Saturday, December 14, 2013

I feel a strange euphoria this morning. Has Christmas driven me mad?

I got a bit done yesterday, not much. I watched Franklin's mattress stitch lesson again and sewed up the Sensible Christmas Project. It looks very good, but I don't know yet whether a pass with the steam iron will flatten the lower edge or whether more substantial blocking will be required. I did a supermarket shop and bought champagne and table wine for Christmas dinner – a white Burgundy was on special offer. But I forgot to get paper napkins and the quality I want is not available on Broughton Street.

I bought some Christmas wrapping paper and mean to get started on that task soon. My least favourite, I think.

Here's something about old age and Christmas cards which I don't think I've seen noted elsewhere: the effect of death. It shortens the list. We know that, and are braced for it. But it can and does take with it, contact with the dead people's children. I can think of two cases where we knew the younger generation well, friends of our own children up to a point. In one, the resolute sending of Christmas cards to the widower produces no result – he seems to prefer silence, and he has effectively taken his children with him. In the other, both parents are dead. The widower's second wife, with whom we are still in touch, is not on good terms with the family. Those three children are gone too.

And a third case where we didn't know the children particularly well, but always enjoyed reading about them in the annual round robin, and hearing their news when the parents visited. Both parents are dead, in quick succession, and the children are lost to us.

What else? I'm having my hair done this morning. Blogger was in a most peculiar Friday-the-13th state yesterday. I hope it has pulled itself together. I am afflicted with pop-up ads again which make it difficult to edit the final paragraph or so.


I was interested to hear that you didn't get on with “Life After Life”, Shandy. I will certainly have a look at “Norwegian by Night” next. [The link reveals that Shandy is knitting Kate Davies' new First Footing socks. I don't knit patterned socks myself. I prefer total mindlessness in which I hand myself over to enjoying the yarn But those are very tempting.

]I'll have to stop looking up links if I am to get to my appointment. Yours is an interesting theory, Mary Lou, that it is harder to remember the titles of books read on Kindle, I find, rooting around in memory, that I seem to have a certain trouble with titles in general. There are books I can remember in some detail of which I am hard put to recall the title. There was a question the other day on a silly quiz programme I watch as the evening's knitting begins: the novels of Graham Greene, name the most obscure. It took me fully 24 hours to think of the name “The Honorary Consul”.

This bloody computer has started TALKING to me, trying to sell me things. Something will have to be done. No ads on the screen – just talk.


  1. Glad to see you watch the same silly quiz as us - it took us ages and all we could come up with was a couple - "Our Man in Havana" and "Brighton Rock".

  2. Isn't it frustrating to forget an item on your shopping list? Perhaps one of your children would pick up paper napkins for you so you don't have to go back to the supermarket.

    I agree with Mary Lou's comment about the Kindle and book titles. And I have fallen for the sock pattern Shandy is knitting, and have ordered one of Kate's kits. I don't count knitting complicated socks as "sock knitting." They get thrown into the non-mindless category just like a sweater or other more complicated item would, and I still keep a pair of basic socks on the needles.

  3. =Tamar6:39 PM

    Auditory pop-up ads? That's insanely intrusive. I may have them but as I always keep the sound turned off, I wouldn't know.