Thursday, June 21, 2007

Three nights in a hotel room, I'm glad to be home but I like Penzance and I'd like to go back later this summer to that part of Cornwall. The journey to Brighton was a marathon. I left at 4 pm and arrived home at midnight. One train with loos that didn't work, a switch at Plymouth to another train with a fault, so it was back onto the one we'd just left. With all that time to write, I could barely come up with 400 words of the prose I'm working on and notes for poems while dipping in and out of books.

With Brighton as my default setting, Penzance seems delightfully unspoiled and quiet. But I guess most places are quiet compared to this party city. The more often I leave it, the more I realise what a pleasuredome it is. I wonder if it's claimed me now? At some point, my ideal would still be a coastguard cottage on a cliff with the Atlantic just metres away. One day I want to live with the sea in my window, to wake up and go to sleep with it.

As I staggered to bed last night, my daughter woke and called for a hug. Her room was heavy with sleep, warm and scented with one of her many perfumes! It was a lovely welcome. Then this morning my son insisted on playing a new beat he'd composed. So at 7.30 am I was listening to rap - but this is no ordinary rap, there's piano and shifting rhythms, poetry, real poetry and synth like strings.

The journey felt like such hard work but just those two things were compensation enough. I woke to the sun and have spent hours on the allotment surveying slug damage, weeding and transplanting, staking up tomato plants and two aubergine plants I was given. Every squash plant has been eaten and all the beans gone. There may be time for a third planting. But I picked two large containers of raspberries, some potatoes, an onion and lettuce. I love walking back down the hill dirty, sweaty and carrying at least something I've grown. That's supper pretty well dealt with.

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