I have five weeks' work ahead (arts editor this time), so thought I'd better take the chance to get down to Albany and see my mum, dad and brother for a few days.
It was lovely down there, and i actually needed a doona on my bed!
I remember standing at the door here just moments before I left, car keys in my hand, having put a freshly recharged battery in my camera — and even then I somehow managed to leave it behind. So no pics.
:: Thank you for all your encouraging words about my first doll. I am chuffed. I so enjoyed making her and the bears. I have also made a soft little rabbit, though my best friend, Damien, reckons he looks more like a little devil than a bunny, so he may need a little tweaking.
:: Many, many years ago — well, it was shortly after The Shipping News appeared with all that hullabaloo here in Australia ... 1994? — my best friends wanted to start a book club, and that was the first book.
We had one meeting. Only a few of us had read the book, and even fewer liked it. But we had a great time, and went ahead and declared ourselves a book club, in the Best Western Suburbs of Perth tradition.
We put out fabulous newsletters, with minutes of meetings we'd held and stellar guest speakers who'd turned up. Bryce Courtenay was one of them. And Louis de Bernières. We elected a committee and organised outings and workshops and readings.
None of it actually happened.
But today, 16 years later, we best friends met properly and actually discussed a book!
JM Coetzee was supposedly our guest speaker, but didn't show up.
We discussed Alan Bennett's gem of a novella, The Uncommon Reader, and frequently veered wildly off topic to talk about testosterone (and the merits and failings thereof), Prince Harry, Prince Harry and Prince Michael of Kent, God, marijuana, why on earth they gave the Oscar to Sandra Bullock, who could watch the gory bits in Inglourious Basterds* ... and so on.
Our next book will be Brooklyn, by Colm Tóibín.
* I didn't, as i watched it with Will, who had seen it before and knew when to tell me to look away. But I heartily recommend it to anyone who knows and enjoys Quentin Tarantino fillums. It is brilliant, and Brad Pitt is a treat, as is Christoph Waltz, who won an Oscar for playing the main Nazi Nasty.