WMC's diary pages, 2002.

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See-also: http://www.wmc.care4free.net/diary/.

November 2002

Fri 1st

D to Sams after school. I pick up 6. D is playing sound-bingo with Katie & Penny but goes off into tv room with Sam & various others: a good room where they can throw cushions around; there is another 'adult' lounge. & a big kitchen. A nice house: I have to drag D away, not quite literally. Penny says: did I know (no): Chloe told her: in assembly, with a teacher playing guitar, Sam started playing air guitar, & D copied him. Funny, but they had to be separated. D said (in the car back), yes, but I was playing piano.

Sat 2nd

Med off to shop & shoes. After coffee I allot for 1h (ponder taking apistan out of bees: its 15oC & calm; will if its nice back). Dig a few pots. Front now mostly ok. Need to get bbeans & garlic in. Weather worsens. Home: coffee & cut shelf #4 - now just painting, sanding & oiling.

pm: M brings DE back: oddly, the shoe people said the same to her.

2:45: drive off to Ma's in rain, leaving M behind for a rest, but D would rather she came. Slow journey.

Ma's. I polish tuba, E ramps, D has bread sticks, Ma makes tea. Dinner: pasta. I have forgotten E's bottle.

6:15: Ma & D to bonfire early to help: E & I will follow. & we do. Bonfire is v big & blazes warmly to keep off rain. After a little while fireworks: E is wondering & unsure but then decides she likes them. Take her home 7:30 once fireworks over.

Put her down, but she doesnt want to. Sit on bed & write palm for company. Mad back; get E up then to bed together; Ma reads D asterix.

Late xtra cheese & coffee; I sew up dinosaur.

Sun 3rd

D watches tv; E ramps. Walk with Ma to church (wheel falls off E's chair) 10:15; she goes in & with D I plant pansies on Peters grave & scub off the moss. Back via 'quality craft fair': have a coffee (E sleeps), watch a glass shaper & buy a lamp; talk to bobbin lacer.

Lunch. Home via J+J, briefly. Lovely pm.

Mon 4th

Busy at work: first FOAM fields in; yoga; Lund stats for wed; glance at ice.

Home: M to yoga after cooking customary kedgeree.

Tues 5th

D to school: it turns out to be photo day in main hall. Those with young siblings first: D sits in line & asks if E can be in the photo too. Then back to class: they are doing measuring: Mrs Leeper says: which is bigger, my hand or my folder?. & all the kids sat in front of her say: 'folder!'.

Walk back with Claire + Gemma (1 week to term) & get lift to p+r at 10:30. First home: tidy, clothes out, find swim stuff. Town. Swim, E happy to bob & getting better at it. Arj; Cb1. E eats banana & falls asleep drinking her milk. She still is (2:15).

Wed 6th

Rain rain rain. D to school, E to M'a's.

Work: busy again: misc, then prepare Lund for J club. Good.

Meet Andy at 2 & go look at allotments. Rain. He is amazed how big they are. So am I when I try to dig...

Home. 1h rest. M'a for E, then school for D, B & Oliver. And we have a good pm (baring tantrums when B leaves at 5 :-(. Extracting children can be harder than teeth). Even get a little rest. Feed them 6 (inst mashed pot & peas; melon & apple), then a last few fireworks.

D (reduced to tears by M, tiredness & piano practice): 'I'm not mr misery! I'm Daniel!'. But 5 mins later he is practising happily, deeply involved in guessing notes.

Soir: pub with A+S. 3 1/2 pints Oyster Stout is too much but it did go down easily.

Thurs 7th

M off to London early which makes getting kids ready fraught. Fortunately E not up till 8. But D up by self early. He wants me to get up too: oddly insistent. I find out why: he has constructed a trap at the top of the stairs, with string & Mirandas trolley. I think he meant no harm: a Tom-&-Jerry style result. Admonish him.

Start yoga with sun streaming in & a halo around Janets hair. Finish with rainstorm: that'll be good for the washing.

Finish up lund. Dry cleaning for M. Cb1. In fact I'm not in much of a mood for town, only here for d/c. Feel drained, odd. To borders to look for latest Beth Gibbons (no) & it feels surreal: so many things I don't want. Beasts.

On way back: collide head-on with other cyclist on narrow bridge. Remarkably, little damage: front wheel wobbles a little. Home: toast. Feels like lower L back strained, & graze on R hand. Get in wet washing & re-spin :-(.

D from home club to piano: but I can't find his book.

Bath. M throws up.

Fri 8th

pm: tired. Back L still hurts. Perhaps I have the tail-end of M's sickness? Might explain y'day.

[from here to 12th: written on 12th]

Sat 9th

Up late: 10! Quick b'fast, then off, which confuses, as I was apparently expected to come later, which means readying E & coaxing then lifting D away from hosepipe. Mfd left earlier to robe.

To Ox p+r; to High. Walk down to Radcliffe (now railed in, alas) & Sheldonian (not via nicer New C L, sadly, since Si+B stride off wrong way). 5 guest tickets go to F, J, M, Si (of course) & then its honte I stay with kids & B gets #5.

Wander around familiar world with small changes: go down ncl to seh but its degree day, no entry, not even to old members (sez mr porter): still we go through arch to quad. Back ncl, show carvings to D: towards commerce: giant lego snake (taller than D) in Boswells mesmerises D. To W/s, for D to read books, but a poor choice: cramped, no cafe. Borders next time.

Back to Sh at 12:45, last foreseen exit time, but in fact not till 1-ish: still E sleeps & D happy scrambling on stonework: I peer through locked gates: yes of course I am now an outsider. Experiment on my back: utanasana & even trikonasana is ok.

Mfd out resplendent in bright yellow battle-shorts (source?): I mean bright blue-&-red D Phil gown. Photos; congrats. Then Mfd hurries of to return gown (retaining white tie) while we bus to Gee's where J+K await: all the respectable people don't really deserve D+E, though they do behave well. I take E out for walk (Parks; squirrels) to sleep her before dessert.

Buses back to p+r; drive home. Then I collapse in bed & miss rest of day, bar brief resurgence at 9 to eat 2 tangerines. So I guess I've got what M had. Feel sick, but don't vom.

Late: gurgling of pipes annoys; open window for sound of rain; trips security light: argh!

Sun 10th

Quiet a.m. Leave after lunch.

Mon 11th

Back still off: sore on lhs. Yoga helps a little. Determined to have easy day: but leave at 6:30.

M yoga soir.

I play 1st igs game with pounding heart: lose :-(.

Tues 12th

Grey am. D to school, E's buggy still short a wheel. Slowly home with E. Tired. House needs tidy. Sit by fire, E plays in a good mood. Rouse self after 1h; wash up: that leaves table, counter, floor in kitchen; l'room; hall... E sleeps from 12 to 3. At 2, cloud edge goes over & day is suddenly blue.

M takes E 3:20 to school then w/rose. I allot: pots to lift, many. Do 1 row in middle; get a bagful. Also pluck a few leeks: must set more next y: they are good. Ground wet but ok if I walk between rows.

Play 2nd igs game: win!

Potato soup for dinner: good.

Lose game 3: lightning. Win g4: I'm starting to get some idea.

Wed 13th

Journal club: Bromwich gr mm5. Not liked.

Home in time for brief rest before to school; pick up E then D; B is coming back with us till 5. He & D play ok, then computer (which misbehaves), but just before 5 B comes to sit with me in front of fire complaining of cold, & appears ready to drop. Andy carries him home. Meanwhile E sleeps.

M goes straight from work to class: 10 min slot with Mrs L re D. D is: good at numbers; getting on well; but - very loud, wont take turns, + thinks his ideas are more important than other peoples. Now where did he get that from? (not w) [I think M wrote that].

Soir: to pub: asc.

Thurs 14th

Work, yoga, little work: get mslp-cyclones going. And 100k p*. And no-sstilt-p*27k.

Home: paper, coffee, toast. Sunny, but blowy. Photo blown-down-willow.

Igs: lose twice, the second by yose-carelessness. Go get D, to piano, where he is clearly progressing.

Soir: gp at pub. Good.

Fri 15th

Up late: 8:35. Rush rush.

D tells us his joke for talent show: 'Q: why did the hedgehog go 1/2 way across the road, & stop? A: to count how many tires he could pop'. His own, he says, & more hopeful than my ans: 'b'cos he became 2-d'.

Home; get 1h rest before getting De. D was in talent show, but to tell 1/2 of B's joke (an elephant-in-pygamas one).

Home: just us: I thought D to N but thats next week. Fairly peaceful, perhaps more for me than M, once E quietens a little after food. M cooks nice spinach soup.

D is proud of his 2 smiley faces: one for tidying up the *whole* construction area; one for telling the joke.

Soir: igs*2 wins: 4/4; M sleepy.

Sat 16th

Up late. As I b'fast in kitchen, cries of despair from M in l'room: E has knocked over her tea that M imprudently left on portege. Oh panda! So many wet papers.

But E's capacity for doing things increases: she can put the cylinder in her shape sorter, & take it out; climb up chairs; put some megablocks together; and is very incautiously curious.

Take one, then another, mem bank out of desktop: appears to make it better. Good. D plays blinky bill.

Jigger back on allot digging pots. Other than that, pleasant.

Pool, Impington, recommended by H, since 1:30-3 on sat they have big floats. & they do: D loves it, they are big enough to climb on. Also H,C & Allan are there, as is Paul with Adam & Ollie. E bobs & I watch her - D looks after self.

Rest by fire to 'bake back' - M's idea.

M cooks: fried pots, good. Also eggs-in-ramikins, with honey underneath, with D. He loves helping to cook them but is then v sad when he doesnt like taste :-(. It is slightly odd.

Soir: igs*2: +/-.

Late: clie misbehaving - hanging - why? Sync it.

Vault into bed: fool: push to hard & pull back more. Can barely move to lie down.

Sun 17th

My day up. Back better, but hurts on lhs. Uniform grey outside, still. Fix D's frog; then E upsets my sewing box. Make dough-bread at D's req, but brown is all we have so he is sad 'cos he says he won't like it.

House feels v cramped in winter. Med off to w/rose. Grey turns to rain. Depressive. As usual, getting up & doing something (tidying) helps.

When the rolls are ready D says his is yummy, so thats all right.

M plays meccano with D in l'room & I have E in kitchen. She has learnt to push chairs around to climb up to sfcs: v annoying. But then I look at her playing with a toy & feel sudden tenderness; & the passing of time: she will never be this again; soon she will talk, grow, change.

D lies in blue-tinted bath with his ears under & a green hand-towel on his tummy, singing 'teddy bear, tb...'. So I vid him.

Soir: sneeze awkwardly & tear back again. Argh. Finish Tristram Shandy. Hmm. Not sure what I think of it.

Can barely crawl into bed & take up M's offer of 2* her preg painkillers. Wonder if I shall need to go to dr/hosp. Muscles are those of back bend.

Mon 18th

Much better today, hurrah! M helps by pushing E's pram to school. Work: active; but skip yoga. Realize after that sitting up all day may be good rest for these muscles.

Soir: 'relax' on igs. Bed late (11:30).

Tues 19th

To town with E (drive p+r): swim. She bobbles better, hardly needs help, & loves the slides & playing ball.

Cb1 but she doesn't sleep. Arj, walk back: sleep :-(. But sky has cleared: sun! First for days: cheerful.

Bus back: see man in street with backpack & odd white bobble sticking up: saying 'trimble'. Gps'ing the streets. Cheap surveying? E sleeps through bus jolting, since I have managed to not collapse p'chair, at cost of inconveniencing others. Home 2:30: E sleeps on.

Md back 3:45; E wakes.

Phoned by Lin Donally, school hearing nurse: D is fine.

Re-arrange l'room: put sofa in middle of room to create 'snug' around fire & open space behind for D&E. Hopefully this will keep E out a bit.

M tests her now-dry portege: ok.

Wed 20th

Work. Plus get a copy of rh8.0.

Home: start inst; have lunch.

Go get DE. E happy to see me. D's shoes outside class: he 'stepped in something' on way back from orchard. Collect D & B (Claire had #3 yesterday, apparently ok). They disappear upstairs for a while, then manage to argue so much that I must adjudicate. Light mid-pm tea, then B on computer & D upstairs. But he comes down & joins in.

Take B back 7 with gift of clothes. Say hello to sleeping possibly-Stanley.

Soir: igs. Then finish rh inst; fail to recompile kernel: why?

Thurs 21st

Up late; all late; M grumpy cos hassled cos I read paper.

Work (k probiem may be gcc 3)/yoga: my back doesn't twinge or interfere: good. In fact my R wrist hurt is worse. Start off careful but soon forget. Town: meet M at Borders: still don't much like it. Read first (presumably easy) half of 'godel's theorem' by Nagel & Newman. M surprises me by saying she once (for a few post-grad weeks) understood the whole theorem: I thought it was harder than that (err, without insulting M).

Look around game shops: find Neverwinter nights. This cmas game?

Home, briefly: pick up D's music; D from home club (he was watching Hairy Pooter); to piano. Rain.

Fri 22nd

Home about on time (for once): 2ish. What to do? End up playing go! Mail M: she can pick up E (D is going to N's).

Pm at home with M&E. Claire phones: they will pick up DB if we like!

Sat 23rd

Lie-in day.

Plant 2*packs tulips (ie 14 minus 1 stepped on; black & red) in the rh lawn & environs marked with sticks 4-6" down. Rain restarts: its a v warm wet nov. Dahlias still not fully frosted; the odd hollyhock flower out.

To Impington again: PAO there again, & P's brother ?michael? D has fun, E bobs but after about 1/2 h would rather be on the edge. Mistake: I pull D under a mat: he hates this & is v sad: I think I have broken his trust a little. Comfort him & say sorry: it was a bad idea. Then he gets out mask & snorkel (& no-one complains): swims across pool & back with head under! Well done! Once more, & out. Into the changing melee.

On way back: stop at jumble sale. D buys frisbee & sand-wheel. I get nice wooden puzzle (Dot, who sold it to me, wasn't even sure it was a puzzle: perhaps just an ornament) & 2 big kilner jars. Home: D v keen to play with 'puzzle'. E sleeps. M is in town to cmas shop.

Photo puzzle. 15 mins prodding finds key piece: photo each stage disassembly. Remake, hurrah!

Sun 24th

Up with DE 7:45. Fitful sunlight. Sleepy.

At D's request: Daniel is a spaniel. There.

Take D to sunday school at 11, preceeded by a little climb on the still-unchopped willow. This is an expt: Joel is there, & N will be. Leave him, happy, not quite sure what to expect but happy to join in. Home for coffee - I suppose I could have gone to church, or allot more likely. Pick him up 12: he has had a good time.

Lunch. E to sleep. Fix E's pram: the familiar wheel-falls-off. Split the

To allot: D decides to come, & we find his gloves (sadly not his boots, which are to school, so boots get muddy).

Plant row of bbeans; row of garlic; this was all I'd hoped for. D helps, putting some in & covering over. He doesn't want to go home yet so plant more beans & dig front. My back warns me: stop. So do.

Now 2:30. Clean mud off boots: D suggests pub: why not? I get pint, he (spurning still) appletise; & crisps. Sit. He wants to look at pool: ok. He disappears: Colin & Marcus are there. Ok: I read varsity.

Cycle back: see Rankins inc nearly-def-stanley at bw; stop for a chat.

Soir: finally win a game (time). M browses cmas catalogues: I try to restrain her from drowning us in cr*p.

Mon 25th

Work/yoga/work: mostly ls vs la. Home: M has had kids since 3:30 since M'a has criked neck but all seems well.

Soir: M to yoga. I igs. 1/2 way in game: D is sick! Poor D. Not too messily: change bedding while he stares down loo, then he seems better: back to bed.

Tues 26th

A broken night: E is sad & coughs a lot.

D to school: early for once. Put out washing. To town 10:30 (drive p+r) for trad tues swim with E. Sit in pool, look out at trees & roofs in sun.

Germ (steam boat; balloon boat; bag of blocks/train. Arj. Cb1: I've forgotten E's milk: no matter, she drinks a little from a cup then sleeps. For some time, indeed.

Back to town: stop at firefighters picket & say hello & sign petition & donate 5 & get sticker for me & pram.

Walking into sunlight across pp: gorgeous.

Pre-bed: D is underwater explorer in the bath with snorkel & facemask.

Wed 27th

DE to school. Free this pm so offer to have Sam, to D's delight. P (& S) accepts.

Work: hkr does lunchtime journal club: strat.

On way back: photo teazels by m'way, on way down bridge. Then grasses against light on f'path. Then wall by church: winter light.

Home: time for coffee toast paper.

Pick up E then D & S. P offers that if S is too much I can take him to Tony, her father. But though we have a few problems (Sam sends D's remote control digger downstairs, poss at D's req: so it gets conf) they play pirate ship, eat, digger, computer (20 min turns) fairly happily so far: up to 6. Indeed S tries to cheer E up when she is sad (by 'playing' piano).

D to Sam over dinner (in a whisper I'm not supposed to hear): when they (ie parents) confiscate one of your toys, *watch where they put it*.

Soir: M to pub. I play (& win: now 1k*) one igs game & chat (unusual) with my opp after.

Try to inst modem under linux but prob: not compat message in no-source obj.

Thurs 28th

Work, yoga.

Sun: go dig row 3 of pots & plant garlic. Get a fine heavy bag & they look good.

Home: as I get there rain starts. Quiet. Lunch; coffee; paper.

Take off shelves 3, 4 in door alcove to oil + supports.

Pick up D: in tears: he had so wanted to watch Tom+Jerry which was just to be put on. Unusually he doesnt struggle or blame me for this disaster: I hold his sobbing body.

To piano. On walk there, I tell him Ma has t+j video & suggest we phone her to make sure its there for next visit.

Fri 29th

Misty day. Billy over after school, he & D entertain each other. M is back so we have an easy time: I even get in a quick igs (win). Inst bg1, to see if I want to play again. Well, do I?

M leaves at 7.

Soir: another igs; paper; bg mines l2.

Sat 30th

Up 8.30, with D's grace. B'fast, wrap Joels lego, & D writes the tag to my dictation, keen to show J how well he can. Take D a little early, remembering gloves (D: trainers are those shoes with lights in), & poke around their new extension.

Continue on to Comberton where I am supposed to help H sell soup but no sign of her so far... She arrives at :30, & we set up, & her soup is good & Sarahs rolls too... but it is a disaster: hardly anyone is buying. Never, we vow, shall we do Comberton bazaar again.

Cycle back (foolishly take bridleway - muddy) & arrive a little before the convoy. D is slumped; says he feels sick; I think he is just tired. Asking S&A I find he did toboggan, & enjoyed it. They went on the smaller of the 2 Bassingbourn dry ski slopes.

Home: D lies by fire, recovering. Pack a little, call taxi, made D hot cordial, sit. Station: 3.15 to kc; walk t link; 4.28 to e croyden. Ok, D quiet, we play Mr Weasel & Pilchard games. To F: E touchingly pleased to see us.

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