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Phantom Thread, 3 Billboards, Unforgotten

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Yesterday, what a
blessing – the sun came out. In the morning, it was as usual dark and raining,
and then – thank you God for the surprise of light and warmth! Chris hightailed
to Drumbeg Park with Sheba; I couldn’t go because I was waiting for a committee
Skype call about the conference. So later, I went for my forest bathing walk on
the nearby trails. In more than an hour of walking, this time, I met not one
soul.

How do all those very tall skinny trees stay up? And see – steps of bright moss on the path. 
While I was out, my
friend baked an apple pie. Is there nothing he can’t do? It was sublime.
 
Last night, we watched
Phantom Thread, which haunted us both – we discussed it at length at lunch
today at the Kitchen restaurant, where we went to get out of the house during
another dark, rainy day. I saw it partly as a quirky meditation on power, the
power of men over women and of women over men. How a strong woman plots to get her
man to change – in this instance, by nearly killing him – and it works! Talk
about quirky. Superb sets, costumes of course, and performances – Daniel Day
Lewis never better, restrained, utterly convincing, as was Leslie Manville, the great actress
who played his hovering, repressed sister. A much more interesting film than
expected.
On Monday, there wasn’t
much sun but it wasn’t raining, so we went to Drumbeg together, and while
there, the mountains revealed themselves for the first time, not hidden by
clouds.
And then a sea lion
charged through the water. That morning, I went for my first bike ride into the
village – about half an hour, lots of uphill, not an easy ride but great to
have some autonomy. I went to Colleen’s, a wonderful shop with shoes, Irish
clothing, tons of cookware and linens. And then rode back. I thought I’d go insane stuck here for 3 weeks without a car,
nowhere to go by foot except the trails, the bike mostly unusable because of
rain. But no problem – I am very happy here in the studio, “the office,” as I
call it – “I’m going to the office,” I say to Chris as I set off across his
yard with my computer, notebooks, water – working on the memoir. I’d thought I’d
be doing new work, but instead I am honing, polishing, cutting the memoir,
work I should have done months ago before I sent it out. I’ve cut 1800 words so
far, though I’ve also added a few where I thought more explanation was needed.
Hope I’m making it better and not just fiddling. But I think I am and it is.
CLo and I also watched
3 Billboards, which was not a huge hit with either of us. Just plain weird, much
of it unpleasant for no real purpose that I could see, and far too much that
made no sense at all. I don’t regret seeing it, it wasn’t dull, but not a
success. We also watched “Unforgotten,” a new
Masterpiece Mystery on PBS, normally something I wouldn’t watch, but my, so
good, those Brits sure know how to hook you. Can’t wait for Sunday when the
next episode airs.
So, thus unroll our
days – he gets up early, I get up late, he sits at his computer, I go to the
office, lunch usually together, then an outing and/or more work, then supper together,
then TV. By then the early riser is ready for bed and I read and tap some more; there’s no internet access in the office, so I need to get it all
done in the house – many emails about the upcoming conference, the upcoming
renovation, my three upcoming courses, family, house, renting the
basement apartment… My city life will hit me full force when I’m
back, in ten days.
So  – now back to the office to work, and then a bit of piano practice, and then, be still
my beating heart, a slice of apple pie. It’s dark and cold and raining, and
even so, I’m in heaven.



And here’s this, that Chris just sent me, so, so true: 

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About Beth

I began keeping a journal at the age of nine. Nearly fifty years later, I started this online journal, sharing reflections, reviews, updates, and the occasional secret.

Some Blogs I Follow

Chris Walks
This blog evolves. It once was about travels. Now it’s a reason to be at the keyboard that I value.

Theresa Kishkan
Theresa Kishkan is a writer living on the Sechelt Peninsula on the west coast of Canada.

I walk on. With my feet, and in my mind as well.

Carrie Snyder
Wherever you’ve come from, wherever you’re going, consider this space a place for reflection and pause.

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