Wednesday, May 13, 2009



… today, although I can reveal that I am ¾’s of the way through repeat no.23 of the Princess top edging, so that means two more repeats were achieved yesterday without major disaster.

Yesterday’s big excitement – in the middle of knitting-time, too – was a thunderous fall of water into the small room we call the Downstairs Lavatory (for historical reasons -- we live on one level). I went racing round the corner – for they live in Scotland Street – to the neighbours above and found that, sure enough, the equivalent room in Mrs G.’s flat was flooded. Something of a relief, in the circumstances.

I also learned that one of her two small children was in the Royal Infirmary. Her husband was spending the night there with the child, and would, she said, come down to see us in the morning. She seemed distraught with anxiety which is probably why her bathroom was flooded in the first place.

I then went back downstairs, placed water-catching receptacles as far as possible, and cleaned up, likewise. My husband, often the coolest head in the room in a real crisis, gets extremely bad tempered in a lesser one. He was convinced that the water was coming from a storage tank of our own – our flat involves bits of what was originally two separate houses, and the water system is indeed complicated. He proposed turning off the supply to the entire tenement. Fortunately we don’t know how.

It continued to bucket down just long enough to be really worrying, but I was comforted, although I did not say so, by my old friend William of Occam. If Mrs G’s bathroom was flooded, as I had seen, and if water was cascading down into the room below, as it obviously was, there was probably no need to look for a further explanation. William seems to have been right – he usually is.

I wish I had an independent source of information about the condition of the child, though. I don’t want to start worrying the G’s about damp plaster if he is at death’s door.

The other big news from yesterday is that the wedding invitation arrived. It’s the full monty – heavy paper, envelopes within envelopes. I wonder if I have ever had such a thing before. I had to go up to the post office yesterday anyway, so I sped our reply on its way.

And here, for something completely different, is a drawing by Rachel Miles of Beijing (for whom, see yesterday) of her sister Kirsty. I append, for comparison, a picture of Kirsty herself (in the foreground, taken nearly two years ago) returning from a rabbit-hunt with her father, sister, brother and various cousins. I think Rachel has done a brilliant job of abstracting the important features and rendering a true likeness.


  1. That sketch by Rachel is lovely.

  2. Could you call the Infirmary and ask about the child?

  3. =Tamar10:54 PM

    Oh my, that is a good sketch for her age. She has definite talent.

    Good luck with the lavatory, and kudos for having your priorities in order. Here's hoping the child is all right.