I had a lovely birthday - thank you to everyone who sent good wishes. I did absolutely nothing. Actually, that’s not true, not really. I did loads of washing and a whole mountain of ironing and cleared and cleaned the kitchen and tidied the lounge room and dining room. But I wasn’t at work in the office. (I found some shards of the Jamie Oliver glass when I was sweeping the kitchen. Don't know where they'de been in the meantime!)
I spoke, by one means or another, to almost everyone. Stella and Tony rang at half seven. Lindsey, Wendy and Matthew sent text messages. Simon, Austin and Ian SKYPEd me. Gareth and MJ texted me. Julia, Helen and Emily sent me messages on Facebook. Lots of the Boys sent Facebook messages as well. It was all good.
The Builder was at work in the morning. Got home at about half two.
We went to Clay Cross after that. I had received a letter some weeks ago announcing that now that I was a woman over 50 I was entitled to regular, free mammograms, courtesy the NHS. My appointment was for 3:36 on the afternoon of the 7th. I was a bit worried about the precision of the time – I like to be punctual but to be that precise is a bit on the hard side. Still, despite the unexpected traffic on the main road, we got there in good time. The whole process took two minutes. Didn’t hurt. Didn’t feel strange (which the radiographer said it would). Just felt like having my boobs squished!
People had expressed surprised that I would go for a mammogram on my birthday. Ah – but it gave me an excuse to have the day off. I’ve got most of December off, one way and another, so I wasn’t going to take my birthday off too. But I was damned if I was going to take a birthday afternoon off just to have a breast test!
It was windy and bloody cold in Clay Cross.
And the traffic was awful. We came back Another Way!
After we got back I trashed the dining room by bringing down all the Christmas presents for wrapping, along with the wrapping paper, sellotape and stickers. I got two parcels wrapped before Marlo discovered what I was doing, decided that the wrapping paper had been put there just for him and took over. So I trashed the kitchen while preparing dinner. And the lounge room by moving things out of the way and leaving them on the chairs. I’m not absolutely sure why I bothered tidying up in the morning!
For my celebratory dinner we had a magnificent (if tiny) piece of rolled lamb, with home made chips, Brussels sprouts and garlic and mushroom gravy. Washed down with a bottle of Veuve Clicquot that Marryk gave us for Christmas last year. I’d put it down in the cellar at the time and (somehow!!) had managed to forget about it. Found it when I was looking to see how many re-sealable beer bottles we had (for making ginger beer; I bought The Builder a ginger beer kit for his birthday. It also got forgotten about and was found when I was looking for something else in the kitchen cupboard. It was a long streak of re-discoveries!!). All very pleasant. We spent the evening in the lounge room drinking wine and generally chatting and went to bed in a mellow frame of mind. (The Veuve Clicquot was really remarkably nice, though I am not usually a huge fan of champagne; I prefer Spanish and English sparkling wines. But if anyone wishes to give me Veuve Clicquot again, I shan’t be complaining!)
And slept remarkably well. Woke up quite late (by our standards). Just as well I was working at Psalter Lane today. It only takes half an hour when there’s no traffic (and there is usually no traffic on a Saturday morning) and we don’t start until quarter to ten.
The weather today is absolutely foul. It’s extraordinarily windy and it’s RAINING. Really raining. One of the skylights in the library is leaking. Nothing that can be done about it at the weekend. I’ve put a rubbish bin on a chair underneath where most of the drips are falling. It’s also very dark. Has been all day. The Builder tells me that when he was going home this morning it was trying to snow. It’s not been doing that here. It’s much too rainy for snow.
I got lots of lovely presents for my birthday. Amongst them was an inflatable giraffe which stands at 6’ tall when inflated. I’m not quite sure what I’m going to do with it. I may have to have a summer party and tether it to the patio!!!!!