Monday, 22 October 2012

Octoberish Sunday


It's been such a lovely relaxed weekend here. Jeremy went round garden centres and I sat in a cafe in Cheadle with the biggest cup of coffee in the world, doing writing practise, all Saturday afternoon - the kind of writing where there's no project in mind - just burning off the extra words and getting down all those niggling thoughts and ideas I want to examine.

It was a great weekend for reading. More from the Spooky book pile - a couple of kids' books by William Corlett and Willis Hall - and even an autumnal Moomins. Why have I never read William Corlett's 'Magician's House' series before?  I suppose it was just slightly too late for my own childhood - and by the time I started looking up everything I'd missed when i was too busy being grown up, i somehow missed him out. This first one, 'The Steps up the Chimney' has touches of all the things I love - bits of Narnia and Box of Delights and it feels like a lighter, less myth-heavy take on Susan Cooper.

Also I started reading the latest novel by one of my favourites, Julie Cohen - 'The Summer of Living Dangerously - which was a perfect companion on a Sunday out and about. Jeremy and I took a walk round our nearest park - which is nice enough, but fairly neglected, though it's still busy. Like many things in south manchester - the council have let it get *a bit rubbish*...  but people seem to love it just the same. It was nice enough for a stroll.

Then we had lunch at the deli round the corner - and it was even nice enough to sit outside this refurbished post office. Lots of tables out there - lots of newspapers and cappucinos and ciabattas and stuff going on. Chorizo frittata with a peppery salad. One very snooty couple, thinking a lot of themselves, decided to get arsey with the owner about how long their lunch had taken to arrive. It was a very busy lunchtime and the chef was startled when the snooty woman took umbrage. When he took umbrage right back she lashed out: 'Are you giving me attitude?'

He replied - and I loved this - 'No, and i'm not giving you any food, either.'  He picked up their plates again and marched back in doors with them. She was livid! Following him back indoors, shouting the odds - then storming out of the place with her sheepish boyfriend only moments later.



After lunch it was still nice enough to sit out in our garden. Amazing, in October. Fester even got to have a run about. He was on the last of his antibiotics from his cough, and fighting fit - scooting through the crispy leaves and demanding to be let into the Beach House.


TV was great later that night. Wallowing in a bit of costume drama - revisiting Cranford and then more Downton. But late on Sunday night - just before Week Ahead Dread started to hit - I eked out the evening and watched this week's first episode of 'Hebburn' from BBC 2. A perfect Geordie sitcom. Much less sentimental than the Royle Family, and more heart than Shameless. Bliss!


10 comments:

  1. It poured all day here in the sarf. Cats firmly on lap or sofa and fire lit. I shall look up The Steps Up The Chimney - sounds right up my street.

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    1. I think you'd like it, Lesley! Sorry you had the rain this weekend!

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  2. I remember the Magician's House trilogy from my childhood reading. I read them quite young -- about six or seven I think, when i was just exiting the cosy Enid Blyton world) -- and although I can remember little to nothing about them other than one vivid section about badger baiting, I always look back at them and remember a sense of being quite frightened by them, by a sense of wild magic about them that everything else I was used to then didn't have. I've avoided re-reading them for precisely that reason, the worry they might turn out to be all very timid and dull.

    The TV adaptation came out when I was about eleven, but I grew up without a TV and so I never saw it. I've tried to track it down ever since but never found it. I remember my peer group liking it, but that's not necessarily a recommendation as an adaptation.

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    1. Matt, I bet they stand up to rereading. (I can't imagine growing up without a telly...!)

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  3. I remember The Last Vampire! That was a favourite from Fordingbridge Library, with that very cover. Is it still awesome?

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    1. Andrew, I think it was a book I had out of the library, too. 'Fontana Young Lions' was a great list. And yes - it's very awesome!

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  4. All sounds wonderful. What a fantastic title The Steps Up The Chimney is. I love the thought of a post office deli too; I hope they've kept the old scales...

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    1. have you read all four, Nick?

      Next time you visit, we'll have to go to Pod Deli - you'll like it. They do amazing fish finger sandwiches and hold things like Banjo Nights!

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  5. I shall keep an eye out for The Steps Up the Chimney, it sounds like one of those books I may have read as a child and forgotten, and if it isn't, I look forward to discovering it! I've just reached the age where I'm nostalgic for all those books I loved, The Amazing Mr Whisper, Louise Cooper's novels, Henrietta's House... Thanks for reminding me what pleasure there is to be had in revisiting these old classics!

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    1. I've never hard of those favourites of yours! I love hearing about the books others remember and want to revisit. Right at the start of this blogging business, i described two books i'd forgotten names and authors of, and Nick guessed them straight off for me!

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