Tuesday, 29 July 2008


I tried to find some clever way of describing the various school events, an influx of family visitors (none of whom have yet offered to paint!) one here, others on the way, the impending council inspection on the morrow and the continued search for a car. I started out with a few lyrical metaphors, a quick wordsketch of busyness, some overly florid phrases and abandoned them all.

The reality is that I am just busy, rather too busy to be crafting well-honed metaphors and incandescent literature. Surprisingly, perhaps because the Jaeckels have taken on a life of their own, their story continues to unwind in my notebook. There’s a lot to be said for the simple discipline of having a clearly delineated time in which to write. Other things are ruthlessly put aside. In those few early morning minutes, housework remains undone, the computer is ignored, I don’t get dressed beyond layering on a few sweaters and my dressing gown. I do concede to one of my weaknesses and make my first cup of coffee. Then I shift the piles of half-read books, school notes and unsorted mail, sit down with notebook and pen at my dining table and write steadily for half an hour if I’m lucky.

My sister wants to read the book before she’s sixty. I restrained myself from verbal or physical retort. Why do I feel eight years old when I am with my siblings? Even if I wanted to, I can’t offer any kind of timeline for this book, but it is getting written. Whether or not she ends up getting to read it is out of my hands.

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