Monday, September 24, 2012



It is three months until Christmas. This is not about shopping. You know about me and shopping and how the word has always conjured up an image of a basket with bread, milk, potatoes and eggs. These days one should probably add a tub of blueberries, a head of broccoli and a bag of carrots and take away the bread, the point being that this is all shopping means to me. Getting a basketful of the daily stuff. So when I say it is three months until Christmas, what I am doing is looking across the divide separating that time from this and wondering how, in the unsteady vessel that is the body of Signs, I will navigate the distance from now to then.

The same kind of thought sometimes comes at the very beginning of the day, as I open my eyes to the bands of light that filter through my trusty wooden slats (I call them trusty because they cost so little, being from IKEA, they have fulfilled their task so remarkably well and I have looked at them and through them with more intense engagement than is usual in a relationship between a human being and a set of window blinds). My first question is: what is the weather doing? This may or may not be significant in what I am able to do that day, but to know about it gives one some kind of connection to the world outside. What would our lives be without windows? It doesn't bear thinking about.

The next question, directed not so much at the window as to the day itself, is: what can I do today? Sometimes the answer that comes back is simply a list of boxes that need, by hook or by crook, to be ticked off. Get cat food, meds from chemist, post letter, ring dentist, do a washload, make evening meal. Choose from one or some of the above, or pick up the notebook.

Today (which is no longer newborn but not yet old) I have been to buy organic vegetables and I have come here to say that it is ninety-one days until Christmas Eve. And I am thinking that to come here every day and post something on blog until the day of the Eve itself would be something, wouldn't it? Not just a falling away - a journey to Advent. Parousia.  Or at any rate - something.  


Anna MR said...

First up: your weather today looks uncannily like my weather today. So snap.

Secondly, you are a frightfully clever source of beautiful and rare words (well rare to me, okay, the forrin geerl). Parousia. It is lovely. So thank you.

Thirdly…one doth wonder should one make a pact, with one's Schwesterlein, to come and write something, anything, every single day until Christmas…and what would happen (apart from personal shame) if one didn't manage it every single day…and what would happen if one did.

So that's summat for me to think about. And sharing it with you.


Reading the Signs said...

First up: well that must be very difficult for an Igloo-dweller.

Secondly, I have to admit that that lovely word is one I only really learned today because I was casting about and it fell into my palm, so to speak.

Thirdly .... one absolutely should do this, Schwes . Yes. It will become the journey of the Magi (minus one, but hei). And think not this these same apprehensions haven't crossed my mind. Personal shame? Pah! We do what we can, innit. And even one sentence or word can count. So think on't, and be (hopefully) seeing you.


Cusp said...

Well it will be great if you can manage to write very day between now and Crimbo...but it needs only be a few words. Just the fact that show have stepped up to the page would be an achievement in itself.

I think that, given these conundrum bodies that we (PWME) inhabit, that it can be too easy to become flotsam drifting along. It takes courage and discipline to commit and then keep to that commitment ...BUT when we manage it, the sense of pride and assurance that we can be part of the world is great.


Reading the Signs said...

Cusp, yes - turning up is the thing, and a few words - or one - may be the most I can do. I have been inspired by Spitalfields Life blog - have you seen it? Amazing.

I'm thinking that the most courageous of us are those who are rarely seen - those we both know who walk the most difficult path. I would like also to find a way of honouring them.

Cusp said...

Oh...just had a look at Spitalfields. Thanks for telling me about it: wonderful writing and images. Love today's post with those great photos of 60s and 70s London -- really nostalgic :)

Fire Bird said...

it would be something very lovely indeed from the vantage point of one who looks forward muchly to your posts, and checks in here often in hope (feeds I do not do.) I found my month of daily small stones a very grounding and only very occasionally onerous task. Small is beautiful and all that...

91 days? Ooh

Reading the Signs said...

Fire Bird, I remember your small stones - they were inspiring. I don't do feeds either any more - I just visit the blogs I know and like. Lovely to know that you will be looking in.

Mim said...

My to-do list is similar to yours. Yours delightful in its way.

I'll look for your posts!

Best regards from Boston . . .

Montag said...

I use "parousia" to mean "being there" as sort of "being beside someone or something", although many like to use it to mean "arrival" or "appearance"

Like the film "Being There", Christmas is our yearly exhausting attempt in living the myth of goodwill and brotherhood and peace on earth.

The difference between "being there" and "appearance" to me is that the first is an enduring state, while the second sort of gives the idea that one is coming and going, making an appearance and then hitting the road again...

I suppose that is why folks of the theological bent use it to refer to the Holy Spirit, notorious for popping in and out all the time.

Reading the Signs said...

Dear Mim, your eyes on my blog are always appreciated.

Montag, that is also how I take the meaning of the word. I also struggle with Christmas but can't shake off the expectation of something or other. Good to see you.