We have had visitors this weekend, my brother Wicker and a lovely, lovely friend of his, whom I shall call Forrisy. I am a bit over the top about her as I wish he would meet someone like Forrisy, fall in love, settle down and be happy ever after. Since breaking up with his wife a couple of years ago he has picked up with several strumpets who are old enough to know better and worse, much worse none of them have taken care of my beloved bro. Wicker and Forrisy are such lovely houseguests, too, very easy to live with And partake in Washing-Up Duties to boot. As my close pals who come to stay already know, I do love to have Lovely Houseguests who are easy to live with. Mainly, probably because I am not.
Anyhoo, a lot happened yesterday as firstly, I went to the 'Winter Words Week'* at The Pitlochry Festival Theatre, Perthshire. There I went to a workshop on writing poetry, with Kenneth Steven, a poet local to the area, which was brill. Out of an hour's talk I took away two things, 1) Find a separate place to write and most importantly Use It; and 2) He gave us an example of some of his own free verse, 'The Birth of the Foal' and talked us through the processes he used, which was fab anyway but, I felt for the first time, what Free Verse really could be. I hated this part of the OU A215 Creative Writing course last year, now I have a clue, I think!
Also, I had booked in to see/hear two authors read from their latest works. I was wiggly with excitement to be in the presence of Maggie O'Farrell, woohoo! I loved 'After You'd Gone' and wasn't disappointed with seeing her in the flesh as t'wer. I bought her latest novel, 'The Vanishing Act of Esme Lennox' and can't wait to dig into it. I even got it signed, swoon.
The other author I thought I hadn't heard of was Isla Dewar. It was only as she was reading that I realised this is the writer my mother-in-law had been recently raving about. I enjoyed her reading and bought two copies of her latest 'The Consequences of Marriage'. Yep, I got these signed too - one for ma-in-law and one for me. I feel aged 15!
Later, we went along to our local Village Hall to a Burn's Night Supper, which was really good fun and we thoroughly enjoyed. Apart from the formalities of the tradition of celebrating the bard, there are lots of in-jokes about local people. The Address to the Ladies is sweet, and then the Ladies Answer is a rant against men! Which we all cheered, of course.
Then, it all goes on here, Freaky Friday and her famille came around for their Sunday dinner. NBG kept being asked to not wear nanny's purple peep-toe high heels (that nanny can't wear and Will put back on eBay.) She hasn't yet learned that nanny's request being worded 'Nanny would prefer it if you didn't wear those shoes, you might break your leg if you fall off them' is code for 'Take them off. Now'.
Freaky Friday is half way through her pregnancy and is moody and tired. Mr T was hung over and Very Grumpy and I seemed to keep upsetting them both. I have not yet learned when to just shut up and leave them to it, I'm afraid. So, I stuck in the kitchen getting dinner ready for seven of us, with help from NBG who re-filled the salt and pepper pots.
NBG: Did you cook all this dinner by yourself, nanny?
NBG: You're very clever.
NBG: Nanny, can you walk in high heels?
* Sorry, haven't worked out yet just how to post links to places, books, people etc.