Saturday, August 06, 2011

A Strange and Quiet Time

It's always a strange month, August.

It used to be known as the "silly season" where there was no news in the newspapers and people flocked to the seaside to sit on deckchairs with hats made of folded newspaper to keep off either sunshine or drizzle. We Brits know how to enjoy ourselves.

This month there's a bit too much news, and hardly any of it good. But it still has that strange, timeless August feel to it.

I'm still working though - I did two roleplays this week - one about sexual abuse for Mental Health nurses and one about diabetes for medical students - and I worked in our office too, though it's quieter than usual. Some actors are busy with summer theatre tours and lots of the casting directors seem to be on holiday.

And it's at this time of year that I look at the house, and all the jobs that need doing - most of which have needed doing since last winter. Sighhh. I have to shout at myself. COME ON DAPHNE. WASH THE CURTAINS. THEY USED TO BE A COLOUR BUT NOW THEY ARE NOT. THEY ARE GREY. AND NO, GREY IS NOT A COLOUR WHERE CURTAINS ARE CONCERNED.

The trouble is, once you start looking - - - ah, that way madness lies, as King Lear was heard to remark one day as he pulled out the fridge to clean behind it.

In a couple of weeks' time we're off to France and Spain - - and yes, I know I've been away twice this summer already, but I just haven't travelled enough in my life, and I'm trying to make up for it.

So in this couple of weeks I plan to learn as much Spanish as I can. I started about two weeks ago with the wonderful Michel Thomas's audio method and it seems to be working well.

I think it helps that I did a lot of Latin and French at school, and a year's Italian at university - - I think all this helps to learn the pattern of languages. And I'm really enjoying the Spanish.

So - - in these two weeks, I plan to clean every bit of the house and pack as well.

I can tell you now, it ain't gonna happen. But I'll do my best. And then, when we get back from holiday, I will look round at the slightly cleaner and slightly tidier house, resolve to do better next summer, and slowly slide into the season of mists and mellow fruitfulness with parts of the house still sagging under the weight of ancestral clutter and a thick greyness of dust.

Last week, I came up with a good title for a reality television makeover programme. From Shabby to Showhome. Great idea, eh? I volunteer our house for the first episode.


Blogger Jennytc said...

Ah well, such is life, Daphne. Enjoy your holiday and to hell with cleaning (as Barbara Flynn almost said in'The Beiderbecke Connection'.) It just gets dirty again, anyway. ;)

10:22 pm  
Blogger WendyCarole said...

I spent the sunny days last week washing anything that was hanging or draped. That's that until next summer.
If it was stated in the Beiderbeck Connection then it must be true!

11:16 am  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

It's been done - and one man was so overwhelmed when he re-entered his once over-cluttered study was to burst into tears (I think he was an ex Radio 1 DJ). It was called Life Laundry. Google it and you may get a few tips.

6:21 pm  
Blogger rhymeswithplague said...

I will now share with you the first sentence in Spanish I ever learned. I'm sure it will come in handy on your trip:

Este es el gato.

This is the cat.

The first sentence in Latin I ever learned was America est patria mea or America patria mea est, I can't remember which, but it probably won't help you on your trip, besides the which, in your particular case, it is not true. However, it could work if you plan on traveling incognito.

1:35 pm  

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