Wearisome day. Hottish - tho' less hot, but windier; north wind up to 30 mph. Bad night - Beloved departed around 4am and still didn't sleep. I had complicated dream about George Bush (not restful) and less complicated but equally unrestful dream about a previous (unsatisfactory) beloved that showed him living these days in a motor home in King's Heath Birmingham called 'JoyNick.' A definite demotion. Which I would have pointed out in expiation when I crawled blearily out of bed -late - and addressed Beloved as 'Nick' had he noticed; fortunately he didn't. He was bleary too.
Urgent message from carer transpired: old man has to move in with attic woman, following nasty burglary in which he got roughed up. This may turn out permanent arrangement may not - but will help financial state of Beloved and self if former - and might, with luck, cheer up attic woman herself. Meantime we had to hot foot it to island capital to buy a telly, sheets and duvet covers. Car started to smell nasty as we negotiated narrow streets in the course of this - too many 'cortado' as usual. Car most likely has clutch problem: we got home but Handsome from Blackburn had to come to the rescue with our truck, in which I then had to drive him home, another hour or so' driving, while Beloved who has to take attic woman to doctor to try and get her medication altered via input from (in this instance at least) a rather more clued-up granny, slept.
So no swimming, no writing up till now. Aubergines salted, kitchen cleared - hate doing morning's tasks in the evening, but there you go. Radio reception too bad for Radio Clasica, digibox on blink again so can't get radio four; what tragedy. Never mind beheadings and blowings up in Iraq, Afghanistan on brink of imploding and families being burned alive in Dafur. We live in a jolly world.
Beloved may be right on some things. If not on literature. (Found someone quoted in TLS today who claimed not to like novels because they didn't tell him anything he didn't already know; this might almost be Beloved speaking.) Last night, making the bed upstairs - to which we have returned now its cooler - I saw myself in the mirror suddenly and groaned. 'What's the matter?' he asks. I explain that unexpected glimpse of ageing self and large bum not pleasing. 'Why do you worry about it?' He asks. 'What does it matter? What does it matter, looking old?' He's right of course, it shouldn't matter, especially if you are still in fair physical nick. BUT OH IT DOES MATTER! I HATE IT! Try to explain that it's hard to let go when you've been brought up all your life - as women are - and increasingly men too - to rate yourself partly on physical appearance in general - and 'youth' in general. He doesn't get it.
I do point out that I don't suffer this defect as much as some; hardly use make-up, slop around most of the time in old not to say shabby clothes. (On the other hand they have to be nice shabby clothes that make me look good as possible on my terms - Beloved at least agrees the shabbiness has to be in good colours and materials; he's the same himself.)
The rest of it he cannot see at all. Looking old? Having a bit of a gut? A double chin? Wrinkles? So what? How admirable he is.......How rare. But rare here in a way I don't want to emulate - never will want to emulate. I love my vanity... or would do if I looked better. So there.
If there were no mirrors around? Ah. How unselfconscious one can be in a world without mirrors. Maybe it was a reflection in a lake that did for Eve really; not an apple. Why not?