Tuesday, 9 August 2011

In which everything has changed

It has been a long silence, as I am well aware. There is a chapter heading in one of Mr Dickens's novels: 'Too full of incident to be described briefly', or similar. That is how life has been since I last addressed you.

I am no longer a lady of leisure, I have employment and this is a good thing. I am most fortunate and I am fully aware of the fact. I have lost a friend and former colleague to an aggressive form of leukaemia, which has been terrible.

We appear to be in the grip of further global financial implosion (think of poor Miss Matty in Cranford, losing most of her income and selling tea and comfits); there are scenes in London reminiscent of the Gordon Riots, as described in Barnaby Rudge; the News of the World has closed amidst the kind of scandal that Mr Dickens would have majestically denounced and Mr Trollope revelled in; and if I recount any further sweeping changes, I fear I shall turn a little giddy and faint.

The Infant Phenomenon is starting school next month, the Inexhaustible Baby is 'streaming' (I believe the modern phrase is) the Terrible Twos and I hardly know whether I am on my head or my heels.

Frankly, I am yearning for a little boredom. Or failing that, the sort of genteel routine which the ladies of Miss Austen's novels enjoyed - or didn't, at times. At the moment, I feel more like Fanny Price than Maria Bertram or Mary Crawford, in wishing for stillness and peace rather than excitement.