Be careful what you promise. Fewer pictures, I said, but there shall be prose. Ah, the prose; the language of Shakespeare and Milton. That is what I am supposed to be good at. Occasionally, I assumed, I may have an interesting thought, which I could happily offer to you. After all this living and all the books I have read and all the conundrums I have pondered, you might imagine that the odd not-dull thought could flit across my brain, like a swallow flying south for winter.
I seem to remember, very vaguely, that I contemplated some antic notion about life and the human condition only this morning which might provoke and stimulate. Now, it is gone. There is, I am ashamed to say, only dullness left behind.
I am bashing on with my work. That is getting done, but slowly and with struggle. There are marvellous, shining days when the words are ready to be written. Out they come, all brushed up, like children on their way to a party. On other days, they must be chiselled and pummelled from the recalcitrant brain, as if I am mining rare emeralds from a sea of silt.
I am, doggedly, getting things done. But there is not enough brain left for an interesting blog. I feel obscurely ashamed.
I wonder, as I write this, whether this is the point of the internet. Is it a good thing to admit to blah days? Not catastrophic days, or mornings filled with grief and despair, or days when everything goes wrong and you might as well go into the garden and eat worms. But those not much cop days. The ones that are usually not written about, that do not feature in shiny magazine articles, the ones that make no headlines. The days when everything is flat and dulled and the wits are not firing and you are just trudging through the hours in a foggy determination to achieve one small thing. Perhaps it is obscurely important to confess to those.
I wonder this because I have an enduring faith in shared experience. Two of the words I love most in the English language are: me too. The sigh of relief when someone else admits to muddliness and crappiness and general messiness comes gusting out of me, so that I want to give the person kisses and flowers. Ah, I think, with passionate gratitude, I am not the only one.
I know also that the desire to be a consistently shiny, capable, organised, admirable person is an idiotic impossibility. My rational mind understands very well that nobody can scale those heights every single day. On some days, everyone will feel a bit scuffed and bashed and not very shiny at all. But the irrational mind shouts – come on, sharpen up, try harder, be glossier. Say something interesting, damn you, says the irrational mind, or people will WANT THEIR MONEY BACK. (They will also judge you, says the irrational mind, which has a mean streak; they will possibly sneer and point.)
So, that is where I am today. Neither good nor bad, just untidy and blah and a little bit dull. I said it would be getting personal.
As I finish this, I have two thoughts. They are: this too will pass. And: I can’t remember what the other one is. Which just about sums it up.
No time for the camera today. Here are two reassuring pictures of the Beloveds from the archive:
PS. You know that I no longer have time to reply directly to comments, although I read and love them all. But one of the Dear Readers did ask for details of the new riding. I shall describe it later in the week. (Not at too great length, for those of you who are not in the horse camp, so don’t panic.) And one or two of you asked about the new opportunity. I’ll tell you that too, once it is all set in stone. I like to think that I am mostly rational, but I cannot tempt fate. Too risky.