I was woken about 6am on 15th February by a voice talking to the back of my neck. It said:
"Now it's not Valentine's day anymore and therefore not cheesy, d'you want to get married or what?"
Oh, the romance! The roses! The chocolates! The... hang on a minute - where are my bloody roses and chocolates? Grumble, grumble, grumble...
Never mind. I'm a practical girl. It was lovely to be asked. It was lovely to say yes. It was the nearest I ever get to finding shopping pleasant to go out and find a ring that morning. And it was lovely, and even a bit romantic, that when he arrived with the ring in my size a fortnight later, Doug went down on one knee to put it on - even if I did have to help him up again as he is only part-way through physio on his knee!
Since then Doug has been conducting an experiment on the observational abilities of science fiction fans by waiting to see if they notice the ring. This has led me to increasingly bizarre ways of picking up glasses and jugs of water in restaurants, twitching my fingers in an odd manner, and eventually out and out wiggling my hand mere inches from their faces. The responses vary from failing to notice anything at all, to looking in my eyes and saying "What?", to asking if I'm playing charades and how many syllables do I mean, to "gosh, what a lovely purple ring - is that an amethyst?".
At Corflu Eileen Weston told Doug that he should focus on being like Charlton Heston. We were a little concerned at first - a gun-toting maniac? wielder of the Ten Commandments in tablet form? Dead? But no - she was referring to his 50 year long marriage the success of which he attributes to three little words used often and with sincerity - "You were right." Perhaps Ian Sorensen can help Doug with the sincerity part...
I may have to kidnap this chair from the college library - it has become shaped to my bum, so much so, it's almost a part of me. I shall miss it.
I shan't miss carrying all those books. I just dropped off 8 hardbacked books of varying sizes that I've been carrying around with me for weeks. I just have to get rid of the other 4 and put away the paperwork in a meaningful manner and then - I'm FREEEEEEEEEE!
I can actually socialise madly without worrying about it, instead of socialising madly and feeling intense guilt. Oh, Zombiecon - why aren't you next weekend?
Dougs had expressed a soft spot (or perhaps hard spot) for Helena Bonham Carter. I recently purchased "Rik Mayall Presents", a series of one-off plays starring him in a variety of roles. One of them (which appears to be a prototype for the film "Staggered") features Ms Bonham Carter as the stripper at a stag party; she does a routine which ends up with her leaving the stage topless in fishnet stockings. Dougs seemed quite taken with the image in a misty-eyed sort of way.
Last night I showed him the sequence. We were eating a noodley soup, which seemed to require a considerable amount of his attention, and as Ms Bonham Carter skipped off the table she had been dancing along he said: "Oh dear, I don't think those shoes will have done the finish on that table much good."
For those of you who don't know, I have just completed a degree in English Studies at Sheffield Hallam University. As I'm still at my father's house helping sort out the funeral and lending support I haven't seen my post. However, Yvonne dropped into my house and rang to say there was a Strictly P&C envelope waiting for me from SHU. She opened it for me, and then kept me hanging on tentahooks before announcing I've got a FIRST!!
Who'd've thought it? Discovering a long unused brain at my vast age...
Just to let people know:
After a couple of months of increasingly severe illness, my mother passed away last night at about midnight. I will miss her very much. If I don't contact people for a bit, it's not that I'm ignoring you on purpose (or it might be - you'll never know for sure!). Hopefully the year will improve from here.
Thank you to all those people who knew and sent their best wishes and prayers, and provided support both physical and mental. I really appreciate it. Hope to speak to you soon.
I have not got around to official invitations to my summer party this year, but I have mentioned the date to people here and there as I've run into them. Unfortunately, due to family sickness I am going to have to cancel the party for this summer. Sorry for any disappointment, but look on it as getting a whole shiny new weekend back this summer to do with as you will.