Tuesday 14 May 2024: The days are getting busy

The weekend was very full and busy, starting with a packed Saturday.

We started with a visit to the mother-in-law to pick up something for Son #2 who’d had an operation on Friday. Then we went to spend half an hour with him, to see that he was all right. He was. In good spirits, if a bit sore.

From there we headed to Meadowhall. My shingles were (are) still playing up and I didn’t want to get stuck at a Monkey Dust gig feeling uncomfortable in a tight pair of jeans. So we went to get me a new skirt. We ended up with 2 new skirts, 2 new tops, a new denim jacket, a new belt, and an underskirt. Plus, the poet had 2 new t-shirts too. Our new favourite shop at Meadowhall is Joe Brown’s.

We had something to eat and then headed to the supermarket to get the week’s groceries. We didn’t go to the butcher. Instead we got everything from the supermarket this week. We also bought a box of cupboard groceries for the camper van – tinned food mainly.

When we got home we had less than 2 hours before we had to go out again. For the first time in a long time I was going into town with the poet instead of following later. We didn’t feel like tea, having only recently eaten our Subways. I had a quick bath, washed and dried my hair, and at 6:30pm, we were on our way, arriving right after the band wagon.

There was a support band on this time, Monkey Dust’s bass player’s son’s band. They went on at about 9:30pm. (That’s how long it took them all to get set up and do a sound check.) They did 4 songs, and then Monkey Dust went on straight afterwards for one long set.

We were packed down and home by midnight.

On Sunday morning we were up bright and early…well, by about 10:15am, and after breakfast we were off again to the camping supplies place. We’d made a list of ‘essentials’, another list of ‘would like to haves’, and another list of the tinned goods for the food cupboard, which we’d already bought and ticked off.

We went in my car via the petrol station because my tank was empty. Then we drove over to the camping shop and spent a good hour or more browsing and ticking things off the list. By the time we’d packed it all in the car, we were a bit hungry. So we had breakfast baps at the café there. The poet had a can of pop and I had a strawberry milkshake.

Then we popped home to pick up the box of groceries for the van before driving around to the van and loading everything up. We got home at about 4pm and chilled for the rest of the day. We were supposed to have beef for tea, out of the freezer in the garage, but it seems we’d already eaten that. So we had roast gammon instead followed by steamed syrup puddings and custard.

I had a bad night Sunday night with my shingles, so when the poet got up on Monday to start work, I had another hour. When I got up I made us both breakfast, then I sat and brainstormed the May story for 12 STORIES IN 12 MONTHS. I didn’t have very long to spend on that, though, as I was off to the dentist for another possible extraction. And the poet was taking me in case I wasn’t in any fit state to drive home.

I was in the chair for a LONG time. The tooth that was left didn’t want to budge and the dentist had to drill it in 3 places before he could remove it. Then he had 3 roots left with no tooth attached that he had to try and remove. But, remove it all he did, and when we came out of the surgery, we were laughing. Laughing!

“Good Lord!” said the poet to the dentist (or words to that effect…) “Didn’t you do anything?”

This one was so much better than the last one. For one, I wasn’t in pain to start with. And secondly, he made sure there was lots of anaesthetic in there. But it did take a long time, and I did it without any Valium too. (Or Diazepam.) We went home. He had a gammon sandwich while I sucked down another couple of dippy eggs followed by mashed banana with yoghurt. And then we were off out again.

The poet had some printing to do at one of his sites, where they have A3 printers. So I went along for the ride and sat in the car brainstorming the cosy mystery. He checked with his legal person there, who said it would be perfectly fine for me to accompany him on business trips now as I was already insured in his car (as a passenger) when he’s going to and from work, and the hotel rooms they pay for are all doubles anyway.

He was happy to have that confirmed. He’s on a training course with 2 of his colleagues for 3 days next week, so it’s a bit late to arrange for me to go with him there. But the next one…And the overseas trips are a conversation to have another time. So now I have to work out how to make the most of my time in these places that are interesting and pretty but new to me while he’s working.

I suspect there will be some pre-research for me to do before we go. My big issue is if there are any markets for such topics. No point in me researching and writing features again if there’s no one to read them.

By the time we got home, the working day was over, and all I had time to do was write up today’s blog post. Then I plugged in my earphones and read INDEMNITY ONLY by Sara Paretsky (inspired to do so by my friend, Devon). I don’t remember reading this one before, and it is interesting. But I have to concentrate because V.I. does a lot of business/industrial private investigation.

I don’t think I like her as much as I like Kinsey Millhone. Kinsey’s more of a casual tomboy whereas V.I. is a bit of a clothes horse. But I’m enjoying reading something different, and I’m enjoying being in Chicago for a change.

Today I have a hospital appointment in the dermatology department and tonight it’s the London Symphonic Rock Orchestra in Sheffield. In between I have work to do. Another full and busy day.

2 thoughts on “Tuesday 14 May 2024: The days are getting busy

  1. I’m glad you’re reading Paretsky. I lived in Chicago between ages 1 and 6, so I remember very little of it, but I love the way she writes about the city. The second book is all about grain shipping, something I knew nothing about and the one I’m reading now is about stock fraud and corruption in the Catholic church.

    I love how different Kinsey and V.I. are. Over the decades, though, I think V.I. has a stronger growth arc, but part of that could be because the books move forward in time at a faster pace than Grafton’s. Grafton’s entire series takes place over four or five years, whereas Paretsky’s recent even deal with the pandemic. So their choice about structure and time frame and those contrasts are very interesting.

    Have fun with your travels. Fortunately, with technology, you can be a digital nomad and work from anywhere.

    1. Thanks for setting me off on the Paretskys again. I really am enjoying it so far. And I do think I’ve read this first one as I remember her visit to Lotty and thinking Lotty was a back street doc or quack.

      In one of Grafton’s books she points out in the author’s note or acknowledgement or something that Kinsey is very firmly set in the 80s, hence no mobile phones or anything. I’m looking forward to reading V.I. keeping up with real time a bit more.

      I have a feeling I’m going to be working all over in the near future!

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