Dilly phoned this morning to say she and the children were coming to visit Bex and co today – so, the upshot was that they dropped in on the way, we all walked into town (mild but very windy), I paid shedloads of money into the bank and posted off the Christmas present I bought nearly a fortnight ago and hadn’t got around to wrapping up. Then we walked home again, so I can rest on that particular laurel for a day or two.
They brought a board game with them: Simpsons’ Cluedo. It was agreed that Al is so good at Cluedo that no one will play with him – well, I will, but mothers don’t count. Anyway, I won, but only because two others guessed wrongly. I was slightly surprised by my feeling of competitiveness, which isn’t usual, but probably it’s years of playing against Al who is just so good at it. As I said already.
Other good things – I’ve become so friendly with someone I’ve been playing a phone game with (True or False, it’s free if you can put up with the ads) that I told her about this blog, so if she drops in – Hello, Jo!
A friend phoned from New Zealand and we had a chat. I’d hardly put the phone down when it rang again – another friend in New Zealand. A complete coincidence, one lives in Auckland and the other in Wellington and, whilst they have met each other, they aren’t in contact.
I think that Natasha has finally hibernated. I wish Anastasia would eat more than a nibble of lamb’s lettuce, but she’s lively, anyway.
Ah. I’ve just had a phone call from someone asking for Russell, so I hesitated and asked his name and then what it was about? He ummed and ahhed (how do you spell that anyway?) a bit so I had to say, Russell died four months ago and he sounded very shocked and surprised. But in the course of conversation, it transpired that he’d heard it from someone and couldn’t believe it so was ringing to check, basically. So we’ve had an amicable conversation and the matter it was about will be held over for a few weeks, but I’m quite puzzled that he thought it was ok to put me through that when he knew Russell might have died. It’s a good job I’m extremely polite and very nice, and also reasonably resilient, because that was a bit crushing, actually and I’m really quite miffed. I wish I hadn’t apologised for breaking the news, as I thought.
Anyway, that’s driven anything else I might have said from my mind and I’m having an early night.
I’ve remembered what else I was going to say. After Russell died, I found a DVD with ‘Sprake family’ written on it and I was surprised, pleased and sorry, because I couldn’t imagine why he hadn’t mentioned it to me – the accompanying letter referred to cine films that had been transferred to the DVD. I finally got around to watching it this evening and, oh dear, it wasn’t at all what I’d expected. I know there’s some footage of Russell and his family when he was a little boy, there’s a film of his sister’s wedding in 1960 and there’s a brilliant bit of Weeza and Al playing on the lawn here – this was before we lived here, of course – someone threw a frisbee for Weeza and she ran for it, sticking out her arm and thwacking the toddling Al to the ground on the way. I thought it would include that and so, I suspect, did Russell, but it started with someone whooshing the camera around wildly, at the wedding I think, then interminable footage of a fishing holiday in Scotland, the only entertaining bit being when Pa got his line caught in a tree. There were a few mildly interesting bits, though I hardly recognised anyone – Russell, briefly, his parents, sister and nephew, possibly some cousins but, frustratingly, as soon as anyone turned towards the camera, the photographer swung away. The rest was the most uninteresting holiday footage you can imagine. It would have been an hour and fifty minutes of my life gone down the pan if I hadn’t fast-footed through a fair bit of it. At least it explains why Russell hadn’t mentioned it, though I wish he had, because at least we could have laughed and commiserated.