Saturday, December 26, 2015

Still very quiet around here...

And so that was Christmas. Our day was very pleasant: extremely quiet and lazy. I don't often do lazy but it made an interesting change. Our son gave me this beautiful glass bowl, made by Etling in the 1930s. I had admired it in an antiques centre but had no idea that he'd gone back and bought it. I'm a great lover of glass and this is rather Lalique-like: opalescent with a sinuous pattern of (according to one website) sea anemones or (according to another) sunflowers. When you look at it from the side under a light, the middles of the flowers (if they are flowers) look yellow, so I'm slightly inclined towards the sunflower theory, though the petals aren't very sunflowery in shape. I love it, anyway.

Most of my presents were books, all exactly the sort of things I like to read. I don't read many novels - not because I don't like the novel as a form, just because there are a lot that are depressing or alarming or a touch on the sordid side and frankly, I haven't got enough life left to want to read stuff that I don't enjoy. One novel that I read recently and absolutely loved was "Gillespie and I" by Jane Harris. I thought it was well-written, evocative and convincing. In fact, the moment I finished it I started rereading it. I mentioned it to my friend Morag because I thought she'd like it too, and was about to expand on its excellence when she said, "Oh yes, I've got that but I couldn't get into it." So it's all a matter of taste. But I know I'll like biographies and letters and diaries. "A Notable Woman" is the diary of a woman who lived in the first three-quarters of last century and contributed to the Mass Observation diary project. After she died, her niece found that she'd written personal diaries all her life, hoping that one day they'd be published. They're fascinating. She never achieved anything special but she's very honest about her life. So far I've only read up till she's in her early thirties and still hoping to find the love of her life; she never did.

So, yes, nothing's happened. We've been out for walks both today and yesterday and neither time did we meet anyone apart from a few dog-walkers. Today has been quite wet and it was perhaps a bit mad to go trudging through the puddles, but you can justify laziness only to a certain extent.

Now I'm off to cut out strips of green fabric. I hope that all my bloggy friends and lurkers are having a lovely Christmas season; and I send my sympathy to any who aren't.


  1. What a beautiful bowl! I love glass......if it ever turns up missing you will find it at my house.

  2. That is gorgeous glass! I enjoy novels because they're not real, so they can't depress me. ;)

  3. I think I saw a bowl like that on Bargain Hunt once. I can only watch the last 15 minutes of that programme. I have my favourite experts and am very good at guessing auction values of course. Have you read Can Any Mother Help Me?

    1. Yes! It's wonderful.

  4. A beautiful gift from your son! I also like glass and have random pieces, not a real collection. But I love to look at it.

  5. The glass bowl is beautiful, you are lucky.

    I hope you enjoy The Road to Little Dribbling, it made me laugh as much as Notes From a Small Island did.

    The novels that I read are mainly by early 20th Century women writers, they are usually gentle and domestic but certainly without violence and horror.

  6. Oooh what lovely gifts! From here, your glass looks more like anemones, but I can't see the center-flower effect. And yes, isn't it interesting how a book can be one person's favorite, but nothing to another? And those two people can be so much alike in other ways? That sort of thing always fascinates me.

  7. The bowl is lovely, what a thoughtful son! Our Christmas was very quiet as well.
    What is the Diary that you spoke of? I might like it, too. I enjoyed Housewife 49, which was one woman's account of WWII for the Mass Observation project (and made into a film, which I am sure you will have seen). I have also read Millions Like Us and found it interesting, as well.

  8. Ohh.. it is really beautiful. I just love it. Thank you for sharing :)

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