And what a short weekend it will be, by comparison! Still, there was not much to do at the office for a change, since someone has dunnit all. As a result, instead of looking at the clock every three minutes and finding that, somehow, three hours had passed, I looked at the clock every three hours and found three minutes had passed. Hmm. Somehow, this ‘happy medium’ thing seems a tricky beast to find.
When I got home, someone had done all the cleaning, so that was housework night off as well. Fortunately, I had a whole buncha supplies to pick up at the shops. Unfortunately, I also had raging stomach cramps and did not feel up to walking two miles to fight my way round Argh!os, so I went for a nap. And woke up on Saturday morning. Damn! I mean, a fairly stressful week this has been (and stressful in a, Things Are Moving Forward! way, too, rather than, stressful in a Oh God, My House Has Burned Down And My Cheques Have Bounced And A Dog Ate The One Slipper I Rescued From The Ruins! way), but still.
So this morning there was the fight round Argh!os. Which wasn’t much of a fight, for it was empty. So that’s the rent gone, then. But there is a shiny new microwave and a shiny new chair to go with the desk in the spare room and a shiny new DVD player to go with the, er, look I’m gonna get the channels fixed, but my flatmates claim they do not even watch TV, hurrah! And I assembled the lot and recycled all the packaging, I am Amazing.
And then I went out for a beer with Beer, as a belated, low-key ‘celebration’ of being a ‘mother’. And took the train, woohoo!
Sunday: the Allittlement. Now, I had been down here briefly on Tuesday, when I spent my time chain-smoking and dithering over what the hell to do first out of everything that needed doing – and believe me, that is, Everything. Meanwhile, around me, Everything has already been done. The trees are down, the paths have been dug up and widened, there are piles of sawdust and logs hanging around in a manner that suggests a few wisps of tattered cloth and smoke would transform it into a semi-realistic post-apocalyptic scene (BBC-style). In short, the place looks so different that on Tuesday I nearly walked past my own plot.
Now, I have to Pull My Weight, what. So, on with hauling paving slabs to the cursed patch, which nearly killed me right off the bat. Him Next Door turned up to observe. His half of the plot, natch, is already perfectly geometrically prime and he told me about how the fox only favours my side. (I had already noticed this, having dug up several pieces of loaf and half a Milky Way, still in its wrapper. Oh foxes, stop copying my style; these will not grow.) Him Next Door has never done me wrong and is perfectly amiable, but last year I discovered that I hate him grimly for his plot’s well-kemptness, which puts my ‘natural look’ to shame. Now I hate him even more for his magic fox-repelling powers. The fact that he is a lovely chap does not do him any favours here.
The fact that he, too, bought lots of shade-loving plants and is up the creek just as much as I am, however, does do him slight favours. He is worried about his alpine strawberries already. I suspect all his plants will recover well, however, because he is an Utter Bastard. Albeit a very pleasant one.
I told him that last year I saw the fox having a piss on his onions. Which I did.
In the evening, I made haggis, neesp and tatties for my new flatmates. The husband was tremendously excited that they got to take part in a 7-day, 24-hour prayer vigil for Glasgow, which is not my cup of tea so much, but it was lovely to see how pleased he was to be a part of it and hear about how he thinks it very important. For my part, I am delighted and excited about my haul of free logs and paving slabs, which I think will be very important (to me), and which would probably strike most folks as about as fascinating as watching mud dry, so who am I to judge? I was rather alarmed when he asked my permission to say grace, however. Then we spent the meal swapping tales of giant Cockroaches Encountered On Our Hols. They are not such bad people.
I rounded off the weekend with more sums and the reading of the Urth of the New Sun by Gene Wolfe. Hee, I was all desperate to get my hands on this fifth and last book in this series, back at Christmas, and then didn’t I fall straight into the Malazan Book of the, er, Fallen right after New Year, instead? However I note I am still waiting for the tenth and last volume of this, despite having to avoid the series forum since every other bastard out there has it while Amazon has yet to even part with mine.
So I was overjoyed to discover I had this to pick up instead. It was happy in a rather sad, bittersweet sort of way, which is the sort of thing I live for; but I did enjoy the protagonist getting his comeuppance along the way. Not that I dislike him or anything, He’d gone off into space to plead for the case for earth to get a new sun so it wouldn’t die, (this being set a cracking long way in the future) and was envisioning coming back and having a nice rule of the place while feeling pretty chuffed with himself for saving everyone, should it all work out. But lo, he has no idea if it even worked, and here there’s someone else on the throne, the last person he would ever have expected (the chump), and at one point he has to sit, incognito, and listen to a bunch of shipwrecked palace servants discussing what a horrible bastard he was, much to his mortification. Although I was quite impressed with the way he took it on the chin when, having finally decided (for the umpteenth time) to stop shagging everyone who offers and actually stick by a lassie, she promptly sods off with someone else.
Now all I have to do is find out all the stuff he was lying about in his memoirs – every review of the series says it’s obvious he’s a total liar, which I hadn’t noticed at all (and still haven’t), despite reading it over several times. I find this ‘meta-twist’ hilarious, because before I even read that it’s all lies, I nicked his name for the protagonist’s boyfriend in the Zombie Chronicles of Nonsense. And he lies to the protagonist, all the time, about everything, and she never twigs either.
God, I dunno, you’d think I didn’t have enough life of my own or something.