Melancholy of aging was banished yesterday; taking Handsome to airport and spending therapeutic day cleaning about to be rented-out appartment, along with Beloved and Mrs Handsome. Nothing like a clean loo to restore spirits. (Forget great literary success.) Mrs Handsome is agitated by evidence of Handsome's attempts to remedy his male menopause (oh god, I'm 50, it's all downhill from here...) by being about to what she calls 'play away from home,' while on his trip to England. At the same time thankful to be shot of him for a whole 10 days. These are the vagaries of long marriage. We all, still, had a nice day together, sealed by gambas al aljillo at local restaurant looking at sea, while Mrs H flirted with waiter - who loved it - and fetched stones from the shore for her garden, with his encouragement.
Granny's own time-ridden melancholy returns in sleep. First dream of one dead and one live friend trying and failing to sell literary works, failure due, she thinks, to failure to present work properly - well-typed etc. Second dream, she takes back milk she has lent, in order to have some for her children in the morning; only to realise she know longer has those children around her any more. A burdened, sad awakening. All about age once more. I suppose, about coming to terms with these things - which stand of course for many others. Odd when you feel much as ever, when your body operates much as ever - apart from the odd bit of stiffness in the morning and a periodically anarchic gut. The evidence in the mirror of course is less kind. And will get unkinder. As I daresay Mr and Mrs H are discovering; for them too, what now? Whither? Inevitable decline aside.
No island this morning. Sunlight hazy, wind down. Kitchen filling with reek of Beloved's slowly cooking octopus on which to feed fiesta visitors tomorrow. A reek only one degree better than that of cooking up prawn shells, something else he's inclined to. Such are the trials of 'marriage' to an adventurous cook.
Today? More cleaning down at the sea - not much tho'. Taking Attic woman out for coffee to relieve Texan millionairess of fights over Attic woman's dog (also relieving poor dog) and East-End villain of having his cigars pinched. (A process Mrs H observed yesterday.) Further clearing up here, too, sorting out a new fax machine with instructions in Spanish; making two orange cakes and a vat of chilli beans for tomorrow. Penalty of Beloved's also being an inveterate entertainer. Help. Grannyp