Wednesday, April 21, 2010



Despite all this circles stuff I am feeling OK and can't stop the sun putting a spring into my step, or into one of them anyway. I continue to be visted from all quarters; the weekend before last it was California and France and this weekend Michigan and the very exotic, Hull. From Hull came Gloria and Doug, the only friends I have left from University days; Gloria went on to teach with Stewart and they lived a few doors from us when we both moved into the property owning class.

Doug was the first person to ever ask me if I was a historian; he was in the year above me and Gloria and was stewarding people to some sort or freshers event. I almost said no when he asked me; how could I possibly describe myself so grandly, I had a history A level, I had opted to do a History degree in a very off hand sort of way, did that make me a historian? Anyway I have no such compunction now, despite never having picked up a non-fiction history book for 40 years, apart to move them from house to house; I can't throw them away of course; I am happy to claim to be a historian whenever the need arises. It's surprising how often it does; if you don't follow an academic track in life you sometimes need to let people know you once did even for a short while.

History is a good discipline I find for all sorts of walks of life; it means you can read loads of stuff really quickly and weigh up the evidence and the opinions before you state your view or take action; it seems I have been doing that sort of thing all my life; not least since I got cancer.

I didn't make many friends at University because I was an old married lady (all of 19) by then and wasn't a candidate for the chatting up and pairing off that went on; or much of a catch as a friend in a new place as I wasn't going to be hitting the pubs and clubs. I tended to be left to have lunch or sit around campus with the billy no mates types so I often didn't bother and went back to my domestic idyll. My other visitor this weekend from Michigan, Rudy, who came to live in the flat below us in 1968, brought a different perspective on that idyll; he had come to lecture at the University, he was a proper sort of hippy Alan Ginsberg look a like; so I could bye-pass all that undergrad freshers stuff and move in the big boys' (they were all boys!) circle around Rudy and do it with my other half. I had very set views about what University life ought to be like and this was much more like it; a lot of hanging around doing very little if I really recall.

So this weekend my University life came back to me with Rudy and Gloria and Doug sitting round for lunch and it was good; and this morning D and G sent me sunflowers and added to the sunshine that the powers that be just can't keep out of my life, try as they may.

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