Bad news, they say, comes in threes. We've had our one singular burst, and nothing more. We're waiting for the other shoe to drop, and it's frankly getting tiring. Meanwhile, we rejoice that once again old superstitions have little or no credibility. Yah, I say. Boo, and sucks.
The Mojo stays. A little while ago I dreamed a first sentence to a story. I wrote it down, and somehow words just kept on pouring out. RATS has, therefore, taken a back seat for a little while. Once you've reached the part I've gotten up to that's relatively coherent, I'll ask for a pause, and start giving you a play that I have just waiting on the sidelines. Oh joy, you cry.
This holiday business is a bit baffling. I've found myself at a bit of a loose end, although I have been outting in some serious hours on writing the new project.
I'm a little sunburnt. Foolish, I know. When we were at the mount I saw a heavily tanned man light a cigarette off the butt of a dying one. He is determinedly committing slow suicide. If a melanoma doesn't get him, rotting lungs will.
LISTENING TO: Ian Anderson, "Rupi's Dance". My favourite of his solo albums. The title song is rather excellent.
READING: "Alibi", Joseph Kanon. An excellent read from a favourite author. Also Bevor's superb "Stalingrad".
MOVIES: We're going to see "Alice in Wonderland' tomorrow. I have mixed feelings about this, having read wildly divergent reviews. i guess i'll just have to make up my own mind. I'll get back to you on that...
Those ones she'd deliver herself – they had been written by boys whose photographs had featured in Jayne's shop-window.
Jayne smiled to herself. When she'd arrived in town she'd scandalised folk with her strange ways and mannish dress. She had been begrudgingly accepted as the new owner of the General Store, but general opinion about the town was that there was something fishy about this newcomer.
Now Jayne Frances employed eight people, and was in severe danger of becoming respectable. True, she still wore moleskin pants, and still tied a bandanna kerchief about her wrist ever morning. But it was now expected of her. From scandalous eccentric to matron, in just 12 years. She smiled, then grinned broadly as Amy burst into the store.
“Here you are, dear,” said Jayne, handing the ten precious envelopes to her friend. Amy checked them for post-marks, to make sure she read them in order, then tore open the first envelope, throwing herself into the bentwood chair by the door to read.
Jayne could open her own letters now.
“Dear Miss Jayne”, the first one began. One of these days, Arthur, you'll simply call me Jayne. One of these days. When I'm old and grey. “Life here in the trenches is not so bad. I can't tell you where we are, of course. Fritz might get his hands on the mail and get some hint about where to shoot. Of course, they're all bad shots: the only way anyone gets hurt here is by bad luck, and by standing still for an hour or two. We had some good news yesterday: a German bullet went through our mess-kettle, and spoiled all the sprouts. Just as well, as you know I've never liked them.” Jayne looked up, surprised. He'd always liked sprouts. She laughed then, and called out to Amy “I know where they are, and it's not France!”