You may have noticed words have been spare, here, of late. Even my sister’s on my case. Her foreboding gaze (I jest) is enough to get any writer into gear. So here I am again, a bashful returner, and somehow it is late October, we have wound back the clocks, and already at five, the thick dark blanket of night is being tugged, wilfully, across the sky. The air smells of woodsmoke and cedar, of bonfires and black. Light the colour of clementines scatters through the leaves, themselves an array of oxblood, mahogany, peaches, foxtails, wine.
I have three excuses for my absence (not that I feel the need to excuse myself, but it’s a good story.) One evening, alone, I slipped and cut my thumb, badly, on a tin can (I know, I’m so glamorous I can hardly bear it either.) A careening ride to the emergency room in my landlord’s car ensued, followed hours later by six stitches and orders to stay away from aluminium. Then I started throwing up on buses, felled by the sort of ferocious virus often rumoured to lurk in hospital corridors. All this high drama occurred during the busiest week of the year at work, which necessitated nine to nine days even before the injury, and even longer nights afterwards, sutured hand or no. By the time it was all over I was pale and exhausted, avoiding the kitchen, and stooping like a ninety-something. A few weeks away from the internet, soaking up the newly cool, fresh air – that air that smells of woodsmoke and bonfires and black – was just what the doctor ordered.
I’m back, and happy about it. For now, three bright spots, of the last week: a foggy autumn morn’, the kind made for storybooks, chattering on the sidelines with Grandma, and Grandad, and Auntie, as Cousin played football in the gloom. Saturday morning, when he jogged to the supermarket for raspberries and hot cross buns, just to make me smile. And the afternoon that followed, wandering the hallowed halls of South Ken’s museums with one of my dearest friends.
What are your bright spots, lately?