Life. It continues. Itemised:
1. Last night, after five, I was tidying my desk and flipping through Farmers' Weekly
(really, by god), and the Caped Crusader rushed by, came to a sudden stop, rushed back and said, "Iona, can you witness a stat dec?"
"Yes," I said, a little doubtfully, read the document, watched him read the document, watched him sign the document, and then wrote my name, address, occupation, and signed to say that the above-named individual had signed in my presence in accordance with the 1835 Act, etc., and then thought to ask, "Why are you making a statutory declaration to say you read over someone's will?"
"Blind testatrix," he said. The funny thing is, I thought later, that the testatrix in question is a young woman. If she lives her allotted span, that document will be pulled from its envelope along with the will a half-century from now. If it becomes part of the root of title for something, well, I have a will in my files that was signed in the presence of witnesses in this year of our Lord seventeen hundred and forty-seven
. That scrap of paper with my writing on it will outlive me by centuries.
2. Still quite depressed. Ahaha, I say "quite". Went to see new GP yesterday, which I hadn't done since arriving in Cambridge. He turned out to be very kind and very nice, and alarmed me somewhat by turning to his computer screen and saying, "Right. I think I should sign you off work for a week and put you on something."
I persuaded him not to do this - it's ten days till Christmas - but he told me to come back in January and rethink. (Actually, he was really
nice; he said I had a sensible approach to things.) And I think he was right about January being different - I always find January and February harder than December. Usually I look forward to my birthday, but for some reason I don't want to be twenty-five. I feel like twenty-five ought to be, to have done, to have become something... and me, I read Farmers' Weekly
. You get it.
3. Speaking of Christmas. This year as most years, I am out of the country. (Once, on Christmas Eve, I spent eight hours on a departure gate floor, listening to "I'll Be Home For Christmas" on repeat over tinny airport speakers. It was hell.) Today at work, I went to see one of the partners to get something signed, and not only is she a lovely person, she has an endearing relationship with the two departmental trainees (me and the Caped Crusader): she's new, and she doesn't want to annoy her secretaries or make her colleagues think she's dim, so when she wants to know how the photocopier works and where the spare envelopes are and what idiotic thing her computer has done now, she asks us and thus feels she owes us a favour.
So she signed my letters, and asked, "Are you going home for Christmas? Where's home for you?"
And, and, I have this issue with home and going home and homelands. Y'all know. Since coming back from the States it's only got worse. Every day I track people and plans and landscapes - I call Land Registry, I register interests, I use documents and time to map people onto the water, rocks and earth they call their land - and I get more worried, theoretically speaking, about what any of it even means and if it means anything. Me, I own no land. (To get technical about it, I do hold an interest in land, but whatever.) But I sometimes worry I own no land metaphorically: that I grew up in one place and spent all my adult life in another, that I've lived in three countries and left bits of myself in all of them, that I never sit still, that I never go home.
All very melodramatic and banal, as per; I guess I have a homeland in my body, all five feet and seventy-percent water of it, and the spaces I pass through.
All of which is a ridiculous prelude to the answer to the question, which is: India. I am going to India on the evening of December 23rd, for the first time in two years, and the real first: Shim is coming with me. I think it will be strange, but good.
4. Possibly related to 2, writing is not going so well. yuletide
, it is a hollow laughter. I have written, oh, 300 words, and I have a perfectly serviceable plot which for some reason I do not write down, why, self, why. The novel is going a bit better, but I'm stuck in chapter nine. I don't know why. Nothing very exciting happens in chapter nine. Some people talk to other people. (Actually, that describes my entire novel. Absolutely nothing happens, and then characters talk to each other about it
. It reads rather a lot like the sophomore effort of a woman who has spent the last decade writing fanfic. (Be glad you weren't around for the freshman effort.)
And so on, and so on. Still flying, still breathing.