This blog is supposed to be about writing but you can’t help life sneaking in sometimes. Like now, for example when all real writing has become impossible because I am suffering from what I can only describe as a wedding-related virus.
Just before my elder daughter’s wedding last September I came down with something similar which meant that on the day itself I looked like death warmed up and, after delivering my speech, was unable to speak again in anything above a whisper for days.
Now it’s happened again. I was in bed for most of the last two days while an invisible demon kept driving a nail into my skull just above my right temple, filling my mouth with sand and shoving a rotten tomato up my nose. At the same time one of his associates seemed to have extracted rather a lot of blood from my body so that it has become like a badly inflated air-mattress.
Everybody is sympathetic but I think they also can’t help laughing at me. Just a little. And in the nicest possible way. And who can blame them? It looks like a huge attempt to steal the limelight. However, I am determined to recover and rebound in time for a week next Saturday when I will have two married daughters.
In the meantime I am having regular draughts of Lemsip. If you are reading this in a country where Lemsip is an unknown quantity let me put you in the picture. It is a remedy for colds and influenza that comes in powdered form. You add hot water and get a hideous luminous yellow concoction that tastes and smells like low-level radio-active waste. But it does seem to do the trick better than most.
Recently I’ve learned that among the guest list at the wedding will be at least one unexpected name. Both my daughters seem to have inherited the family tendency to receive messages from beyond the grave in their dreams. Recently Emily announced that she had seen her maternal grandfather (long since dead) in a dream and he told her he was very pleased to have a chance to talk to her, that he was delighted about the wedding and that he would most certainly be there.
I know this steadfast belief in an after-life seems like so much puerile self-delusion to those like Richard Dawkins who zealously insist that there is nothing but what you see in front of you. To them I say, with all the careful consideration that their arguments deserve – ‘Yeah, whatever…’