Thursday Bliss

I love Thursdays.  I love them for all the normal reasons – it’s close to the end of the week, the weekend is in sight, and so on.  But I have more reasons than most to love Thursdays.

Thursday is my bliss day.  No make-up, floppy comfy clothes, normally paint-spattered or covered in holes – the kind of clothes no one wears in public.  And then I do whatever moves me.  The house is completely peaceful and quiet, except for the occasional bark from one of the dogs, or sporadic and noisy demands from the cat.  My phone doesn’t ring.  I play Mozart very loudly.  I sit and write outside in the sun, watching the creepy crawly laze its way round the pool.  I have endless cups of tea, I read (normally searching for inspiration and then get accidentally stuck in a book), I rearrange my office.  I ignore my to-do list.  For the most part.  I eat when I feel like it, if I feel like it.  I try to make sensible food choices.  But mostly all the things I usually worry endlessly about are hushed.  I feel calm.

This morning I have dusted and cleaned all 1200 of my books.  I’ve re-categorized my bookshelves according to my own private system.  Very rarely according to author.  Sometimes I use subject, sometimes I use colour.  But whichever way I do it, I know exactly where each one is.  My family think this is sad.  I just think it’s being organised.  And tidy.  And it prevents them pilfering because they will always get found out.  Maybe that’s why they think it’s sad…

So now I’m sitting in my office, in my new blue chair that is better for my back and provides distraction when I swivel around in it.  The cat is curled up in his usual spot on the chest in front of the window.  A cool breeze is blowing – unusual for this country at this time of year – and the shadows of the jacaranda tree are playing across the driveway.  And I have a beautiful feeling – all is right in my world.

Happy Thursday!

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A Suitable Boy

What an achievement for the morning!  I have just finished reading ‘A Suitable Boy‘ by Vikram Seth.  The book is incredible – it makes for rather a long journey, but each character is so well drawn that you feel close to all of them.  And now that I’ve had to put it back on the bookcase, I feel bereft.

Set in India in the early 50’s, just after partition, Seth weaves together law, politics, religion, family and cricket.  The book centres around Lata, a young student at Brahmpur University, and her mother’s quest to marry her off suitably.  The extended family of brothers, sisters, in-laws, grandparents and friends are drawn into finding a ‘suitable boy’ for Lata, of the right colour, religion, and economic status.  In the meantime, Lata meets and falls in love with a young Muslim, Kabir.  Obviously, this relationship is doomed from the beginning, and Lata’s family find her a suitable boy.

This book is Middlemarch meets India, and like Middlemarch, you feel there is so much more to find out about each character after the book ends.  Seth is a master of language, so even though the book’s sheer size can be daunting to begin with, it is truly one of the most rewarding reads I’ve ever had.