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Sunday, 28 August 2016

Reasons why Fran went quiet

I'm sorry I've been absent for a month or so. Did anyone notice? Did you wonder what that unusual quiet was, or why you could suddenly hear birdsong and butterflies whispering?

The reason is, I've been writing the first second third fourth seventy-ninth draft of a novel all summer, grabbing the opportunity afforded by a long teacher holiday, or should that be 'long holiday for teachers' in case you think it's only for teachers who are unusually lanky with limbs like string. What fun syntax is, readers!!

Here are some other things I have done this summer.


Thing I did #1


I came within a few inches of snogging a llama at a farm. Is it just me, or is that llama looking sideways at my daughter-in-law taking the photo as if to say, 'Please get this llady away from me as soon as possible.'



Thing I did #2

I stayed in a holiday cottage in the Cotswolds where all the mirrors were so high up on the walls you had to be six feet tall to see more than your fringe, yet all the sofas were so low down that if there'd been an emergency in the kitchen you'd have taken six minutes to reach the scene. I looked on the brochure to see if it said 'Only suitable for people who can grow or shrink themselves at short notice' but, no. All I know is, by the time you'd leapt up and down to try and pluck your eyebrows and then winched yourself out of a seating position a few times to fetch biscuits, you've done more exercise than is right and proper on a holiday.


Thing I did #3


I met an old lady on a bench in Bourton-on-the-Water who should have gone into stand-up comedy. I got into conversation with her about the lengths to which people will go for a tan. She told me she'd seen a news article about a woman who was stuck in a traffic jam on a hot day and, so as not to waste the opportunity, lay in the road in between the cars to catch more of the sun. I mused with the old lady about whether being run over while you were sunning yourself was a good way to go. 'At least you'd be nice and tanned for when you're laid out,' she said. 'And if you were going to hell, you'd go down brown.'

Thing I did #4

I watched the Olympics. The dressage, you can keep. I feel sorry for the horses who I'm sure are thinking, 'How the heck do I face my mates tomorrow?' I'm also not keen on team sports. The hockey, for instance, reminds me of school, and of the fact that I still haven't ever confessed to my secondary school that I was the person who wheeled the trolley of hockey sticks into the girls' showers in July 1978 and turned the hot water full onto the sticks so that they warped. This was as revenge on Miss Smith who never believed me when I tried to convince her that I was on Week 46 of my monthly period and therefore could not possibly do cross-country running. My favourite Olympic sport is gymnastics. I love the 'floor' work. I do floor work myself quite regularly although I have yet to move on from Stage 1: sitting to Stage 2: moving a limb.

Thing I did #5

At the farm with the llamas ... the llama farm, where llama farmers and llamas alarm us but don't harm us ..... unless we're in pyjamas .... where farmers of llamas can calm us .... 

*THE WORLD SHOUTS STOP*

....  I watched Pig Olympics with my family: my husband, two daughters, one son, one daughter-in-law, and two grandchildren. We yelled and waved flags to support our chosen pig, Harry Trotter. There were five pigs in the race. There were meant to be six but we were told that one had 'strained a hamstring' in training. Another pig was called Boaris Johnson; he came in last in the two races we watched, lolloping along at the back, looking as though he didn't care. As you can see from the picture below, these particular pigs look more like sheep. I'm sure their bacon will be delicious, although you might have to pick bits of wool out of your teeth.






My favourite conversation of the day was with 2 year old Phoebe who was doing some 'pretend cooking' in the play area of the farm.

'What would you like, Grandma?'
'I'll have eggs and toast, please.'
'Okay, here you are.' (She hands me invisible food.)
'Thank you very much. That looks delicious. How much do I owe you?'
(She thinks.) 'Hm. That'll be .... that'll be .... four o'clock, please.'






















20 comments:

  1. Hey, good to see you back! You have been missed while you were Being Miss.

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    1. Thank you for missing me while llamas were kissing me.

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  2. If you handed her a fiver, would she have change? I guess that could be a tip!!

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    1. I dread to think what she'd have done if I'd handed her a fiver. Probably ripped it up to make chips.

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  3. how is the 79th draft coming along?
    Don't ask?

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    1. Thanks for asking :) It was coming along nicely but then I went on holiday and now I'm going back to face the new school term. So, er .... I may get to start draft 80 at Christmas?!!

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  4. Sounds like you've had a delightful holiday! And what holiday is complete without a nice llama snog?

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    1. I thought the very same, but I'm not sure the llama did.

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  5. A pig straining a hamstring sounds rather ironic.
    Woolly pigs & kissing Lamas sounds fun x

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    1. Woolly pigs and kissing llamas also sounds like a fabulous title for a novel ...

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  6. I think all mirrors should be that height and am now planning to rehang mine ... though , thinking about it , does one really need to see one's fringe that often ?

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    1. I think all mirrors should be turned the other way round.

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  7. I have missed the giggles. Glad you are back. I love that llama-snogging photo. I wish the old lady could have seen it. She may well have suggested an interesting way for you to go, too!

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    1. Ha ha - didn't think of that. But she was the type of old lady I suspect goes round snogging llamas herself.

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  8. .. hello Fran... glad to hear you had a good holiday..... I love you conversation with Phoebe.. little ones do say cute things...
    I am imagining the woman sunning herself on the road between the cars, and seeing her jump up and get into the car to drive when the traffic moved.. then lying down again.... I wonder why she didn't just stick her legs out the window????
    Good to have you back.. xxx ..... Barb xxx

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    1. Yes, little ones do say such cute things. When ours were growing up, we kept a book and wrote them in so that we didn't forget. We used up two books in the end, and now we call them 'the funny books' and look at them when we're fed up.

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  9. A friend's 4 year old grandson, after being chastised, shrugged and said, "Well, life's not ideal, is it?"

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    1. Classic! He'll go a long way!

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  10. I enjoyed reading this - I'm sure your students enjoy your lessons, too.

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    1. Thanks so much, jabblog. I hope they enjoy the lessons, too, but most of the time I dare not ask them the question!! I'll just assume .... it's better for the self-esteem :)

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