"It was imprudent of us, in the first place, to become authors. We could have become something regular, but we managed not to.
We were lucky, but we were also determined." Roy Blount Jr

"I don’t change the facts to enhance the drama. I think of it the other way round, the drama has got to fit the facts,
and it’s your job as a writer to find the shape in real life."
Hilary Mantel

Wednesday, May 24, 2006

Spring Cleaning

Today I've re-organised my sidebar links--pruned a few out, added fresh ones.

Speaking of the sidebar, I added a recommended historical novel recently, A Likeness by Sonia Overall.

I found it in London, in the bookshop at the British Library--where I spent so much of my time over there. I was seeking a good book to take along to Eastern Europe, and while poring over the fiction shelves I spotted this one. Why I didn't notice it last year, when it would've been sitting there, I've no idea, perhaps because I didn't need it so much. I nearly put it back on the shelf when I realised it was a first person narrative--sometimes that's a deal-breaker for me, sometimes not. The book and subject were so intriguing that I didn't care.

It's wonderfully written, and impressively evocative and even informative of the Elizabethan era. The protagonist is a portrait painter, and I thoroughly enjoyed following the fall and rise of his fortunes.

Another thing I meant to mention sooner was my glorious amaryllis, which bloomed this year. In fact, it was almost open when I returned from overseas.

Three years ago I received it as a thank you gift from a bishop, for serving on a diocesan committee. (The bishop has since retired.) It bloomed beautifully that first year, but never again until now. At long last, my patience was rewarded! I will carefully repeat the regimen of care I followed over the past year, because I forgot how gorgeous it is and I so want this to be an annual occurence!

Ruth is settling in so nicely, she really is a delightful wee dog. Twice each day, in the morning and in the afternoon we have our "racing around the backyard like a Border collie" session. Lola joins in, sort of--sometimes she trots around with Ruth, sometimes she stands there while Ruth playfully nips at her back legs. They get along so well, it's a blessing.

The garden is so green--and weedy. I pulled and chopped as many weeds as I could this morning among the snow peas and in the flower beds. The roses are leafing out very well, and one bush, which has never bloomed at all, is budded already. I'm cautiously hopeful that there'll be flowers.

The bleeding hearts--regular and fringed--are blooming now, and I've got carpets of lily of the valley all round the property. The last of the tulips are doing their thing.

The phoebes never nested in their usual place. But the pair up at the lake cottage are nesting on a porch overhang, as ever.

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