Wednesday, August 06, 2014

Bits and pieces

Eat less
Drink less
Waste less
Spend less
Mope less
Snark less

Think more
Thank more
Listen more
Move more
Love more
What's more...


Missing Joe to e-mail to remind to listen to Eugenie Grandet on Radio 4, adapted by Rose Tremain, with Ian McKellan as Grandet, a dramatisation dream team.

Glad of Glenn e-mailing remind me to listen to the Tallis Scholars singing  Tavener on Radio 3  and of their keeping it available to listen for a whole month, since it's the kind of thing you need the right moment to listen to, or rather the right hour and three quarters, still, it's lovely when people think of you like that.

Missing Molly. Glad of Tom. Pretty much all the time.


When the kids come, we convert to paper plates to avoid trouble with washing up.  This time a strange fit took me: I smoothed out some packing paper, folded it and printed it with potato prints and gouache,

and voila, seafood-themed throw-away table mats and runner.

I put them with bright yellow paper table napkins, blue paper plates and yellow bowls, but forgot to photograph that.

They came and went, had walks on the beach and round the market and by the watermill and dinner out, as ever. We appreciate their coming but worry more and more about the stress of the journey and of  adolescent recalcitrance on all concerned. More changing and passing. My nice step-son-in-law and I spent an enjoyable afternoon talking over cameras and photos, and he gave me some useful and simple tips about the camera which I shall try to put into practice. His photography skills are way above mine but he is internet shy and lacking in confidence without so much as a Flickr or Picasa web account, and does nothing with his photos except keep them on SD cards and look at them sometimes, which is a great shame.


As well as Kerbiriou for Tom's birthday in September, we're booked for a sea trip on the old sailing boat la Sainte Jeanne at the weekend, and to see Jordi Savall at the Cité de la Musique in October. The kind of things we said we'd do one day when we could, and not hang about before doing them, though it still feels a bit strange and not quite real, like it won't actually happen. The train booking for the latter went pear-shaped, I got flustered by an unsympathetic ticket clerk and unwittingly, or half-wittedly, ended up committing us to a horribly early start to get to Paris, which made me feel stupid and miserable, I'm normally more competent than that in such matters (though it was a bit cheaper). By contrast the Ste Jeanne people were lovely, they held on to the over-subscribed places, even though they didn't really do phone bookings, till we could get there to pick them up, and the little office and those in it were bright and friendly and full of colourful boat pictures. Saying how I'd wanted to make such a trip for a long time, I found myself telling them about Mol, quite calmly, and received understanding and kindness.

 I'll take pictures of the boat trip, all being well, and get the last couple of months photo collages made too.


Francesca said...

The potato prints are really lovely. I had forgotten about potato printing!

Ellena said...

Oh Lucy and Tom, what an assortment of experiences to look forward too!
A bit of bittersweet at the first stop maybe and then sailing from falaise to falaise and topping it all off with Jordi S. and his group.
Whatever Natalie will have to say about your 'potato art' will count. I love it.

Zhoen said...

Griefs and gratitudes all mixed together in a sea of change.

the polish chick said...

so glad to hear about your trips. the looking forward is as much fun as the doing, sometimes.

i first heard of jordi savall here, on your blog, and now he's coming to edmonton in the late fall and i shall go, so now, in a small way, we are looking forward to the same thing!

Roderick Robinson said...

Fell briefly in love with Rose Tremain at Hay. Bought her novel, The Colour, at Hay, got her to sign it, asked her about time spent on (a) the first draft, (b) revision and was pleased to see we agreed about the importance of (b).

Am preparing OoA for publication. Cursing Joe for being dead (I can't, mustn't, euphemise), not able to help with my campaign to Frenchify the dialogue. The selfishness of affection. Then I recalled one of his posts; on a bus in London forty years previously I'd talked insistently about Grosse Fuge. It became one of his treasures. One of those rare occasions when it was more blessed to give than to receive. Another thing that music does so well - linking the dead with those yet to die.

Lucy said...

Thanks chaps.

Francesca - I rediscovered tater prints in adult life, in fact when primary teaching, but in fact was reminded what it was I found frustrating with them as a child: the lack of cognitive skill, and adequate tools, to carve a reverse image, and potato shaped ovals and half-ovals are only so satisfying to work with. It was better, as a teacher, to prepare ready-made spud blocks myself, in fact, even for kids older than those they're traditionally aimed at (which makes it sound like I threw them at them, I may have been tempted...). In fact though, they don't take much in the way of equipment, the sharp end of our potato peeler is fine, and then you need to leave them to dry out for a bit. I love the roughness of the images they make. I expect to see Francesca-work incorporating them any time soon!

Ellena - what lovely images, hope we don't run aground!

Z - yep, grief and gratitude is good.

PC - lucky girl! But remember what I cautioned you...

Robbie dear - we have been speaking of you. Why does he do it, we mused, when, as Tom said, you have never shown yourself to be anything other than generous and prepared to put yourself out? And doesn't Joe's treasuring of the Grosse Fugue episode alone show that there is no clear boundary in friendship between giving and receiving? Ah well.

I must confess all I have read by Rose Tremain is 'Music and Silence', in part because I loved that so much I feared being disappointed by anything else she'd written, but I will certainly amend that. I thought the Balzac was good, (the very snotty Indie review notwithstanding - if you can't stand radio drama should you be reviewing it anyway?) Ian McK is great on radio, though I'm afraid it's taken us a while to be able to watch, or hear, either him or Derek Jacobi in anything after watching 'Vicious', which I'm afraid we enjoyed shamelessly, not least for Frances de la Tour.

I can't take Joe's place, none can. Still, go on, send me the MS, if you're not in a hurry.

Lucy said...

Robbie - sorry, of course, I have OoA. I'll have a think.

tristan said...

love the prints and deeply envious of your tickets for jordi savall ...

Lucy said...

Tristan, Wigmore Hall in December, last time I looked still some tickets left, though pricier and not as good seats as in Paris, you could get on the Eurostar and see us there...:~)

Roderick Robinson said...

The revelation that I'd been talked about in Brittany briefly allowed me to add two cubits. So it can be done whatever the HB says. For a little while I puzzled. I admit to being guilty of the defect you mention but couldn't see where, in the comment above, I'd supplied any further evidence. Finally I guessed you'd been talking generally, the data having accumulated over the years. Thus I added another half cubit.

In Tesco I shed these extra 2½ cubits (and more) emerging back into reality.

Why do I do it? Because I'm always at it, writing I mean. Looking for angles, more propitious views, deeper lodes. Even if I believed your very generously mistaken judgments there'd be nothing in it for me. Far better to trawl the inner, ungenerous, unconfident RR, then aim for a mild sense of outrage. Of course there are occasions (eg, at the unaccustomed-as-I-am lectern in TW) when I'm required to tell it as it is, without word-sheen. That's hard and it's getting harder.

But away with navel-gazing. After reading your comment about Rose Tremain I returned, as is my wont, to bed and recounted the anecdote to VR. Except I'd forgotten the name of the novel you'd mentioned. You can guess where this is going. "That'll be Music And Silence," said the omnivore. "It's an excellent novel."

So you were talked about in Hereford. I couldn't bring Tom into this but it so happened I had Box Elder open as I wrote and in the list of Labels his name appears with the figure 68 after it. So he is, as we ex-journos say, getting the coverage where it matters.