2009 — 16 November: Monday

It's now 01:01, has been trying to rain again, and I'm recently back from the predicted showing of Oliver Stone's "W" over in Winchester. Good film, and some very interesting 'extras', too. One for the collection, methinks. Meanwhile, here's tonight's picture of Christa — from the "somewhat wild hair" series, and taken in the back garden at Old Windsor in (I suspect) the summer of 1976:

Christa, 1976

I have a lunchtime birthday date to attend in a few hours. Mustn't forget to write the card.


Didn't see it coming...

... the word "augury", that is. Does it make me glad? Well, you'll have to follow the link, Malcolm!1 Meanwhile, it's 08:32, the sun is shining, clouds are scudding around, a train has just whizzed past, and my first cuppa is at hand.

The interview here with Michael Winner also made me smile. I didn't know he was such a (theatrical pause) philosopher. And this looks like a guaranteed giggle, too. Excellent. (The delectable lady hovered below my radar until that series "Maestro" last year about turning people into orchestra conductors.)

I'm informed that yesterday's butterfly was a Peacock. Compare and contrast with the one in August. He's apparently getting ready to hibernate for a few months. (Or should that be "moths"?) I can empathise with that.

At 10:00, the weather is not currently improving. Where's my brolly?

Pant, gasp

And, at 11:38 — soaked, but not by rain — I'm calling a halt to the morning's "let's shift stuff around in the loft to fit yet more stuff up there from the piles of stuff currently in the living room, to give myself more living room in the living room" exercise. Better have a shower before I set off for the lunch event. Goodness me, I miss Christa for millions of reasons, including not being around when it comes to handing stuff up the ladder, let alone knowing where everything was in terms of "what's in that bag inside that box over there almost out of reach?"2

Care to come over for a rummage, Bro? It's only 12,000 miles after all, and you get Business class on expenses, don't you? I even still have the Pentax S1A camera3 I got from my parents for my 21st birthday, though its clip-on exposure meter seems to have done a bunk. Who knew? I think I may have remarked before on Christa's close kinship with genus Sciurus (aka squirrels).

Rather fresher than 30 minutes ago I shall now set off to greet the birthday boy...


... to (in no particular order) an empty house, a Christ(a)mas Card from the Royal Mail and the next credit card bill. But, being replete, I take it all in my stride and simply put the kettle on. The motorway was remarkably busy, and it must have been school chucking out time 'cos the local roads were also unusually chockerblock. It stayed dry for the walk to and from the restaurant (La Place; a new one for me) and I'm now chilling to whatever BBC Radio 3 is churning out, despite all its references to some "Jesus" bloke. (It's actually Bach's St John Passion.)

I know that "many hands make light work", but tell me again the benefits of "many eyes"? Apart from reminding me of a ghastly illustration of Argus, the 100-eyed watchman I encountered in a primary school book. It can still make me shudder if I think about it. Though it didn't stop me going on to read Nathaniel Hawthorne's wonderful Tanglewood Tales.


As predicted, Big Bro has risen to the (philately) bait. Meanwhile, with two interruptions (a gentleman caller, and Junior phoning to arrange a cinematic visit / treat for me next Sunday) I've just (23:09) finished watching the pleasant surprise that is the very competent 2008 remake of that 1951 Robert Wise classic SF film: "The Day the Earth stood still". I was so taken with it I didn't even make a cuppa! That's two excellent films in a single 24-hour period. And (alas) two more notches on my credit card. It's all Mike's fault.



1  Oops. The article ends with an "igon value" that should surely be "eigenvalue". Tsk, tsk. Or is it a clever pun?
2  Nine times out of ten it turns out to be either some of Junior's ancient toys, some of Christa's voluminous correspondence, or (and this is the point at which Big Bro will probably perk up) some of her vast heaps of unsorted German, UK, American, and NZ postage stamps.
3  I haven't yet unearthed the pre-war Leica that belonged to my father-in-law. He'd attempted to scratch off the maker's name to make this a less attractive "prize" for the occupying American troops, though I expect hiding it up the chimney also helped. It's probably in one of Christa's wardrobes, and is doubtless doing just fine in there. One day...