Back to Square One

So, Friday was a difficult day, and such days do happen. Still, I was left grateful I was me by the end of it. I was waiting in the petrol station, waiting for the woman in front of me to finish putting fuel into her car. When I noticed her face turning to a look of horror, as she stared at the petrol pump in her hand. I gave her a look of ‘are you alright?’, only to have her mouth the words ‘Wrong petrol’ to me: petrol in a diesel car. Oh god the poor thing. I have a diesel car too, and I have a huge fear of doing the exact same thing. And if you do put petrol in a diesel car, and turn on the engine, you will never be able to use the car again. The only thing you can do is call the tow truck, have your fuel tank completely siphoned off, and hope for the best. I gave her some chocolates to keep her company while she waited, and headed on home. There, it was the other half’s birthday, and the wonderful Fiona of Tasty Treats (see here) had done some fantastic biscuits. And we went on to dinner in Dundrum and I ate very well. But I did break my diet.

Saturday saw me still exhausted, and very much eager for my own company. I do think writing or any personal creative endeavour can do that to a person’s mind, they need time by themselves to reflect and recuperate. I went to bed early, avoided all mention of social media, and slept.

Sunday saw me rereading a marvellous anthology I have, The Assassin’s Cloak. It is an anthology of diaries, presented chronologically, so one can look up, say, the 5th of May, and see all manner of entries for that date. It means you can see the concerns of Pepys in London during the reign of Charles the II, or the illness of Souter in 1903, the passage of the war in the 1940s across the world, the rebelliousness of the 1970s, and the newspaper concerns of Derek Jarman in the 1980s. Literature solves almost everything, I find.  To connect with other minds from the comfort of your own home, on a rainy Sunday, seems to be really such a pleasure.

And what I learned rereading that book, was that no one has any certainty about life. Everyone, from generals to princes to teenage girls hiding from Nazis, is unclear about the future, unsure about their own skills, and only able to see the way in hindsight. There is no clear cut way, no shortcut, no certainty to life. That is very much the human condition. And that has never changed.

Right. I have to away to bed. School starts again tomorrow. Wish us all luck.

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