Thursday, 4 March 2010

Not Drowning, Waving (Goodbye?)

Taken on the flight deck by the pilot - beyond the clouds everything is in perspective


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How are you all? Thank you for all your lovely emails and comments - sorry I haven't been able to respond in person as usual. We're a few short days away from leaving home, and it looks a lot like a warehouse in the cottage. The pilot is happily settled in Qatar, (picture five strapping pilots going around town in a small rental car together ...) Here, once the children are tucked up after their bath, it's strangely quiet without the pilot, the hound and the other animals. Manic during the day, but quiet at night :)

Maybe you're the same when you're packing, it's easy to get sidetracked. I came across a bunch of old video tapes from when we moved here - my son was six months old, and I swear I can't remember him being that small. It was incredible watching him splashing around in the river, or curled up in a fresh white romper suit ready for bed. Now he's teaching me how to work a Nintendo DS. Where does time go?

So, we've given away a lot, but there's still 80 odd boxes going into container storage on a farm here, near one of the best pubs in Hampshire (the Thomas Lord - as in Lord's cricket ground, maybe kismet, maybe a relation). Among the few boxes of cargo, there's one I'm most concerned about - 30 books and a handful of manuscripts. I have no idea if it will make it past the censors. In there is everything from MA books (Aravind Adiga, Postmodern Fiction ...), to old favourites (Gaston Bachelard, Siri Hustvedt, Jojo Moyes ...) and research books (WW2, Che Guevara, Spanish Civil War ...). I have no idea - I've been told they're tough. Will they make it? We'll see. I just hope they don't take the only hard copy I have of the Spanish love story I started writing last year, (yes, when the computer crashed last year it took the whole thing ... please don't mention the word 'backup' :)

Let's hope. Have any of you read Barbara Ehrenreich's new book? She gave a sermon at the School of Life recently, and I'm curious about her argument that positive thinking doesn't work. What do you think? Frankly looking on the positive side of things has been the *only* thing that's kept me going this last year. There's a lot of sheer damn hard work, determination and luck involved in making your dreams come true, but surely staying positive helps? It hasn't worked for us here. Recession has taken it's toll. We're off where the pilot can find work, and I'm determined to make the best of it. Today's video clip is from Beth Nielsen Chapman - my lovely agent gave me a link to her site when I was looking for a title for the new book. I downloaded a bunch of songs, and since then have heard her everywhere. This woman survived the loss of her husband, critical illness ... talk about what doesn't kill you.

So, what's leaving somewhere you hoped would be your forever home in comparison? Saying goodbye to friends you've grown to love as family? I don't know. I find myself saying that a lot lately. Places, friends - the good ones will always be there. We're leaving to keep our little family on the road. I don't know if this is goodbye to WKDN - I know some sites are blocked, and Blogger may be. I hope I'll be talking with you from pastures (well, deserts), new soon - but just in case, thank you. It's been a joy and a privilege writing with you. x

TODAY'S PROMPT: What do you know?
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