Tuesday, 13 September 2011

So should I laugh or cry?

It’s been a very up and down sort of day. Nathan put the car in to be MOT’d earlier on, and got a phone call mid-afternoon informing him that we’d need to spend about £800 making it road-worthy again. I think the phrase is that it never rains but it pours. I almost feel like laughing. This period has done a great deal to make me question the nature of life. If I thought before that there was a great big sentient, beautiful being, keeping a watchful eye over things, the notion has been completely shattered, by a display of absolute randomness. No one will ever be able to convince me that there is a purpose to anything that’s going on at the moment, or moreover that the good guys always win in the end. Most of the people around me have been smacked repeatedly in the chops recently until they can hardly stand. None of this is character building stuff. It’s gone way beyond that. It’s just pointless nonsense now. Surely this can’t be what getting old is all about?

Still, I had another (almost) confirmation of a job this afternoon; this one for a massive choral commission in York next year, which will be very exciting, if it happens (and obviously if I’m paid for doing it!) You gotta love the good folk of Yorkshire; they’ve been incredibly kind to me over the years.
I spent a considerable amount of time this morning sending various emails to various people about various projects, and am thrilled to report that I finished the first draft of my Requiem last night, which feels like a rather momentous achievement. I think I might have been tempted to pour myself a little glass of whiskey had my cold not been doing its best to make me feel like a weeble!

This afternoon – and I suspect much of the week to come was/ will be spent doing a rather large amount of life laundry. Basically, if it doesn’t move, I’m going to contemplate throwing it away, and I won’t be happy until at least 4 bin liners have been filled with the bits of paper and the bad energy that’s been weighing me down all these months. Purging. That’s what I’m doing. Ruthless purging.
The little ill rat that we’ve been looking after continues to worsen. She’s now started to hide herself away in darkened corners of her cage, which surely means the end can’t be far away. She’s still periodically bleeding as well, and today her eyes looked glazed and sad. Nathan had her out for some time earlier and fed her a piece of chocolate, which she seemed to enjoy. I suppose the warmth of his hand perked her up a bit as well. It’s so desperately sad to see a creature with such little understanding of her predicament. “A breath of wind passes over and we’re gone.”

350 years ago, and Pepys’ Aunt Kite died. Aunt Kite was actually called Julian; I guess a bit like Julian of Norwich, that other famous girl called Julian. But it’s a strange name all the same. Imagine calling your daughter Julian these days? You might as well call her Roger, or Frank. Pepys spent the afternoon on the Thames with his wife, “in pleasure” before mooring up at the Sun in King’s Street which was his favourite bar. He called it Old George’s after one of the bar tenders. It was there that they ate “as much as they would of a hot shoulder of mutton,” which sounds horrible.

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