Saturday, August 30, 2008

In your absence...

... or was it mine?

The computer whiz arrived and whisked off the computer, so I was unable to read or reply to the comments on the last post. Tom told me off for being rude about bulls' bits, and I notice some of you are still insisting on NOT squeezing the jelly bag, such effete culinary purism, or even puritanism. You know who you are, Joe. I concede there may be a point with paler apple jelly...

He has done nothing with the computer, because he couldn't get it to misbehave to order, he uttered unintelligible things about possible RAM chip failures and how a new laptop wasn't all that expensive anyway, and that really reformatting it 'back to factory settings' seemed rather drastic under the circumstances. Oddly, I was kind of looking forward to having a tabula rasa; the idea of an empty My Pictures, feeds and favourites all blank and needing to be resubscribed, new shortcuts made, was somehow appealing, a born-again computer. I know I could do it anyway, but I won't. So we must simply observe a few precautions and wait and see.

In the meantime, I have finished three novels, cut the grass, pointed quite a large section of wall, done some drawing, sprayed the tomatoes with Bordeaux mixture (yes, I know it's late, but so are the tomatoes, and the pumpkin leaves were looking a bit mildewed too so I included them), taken Tom for a check-up and met some really lovely people in Lamballe (see below). Oh, and the new car's battery also died, but the garagist replaced that under guarantee.

The angelic bowel doctor is very pleased with progress, and booked us in for all the preliminary stages for the op. Unfortunately, rather than getting it all neatly done and dusted by the beginning of October, it will be a rather more strung out sequence of events than that, which left us worried and unsettled as to how it will all pan out and fall into place with other events.

My anxiety was somewhat allayed when Rosie-Gillian rang to see how we were, and I asked on impulse if she might be able to stand in and teach my classes for a week or two and she said 'yeah, all right' just as if I wasn't asking a huge favour at all ... Just knowing someone is willing to help out is reassuring, and this confirms for me that bloggers, at least the ones I know, are the very best of people.

Which was further reaffirmed by meeting up with Julia of Kolokolo and her gorgeous family in Lamballe. They live in Prague, but have been staying at Val Andre, up the coast a way. I lured them down to Lamballe with the hope of a second hand bookshop for Julia's husband, which turned out to have closed down who knows when, since I last looked anyway, but they were so gracious and sweet and serene they didn't seem at all fed up, and anyone would have thought that having coffee and trailing round Lamballe market on a wet Thursday in late August that felt more like October was a worthwhile thing in itself. They said if we came to Prague they'd be tour guides there for us, which seemed to me we'd rather get the better end of the bargain.

Flame-headed James is obviously a very cool traveller at just three and a half months, and looks quite bit like his dad, less the professorial beard and glasses,


and pretty, self-possessed C. ( "... and I'm from Prague!" she asserted proudly, when her parents had told me where in America they came from originally), wears red ribbons on her plaits to school, is conversant in three languages, and reached for all the printed matter in sight as soon as we sat down.

and Julia's even more like she is on her blog than she is on her blog!

Just lovely people, they felt like my friends straight away. Which I think they are.

~~~

Now, on the eve of September, it's finally decided to be summer, I don't know for how long. I'll try to catch up with blogs ASAP, but it feels a little sinful not to be outside when it's sunny at last. Thanks again for being here when I got back!

15 comments:

Barrett Bonden said...

In the third paragraph ("In the meantime...") you missed out the bit about laying the groundwork for world peace and finding a cure for epizootic sniggers. Otherwise it was just the usual string of events and achievements common to all Renaissance Women. Thank goodness cold turkey is done with.

Zhoen said...

Really can know people from what they write. Wonderful.

Plutarch said...

When I first read this I thought for a moment that your had finished writing two novels,which, on your record of energetic and creative activity, wouldn't altogether have been surprising. I'm sure that blackberry jelly doesn't suffer from squeezing the bull's bollocks, but the garnet coloured crab apple jelly does need light shining through it.

Crafty Green Poet said...

I hope it was reading, not writing, of the novels.... Otherwise I'm feeling most inadequate....

Granny J said...

I, too, was pondering the question of the three novels. Glad to hear that you're not too superhuman! And hope they were worth reading, BTW.

Lucy said...

I feel I should be able to spin this a bit and make out I really was writing three novels, but I am in fact incapable of sustaining any kind of fiction of my own creation; I am a lousy liar and don't have a single novel in me.

No, I am simply rather alarmed by the amount of things I can accomplish in the absence of the computer; reading a novel in a day or so used to be normal, now they often take me several weeks.

On the other hand I have missed you all, and am very glad to have you back!

Reluctant Blogger said...

Yes, it's amazing how much does get done when the computer is off. I find that too. It's nice to do it sometimes - although better to be able to choose when than have it foisted upon you by a recalcitrant computer.

I'm glad that Tom continues to improve.

With regard to help I think people often like to be asked. I always used to decline to ask for help, cos I thought I was being a pain and would struggle on but when I did eventually ask people always seemed pleased that I had. I think as long as you only ask for help when you really need it then people feel good to be needed in that way.

Anyway, I am not really meant to be at my computer! So I shall go.

I'll be back to blogging in a week hopefully!

Isabelle said...

Yes, the computer is such a waste of time. It's fun, though!

What cute children.

Must go and mark...

herhimnbryn said...

Superwoman!:)

Julia said...

We are, we are! And a Lamballe trip would have been worth it just to stand on a street corner and converse, truth be told. Getting to wander the market and drink a cup of real coffee were icing on the cake, really.

Dave King said...

Hey, yes, my first reaction actually was that you had finished writing three novels! Took a double-take to realise I was daft. Lovely photographs of (obviously) lovely people. Good post.

Dick said...

Sun before blogosphere, Lucy! Take some pics - my memory needs jogging...

Lucy said...

RB - yes, I think you're right about helping; some people do take the piss, but they're quite rare really, and get known. Look forward to your return!

Isabelle - marking already? What a shame!

HHB, well, hardly!

Julia - it was lovely to meet you all! Hope you got to the moulerie in time, and that you had a good trip back. We must do it again some time...

Dave - I wish I could write even one novel! I think I'll have to put an adendum on this post.

Dick - oh yes, it cam out for one day then resumed its sulking. Today (Tuesday)I've had a lot of gardening to do, following in the wake of our hedgecutter, and it chucked it down all day, then came out just at the end when I was wet to the skin. Perhaps I should go and photograph it for the record...

Sheila said...

I smiled at the three novels, too. :-)

And you've inspired me without meaning to. I was just reading about fasting (cf. my latest post) and then came to this. I think I'll try a weekly computer fast of some sort and see how it changes my little life...

Beth said...

Lucy, so sorry I haven't been here to offer sympathy and support - my own family troubles have kept me from keeping up. It's good to see things have improved on all fronts -- my own GI adventures a few years back were scary too but it all worked out very well, and Tom's will too, I'm sure. Sending love and sympathy your way, and a thank you especially for the bramble post and lovely photos - you were mentioned the other night over a plum tart with Tori, of "Love Apples!"