Listless

Not me! Not in that sense, anyway. Lots of people get listless in the heat, but I have new reserves of energy. I am the opposite of lettuce. However, I do need to do a new list of things to be done over the next fortnight; when I don’t have a nicely-controlled list of jobs I start getting a little anxious, because I think I might have missed something. I think I know what I need to do today (about three days’ work, of course), but I’m not completely sure. It’s rare for me to be in this state.

Anyway, hasn’t it been lovely? And I won’t listen to any whining; it’s lovely weather, and that’s that. On Monday I did some prep for a course I was to run on Wednesday, and I painted the rest of the garage. Since then I’ve also painted the garage door and window frames and washed the garage doors, and now you need sunglasses to look at the garage. Parts of the gravel drive are also white, where I spilled the paint, but never mind. We had a TADS meeting, and I did some prep for the probation hostel work, and wrote the first draft of a poem, and answered loads of emails.

On Tuesday I had a session at the hospital; worked with two terrific ladies again. One of them cried, and I very nearly did too; it can be extremely moving, this stuff. I wrote up all the hospital stuff and did some gardening, and in the evening saw Pacific Rim. This had reasonable reviews from the critics – what were they thinking of? The script felt as if it was made of lots of bits of other scripts, thrown up in the air and out together as they landed; the plot was predictable; the special effects were ok. Overall, one of the worst movies I’ve seen.

On Wednesday the excellent Kim Hill and I ran the training course, designed to help library staff and poets work with people on poetry about objects and landscapes and architecture. This was the first time we had run this course, so we were a little anxious, but it went really well – the timings were perfect; everybody taking part was surprised and delighted by what they were doing, and several people have said to me that they went away with loads of ideas. It was all very pleasing. I came home and pruned a huge shrub, and did the evaluation for the course.

Thursday was a busy day. In the morning I interviewed potential Poets in Residence for Herefordshire – a joint project between Poetry on Loan, Herefordshire Libraries and the Ledbury Poetry Festival. They both had their good points, but it was easy to agree on which one was more suitable. A quick foray into B&Q was followed by my  first session with the guys in the probation hostel. There were only four of them, and they were all a bit whacked by the heat, but they produced some good stuff, and again were surprised by what they could do. Excellent! I did some post in the evening.

On Friday morning I met the Take Part Director at the Roses, to see what’s going to happen with one of my little ex-ArtLift writing groups, and it’s good news – they will be able to continue. In the afternoon I started preparing the big back wall of my house for painting and picked some blackcurrants from the garden, and in the evening went to see the 1974 version of The Great Gatsby, preceded by a talk from a Gatsby expert. She was interesting, if a little obsessed; but the film really wasn’t as good as we had expected. It was very slow, and Mia Farrow as Daisy was terrible, and it was in a small, uncooled room in the library, on uncomfortable chairs…

On Saturday we went to the Much Marcle steam show, with all its quirky enthusiasts; and on Sunday we went to the air tattoo at Fairford. I’ve never been to this before, and I had no idea that it would be so huge. The flying displays were superb, and it was lovely to see the Vulcan flying; this will probably be my last time for this. But we had to walk for miles, and by the end of the day we were exhausted.

And this week – well, I know I need to catch up on lots of admin stuff, and I want to paint the big back wall but the weather forecast is not promising; but right now I have to get four new tyres for my car and go to the supermarket. I’m still full of energy and raring to go, but I think that this week rain will stop play. And I really do need a list…

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