An unfamiliar and cold morning, ice all across the old Volvo and no wind at all. I scraped the frozen car clean and we headed out in the early morning gloom to drop Ali off at hospital. Cold breath and slippy feet everywhere, we're all born slippy it seems. On the way home I weighed up my options and thought of what I had to do and the best way of working things out; cash machine, grocery shop, painting, a pile of laundry, Amazon parcel and then heading back to the hospital. I turned into a gloomy half lit Sainsburys and bought bread, fruit and vegetables, I'd be making soup. Soup is always required to promote good health and somehow compensate for the lack of Mediterranean diet and Mediterranean sun we suffer. It might just work.
Home and on with Radio 6, Neil Young songs were being played and I set about painting the fireplace and sorting out the logs and the stove. The painting was fiddly, I needed four sizes of brush and then lay down on cardboard so as to avoid spilling paint on the newly cleaned and treated fire bricks. I took a break and ate two boiled eggs and a toasted bagel, then I chopped up the vegetables and made soup. Then back to the fireplace for a second coat and a tidy up. Not too many splashes and the edges came up reasonably clean as I removed the stubborn masking tape. Stir the soup a bit so the lentils don't stick; my one soup recipe, done to death but at least done.
Then I took another break, this time with coffee, a snowball and the last few pages of Knausgaard's third volume. It's not as strong as the first two and I was struggling to finish it but I did; will I carry on when number four comes out in English? Probably, his long rambling childhood tales are not what really interests me however readable they might be, the tortured adult life is much more appealing and deeper somehow.
Steely Dan were playing when Radio 6 eventually stopped pumping it's music mix and turned on to a new Nick Drake book, forty years after he died. His sister talked about him and the book in rich, plummy tones. Forty years is a long time to be dead and a long time to be remembered. I wondered how much his estate was worth now.