Alexander Averin

Wednesday, 18 August 2010


Dear Diary,

If I am walking with two men each of them will serve as my teacher.
I will pick out the good points of the one
and imitate them
and the bad points of the other
and correct them in myself.
Confucius (c551-478 BC)

I have to post a blog but today’s will be a mish-mash.  Just ramblings, a poem I like, a song, a picture, a quotation....

It’s Wednesday,  a no-work day and today it’s also an unexpectedly free-from-any plans-or-commitments- day, I love those kind of days best but I can’t  make up my mind what to do and the weather can’t either - whether to behave like it is still summer -  or push on with the beginnings of autumn.  The ‘A’ word is on everyone’s lips and in everyone’s writings at the moment, there is definitely something autumnal in the air.  I am a great lover of autumn but even I don’t want her to appear in August for God‘s sake.  I adore Indian summers and we had a great one last year - September and October were lovely.  Today we have had a heavy shower mid-morning and now the sun keeps peeping out and then disappearing again.  But they do say that rain is liquid sunshine don’t they?   I don’t know whether to potter in the garden or stay in and chase a few dead folk on the Ancestry site, something I love to do.

On Monday it was decidedly chilly when I woke up and so I dressed  accordingly, resigning myself to the fact that summer had passed.  We had things to do in Carmarthen and while we were there the temperature reached 27 degrees (!) but  when we arrived back at home it was very much cooler.  It is strange how the temperatures are varying so much at the moment, even within this little country.

I have the DVD of Dragon Tattoo to watch tonight so am looking forward to that.  Also have  the DVD of The Reader with Kate Winslet, somehow I missed seeing that film but a friend has recommended it.

I am now reading Ellis Island by Kate Kerrigan, it was one of the TV Book Club choices on Channel 4, I’m finding it a light but enjoyable read that obviously has resonance for me and my family.  I love the short chapters which are just right when I’m feeling tired and not up to long spells of concentration.

Waiting on my bedside table are In the Kitchen by Monica Ali, a recommendation from a borrower and The Betrayal by Helen Dunmore.  Before I start one of those I have to get back to Rose Tremain’s Trespass which I have started  (it’s very good)  (I always have more than one book on the go).

So I may just curl up after lunch with a book, I am feeling kind of lazy today.  I always feel guilty reading in the daytime, I see it as a night-time things, how weird I am.  Talking of weird  M has hoovered downstairs this morning for some reason - I felt his forehead, no signs of a fever. I should have caught it on camera for you.

I promised a poem, here is one by a poet I admire, Joan McBreen.


Loss is a handkerchief on blackthorn touched with frost,
the imprint of your feet on sands you have crossed.

Loss is many stations where you waved in the rain,
the spring and summer you will not see again.

Loss is the mother calling the boy who does not reply,
is forked lightning in a summer sky.

Loss is the last page of each book loved,
is in the bedroom curtains that have not moved.

Loss is the black gabardine never returned,
it has no colour – that too is learned.

Loss is a silence you cannot forget,
is tobacco smoke recalled in the lilac garden where we met.

Joan McBreen

David Gray's new CD came out yesterday which is very exciting!   It has a lovely title -  ‘Foundling’ which reminds me I am meant to be visiting the Foundling Museum in London soon.  Would you like to hear the new single from the album?  A Moment Changes Everything - how true that can be.

Bye for now,


Fennie said...

Lovely blog, Cait. Soft and dreamy, but also plenty to make one think. I'd curl up with a book because although people regret time wasted in watching television (or even scanning a newspaper) I have never ever heard anybody bemoaning the time taken in reading a good book and it really is a loss, as your poem says, when you come to the last page.

mountainear said...

Hope you had a lovely leisurely day - there are too few of these. What a shame we feel guilty about reading in the day time - I do too. Except when I'm on holiday and then I devour huge passages of books before lunch!

Exmoorjane said...

I agree, lovely blog (but aren't your posts always so fabulous?) I was feeling rather irritable and rattled and thought 'I know, I'll go visit Cait's blog - it will soothe my soul' -- and it did.
Love David Gray.... some great book suggestions and some lovely poetry too.
My therapy sorted, I shall depart...thank you.... :) xxxxx

Toni aka irishlas said...

I'd rather curl up with a book rather than waste time with trying to find something decent on television. And although I think this is a good thing, I still get pangs of guilt for doing so!

You had asked how I knew of the Jeanine McMullen books - a good friend of mine lent them to me knowing how much of a Herriot fan I am and thought I'd enjoy them. She was right! Come to find out, my friend is also a huge Derek Tangyes fan and had occasion to meet with him several times at his home in Minak.
It's small world!

Deb said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Deb said...

This is a lovely blog which I dip into often. I especially loved the poem by Joan McBreen. Also the David Gray, and your Irish artists. Fabulous. x

Deb said...

This is a lovely blog which I dip into often. Loved the Joan McBreen poem, the Irish artists and a reacquaintance with David Gray. x

CAMILLA said...

Dear Cait,

Apologies for stopping by late, just trying to catch up.

Another lovely post Cait, you write so beautifully.

Wonderful poetry, sadly I cannot get the link to David Grey video here. Thank you for the mention of the books Cait, will check them out.

We have had a hot summer here this year, but I can smell that Autumn is in the air.