Every year since 2006 I have bought an RHS (Royal Horticultural Society) Diary. I’m not a great diarist but I love the illustrations in the diaries – flower paintings of great delicacy. I also have an RHS Address book to replace the battered one I have had for many years.
Last year both Barry and I started writing daily journals. His is full of references to world affairs, causes of conflict, esoteric measurements and abstruse comments. Mine is far more mundane – the weather, family affairs, the animals, comments on books I’ve read and those I’m attempting to write, what I prepared for supper . . . on that latter point it’s rather worrying that, despite all the wonderful cookery books I have been given, my culinary ‘arts’ do not spread further than roast beef, spaghetti carbonara, curry, casserole and trout.
Bethan’s fiancé told me I was a good cook – I assured him that he’s simply been lucky thus far to have been offered edible fare. On that note, by the end of the year they will be married or so we are assured. No date yet – but I’m sure they’ll let us know in good time. (Thinks: how long does it take to lose four stone, acquire grace and elegance and develop witty repartee for clever discourse with wedding guests?)
Also last year I started another collection – or rather, Barry initiated one for me. Fountain pens! How many pens does one person need? That’s rather a different question to ‘How many pens does one person covet?’ I have some beautiful pens now and naturally Barry insisted that I have some suitable journals in which to record my deathless prose. We both started with Moleskine but the ink bled through so now we have Rhodia. Even a shopping list is a work of art on good paper, not that I would defile my journals with anything so mundane.
As with all things there is an interesting subculture concerning pens, nibs, inks, papers – some people devote their careers to determining the very best but it’s all subjective in the end.
My diary entry today will undoubtedly make reference to the walk I shall take with the dogs shortly. It is pouring with rain and already, at 2:00 pm, quite dark. Nonetheless, we shall enjoy our outing. Barry is in bed nursing a cold so will miss the pleasure of sloshing through puddles and skidding on mud. When we return I will endeavour to deter damp dogs from rushing up to share the warmth of our bed with him. Maybe the sun will shine tomorrowJ