Winding down

The theory is that I’m winding down a bit ready for Christmas, which I plan to spend sorting out my house. It hasn’t felt much like winding down this week, though. Monday was spent at home, doing lots of write-ups from the week before and prep for the coming week, And I got an invoice in, which is always good news. In the evening I saw the Harry Potter film. I hadn’t realised it was only part one, so I was a bit surprised by the ending. I thought it was a bit long, although there were a couple of bits that made me jump so much I hit myself in the eye. Stupid!

On Tuesday I had a great session with my Ross group. It’s great – they want to keep on meeting after our sessions are over, and one of them said that I had inspired her to want to take writing poetry further. This is always a good thing to hear. I had a message from a school where I worked a few years ago, asking me to go in and do some performance poetry sessions with their year 8s; I can’t do all of them, but it looks like this will go ahead with me and my good friend Jonny Fluffypunk. Should be fun! I had a long phone call from my cousin Alan, and paid the deposit for The Son’s flat – it’s quite worrying that it is so easy to spend a huge sum of money in one go like this. The Son came home unexpectedly in the evening, which was lovely. And I got the adjudication written for the play I saw last week. In the evening we had a TADS meeting; lots going on with our current production of three one-act plays.

Wednesday morning was largely taken up with a long call (unpaid!) from a woman who is evaluating the work done by The Reading Agency with young people. I am a great believer in proper evaluations, especially when, as in this case, public money has been spent. Some people in the arts world seem to forget sometimes that we are spending public money; we have a duty, I think, to make sure it is spent wisely and well, and evaluation is a part of this. I got lots of prison prep done, though, and then went to the hospital – partly for one of my usual sessions, and partly for a meeting with our very supportive oncology doctor about the bid for further funding for the work I do there. He understands just how important this work is, but of course there is very little money about. Oh dear.

In the evening I ran the Treasure Island rehearsal. It’s looking good. I was a bit fierce about them learning their lines, though.

Thursday was a prison day. We had a fantastic group session – there are some terrific writers there – but as always I didn’t get everything done.

And Friday – Friday was a busy day. Hospital first thing, then shopping, then my doctors’ surgery group. This was the last session of the current term – definitely a bit of winding down – and we spent the time planning the book of their pieces. They were really pleased when they saw all that they have done this term – it adds up to a surprising amount of work. I wrote up the TADS minutes, did my spreadsheets and another invoice, and went to see The Bloke. I stayed at his house all weekend – it’s a lot warmer than mine is! I did some prison work while I was there, but we spent most of the time doing Christmas shopping. Christmas is nearly here, it seems; and it was a lovely lazy end to the week.

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