A Christmas Carol

The ghost of Christmas present?

We are rehearsing A Christmas Carol and hubby has got the part of Christmas Present. He’s a bit anxious so he will have a scroll to use with the script on to get through it.

It’s a bit strange to be doing this after three years of Covid, especially being among people who have got bad colds! We sort of sat across the room as much as possible to keep out of range of a cough. I’ve managed to avoid Covid since it emerged in 2019, I hope to carry on in safety.

I have a couple of small parts but my problem isn’t learning the lines as much as following the cues from the line before. But only two weeks to go. I’d better practice more!

Keeping in touch.

I’ve realised how out of touch I have got with some people. It’s not deliberate, but I’m one of these out of sight, out of mind people. I tend to be aware of things in the ‘now’, and the past is gone. It’s helpful because I don’t dwell on bad things from the past, but on the other hand it makes me forget to keep in touch with old friends. Can you know too many people? I don’t think so. But I can’t hold them all in my head! So my intention is to try and at least say hi once a month…. I need to remind myself to do it…..

Cycling

I was thinking about when I used to cycle several years ago. I used to be able to ride for miles. Unfortunately I was knocked off my bike and sustained a head injury. When I recovered I carried on cycling, but I did not know the brazing on the front of the bike had been damaged. I was cycling up a hill when the headset and down tube seperated. The front wheel bent forward and the forks collapsed!

I decided to have the bike repaired as I only have short legs, I’d tried getting a new bike, but it wasn’t the right size or shape of frame. Unfortunately the bike shop I took my bike to was a little disorganised. They lost the frame for a year. I didn’t have a bike, so I took driving lessons. By the time I got the bike back I had a job that I had to commute to, so I used the bike less and less. I eventually gave up. I keep thinking I will try and get on my bike again, but my hips and back are too stiff…. Life, sometimes it really gets you down.

Old TV

Some people will remember these, before huge flat screen TVs, before TV remote controls, even before colour TV. I give you the cathode ray tube, where an electron gun shot rays at a flourescing front screen in lines and the picture appeared on its surface. The ‘tube’ was a conical shape with a square flat front. It was a vacuum tube so if it broke it would implode as air got in….

People employed TV repairmen to come out if it stopped working (replacing valves or solid state electronics? I’m not sure.) Gradually things changed until TVs changed shape and now use liquid crystal displays.

When ours went on the blink we found hitting it just above the on off switch with a hairbrush got it to work. Apparently the electric connection in the switch burns away slowly so the contacts were seperated, hitting it knocked them back together. Probably not safe!

#favourite

detail of a favourite painting. I did this forty years after painting the original. I can’t find the full photo. The hashtag #favourite was in a Facebook group I’m in. I loved the town landscape. I was living in a flat opposite a steep hill so I could see down into back gardens and see people gardening and putting washing out, also the architectural structure of the rooves. I was just starting my fine art course and thus took six weeks painting every day in situ. I remember being told off for taking so long over it, so I learnt to paint faster!

Twins again

Twins on the TV, twins in conversations, twins on the Internet. It’s like the universe knows what’s going on, and bereavement too, so sad that there are so many loses. Each one gouges another piece from my heart. The smoke alarm went off a couple of mornings ago. I want cooking and there are no sockets or electrical equipment near to it. The only thing I could think of was to check the Internet. False alarms are caused by high humidity or maybe a small spider sneaking inside the alarm! Or my mind telling me my sister is haunting me? I’d rather see her in a dream, to properly say goodbye. I’m sad, but I have to accept what has happened.

Singing!

I went to sing with Loud Mouth Women tonight. It felt like I’d never been away. Numbers of attendees were down. I think a lot of people have got the cold that is going round. I’m glad I went. We are starting to learn Christmas songs that we will sing at a small performance in a few weeks. Old songs just come back into my head. You don’t know how they go, and then suddenly the music and words pop into your head! We sang a combination song of English, Hindi, French, Hebrew and Latin tonight! It was 2019 when I last sang it but I still sort of remember it. I was listening to a science programme on the radio on the way home and it said that people can still recall the languages they learnt at school even if decades have passed. It’s because those memories are in a stable area of the brain. It was on a show called All In The Mind on BBC radio 4. It might be on BBC Sounds.

Leaves leave…

Drawing of Etruria Industrial Museum chimney from late last winter. Soon the leaves will be gone again. The museum will hunker down in the rain or possible snow. The industrial archaeology is more visible when the surrounding trees are stripped bare. Life is a cycle, one day its bitterly cold, the next warm and comfortable. I hope to visit the museum again soon. Its run by volunteers who work hard to keep it going.