Monday, January 12, 2009

Time is, time was

Because of the I-5 closures, we stopped in Vancouver instead of proceeding to Eugene for 12th Night. I spent Friday in the wilderness of Ikea with Chris, finding as-is furniture for his new place, which I have now seen, though I failed to inspect it as mothers are supposed to inspect their child's lodgings.
I have no idea how to be a parent to an adult. Is there an online tutorial? Or is it okay to act as if we're people who know each other?
Home again Saturday morning, and my internal calendar is muddled because of this and because of having Monday off (not a bad thing, but a muddling thing). I felt all through Friday as if it were Saturday, and today feels a bit like Sunday.

Muddled calendar being my segue into the realisation that I'm not going to be able to sit down and write a proper diary of either the UK trip from April, or World Fantasy in October. Instead I shall sprinkle recollections and observations through the next several posts.

UK 08, flying: The in-flight movies were shown not on sweet little back-of-the-seat screens, but on columns of ceiling-mounted mid-seat-range screens. If one happened to be sitting at an angle to the long string of images, the effect was more than a little disconcerting. One expects infinite mirrors to reflect oneself.
I am cheap, and had books, so didn't bother to rent a headset. Instead I slept, or blinked awake to watch the soundless films. Without sound, PS: I Love You becomes a Japanese-inspired horror film about a vengeful ghost possessing his lover's friends and acquaintances. August Rush, unfortunately, was inescapable as the melodrama intended, and somehow I doubt that the dialogue spackled the visible plot holes*. Juno was harder to judge, because I remembered enough of the reviews that I couldn't approach blank-slated. Mostly it made me desperately want to adopt Ellen Page. I may have to rent and watch Hard Candy to balance my impression of her adorability.
Two of the movies used captions to indicate the passage of seasons - is it that hard to figure out from visual cues? The third used captions for locations.
All three movies used 'spooning', the man curled behind the woman, as the indicator of the true match.

UK 08 arriving: Lucia from VPX is awesomely crazy. She met us, jetlagged and deaf, at Gatwick, and drove to Lincoln, stopping on the way to drop Mark off at Peterborough train station. The next day she drove from Lincoln to Diss, to the bed-and-breakfast Gables Farm, with the aid of her trusty GPS Jane. (I envision Jane as looking like one of the Angels from Captain Scarlet). Jane did not approve of us stopping at the Peterborough station, and in retaliation sent us to Lincoln via the A15 instead of the A17.
Here is Lucia, inside one of Lincoln's wonderful Norman stone buildings, St. Mary's Guildhall (built 1160), which we visited by appointment, and were shown around by Ken Franklin of the Lincoln Civic Trust. Under the floor of the Guildhall (originally a royal residence for Henry II) is a section of Roman road, which has been excavated and can be viewed through a glass floor.
There is not enough room for all the history in England, so it has to be stacked.

And here is me, outside another one, cleverly called Norman House, and presently closed. It was built between 1170 and 1190 (builders weren't any faster then than they are now) and you can see how it's been altered and changed about to fit fashion and use. The rectangular windows are Georgian at the earliest.

The first Norman stone house I fell for was Hemingford Grey, in its fictional disguise as Green Knowe, and visiting Hemingford Grey was the highlight of a previous trip to the UK. Not having fictional associations with these makes it not quite so heart-racing, well, not psychologically heart-racing.

Physically ... the Norman House and the Jew's House (also Norman) are on Steep Street, which Lucia and I must have climbed three times that day. Oof. The road really does look like that. Here's Steep Hill from the bottom.

The Jew's House is now a very posh restaurant, which I would have been willing to splurge for a meal at, but it was already fully booked for a special occasion. Sigh.
Instead Lucia and I met Zolah, Rocambole and Ferret of the Furtive Scribblers Club, my other writing tribe, at a lovely Chinese restaurant quite near the Guildhall, and we ate and talked until the restaurant closed and tossed us out into the street to wander through the charity shops.

And that was my first day in England.

* so, rock and classical musicians are just like the Montagues and the Capulets? seriously, it cannot be that easy to legally give up a child; all of those boys should have been snapped up for adoption within minutes; count the Magical Negroes; has this kid been listed on canon_sues?


avo said...

It's so good to hear about your adventures and see pictures, esp. the picture of Lucia. Thank you for posting this.

batgirl said...

You're welcome - I highly recommend her as a travel companion.