The poetry section of the OU course is now in full swing and indeed the Day School in Geneva (no less) is almost upon us. As indeed is the next tutor marked assignment; which asks for a large number of lines of poetry.
I have planned out the framework of a sequence of shortish poems. All that remains is to think of a subject and then to write them! No sweat!
Last night I went to the next in the sequence of operas as part of my season ticket. This one was Bellini and The Sleepwalker. The story is of utter inanity, but the music glorious. In this production the contest was won by the tenor who got a well-deserved ovation after one of his Big Numbers. I’ve just realized that I have left the cast list in the shirt pocket of a garment that I have put ready to be washed and therefore can not give names to roles.
The sopranos had their usual battle over the love a totally unworthy male and, in my view, the loser (in the battle of love) had my vote. To be fair it was easier to portray a thoroughly selfish, unprincipled vamp, than a weak, mewling sleepwalker, but still the music was on the side of the wimp and she does win the unworthy male in the end.
My particular experience of the opera was made even better by the fact that the gentleman sitting in front of me, did not return for the second half and therefore my view of the stage was superb. Indeed there was a partial cordon sanitaire around me as I was sitting next to the aisle, the seat to my immediate right was also unoccupied and I was able to place my coat there rather than on the floor. I understand that there was an actual theatrical patron sitting behind me!
The great achievement in my life over this past month has nothing to do with my academic life, but rather with the simple problem of living within a limited space – and I don’t mean my body.
Over the period that Toni was in Terrassa visiting his mother I attempted to bring some order to the library. As this doubles as my so-called dressing room the two aspects of my life-style do not co-exist easily and the room as been described by one anonymous observer as ‘a disaster area’. While this is a totally unjust appellation, to quote our revered Prime Minister (and walking joke) Rajoy, “It is totally untrue except for some bits.” The some bits were getting out of hand and so I determined to give Toni a surprise on his return and bring order to chaos.
It took five days or unremitting labour of trying on clothes, rejecting clothes, bagging clothes, throwing out some clothes and generally finding myself totally fed up to the back teeth with the numerous items of garmentry that passed before my eyes. And even now the ‘job’ is not entirely done. But I am able to walk to all my books in the ‘library’ and the next stage in the mythical ‘Ordering Of The Books’ comes a step closer. At least I am able to get to them now.
One result of the Grand Clearing is that, for the first time in forty years, I now possess but one, solitary suit – an all-purpose weddings-and-funerals number. I have one half of a Nehru suit, which I am now able to get into! Pity the other half of the suit is nowhere to be found. Still, even this problem will allegedly be solved with the buying of the new some time in late spring or early summer.
I remain sceptical about my weight loss, but we will have to see what comes of my present approach and hope for the best.
Meanwhile my search for subject and content for my poetry sequence weighs on my mind. Lightly, to be sure, but the load is significant. I am looking forward to the struggle to creation!
It will be interesting to see if the Day School adds anything to the process. Given the cost of going there, I sincerely hope that it does! If not, well, at least it is a visit to Switzerland, which previously had only figured in my limited journeying as an unscheduled or at least unexpected stop in Zurich airport by the ever reliably-unreliable Tarom Airways when Romania was still in the evil grip of Ceausescu and I was supposed to be going to London. Airports, as every seasoned traveller knows, don’t count. But a Day School by a Lake (with a capital L) does.
Another experience to add to the list!