Monday, October 08, 2012

Not much done – Sundays tend to be unproductive. The second sleeve cap is finished, though.

So we’re on our way north, despite anxiety. I’ll try to knock off a Cousteau hat while we’re there. I should be back here on Friday, insh’Allah.

L’s comment yesterday has solved the problem of how to pick up stitches forever.


n      We are now reading “The Good Soldier” at bedtime, and I am galloping forward with “Parade’s End” during the day. Either might be said to be Ford’s masterpiece. They are extraordinarily different.
n      You will remember that my credit card was replaced recently. This has had the pleasant side-effect of unsubscribing me from a couple of things I had long meant to unsubscribe to. They keep sending me anxious emails and all I have to do is not reply.
n      James and his family have decided to keep their new cat indoors in Beijing (wisely, I think) and are worried about whether it will subsequently be able to cope with outdoors in Sydenham and Strathardle. I think it’ll manage.
n      We are suddenly being made aware of what a remarkable year 1962 was. The 50th anniversary of the first Beetles single is much in the news at the moment. We were reminded at Mass yesterday of the 50th anniversary of the opening of the 2nd Vatican Council. And next month is the 50th anniversary of the Cuban Missile Crisis.

It would be an exaggeration to say I can remember every moment of that week – but I can remember a lot of them. I was scared. I had three small children and was substantially pregnant with a fourth. It was impossible to run, even if there had been anywhere to run to. We didn't even have our little house in the country then. The Glasgow Herald still had small ads all over its front page, like the Times, in 1962. I remember the little front page box, on one of those days, saying that all the nuclear submarines from the  Holy Loch – [they’re still there] – had put to sea.

My mother was in Dallas that week, where her own mother was gravely ill. She didn’t notice what was happening, and in later life confused the Cuban Missile Crisis with the Bay of Pigs. I have long wondered whether that was because family anxieties trumped even the fear of annihilation, or whether Texas was –is – so far away from anywhere that the danger felt less acute.

Next summer will be the 50th anniversary of our purchase of the house in Strathardle.


  1. Glad to help!

  2. Cats are quick to adapt, mine were when they moved from a 12th floor appartment to a house with a garden; as long as you take the time to "show them around", she will love it!Don't forget to check the rules for importing animals to the UK with DEFRA.Takes about 6 months from the chipping and first labtest to vaccinations and final labtest or you'll run the risk of an expensive quarantaine of 6 months.I did the whole circuit and the last 4 months quarantaine with our sons St Bernard...moving from Canada to Ireland.Luckily Holland accepted her without question. Marcella

  3. It is fairly easy for an indoor cat to become an outdoor cat, but nigh on impossible for an outdoor cat to be permanently confined to barracks.

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