I had not expected Fernando this week, as he'd talked of going away for a week, but by now I dare not allow any possible completion date to winkle its way into my mind. Avaunt, I tell such thoughts. We had to get the sanders/sealers back, as they had used white putty sort of stuff as fillers, and they were obvious. Apparently it was easy enough to fix, which made me wonder why they had not done so in the first place. Ah me!
Fernando has done a lot of sanding and filling, so as to paint it all, and this raised vast quantities of dust, so much that it set off the smoke alarm. He managed to turn it off, but not the flashing alarm light outside. My technological knowledge and ignorance, not to mention fear and loathing, is considerable. I came out of choir this evening to find a message from the neighbour across the road, as the light was flashing into their children's bedroom. I telephoned the security firm and they talked me through it, but I am consumed by guilt and shame at my technological deficiencies. Really, you should be able to grow out of being a total sook. It is time I grew up. All the same, those security systems are horrible things, and are all too likely to reduce me to a quivering pulp. And it has been the case that every time I manage to clean off some of the dust and grime, even more comes and covers absolutely everything.
All these (relatively trivial) experiences seem to drive out sustained thoughts about more serious matters. The weekend was rather quiet. Choir practice took up most of Saturday, and on Sunday I wandered up to the market and came home with another couple of books. One is by David Crystal, entitled By hook or by crook: a journey in search of English. I am dipping in and out of it, and came across an account of writing something in which every word starts with the same letter. Slowly started, simply, soon sampling seriously sustained sentences, synopsis of Shakespeare's Hamlet. Simply staggering.
And very entertaining!
Margaret Atwood has written several children's books using this technique. I have two of them and they invariably make me chortle. They are Rude Ramsay and the Roaring Radishes and Bashful Bob and Doleful Dorinda.
I used to read them to my grandchildren and gave them copies. The other book, which I have never been able to find, is Princess Prunella and the Purple Pea. The books came with a CD of Margaret Atwood reading them aloud.
Just so as to distract myself from thoughts of building noises, security systems and other technical matters, I quote the final paragraph of Rude Ramsay.