Wednesday, 23 December 2009
Something in the Hare
We travelled home the other night beneath a clear, sapphire sky with Jupiter twinkling on an invisible thread off a sliver of a crescent moon. Suddenly there was a movement in front of the car; a hare, pale gold in the headlights, loping in front of us before leaping into a bank.
‘Ooh,’ says Rose, when I tell her, ‘Isn’t that symbolic?’ So I look it up and read about fertility, longevity and rebirth none of which seem particularly relevant at first, unless I suddenly find I’m expecting octuplets in which case I’m straight off to the papers.
But then I start thinking about everything that’s happened over the last couple of weeks; certainly, so far as my writing is concerned, I do feel reborn. I’m overflowing with ideas and looking forwards to getting them down in the New Year. Tom, too, has crossed a threshold this week; he’s passed his degree and achieved a Diploma in Music some thirty-odd years after deciding, as a very homesick eighteen year-old, that university the first time round wasn’t for him. Along the way, as an OU student, he’s battled with two bouts of severe illness and personal turmoil, but has come through with distinction – I’m really proud of him.
We’ve had some lovely family moments too; sitting in a Caribbean restaurant with my stepsons and one of their girlfriends enjoying good food and laughter was, at one stage, something I wouldn’t have believed could happen. Today, Rose and Si join us and Lily and Russ are due tomorrow so our family has certainly expanded in interesting ways! As for longevity, I caught up with three of my lovely and enduring Ace Gang this week, though in our thoughts is our dear girl, Ju, whose mother is so very ill.
Yet it seems that the hare is also a paradoxical creature symbolic of opposing traits; yesterday I was absolutely thrilled to bits when my publishers, who have been a complete delight to work with, sent me the most ravishing box of chocolates for Christmas (it’s up there with winning a tin of chocolates at primary school so far as best ever writing moments go!). I have to say I did have a serious ‘Cor! I could get used to this’ feeling, but because it’s been so long coming I’m also wary of jinxing it so I’m trying to take it one day at a time and simply enjoy each minute.
Best wishes to you and yours this Christmas.
Painting is 'O Say Can You See By the Dawn's Early Light' by Tom Tomos