do our fingers.
Wednesday, November 26, 2008
2. The transformations in Fenella and Andy's home. Crisp white damask curtains arrived today and are presently tied into neat pleats: they are memory curtains, and if they are kept in place for 24 hours, will remember the shape and go back to it every time they are closed. When you've had no bedroom curtains for a few months, a 24-hour wait seems like a lifetime.
3. I come home to find an anonymous comment on yesterday's post that reminds me -- in the nicest possible way -- to write my thank you letters.
Tuesday, November 25, 2008
2. Katie comes back from lunch to find me on the phone. 'Who were you talking to that's made you smile?' It's Cat and goddaughter Ellie.
3. Going to bed early, and settling down to sleep while Nick is still reading.
Monday, November 24, 2008
2. A dish of orange slices arranged in caramel.
3. We learn a new word: limerence -- it means, really, 'fallen-in-loveness'. Joyce (who is a relationship counsellor by day) uses it to explain my complaint that at present Nick and I find it very difficult to get anything done because we're always thinking about each other. Limerence lasts just 18 months to three years, so it could end for us at any moment (this makes it seem all the more exciting). Joyce says that with luck and skill it will turn into an affectionate bond. At that stage we should be able to get the housework down with fewer breaks for kissing.
Sunday, November 23, 2008
2. Darning an uncomfortable hole in the toe of a pair of tights.
3. 'Guess who won,' says Nick as he comes in through the door.
Saturday, November 22, 2008
2. On Facebook coming across a set of photos from a past job. It's strange to see faces and places that I had forgotten.
3. We watch Brief Encounter -- another of Nick's wonderful favourite films.
Friday, November 21, 2008
2. I go into M&S feeling as if I ought to take advantage of its 20 per cent off day by picking up some needful things. A lady near me looks at the queues and the crowds and the scrums and says: 'Oh how ridiculous.' I quite agree, and walk out again.
3. Rolling ink with a brayer because of the sticky noise it makes.
Thursday, November 20, 2008
2. Mushrooms on toast cooked with brandy and dots of green leek, purple onion and garlic.
3. A display of Christmas books in Waterstones makes me feel very excited about the home traditions Nick and I are making for ourselves.
Wednesday, November 19, 2008
2. Just after 4pm, I slip away from my desk to find a window that faces west. In these short days, I can watch dawn and dusk without hardship.
3. We scare off Tim's giant spider and he takes it back into his monster box with a a satisfying vrrrring noise to represent it zipping back up to the ceiling.
Tuesday, November 18, 2008
Monday, November 17, 2008
2. The waiter comments on the chill in the orangery. As he leaves us, he touches the floor to check the heating has come on.
3. A bowl of hot red spicy bean soup.
Sunday, November 16, 2008
1. Waking up next to Nick after a few days apart.
2. Monkey: Journey to the West. Ninja guards on very tall unicycles. Spider Fairy on a corde de lys with sheets of red silk.
3. We watch in amazement as our bath changes colour from turquoise to cobalt blue.
Saturday, November 15, 2008
1. At the waterfall, someone has hammered fistfuls of coins, edge first into a rotten tree stump.
2. I burst from the train, a whirlwind of fretful limbs, tickets and luggage.
3. I tap on the window as I pass, and Nick is at the door before I can get out my key.
Friday, November 14, 2008
2. 'Which one are you drawn to?' asks the shop lady, seeing my hand hesitate over a basket of scarves. It's the raspberry red one that I really want, but I don't know what I'll wear it with.
3. In the afternoon, I put down my book and sleep until I can sleep no more, while the rain and fog swirl outside.
Thursday, November 13, 2008
2. Watching foam clots on a stream pool. They whirl and stretch and split and eddy and reform.
3. Water drips down mossy quarry cliffs.
Wednesday, November 12, 2008
1. A harvest mouse, a scrap of fur the same weight as a 2p, in a tank of millet and wheat stalks.
2. Walking under a fresh water tank and seeing carp, bream and perch swimming over us. But best of all, ducks sculled with their feet and then dived in a scarf of bubbles, stretched neck to tail.
3. Yellow seahorses curl their boney tails around strands of weed.
Tuesday, November 11, 2008
1. I tell Nick that there are two steeplejacks on the church -- but as I don't have my glasses on, he tells me not to be so silly. Later, he puts his glasses on and sees for himself. Much, much later, we visit the church and he chats to them. One steeplejack is feeling very pleased with himself because he's picked the sheltered side of the tower on a day of driving rain and hail. He says that the church will stay up for another 125 years. They are about to set out to the chippie for something hot, but the another shower sends them back to their van. (Picture by Nick).
2. The waiters pause to look out of the window at the sky tipping hail on to the outside tables.
3. We overheard people at dinner talking about a Roman fort. We find it on the map not far from the village and set out to look. Low walls mark the lines of the buildings. Sheep step in the sodden grass where soldiers homesick for other parts of the empire might have walked.
Monday, November 10, 2008
2. Getting into a still, blue swimming pool.
3. A taste of pink damson and plum sorbet.
Sunday, November 09, 2008
2. We catch a slip of sea view from the train. It's the wide sands at Morcombe Bay.
3. Having travelled on five trains from one end of the country to the other, we arrive just one minute late.
Saturday, November 08, 2008
Friday, November 07, 2008
2. I buy a stainless steel flask to keep our tea hot.
3. Drizzle has beaded silver grey on my coat.
Thursday, November 06, 2008
2. I hurry home from work and I can't stop smiling at the thought.
3. We sit close together on the sofa and giggle our way through Team America.
Wednesday, November 05, 2008
2. Debbie buys my lunch because I've forgotten my purse.
3. I come home to a hug; and 'My poor darling and her distraught early morning phone call'; and my summer shoes, the mould cleaned off, lined up under the bedroom heater.
Tuesday, November 04, 2008
2. A mug of hot soup warms my chilled fingers and soul.
3. My brewers yeast tablet doesn't quite go down first time. It tastes of malt, as if it ought to be taken with chocolate.
Monday, November 03, 2008
2. He came from an electricity board which doesn't exist, wouldn't say what he wanted and dropped a folder full of torn up newspaper. Nick's father put the chain on, hefted the stick he keeps close by and threatened to slam the door if the caller didn't remove his foot.
3. Pounding spices for hot apple juice.
Sunday, November 02, 2008
2. Hanging clean towels and flannels in the bathroom, and leaving a damp footprint on the just washed bathmat.
3. After supper, when the rain really has stopped, we go out to see if there are any fireworks still going on. It's very foggy, and muffled bangs and whizzes are all we get. But the street is transformed into a strange place of fog and trickling water and dark alley ways lit at the end by a circle of foggy orange streetlight.
Saturday, November 01, 2008
b. I'm really enjoying Fiona Robyn's A Handful of Stones and I was in it back in September.
c. Elspeth Thompson recommends 3BT-style blogging in her The Wonderful Weekend Book -- which is a splendid and lovely volume for improving your life with photography, gardening, sex, brewing and staying in bed all day.
d. The Your Messages project is running again. This time Sarah and Lynn want 30 or 300 words from you. Every day.
1. Breaking a sandwich biscuit in half and eating the filling separately.
2. The rattle of a jar of vitamin pills.
3. Orange clouds massing on the horizon and a bitey feel to the air make me feel uneasy as I walk home. I am pleased to be safe inside, lamps lit and curtains drawn tight.
1. Bringing donations to the charity shop with Nick to carry the awkward things. 2. Sending an edit back when I have very little to say, ex...
Today a special guest post by Nick... 1. My wife's courage and stamina as she painfully brings our baby into this world. I'm so prou...
1. This week there are green-orange leaves caught in the water gully. 2. He comes up to ask me how scary is The Haunting of Hill House, wh...
1. She brings soft almond cakes for pudding. 2. In the fridge I have a jug of lemon iced tea. 3. Sifting compost as the evening cools.