The sun is out, it feels like spring and the Christmas tree will be coming down today. I have always left it till Twelfth Night in the past, following the tradition in which I was raised. I used to add the French custom of the galette des rois too, when the children were younger, but though I might treat myself to an almond pastry for Epiphany, I won’t be baking the cake of kings this year.
The world is supposed to be largely back to normal today… Well, I was hoping so as my poor little car is still sitting five miles away in desperate need of help from a garage… which has been closed over the whole of the holidays. And apparently remains closed or incommunicado today. The lack of decent bus services over this same period has meant taxi fares eating away my resources getting to my son’s and back every day. I also note uncomfortably that I still get car-sick if I’m not the one at the wheel. I am shopping entirely at the little village shop, which may sell everything from mouse traps to light sockets, but which has a limited variety of foodstuffs and the frustration of not being able to get out and about is driving me nuts. That is the downside of living in a village.
I’ve been effectively grounded.
The upside is that you have access to footpaths, fields and woodlands. You can walk for miles and never see a soul except the deer and pheasants. You can watch the seasons turn and see the first leaf of spring and the last fruit of autumn. But pushing cars does damaged spines little good and by the time you have been dragged down the street by an overexcited Ani, you’re not really up for much more walking. Especially when you feel like you are being permanently throttled with the spinal thing. I can’t even let her out into the garden except under supervision, as the fence blew down again in the gales … and of course, I need a car to be able to get the materials to repair it. Likewise to take the computer in to be looked at. So the holidays have been just a little frustrating.
I had planned a few local days out as I wasn’t doing anything over the festive season; visiting some of the places usually heaving with people… Christmas is the only time you get them to yourself. That went by the wayside. So yes, this is me moaning. I hate having my wings clipped! All those fabulous misty mornings… all the hawks that are literally lined up on fences beside the road… the wonderland of frosty dawns… and I’m stymied. I don’t like it one little bit.
By way of a holiday, therefore, I have watched a film every day. I don’t have TV, keeping up with the news via the computer. I do have a TV… it just isn’t connected to anything that gets TV, the satellite dish having gone missing when the scaffolders were here. My small stock of films is relatively limited… though recently enhanced by some hitherto unseen gems as my friend continues my cinematic education. However, the machine needs a firmware update and the player seems not to have a website for that… Technology is not being cooperative at present. And the first person to even whisper that astrologically, Mercury is about to enter the pre-shadow of another retrograde phase is going to wish they hadn’t…
To add insult to injury I picked up some rotten bug thing that hasn’t even allowed me to go cuddle my granddaughter.
So I’ve worked on a new project instead, whilst promising myself a proper desk one of these days… one I can get my feet under and sit at with sensible posture… one that is not a conversion from the top of an old Welsh dresser and where my feet might actually reach the floor. This one is possibly not ideal with a duff back. My kneecaps rest on one shelf while my toes cling to another and the dog inserts balls on both which she expects me to throw. However, I digress.
The new project did not go well. I struggled with recalcitrant technology, fought my way through files, erased and reinstalled half my software… all to no avail. And the results, to my eyes, were pretty poor. Not what we were after at all. I wasn’t happy.
Yet, this round I have won. I finally managed to find a piece of software that didn’t require a functional flash player, bypassed the instability of the internet connection and didn’t even mind the antiquated graphics card… I started again and managed to get two whole pages ready to present this morning. And while it is far from ‘right’ the possibilities to have fun with it are endless.
Maybe I’m an inveterate optimist… or just stubborn…but I choose to see this as my mote of sunshine on which to end the week. There usually is one somewhere… even if you have to dig a little deeper than you’d like to find it.