Things I did this week:
- Had lunch at The Orchard with two friends. It was overcast, but it didn’t rain.
- Danced to ‘My Favorite Things’ and ‘Too Marvelous for Words’ with my daughter at the Wellhouse Meadow Diamond Jubilee Celebrations. Overcast with sunny spells, but no rain that I remember.
- Watched a face that launched a thousand ships stand with composure and grace through a rainy afternoon boat flotilla, ringing their bells and raising their oars in her honour.
- Ran a 10k race – the Hatfield Broad Oak 10K. One of the nicest 10k runs ever. Enjoyed a cooling fresh light rain from 9k – 10k.
- Woke up early to write short reports on the 13 undergraduates I worked with this year, listening to a steady rain on the roof of the conservatory.
- Finished my last physics supervision for the year and came home to find the living room turned into a mosh-pit, my kids, topless, leaping from the sofa onto a futon on the floor, shouting ‘ROCK AND ROLL!!!’ to Tom Jones as my husband mildly stood by drinking a martini. Nick doing handstands and Juni twirling and kicking while watching the Diamond Jubilee Concert from Buckingham Palace on TV. I was pleased to note that at least it wasn’t raining in London.
An aside: Last fall, I thought we’d try dance lessons for my daughter. When I took her to the ballet class at school, she refused to leave my lap. She watched her frothy pink tutu-endowed classmates float around like butterflies or ponies or fairies with a mixture of scepticism and alienation. Not interested. Not her kind of dancing.
Last Monday, while Elton John sang, my daughter informed her dad,
‘I LOVE dancing! Not ballet, but BOY dancing. ROCK AND ROLL!’ and raising both arms above her head in a victory cheer she launched into the air.
- Wore corduroy trousers, long sleeves, and a sweatshirt for a rainy picnic outside to celebrate summer half-term. The kids (there were seven of them) found a fallen willow tree that hadn’t been cleared away yet. They delighted in walking along the trunk and hanging from the branches of what was once a tall tree.
- Got a new writing book: The Writer’s Portable Mentor:A Guide to Art, Craft, and the Writing Life, by Priscilla Long. One of her first observations is that ‘writers of deep and beautiful works spend real time gathering words.’ She suggests creating a word lexicon, a blank book for gathering words. I have a journal for that. She recommends setting word traps, to capture the words and phrases that belong to a story or essay. I think it’s time to set some traps (or maybe install a rain butt), to collect a bigger vocabulary for all that is falling from the sky these days.