I had a long discussion this morning regarding a PCC matter, which has clarified things nicely for both me and the person I was talking to, but it’s left both of us with quite a bit of work to do within the next week. I haven’t even looked at the minutes of the meeting I chaired at the end of last term at school, and I need to okay them before the clerk can send them out. Then I have three people to contact before a committee meeting on Wednesday and I mustn’t forget to ring someone else because I didn’t send her a reminder for something on Thursday, so I must give her some warning. Tomorrow I’ve got to spend an hour clearing away the Easter flowers in church and doing new ones, because no one has put their name down on the flower rota this week. Someone else has invited me to her special birthday lunch next Friday, so I must find out if it’s a significant birthday – she’s specified no presents, but I don’t even know the exact date of the birthday and it may be her 90th. I can’t remember what the other things are that are becoming quite urgent, but they’ll come to me, probably in the early hours of tomorrow. I must, from now on, try to put in at least an hour’s clarinet practice every day or I won’t be ready for the wedding in June.
I can’t help feeling that a proper job would make life easier. I wouldn’t have taken on the other things and I’d have fewer distractions during office hours – being at home, there are phone calls and callers and housework to do and I’m very easily persuaded to faff about doing anything at all but work.
It’s been a pleasant day today, though. I looked after the babies this afternoon, and they were charming. They decided on pasta with cheese sauce and carrots for tea, and their mother arrived home in time to wipe off the debris. The Sage discovered a hen sitting on eggs last week – she had hidden behind a piece of wood leaning against the shed, out of the run; they go where they like, those bantams – and they started to hatch today. There were two out this afternoon, with a third beak just breaking through, and there were four or five tonight, with another one half out. Still four more eggs to go. Once they’re all out, we’ll pop them safely into a coop so they can’t be caught by any predators.
Tonight, Ro and I went to a concert of, mostly, early Britten music, including a string quartet and two Poèmes that he wrote when he was 13 and which had not previously been performed. The second Poème was a bit overambitious, not that I know anything, but the first, which was actually Number 4, I enjoyed very much – a bit Richard Strauss-y and Debussy-ish, I thought. I liked the quartet too. The first piece was his Simple Symphony, which he wrote in his early 20s, but he had actually written much of it between the ages of 9 and 12 and orchestrated it later. Then there was a series of songs in 8 movements, each based on a different poem with a different instrument solo accompanying the tenor, with the unifying subject of Sleep (I’ve left the programme in the car or I’d tell you what it was called) – and that was written much later. It was also played and sung at Britten’s funeral – he died in 1976 at the age of 62.