Discover more from Knots in the String
Confidant. Companion – noun…
... for Knots in the String.
Have you ever had days, even weeks, where you have relied on friends to see you through?
For those confidants to pull you along in the slipstream of their positive energy?
I’ve been lucky enough to have that in the last month, a kindness that’s sustained me and given me impetus to keep smiling when a member of my family came up against the worst of possible hurdles.
It’s given me backbone when I’ve wanted to fold and withdraw, to listen when I’ve felt I could just sink into muddy silence. They have helped me laugh for heaven’s sake, as I keep trying to imitate some fiery Spanish señora as I glissade across the ballet studio floor, swishing my red folds in a faux-tantalising way.
All this while my small world has rippled like a piece of shredded silk in the wind – a constant agitation born of difficult events.
I wondered as The Terrier and I walked the other day, why my lifelong instinct under duress is always to retreat (run away)? Like a dog who must heal its wounds. Is it a primal animal thing? A fight or flight response?
When I was child, I would do one of two things when I was distressed by anything – I’d go to my bedroom and retreat into my books – that wordy Narnia escape I mentioned last week. The other was to take the dog (a beagle) for a walk on the beach.
Except for the dog breed and that I now have mature confidants.
As I write, I’m thinking of The Labryinth, when Ludo growls to Sarah, ‘Friiiieeeend…’ There’s something so touching and heart-warming in the gravelly way he says this, a moment of illumination.
Maybe when a trusted local friend hugs you or wipes away their own tears in reaction to your pain, or far-off friends take the time to contact you from points as distant as Queensland or Sweden, England or Scotland, it’s like the sun shining on a cloudy day – there’s warmth melting the unwanted chill. There’s that beam of lellow.
There’s the feeling that one is not alone…
*New lambs are popping out in our paddocks. A perfect lambing season thus far.
The lambs have been birthing into cloudless blue days where the warmth of the sun lets them unfurl like crinkly little white petals, stretching those precious limbs; and where the mums can graze on early spring pasture. But I’m a mum, I share their sharp-eyed concern. Oh my word, yes!
I stare at my veggie garden and plan rows of feather-topped carrots and tendril-laden snowpeas to join the garlic, pinkeye potatoes and broadbeans that are already thriving. Planning more food plantings.
I pick the first freesias. That fragrance!
I love the fresh blueness of the forget-me-knots and that my auriculas are flowering.
Ive been spending time sorting out Instagram where some bollocky lowlife duplicated my account and took 60 images. Instagram suspended me for a few hours whilst they investigated my claims. Apparently, I’m back now but wondering if I want to be. Facebook was proving an issue as I watched friends hacked and as I changed passwords regularly and instituted 2-factor authentication. I have done the same with Instagram, changing from a public author’s account to a private individual’s account. Is it worth the trouble?
But mostly, I’m trying to be mindful of the absolute moment.
Kindle: The Assassin of Verona by Benet Brandreth. A very unusual historical mystery set in the 16th century with Will Shakespeare as the protagonist. Thus far the man is filled with derring-do! The narrative reads like one of Shakespeare’s many plays – elegantly tailored and familiar. I like it.
Print: John Koenig’s The Dictionary of Obscure Sorrows. It’s astonishing to think that this is a dictionary of imagined words for various emotions. Koenig appears to have an intuitive view of the human psyche. Maybe it’s all a joke but whatever the case, it’s a book I really savour. I wrote a post about Sonder once – a perfect word for an intense emotion.
Audio: The Bookbinder of Jericho. This is a wonderful book – especially in audio. Reviewers of both this and the previous Williams’ book speak glowingly of how far women have come, as though Lost Words and Bookbinder are only about women’s rights and suffrage, but for me, they’re about people’s (inclusive) journeys in times of crisis, about word and book, about war and peace. They’re poignant novels, not political statements.
The Constant Commoner which is synchronous with my thoughts on friends.
And Lady Jo because she really can tell you that life isn’t over until you complete your never-ending Glitter List.
Stitching: The Brenda Kinsel Bag because its technicolour dreamcoat palette is so uplifting.
Robson Green’s Weekend Escapes.
Matilda’s vs England World Cup Soccer. Sigh. But so proud of our Matildas and can’t wait till Saturday night to cheer them on again. BRILLIANT ambassadors for Oz, for children, for females in soccer and for sportsmanship. Go Tillies!
Michael Portillo Goes to Ireland – Great British Railway Journeys. Blown away by the great fort of Newgrange (over 5000 years old) and thinking I want a piece of sandstone in my garden that I can chisel with spirals.
Insight on SBS TV – Letting Go. And knowing that attachment is what makes our lives so painful. Whilst I might wish to be a competent Buddhist one day, I find it difficult to give up things/people that matter to my heart and soul…
Landscaping my son’s garden on the farm, so that when the house is painted, the place will be special and uplifting for the future.
As I write this short post (knowing I should be offering you more) the waves have built up and are ricocheting along the length of the beach. There is a snickety night breeze that nipped at my face as we walked The Terrier and is now snarking around the eaves. As we hurried around the coastal streets, a couple of little bandicoots paused in their digging for grubs, looking at us over sand-covered pointy noses as we edged by. The Terrier just let them be. Mind you, I did tell him in a sing-song voice that they were puppy-dogs.
Walking on, I looked up at the night-sky, the oak-gall ink immensity of it, and reflected how fortunate I was to have a coterie of friends I can trust, even if half live on the other side of the world.
There’s a lot to be said for trust, but maybe that’s for another day…
I searched for a song. There’s dozens on friends, but this is my choice, just a different version of one I’m seriously fond of and which speaks of family, parenthood and … friends.