MsCellany

Every time

Every Time We Say Goodbye

by Ella Fitzgerald

https://open.spotify.com/track/5FSiKZldtWDSeSC1GQklMA

This afternoon my lovely Boywonder flies back to Montreal for his new university semester and, because he is required to take extra elective subjects, he won't be back until June. It's the longest he's been away from home and I shall miss him hugely. I've been trying to put this to the back of my mind all through his 18 days with us and I'm not taking him to the airport but I am finding it almost impossible to cope with at the moment.

When I was the Boywonder's age - he'll celebrate his 21st birthday in Canada in a few weeks' time - I was never homesick. To my subsequent shame, I didn't ever look back, and when I was at home, I longed to be away but he is much more of a homebody and I think he's finding it hard too. I'm wondering whether my parents missed me this much when I went away.

My friend Ann, who sits next to me in choir, reminds me that this feeling never goes away. One of her grown-up sons lives with his family in Australia. He came back for a family reunion this Christmas and she hadn't seen him for 2 years. Even before he arrived, poor Ann was fretting and upset about parting from him again and I understood perfectly well what she meant. I suppose we all move on, we have to, but the feelings remain the same. 

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A slight change to an autumn walk

Before I lived in Paris, I was one of the staunchest indoor people ever. And then, to stave off the effects of croissants, patisserie and driving everywhere, I started running up and down the Seine towpath a few times every week. You really start to notice the ever-changing beauty of the things around you and Autumn is such a wonderful time to be walking dogs. We haven't yet had a frost here. It's expected any day soon but in the meantime there's a chance to view the wonderful fungal structures that have popped up all over the place. I caught sight of the bouquet on my run this morning and came back with my camera on the dog walk. Dogs often don't appreciate the local flora to the same extent as me. One stray set of paws and the ephemera have had their brief time on earth. There was an added frisson today, though, because Lewisham Council shut the golf course yesterday and Raffles was allowed to run around off the leash for the very first time without fear of him being hit by or, more likely, picking up a ball in play and running away with it. Our gain is very much the Lewisham Golfers' loss, though. This was the last remaining public golf course in Inner London. The council no longer wish to finance the upkeep of what they consider an elitist sport. What a pity. And it means that these beautiful, mature trees between the links are set to be bulldozed to make way for a lake and...new trees. Which doesn't really make a huge amount of sense. There are rumours of other shenanigans too but, as a resident of neighbouring Bromley, I don't know enough to make any accusations here. Walking up the hill to the mansion at the top, we came upon a load of protestors, who are staging a sleep-out Occupy-style protest to try and remind Lewisham of its duty to keep the cafe and lavatories open as an amenity to park users. They told me that the bulldozers' action is being challenged in court and that they'd be there until the outcome of the case is known. They are asking for volunteers to spend a couple of hours with them this week. I might just go, public protest being a thing of mine. In the meantime, do enjoy the photos of a foggy, smoggy London morning walk.
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January 2017
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Crocheted cotton throw

I’ve finally finished it. Well, called it a day really.

I’ve been working on this cotton wave throw on and off for three years. Mainly off.

I bought lots more balls of yarn for it but eventually realised that if I used them all I’d have a stair carpet rather than a blanket. I was going to add side panels but why over-complicate things? So I’m left with this throw-shaped throw and a lot of cotton yarn in muted shades of grey, green and blue. If you’ve any ideas about what to do with them, I’d love to hear the polite ones.

Anyway, it’s done now and time to move on to my next unfinished project: an alpaca jumper that was originally destined for James, but will now go to Eliza. If, indeed, she wants it.

 

Cotton throw to own, random, design made using Rowan Handknit Cotton and a Knitpro 4.00mm hook.

Dandelion clock in fog

My mum: a composite portrait

I’ve been trying to improve my photography. That’s one of those things that I’d just like to absorb by subcutaneous injection, since I always seem to forget about focal length and depth of field. I’m still inept at landscapes and being in the right place at the right time but I hope to improve these skills. In the meantime, I’ve found that I can take quite good portraits with my telephoto lens but I’m still not quite sure how.

I’m also trying to get good photos of my mum while I can, but I must admit that I do have some qualms about putting these on my blog: how can she consent to anything? If nothing else, these are gently meant.

At last

Here I am again. I’ve been out of internet range since Sunday night on account of the monsoon downpours here in India, which have clearly wiped out the 3G and, often, the electricity.

I don’t like to moan, as the people who look after my mum are so kind, but the accommodation for guests is quite basic. Damp was seeping down the walls of my room and the noisy fridge disturbed my fitful sleep on the hardest bed in the world – possibly – and every time I used my travel kettle to make a cup of tea, it tripped any electricity that might have been in the room at that moment. Okra for supper, truly the only vegetable that I actively detest, was the last straw.

It’s not been a particularly jolly trip to see my mum this time. It’s clear that her brain function has shrunk again. The world’s most loquacious woman – possibly – no longer has the means to talk and she’s quite a lot sleepier than I’ever seen her for a while. Perhaps it’s the dingy weather, we all know how uninspiring persistent rain can be.

I know we’ve had downpours at home but I’ve never encountered rain on this scale before. Parts of our normal return trip back from Neral to Mumbai were like an Alpine whiteout, only with rain. On the plus side, this meant that the traffic was reduced and we made the journey through the Mumbai traffic in less time than usual, though I pity poor Deepak on his journey home tonight.

There were some hardy souls about, though:

All in all, the Leela’s dirty Martini was particularly welcome tonight.

Do you want me like this? This? Maybe a head tilt? 

MsAlliance

MsAlliance

I live in Beckenham, suburban London and, having worked in travel, industrial materials, recruitment advertising, and diversity consultancy, I have devoted the last decade or so to raising my children, of whom I am incredibly proud. Latterly, I have spent time developing my singing; caring for my two dogs and expressing myself through my blog and, especially, on Twitter.

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