Latest News

Again???

by in Latest News on 12 March, 2018 with 0 Comments

I am never more conscious of the passing of time than when I update this 'News and Events' page. Despite my very best efforts to write something each month, suddenly I realise that my last entry was pre-Christmas -and here we are, mid March, and almost Easter. Again, that sense that life is hurtling by with express train speed, and I'm standing on the platform trying to get aboard!

But such a packed time. First Christmas, and all that it means in our festivity-oriented household, though last year was easy with Christmas dinner at Sam and Wayne's home, and my only job the usual Christmas pudding; yes, with the carefully preserved old silver Christmas coins, a family tradition. How they'll divide those when the time comes, I sometimes wonder ...

January was marked by two lovely times away, first with Felicity and daughters in Canberra, then with oldest son Nick and family in Brisbane. Both times happy reunions with  family members and old friends from previous eras, becoming more and more important as years pass. (As do old friends - but that's a morbid note to sound. Yet true.) Not too much writing in that time, and still no word of acceptance on my historical fiction novel, a source of some concern. I would dearly love to see this book in print. To balance, some lovely things have happened. Poems published in journals, but the greatest pleasure has been the request from a young Adelaide composer to use some of the poems in my collection, 'In Due Season'. as the text for a Requiem she has been commissioned to write for the Adelaide Chamber Singers, a talented and highly regarded group. This Requiem will be performed as part of their two concerts, one at Ukaria, the loveliest of concert halls in the Adelaide Hills, brainchild of and gift to Adelaide from Jurlique's Ulrike Klein, and the following day at St Peter's Cathedral in the city.  This has been one of the most heart-warming things that has happened to me in recent years, and from what I have heard of the composition to this point it will be a deeply moving piece of music.

Apart from this, life goes on, with regular participation in the poetry groups we belong to, and a fun afternoon at Goolwa poets yesterday, where David and I were the guest poets in what the MC described as a 'double act'  - fun to do, as we both love sharing what we write with others, especially fellow poets. And it's been Festival time, both the Arts Festival and the Fringe Festival  - as well as Writers' Week  -  too much to choose from, and so many wonderful things on offer. Perhaps the Glyndbourne 'Hamlet' will live longest in my mind, for an Ophelia mad scene that was shattering in its impact, and a Hamlet who forced me to re-evaluate all my preconceptions of the role. A sad goodbye to Lawrence Olivier, the Hamlet of my formative years.

December - and Christmas almost on us. We seem to have just lurched through a very busy November, and suddenly now we're into all the preparations for the Christmas season. Then, it's one more year gone, and 2018 staring at us. Invitingly? One hopes so.

November was the big wedding month, and a splendid affair it was. I've waited a long time for this ...  was the opening line of my wedding speech, the toast to the bride and groom, and it must have resonated with the audience, as there were gales of laughter. Sam is the only one of my daughters to marry, and my long-anticipated day as Mother of the Bride was worth the wait. It was a truly joyful wedding, and the sight of Sam walking on David's arm down the stone steps and across the rose petal path over the lawn to where Wayne waited at the altar in the rose gardens at Lyndoch Hill was one I will always cherish. The sheer happiness on both their faces as they made their wedding vows was heart-warming, and the sense of love very nearly tangible. It was a low-key event, but the thought and meaning they had put into both the ceremony and the reception in the Lyndoch Hill restaurant made it a very special event, and the eighty guests seemed to respond with the same joy as both sets of parents and the wedding group.

Now it's back to normal life, and into the series of book launches and pre-Christmas events that these months always seem to bring. Yes, I did write a wedding poem for Sam, but apart from that my writing life has been, sadly, on hold. I'm  hunting a new look cover for my Passion Play - the Oberammergau Tales, and we' are still contemplating a trip there next year as a marketing exploration before the 2020 Passion Play. Who knows? It may all happen. Watch this space. But before that, it's Christmas ...

And it has indeed been a very crowded month. After the big events around my book launch for 'Of Llamas and Piranhas' followed by book promos at meetings and radio interviews, there was a lovely respite during our house boat trip on the Murray, by now turning into an annual event. The six of us ate, talked, ate, slept, ate, read, ate, played a variety of board games, ate, took occasional shore walks, and - yes - ate some more. We've all come home to rigorous diets. Highlight was the birthday dinner for Anthony (69) and David (80) complete with cake, candles and sparklers. We've booked the boat again for next year.

Home, and into preparations for the next major event: David's first book launch combined with his main 80th birthday celebration at the Stirling Coventry Library. Over eighty people gathered for a night of speeches, toasts and cake cutting (I'm improving my fruit cake making and decorating skills with all this practice) and readings from 'In a Subjunctive Mood' which found a very appreciative audience. Rob Walker's launch speech and guitar playing added a lovely touch, and I enjoyed the chance to make the birthday toast to David to an audience that included friends from so many of his diverse activities.

Now we're into pre-wedding mode - my first chance to be 'Mother of the Bride'. But a very easy wedding to cope with, as they're doing all the preparations and plans themselves. All I have to do is is turn up (cheque book in hand) and enjoy. I must admit I've had fun going round the bridal salons with daughter - a real revelation of all the extras one can buy, ranging from genuinely appealing to totally tacky!

In all this, not much time for writing, always a sadness - and no word on possibilities of publication of my new novel. Both Felicity and I wait in the usual fear and trepidation for publisher responses, though her agent seems sure that her book will find a welcoming home.

 

Page 1 of 17