That Was the Week that Wasn’t (OR, Where on Earth Have I been?)

An Englishman at the pique of happiness

An Englishman at the pique of happiness

You may or may not have noticed that I haven’t been blogging for a while. The Mind of Evermore has been devoid of any thoughts, ramblings, or rants – abandoned in a dusty jar on the shelf, disappearing under a thick layer of cobwebs.

But where have you been? I pretend to hear you ask. What have I been up to that has prevented me from inflicting my opinions upon you all? Well, I’ll get to that in a minute, and when I do, you will gain a new understanding of the art of the anti-climax.

Before I reach all that, I want to share with you something that happened last Sunday night, which sent my whole world spiralling into oblivion. For a few days, I was sitting at the back an unmanned aeroplane that was plunging straight into the heart of the Bermuda Triangle. My present was thrust into chaos, and my future was more uncertain at that point than it had ever been before, or at least as uncertain as the time when I fell into a river as a young child, and a boy with the same first two names as me sat on the bank and laughed, as I desperately clung onto clumps of muddy grass for dear life.

Last Sunday night, the kettle broke.

Just to put this in the right perspective: I’m English. In our house, there is no ‘tea machine’ or ‘coffee maker’, and at that time on a Sunday, there are no local places to get a cup of hot, strong tea. Drinking tea, to me, is practically a hobby, and one I take very seriously. For 1.5 days, until the new kettle arrived, I had to rely on ‘pan tea’. 20 minutes to boil on the cooker, and tasting like hot mercury with added milk and sugar. I was an Englishman Distraught: a shadow of a shadow, a suffering husk pining, Arthur Dent-like, for that perfect cup of tea in this new, alien situation. And then I got over myself and read a book.

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Yes, last week I completed 77 Shadow Street, my first foray into the world of Dean Koontz, and I loved it. A sleek, suspenseful horror thriller, the core of this book is not the fairly thin plot, but the beautifully crafted characters that spring to life as they battle hordes of hideous creatures from a dystopian future. Despite the heavy dosage of exposition at the end, 77 Shadow Street is brilliant read, and one that I would recommend to anybody after something horrific, but marginally different from what else is out there right now. Dean Koontz, you have a new fan!

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Last Tuesday, I took a break from reading to introduce a new feature to my radio show. It’s a rather fun segment that allows me to play music a little outside the boundaries of heavy metal, and gives me the opportunity to discuss the things I love – namely horror and science fiction. On that particular show, during that particular feature, I had the chance to say a special thank you to Harold Ramis, who sadly passed away on Monday the 24th of February. He was a childhood hero of mine, and I will be dedicating an entire blog post to the great man very soon indeed.

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But despite all this going on, you’d have thought I might have been able to slip a sneaky post or two in between, wouldn’t you? Why haven’t I been blogging? Well, if I were to tell you that I’d spent an afternoon digging up my garden for no good reason at all, only to discover an ancient burial site littered with the rotted remains of an historic cannibal tribe, I’d be lying.

I have, in fact, been at work, doing overtime (I told you it’d be an anti-climax!). Betwixt (and during) the ruined kettle incident, the reading, and the radio-ing, I have been grinding away at the supermarket, scanning things and putting them into carrier bags for complete strangers, before taking their money from them. While I have been at work, my head has been in the clouds, trying to decipher the ins-and-outs of a short story I am currently working on (well, one of them). It has a good premise, and a strong ending, but nothing in the middle. Unfortunately, my daydreams do rather distract me from the task at hand, which is why I sometimes have conversations with customers where I have absolutely no idea what they’re on about.

“Have a great day!” I said to a blonde woman once, even though it was 9PM and dark outside.

“What, at a funeral?” she retorted angrily as she left the shop, baffling the situation even further.

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This brings, us rather messily, to ‘today’. The sun is shining, the sky is a soft blue shade of heaven, and the birds are singing songs of joy and freedom. I, on the other hand, am getting ready for work. I wonder what the first week of March will bring? Will I actually start planning the novel that has been swimming around inside my head for a few days? Will I find something interesting to happen in my short story? Will we be having pancakes on Tuesday?

Time will tell. It usually does.

I’d like to finish off this Saturday ramble through the English countryside of my mind with some sage advice:

“Sage can easily overpower a dish. Use with a light hand when experimenting.” – Peggy Trowbridge Filippone

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18 thoughts on “That Was the Week that Wasn’t (OR, Where on Earth Have I been?)

  1. Wow! I had no idea the kettle broke, no wonder you weren’t around for such a time…you held up remarkably well on Tuesday’s show…I am impressed you held it together.

    Funerals at night would be an interesting thing, black is always going to be the order of the day, the atmosphere is more dramatic and films do it all the time….fascinating, if slightly weird.

    • I think I held up well on Tuesday because I’d almost worn out the new kettle by then! Monday was a VERY dark day though. I was glad to be at work – they have a kettle there!

      I think when she said funeral, she might have meant ‘wake’, but it still made me feel thoroughly awkward. Night funerals would be an interesting prospect…imagine if somebody stumbled into the open grave during burial?

  2. It’s the small details that make life messy. Im delighted that you are taking time to work on some shorter pieces; it was a one-off piece of flash fiction that gave rise to the novel I am editing now. DONT GIVE UP.

    • Thank you very much! 😀 Flash fiction can be a HUGE help, and I am currently working on the latest VisDare. I’m trying to focus on short stories, as I really want to push myself to get things out there, build my confidence up before attempting ‘The Novel’. Thank you for your words of encouragement 😀

  3. I swear I was probably English in a past life. I HEART tea & even more-so – tea with sugar & milk! Oh – & biscuits. 🙂

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