pretty good last-chocolate-for-a-month

9::30 – Late rise, sitting, breakfast.

I get Judith’s CD cover ready, finally. A job I thought was going to take thirty minutes takes several hours, which is probably why I was putting it off.

A bit of guitar with H.

I begin uploading the files.

I make pancakes, using the recipe by Delia Smith on her website. I’ve been discovering recently that if I read recipes for things that I think I can cook without, I often discover that I was doing it wrong. I’m not sure that I’d have been capable of it two years ago, and I’m not sure what’s changed. In fact I suspect that it’s not so much that I know more now, but that I’m capable of admitting to myself that I don’t know, that I have to find out and that there is a specific methodology that I have to follow, rather than some innate genius. Which is not there, cookingwise.

I decide not to eat any chocolate biscuits from tomorrow until Easter. Actually it looks like I’ve forsworn chocolate.

After pancakes I walk up to the Strand to pay a cheque into the building society – very cold out there, in fact it snows for a few minutes, and crossing the Jubilee Bridge is very challenging – and then go to Bureau, stationery fetishists’ shop of choice, where I buy a Lamy fountain pen and a tiny Nava propelling pencil. I’m looking at the pens, wondering why they all have medium nibs, and a sales assistant approaches me, asks if she can help. I want to ask whether different nibs are available (I want a bold one) but it comes out “These all appear to have medium nibs” in a way that feels very antagonistic. She’s very helpful and I take the pen to the counter. Again, during the exchange with the shop assistant it seems like all I’m saying is rude and abrupt, although I’m not feeling angry or aggressive at all, but I don’t seem to be able to control it. Even when what I’m saying is straightforward, or a ” thank you”, the tone of voice is harsh. Very strange.

I walk home. Haru is pleased to see the Lamy pen.

Dinner is leftover rice and pork soup – Far Eastern Fusion, I think – very nice. Followed by Haru’s Mum’s chocolate, which is a pretty good last-chocolate-for-a-month to have.

On the sofa for the evening, listening to TV themes from my childhood (the only one we have in common is Monkey Magic) and reading about Radio One.

Soon a toast for the end of the Yellow House and the beginning of what follows, and then bed.

Today the left little toe.

7:30 – Rise, Sitting, Breakfast.

Housework, a lot of vacuuming. I step back and cut the little toe of my left foot. After H went back to Japan last May I had a similar incident of unthinkingness which resulted in damage to the little finger of my left hand that it’s not quite recovered from, not so that I can play half-barres with it, which is a shame, as a lot of my pieces require it. Today the left little toe. I patch it up as well as I can.

11:00 – Denise arrives and we spend a while logging her on to the wireless router (she didn’t even realise she had wireless), then I need to download Firefox as Internet Explorer doesn’t seem to want to play with an unfamiliar internet connection. Then we work on a web site for a while. Quite a slow procedure. Also discuss some sites and other jobs I’ll be doing for her.

15:00 – Go out to the Noodle place, then I take a DVD of the last Monster and Frog book to the publishers. In the old days I just needed to leave it with reception, but now it seems that publishers have got so consolidated that that won’t work any more. I take it round to the postroom, at the back of the building, where someone promises to deliver it.

I walk down Tottenham Court Road, dropping into Maplins and Paperchase and then catch a 1 bus home. Tea and biscuits, then at 19:20 out to the Movements class.

I begin being very clumsy. Before the beginning of the class, there are a few people chatting, which, even though quiet, seems off to me, or at least indicative of a lack of focus which I’m also exhibiting. Also there are a couple of observers in tonight.

21:50 – Go home via District and Jubilee lines, get snack food at shop on the way home. Chat with Haru, she goes to bed and I write this.

how dimwitted even the most supposedly highbrow of it is

8:30 – Get up. Sitting. Breakfast.

Eventually I get down to colouring in. Haruko goes out and I take two very long telephone calls, during which I’m reminded of all the things I’ve learned over the last couple of years.

13:00 – Lunch

More colouring in.

I have a shower, and then H returns and we have tea.

I nap for a bit.

And then more colouring in. And it’s still not finished! Bah.

19:30-ish – Dinner

Internet, looking at someone’s web site that they’ve been having a problem with and then TV dose – IT Crowd, a news comedy show and Newsnight. Among other things, there’s a report about how BitTorrent is Evil and will Aid Terrorists and Paedophiles. I hardly ever watch television, and when I do I’m reminded of how dimwitted even the most supposedly highbrow of it is.

But then there are the NME awards on Channel 4, compared to which mere dimwittedness is Mensa-quality.

Later to bed.

or possibly kemikal kake.

7:20 – Rise, Sitting.

8:15 – Breakfast.

9:00 – DoA, Guitar Work. Long chat with H.

Colouring in.

13:00 – Lunch. Ramen. Hurrah for Ramen!

Tea and Japanese Bean-jam sweets.

Colouring in.

I join in a burning debate via email.

Tea. I get cheap cake, which turns out to be chemical cake, or possibly kemikal kake.

19:15 – to the gym: Stationary bike, ski machine, running machine, then a lot of stretching. It strikes me that these machines are designed to replicate the negative side of travelling without the benefit of actually going somewhere else.

I return home, delayed somewhat by the fact that the neighbour who hammers on the door and shouts (because he’s lost his key or forgotten how it works) is standing outside hammering on the door and shouting. H calls to tell me that he’s outside hammering on the door and shouting. I do the sensible thing and run away to the shop to get, as it turns out, Jacobs Cream Crackers (as eaten by Wallace and Gromit) and a jar of Branston pickle. Returning to the flat I find he’s still there, and not only there but attempting to kick down the front door – full on running, jumping action (with no effect, which is quite a relief). I watch him doing this until he notices that I’m there. I open the door.

He complains bitterly that nobody came down to let him in (he does this all the time, sometimes in the early hours of the morning, and we’ve basically given up). His sense of entitlement is incredible – he genuinely believes that we are there to let him in. It’s fairly distressing living next to these people, but from the point of view of observing psychology at close hand it’s fascinating.

Greet H. Shower. Cheese, crackers and Branston pickle. Internet. This. Soon to bed.

the urge for biscuits

7:17 – Rise.

7:30 – Sitting.

8:15 – Breakfast.

9:00 – DoA, Guitar work.

Haru goes out. I shower and colour in.

13:00 – Lunch. I succumb to the urge for biscuits.

Colouring in, and a cold H returns.

Tea, and the rest of the biscuits.

Colouring in.

19:30 – Dinner.

We watch Wallace and Gromit – Curse of the Wererabbit with me explaining as many of the tiny jokes as I can spot. Also some of the copious extras.

23:30 – Soon to bed.

Bah.

7:06 – Rise, shower.

7:30 – Sitting.

8:15 – Breakfast.

9:10 – DoA / Guitar work.

Then colouring in ’til lunch (Soup, bread, stirfry prawn and mushrooms and cheese).

I decide to lie down for twenty minutes and wake up two hours later. Bah.

Tea and marzipan.

Colouring in.

19:15 – I go to the gym and do various exertions followed by various stretchery.

21:50 – Back in the flat. Shower, then some rice and tofu stuff by H.

On the sofa with cocoa.

23:13 – Posting this. Soon to bed.

but challenging is good

7:10 – Rise.

7:30 – Sitting.

8:00 – Breakfast.

9:00 – DoA, guitar work.

10:30 – Haruko departs to have fun. I begin colouring the last of the Monster and Frog books.

12:40 – I put rice to cook.

13:00 – Lunch.

Back to colouring in.

15:45 – Haruko returns, very cold.

16:00 – Tea.

More colouring in.

19:20 – I depart to the Movements class. Again I find I’m rushing to get there, and again there’s some dispersal initially, which soon settles down. At one point I find myself on the wrong side of the room. It’s not a problem, just I notice that as I’m sitting there, I really ought to be on the other side of the room, as everybody but me and two other people have neatly sorted themselves. Without thinking, I suspect. A little more challenging tonight, at least for uncoordinated little me, but challenging is good.

21:50 – Class ends. To tube station.

22:30 – Back in the flat. A little reading, some excellent H-made soup and writing this.

23:00 – Soon to bed.

extensively chilling

Lie-in until after 10:00.

The day is spent extensively chilling, apart from when I get a lift to the supermarket at 14:30. Cold rain outside, and hell in the supermarket.

Long, hot shower, then a very late lunch (curry, home-made bread and home-made hummus, all by H). There’s another snack at 20:00 and then we watch Meetings With Remarkable Men.

22:35 – Posting this and soon to bed.

In a very different place from several days ago, despite the fact that I can’t see how or why a change might have taken place. It seems to have done so, however.

some alien language or other

6:27 – The part that doesn’t go to sleep even when sleep takes me, and knows what the time is even without looking at a clock, wakes me up.

6:40 – Rise, shower.

7:00 – Begin breakfast preparation – everything except the actual heating/boiling/grilling. For some reason I’m reminded of preparing breakfast on the last full day of the San Cugat summer course, 2003 – I woke early that day too, dreading the preparation, but when it came to it the preparation with Chris P went so easily that we were able to stop for a break.

7:30 – Sitting.

8:00 – Back to the kitchen for more breakfast-making.

8:15 – Breakfast is served. Joe is back.

9:30 – Listening to circulated pieces.

10:00 – House work – I fold washing, sweep the dining room and stairs and assist Jacek dismantling and taping together two of the bunk beds that will be collected tomorrow. Towards the end Sylvain comes to assist us. I mention that the beds are probably more valuable as gaffer tape than as beds, but I may be wrong, as I’ve never valued beds as highly as I ought.

12:05 – Complete the work. I sit down at the computer to type this and notice my body sagging.

13:00 – Lunch – spicy pasta by Ignacio. I’ve now become garrulous.

14:15 – Guitar practice. I find as I’m moving into the left hand work that I’m falling asleep, so I decide to lie down before I fall off the chair.

Nap, then.

16:00 – Tea. Not enough letters for proper words at all today, as the ones that are left are broken, and all that can be spelled out are words in some alien language or other.

After tea, I pay Ignacio and Mariana some money each, which is quite a relief.

Practicing.

19:30 – Dinner (lentil soup by Sylvain) and chocolates.

I have a chat to H, then write an email, then play Askesis and Tiki with Jacek.