Monday, January 05, 2009

The new year starts here…

Current work: revisions to Penhally book
Listening to: Crowded House
Reading: Paul Doherty, The Field of Blood

The new year so far has definitely been, um, different. I’m rarely ill (apart from the odd cough/cold – which for me always ends up with losing my voice for a couple of days); but I spent most of New Year’s Day in bed. Friday, I made myself get up. Well, it was more like being woken up at 10.30 by a small child tapping on my shoulder: ‘Look how I did on the Big Brain Academy test, Mummy!’ Uhhh. Calculated that it was another hour until I could have more paracetamol. Staggered into shower, in the hope that washing my hair might help shift the headache. Littlest one bounced upstairs again. ‘Can we go over the road?’ Lovely, lovely neighbour had invited both kids over to play with her two. Staggered over (post shower) to say thanks and send them back whenever she’d had enough. Bless her, she told me I looked dreadful, told me to go back to bed, and kept them until mid-afternoon. I didn’t have the energy to crawl back upstairs, so I curled up on the sofa instead (with the dog – shh, don’t tell DH, because dog is not allowed on the furniture… though I suspect he also lets dog have a cuddle and does the butter-wouldn’t-melt routine: ‘Dog was sitting by my feet.’ Yeah. Feet that were on the sofa) and watched the whole of North and South.

Yep. As in two DVDs’ worth. Four hours of it. Bliss. Fabulous acting. And it’s probably my favourite of Gaskell’s novels, so I really enjoyed the story, too. Best bit? John Thornton standing in the snow, saying, ‘Look back at me.’ Actually, that’s the second-best bit. OK, I admit, my favourite scene is the kiss at the end – I loved the way Margaret capitulated and kissed him first. The kids were back in time to view that and do all the ‘urrr, GROSS!’ bit, as they’re at that age. (But that scene is unspoilable.) I also really liked Brendan Coyle in his role as Nicholas Higgins. I think he’d make a brilliant Gabriel Oak, Giles Winterborne or Diggory Venn. (Yeah. Nailing my colours to the mast. I much prefer Hardy to Austen; and Eliot is my favourite 19th-century author.)

Slept late on Saturday, too. Very unlike me. Though I was dragged out for some fresh air (i.e. kids wanted to spend their Christmas money, and then DH decreed that we were going to have dinner out to save me cooking). And I spied this on the shelves.

Sunday, begged a quick trip for pics for the book, but both the things I wanted were not where they were supposed to be. As one of them involved the oldest figurative glass in Norfolk, I sincerely hope the window has been removed for restoration or maybe going to the new stained glass museum in Norwich (I am so looking forward to St Peter Hungate reopening in the spring). The alternative – mindless vandalism – is unbearable. However. Glass half full. Nice sunset, last night:
Today, the kids are back to school. So it’s back to routine – or, rather, starting my new routine. The deal was walkies if it’s dry, but as it’s snowing here this morning I opted for Wii fit and will take the dog later if it clears up. I also have to make my first (and hopefully only) ‘please can I have an extension?’ calls of the year, because I’ve lost a big chunk of working time because of the virus, and am still feeling a little fragile. Bearing in mind my new year’s resolution of balance, I want to pace myself rather than rush through and deliver books that I don’t feel are up to standard, and feel physically rough at the end of it. (Patience, Grasshopper. Wisdom. Ha.)

12 comments:

Nicolette said...

Happy new year, Kate. Glad to hear you're up and about.

rayannelutenerblog said...

Hope you are soon feeling better and back in control. Take care. Ray-Anne

Jan Jones said...

Take it gently, hon. You're precious, you know?

Shirley Wells said...

Everyone seems to have had some sort of virus over the holiday. Asking for a deadline extension is the only sensible thing to do ... otherwise you'll wear yourself out and go down with another virus.

Take good care of yourself!

Nell Dixon said...

Hope you feel better soon.

Kate Hardy said...

Nicolette - happy new year to you, too :o)

Kate Hardy said...

Ray-Anne - thanks :o)

Kate Hardy said...

Jan - you know I said my throat felt scratchy? I was expecting to lose my voice, not to sleep all day! Am taking it slowly, promise.

Kate Hardy said...

Shirley - absolutely. Hope you're feeling better now, too.

Kate Hardy said...

Nell - thanks :o)

Donna Alward said...

Brendan Coyle would make a great Gabriel Oak! And I won't pick favourites but I also love Hardy at Eliot at least as much as I love Austen. Austen just makes me laugh more.

Those are great scenes from N&S (OMG, RA's hands in that kiss scene...drrrrooool), but my favourite is still the proposal and rejection and how he actually says exactly what he feels and I am blown away everytime I watch it. Talk about heart on your sleeve and crushing....

Gotta say tho there is something about Cranford that is just pure delight. I haven't seen Wives and Daughters yet.

Kate Hardy said...

Donna - you are a woman of great taste :o)

My all-time fave is The Mill on the Floss. I thought Emily Watson was v good in the TV version (and have just been shocked to realise it's 12 years old. WHERE has the time gone?). She was v good in The Water Horse as well - and in Hilary and Jackie.