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Saturday, August 30, 2008

towelling mysteries..

The weather has improved - the islands are visible again - and Granny's black dog did not come a-biting after all. Use of her hammock, the hot-tub, swimming, soothed things: the visitors went away happy and Granny has been sorting out her linen with the (hoped-for) prospect of all the visitors to come once the house appears on the website of the prestigious bed and breakfast guide (she will tell you more about that, once it does...). Explain to her though....how do up five or six face clothes of assorted colours and at last one hand towel just DISAPPEAR? She can't believe visitors run off with them, why should they? Do the dogs eat them? The cat? The occasional cockroaches? Do they get blown from the line by the wind?

Beloved is sanguine. 'They'll just turn up,' he says. Granny, having turned out every single linen chest/drawer/cupboard in the house is not sanguine. Still, all this useful domestic labour and the conundrums resulting stop her contemplating the fact that she was a writer once and doesn't seem to be any longer. The black dog will appear in style, fast, if she contemplates that one too long...... So back to work - making cakes perhaps for the freezer? - or applying herself to the job of trying to persuade the cat, Feline Lorengar, to use the newly installed cat door. Why is it so reluctant? Is it just a stupid cat? No,' says the animal man. 'It's probably just very cautious.' Whatever the case Granny is still crying 'puss puss puss', rattling food bowls, pushing and pulling all in vain. Cat did enter once that way - her hopes rose - but fell when it refused to do so subsequently. And continues to refuse to do so.

In betweenwhiles Granny has been applying herself to the US elections, thanks to the somehow unlikely fact that she can get the BBC parliament programme on her island and it showed the Democratic Convention in full. She watched all Barack Obama's speech and was knocked for six. If US electors fail to put him in, she'll despair of them she really will. To find a politician who is clearly so sane and intelligent .... And then to elect - if they do - a 72 year old with an evil temper and a totally untried 44 year old pro-life woman - surely Hilary's pissed-off supporters won't/can't go for that? Can they?

In passing: Obama's kids.... Granny feels kind of sorry for them - and impressed. She can't see any of her grandchildren at any age, let alone seven, sitting still all the way through their dad's hour-long speeches. And then that endless waving from platforms....? what effect does that have in the longterm? Chelsea Clinton - still forced to do the waving and smiling - seems to have done OK. So maybe, maybe. But it's not exactly what you'd call normal childhood. More like short-term royalty and on this side of the Atlantic we know what the long-term version does to the real thing, don't we?

And while we're being political: Granny has some particular feeling for the Russia/Georgia situation after watching the Georgian national ballet in Edinburgh. The Georgian musicians supposed to appear live could not do so and Granny like everyone else clapped and cheered in support when the ballet's director appeared on stage wrapped in the Georgian flag. Nor does she have any positive feelings about the thugs in charge of Russia. But wouldn't you say there was something a mite provocative about suggesting NATO membership to two of Russia's closest neighbours - both formerly part of the Soviet Union? And even more provocative about proposing to park an anti-missile system - pointless as it may be - on the territory of yet another?

Just asking, that's all. And thinking - with a hopeful sigh - that maybe Barack Obama might manage not to be so stupid. Over to you, Americans. Granny will keep hoping. (Any moment now, what's more she will be among you for three weeks, hectoring... WATCH OUT!!)

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