November 25th, 2010

A Ca Ira

I was a student revolutionary - and I'm happy to see the kids are back on the streets and occupying lecture theatres again.  A bout of political activism is an education in itself- and will teach you more about politics and the psychology of crowds and what the individual human being is made of than you will ever get from books. I learned to despise the Trots and how brittle potheads are and how easy it is to mislead the press and what comradeship feels like and all sorts of useful stuff like that. Really, it was one of the formative events of my life.

A High Wind In Jamaica

A book about children, but not a children's book. Adults mainly forget what it feels like to be a child- perhaps because most of it is so embarrassing-  but Hughes remembered- and remembered unsparingly. Also it's beautifully written- the earthquake and the hurricane are fabulous- and there are pirates in it. 

I read it in half a day. I don't often do that.

More Of The Same

We have the plasterer in. He's a tall, rangy white man with a ponytail- in his 50s I'd guess- who talks to himself. He's sufficiently weird for me to not want to go out shopping and leave Ailz alone in the house with him.

Ailz's father- who was dying in hospital a couple of nights ago- is back home and planning to drive to Sainsburys this afternoon. Ailz's mother has been on the phone this morning being dithery and pathetic and trying to shame Ailz into rising from her sickbed and going round to sort out their lives for them. She has been tested for altzheimers and she doesn't have it- so the ditheriness and inability to listen and take things in must have other causes. 

Ailz's father once told her- long, long ago- that a woman's first responsibility is always to her parents- even if she has a family/career of her own. He has never stopped behaving as if he believes this to be true.

It's very cold. We've been seeing odd, wandering flakes of snow.