Saturday 23 August 2008


wishful thinking

It's a Bank Holiday, apparently. I am always taken by surprise when they come along, as they have never featured particularly in my working life, which has either been at sea, where they don't count, or self-employed, where they don't count. I know they're going on because supermarkets get horribly crowded as people panic buy the essentials to keep them going during the one day that the shops will be closed, except that shops don't tend to close on Bank Holidays these days.... and there will be queues on the M5 heading into the West Country, followed by queues on the M5 heading out of the West Country.

All in all, a good time to stay at home. Going out and about on a Bank Holiday provokes in me the feeling, described by Evelyn Waugh, that Basil Seal experiences at the outbreak of the Second World War, in, I think, Put Out More Flags: "like being in the middle of a South American revolution, but being oneself a South American."

I may have paraphrased.

K is away with the Other Parent, on her Other Hols. I texted the OP yesterday: There is something odd going on the sun is shining in Bristol. She replied There is something even odder going on- it is pissing with rain and freezing cold in the south of france.

I continue to get the flat tidy, or at least less messy, in readiness for K's return in time to start school in September. She will be living with me after some years of living in the Other Place, and we're all treading cautiously into the new order of things.

I have a friend who has three children and an estranged partner, and they arrange things such that the children live in the same house and the parents alternate staying with them. K is very struck by the felicity of the solution. I can, of course, think of all sorts of reasons why it wouldn't or couldn't work in our case, but then I would, wouldn't I?


  1. There is fog this morning in the middle, which is odd for here too. We all work on bank holidays in this household. Rob gets a nice bonus for dealing with impatient tourists. Olivier discovered that all the people who bought essentials... etc., decide to eat out, all together, at the same time.

    Good luck with reorganising the flat. I was surprised at what a difference Dom made to the household coming home after 10 months. (especially the kitchen - grrrr)

    Don't think I could live around the children quite like that family

  2. What an interesting solution re childcare!

  3. It's bright and sunny here in the souf of Dorset... and I shall be avoiding the throngs (and thongs) over this weekend.

    With 'those games' closing this weekend, the town will be more throngy than usual...

    I'm sure yer household will be grand come this Sept. ;)

  4. I am working bank holiday Monday - double time and a day off in lieu - I love it!

  5. I remember being benighted in fog somewhere in the wilds beyond Poitiers, Anji; huddled up in the driver's seat, occasionally getting out to stamp my feet and try to restore circulation. Mind you, it was earlier in the year... no, I don't think I could bear to do that either, even if it were practicable; but I can entirely see why K should like the idea, as there's always something that's in the wrong place at any given time.

    The parents were fairly amicable, Jo, but even so I think there were lingering tensions in the arrangement. Partings are seldom entirely amicable. Allegedly...

    I don't know where you are, but I know Weymouth, Shaggyred, and how throngy that can get. Happy avoidance!

    Sounds like a good deal, Neil. Be happy in your work :-)

  6. Hi Dru
    I find this interesting - I went to Weymouth on 17 June this year for the first time - later - in July, while on holiday in the Lake District I read 'Becoming.....'. It is late on a Friday night and I am trying to make a point but I am stuck. No matter, I wish you well.