Lucky me. The crucible of life has dealt me a mini-break, with my parents. I was duped into it by an e-mail from my Father offering me a trip to Sri Lanka.
Having just been conned into scratching a month long hike down Chile by Girl 12 ('You shouldn't have had children if you weren't going to see it through to the end'.....What?!) I jumped at the idea. It was then that Dad told me when he and Mum wanted to go and asked me to organise it. Hmmmm
The most significant result of this is that I have been buying and hoarding books to take with me. My parents are largely somnolent, waking, like male lions, only to feed. (Oh God no, not to mate too... oh no I am getting a mental image that won't go away...not good). I, on the other hand will do just about anything to avoid sleep. So, my iPhone is loading with films I've always wanted to see, music I love and which makes me happy, and which will block out any unwelcome noises ('Luce? Luce? Where are you, Luce?) and books to fill my mind. The 12 volumes of Anthony Powell's A Dance to The Music Of Time arrived today. I have decided that Vol 1 is coming on the plane with me, and nothing else. I'll be like a sow in a farrowing crate.... So even if it isn't the best of the lot I will be forced to get on with and into it.
Coincidentally I also found myself in a British Heart Foundation Bookshop, in Bristol today. I prefer to buy my books in Charity shops rather than on line. Then, if I hate them, I can throw them at the wall and accuse the writer of having had a lucky break, being undeserving of his deal, having family in publishing or just being a total tosser. My investment has been a small donation to charity... no big deal. I also picked up Martin Amis, Money. He may make me puke, but he is good at it. And then some lousy tacky love stories, for break times. Armistead Maupin, Tales of the City and Selden Edwards, The Little Book. Life is a lousy, tacky love story sometimes and if someone can write about it well, and make it bearable, I'm in, and maybe I will learn something.
I leave on the 2nd March and come back 9 days later. Little Lulu, with Mummy and Daddy. Little Lulu and her very own Big Bar Bill. And her charity shop copy of the 2006 Lonely Planet Guide to Sri Lanka. I might as well read about what I would be looking at if I wasn't babysitting the Olds on some Spa compound somewhere... And actually at this point I would like to say that I catagorically do not do 'Fanny Parlours' All that massage, facial, and mud mallarkey makes me very uncomfortable. Give me a tub of Nivea, a good book, a packet of fags and a bottle of Blue Nun any day. And quit your daft whale music too.