There is always a temptation when blogging to go in search of the great themes or develop coherent arguments. Whilst I have done my share of dialectical discourse in the past - who can forget my investigative work on lamp-posts or my sortie into the secret world of the International Brotherhood of Knot Tyers - on occasions all I want to do is to chat about the unimportant things that are happening in my life. This is one such time. The following topics are nothing more than a meaningless miscellany : the fluff which congregates at the bottom of the drawer of the mind.
I seem to have spend a lot of time recently putting together the pictures I took - and the blogs I wrote but never posted - whilst on holiday. I decided to produce - solely for my own amusement - a book containing both and I put one together using the excellent services provided by Lulu. Although the process is comparatively simple - and extraordinarily cheap - I am already on the third edition. Isobel didn't like some of the photographs of herself in the first edition and went wild when I told her they were available on the Internet, and the printing of the second edition was a bit short of glue and tended to come apart when robustly handled. The third edition is a stout hardback. I finished it last night and I have ordered a copy - I will report back when I receive it.
Yesterday I received a letter! It came through the letterbox in an envelope and was handwritten on paper. I mention this because it is such a rare event these days. It was from my niece Di who lives in the British Virgin Islands and was even more welcome because it brought family news and was surrounded by colourful and exotic stamps. Whilst I bemoan the loss of the gentle art of letter-writing I am as guilty as the next man for its demise. Many years ago, me and my good mate Dave Hornby decided to rekindle the habit by exchanging a weekly hand-written letter. We both rushed out and bought the finest vellum paper and invested in new pens. All I wanted was a silk smoking jacket to wear when I wrote the letter, all Dave wanted was an antique writing desk. We never got them. We never wrote.
Clouds Got In The Way
I was listening to the radio the other day and I came across a piece about the Cloud Appreciation Society. This is an organisation which is devoted to both the study of, and the promotion of, clouds as things of beauty. They have a manifesto which sets out their beliefs which includes such things as:
- We believe that clouds are unjustly maligned and that life would be immeasurably poorer without them.
- We think that they are Nature’s poetry, and the most egalitarian of her displays, since everyone can have a fantastic view of them.
- We pledge to fight ‘blue-sky thinking’ wherever we find it. Life would be dull if we had to look up at cloudless monotony day after day.
This is my kind of organisation and I immediately sent off for a copy of the Cloud Collector's Handbook. This wonderful book contains a complete lists of the many hundreds of types of different clouds and provides you with an opportunity to record sightings of them. I can't wait until it arrives.