Alone isn’t lonely, necessarily. Though company is good.

It’s fairly rare for me to be lonely, nowadays.  I trained myself out of it many years ago.  I used often to be by myself when I was a child and, with a much older sister and parents who, though loving and caring, were not in the least child-centred, I had to be self-reliant a lot of the time.  Mostly, I read, but I loved the outdoors too and we had a big and interesting garden.  Then there were the dogs – you can never be lonely with a dog.

In later years and during my marriage, it was no good relying on Russell for company.  Frankly, he liked to go off and do his own thing and find me here waiting for him.  Which I might or might not be, of course, I don’t want to suggest that he was overbearing.

Last summer, I was lonely, I have to acknowledge.  Russell was here but he was not able to provide any company at all and the evenings stretched out very quietly.  I just wrote and deleted a lot more about that, but I find that I don’t want to talk about it.

Anyway, yesterday I was walking the dog and I realised that I wanted to call on a friend.  I didn’t quite get around to selecting a victim and that’s partly because, actually, I’m not great at calling on people unannounced.  But after the sociable time with Mig and Zig and the other guests, then with Charlotte back at home, I felt rather at a loss.

I told Roses about this today and she tells me that I have to start getting used to putting myself out a bit more – she’s right, of course, but that’s so unlike me that I’m not sure it’ll happen.  But anyway, most of the time enough people come to me.  I had a whole succession of callers this afternoon, which always cheers me up no end.  Jamie came to talk about getting coal and chicken food, his son Stevo came to fetch me wood and fill the coal buckets, Charlotte called in to pick up her phone charger which she’d left behind and she came with her friend Shaun and his dog.  So maybe all I need most is to be welcoming and hospitable.

Though I have written an email to Dilly this evening, to tell her that a former school friend of Squiffany’s now has a baby sister, and I invited myself to their house at the earliest convenient opportunity.  So that’s a bit of a step.

I had a sudden impulse to make crumpets this afternoon, but it wasn’t the best timing, being a bit late for tea.  So I made sure I have the ingredients and the rings and I will make some tomorrow.  They’re really not that much trouble and they’re so much nicer than bought ones.  I think I’d rather make them than bother with bread.

Oh, taking the shelf out of the oven to put the dinner in, I managed to catch it on the back of my finger and the skin blistered painfully immediately.  I dribbled lavender oil on at once  – it’s magical stuff, a slight blister but no pain at all.  I didn’t even run it under the tap.

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