Monday, 17 September 2007


There are days when family life overcomes me, Friday was one of those days. Special activities at school required all day parental attendance followed by tiredly and crankily dealing with tired, cranky children. I was one of those mothers you look at askance in public places, trying vainly to shepherd children in one direction and equally vainly to not boil over. Bedtime for them (and me) couldn’t come soon enough. In all of it: no writing, no reading, but a few moments for thoughts. And those thoughts were all along the self-flagellating line of “What made you think that you could ever write a book?”

Saturday was full of family birthday celebrations for one very small, totally thrilled little boy. Sunday opened early with children amazingly bright-eyed after the busyness of the last week, cheerfully playing with new (and very loud) acquisitions. No time for anything other than the immediate needs of the moment.

Then Sunday afternoon: four whole hours of solitude. I hope I didn’t forget any major commitments because if I did, I can’t apologise. I finally sat down in the study, looked at the distant mountains and wrote solidly. No cleaning, no mountain of laundry reduced, no preparation for the week to come, but a story emerging, peopled with real characters.

Sunday evening: beloved partner, children weary, scraped of knee, grimy faced and happy after a full afternoon at the park. Myself: satisfied at the thought that a story may finally be emerging.

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