Helen (heleninwales) wrote,

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Yesterday and today

Yesterday G and I went up to my Dad's house on the North Wales coast. My brother, his wife and offspring were there, so we could have a little family gathering. It followed the usual pattern: arrive in time for light lunch, sit around and natter for a bit, then while my Dad had a nap, the rest of us piled into the cars and headed for the beach. A brisk blowy walk with more catching up of news and chat, followed by tea with scrumptious scones made by my niece, who complained, "You're eating them all!"

Today I felt a bit sleepy with a slightly sniffly nose, so mooched around a bit, though I did manage to: order a second-hand laptop, unpack the storage boxes that are for storing things in the garage, go and have lunch with G and his Ph.D. supervisor and wife, go for a walk in the forest with G and Ph.D. supervisor in order to look at a hitherto unexplored section of river.

At last my Girl Guide skills became useful as I spotted that there was no moss and lichen on one side of a tree trunk, but there was on the other; whereas higher up the tree, the moss and lichen grew evenly all around. This must therefore indicate the height of the flood waters in the 2001 flood. Extending an imaginary plane across the hill slope, I pounced on some bared tree roots. Ph.D. supervisor made humorous suggestion that we now needed to calculate the MSV (Moss Stripping Velocity) in order to find out how fast the river was flowing. Speculation about experiments with hoses and lichen coated twigs followed.

The laptop, by the way, is intended to make my writing sessions more productive. When writing away from home, e.g. in the gap between the daytime teaching finishing and the evening class starting, I've been writing by hand. But I do type faster than I write and of course the hand-written stuff has to be typed, which takes up a session in which I could be pressing on with more new words intead of typing up already written ones. But for various reasons (mostly psychological, I suspect) I don't feel happy writing my fiction on the college computers. There are logistical problems of version control to consider too. So the idea is that I'll lug the laptop to work and train myself to use that. It will mean that I can write in other parts of the house too instead of getting stuck up in my study. Which is fine, but it does make me a bit anti-social.

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