Monday, 12 September 2011

dumfries and galloway

The drive to Scotland last week was interminable, made possible only by listening to The Lollipop Shoes on ipod and an overnight stay in Harrogate.

The hotel was enormous and cheap, maybe because a Lady Gaga tribute act was going to thunder up thru the floors until midnight. Had my first Wagamama meal in this country - adventurous for oop north.

The cottage is an ancient stone barn, walls 24" thick but all refurbished in the "best possible taste" - oatmeal and eau de nil. Three bathrooms, but no baths, sad I like a good wallow on holiday. Just a few muddy steps down the bank flows the river Scaur, absolutely wondrous, tumbling Scottish waters leaping and jinking under ancient trees, beautiful.

The countryside is so beautiful, lush green hills, thanks to the rain, huge beeches and birches lining the roads, all mouldy and mossy, so serene. It was a wondrous week; I am attempting to make a textile diary of the gorgeousness, brought some inks and bags of threads and fabrics.

Also done a fair bit of reading, polished off several crime stories - Sophie Hannah kept me awake at night watching the door. very tense making.

Sue Townsend's Number Ten for light relief [Tony Blair in drag] and Snowdrops one of the Booker shortlisters. Very atmospheric but somewhat depressing.

Have also read from the short list The Sisters Brothers - good but got bogged down in the second half I think, and Derby Day [left off the short list] a well researched Victorian style who dunnit.

All except Sue were depressing, and really she was too when you consider TB and his antics, both in real and fictional life.

Started one by Lin Anderson but had to chuck it, nastiness, couldn't take it, wouldn't take it. She can bog off with Val Mcdermid, exploitative violence,and not well written either. have turned to an early Donna Leon for a gentle murder or two in Venice, much more enjoyable.

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