Yesterday I travelled the 230 miles northwards, and then a little westwards, and then a little southwards, to my parents home in Wales, and that is where I am now, writing this on my bed in my sisters bedroom, because mine has become a hearty storage facility. Avast, when you spread your wings to fly solo, it is to be expected that your parents make use of the extra space. I’m armed with my four-year-old laptop, a stack of books and my novel-writing gear, but I am already finding the shift in environments a little difficult on my creative mind.
To begin with, my parents have a large, flat-screen TV, and having been without the option of browsing channels so long, it has become somewhat of a distraction. Programmes I enjoy, such as Ghost Hunters, and Miami Ink are stacked up on the sky listings. I’ve discovered a documentary about a monkey sanctuary my mother has been recording, and spent most the afternoon making my way through the episodes. Intentions were good, I had my folder perched upon my lap, but I wrote two words before they introduced the lemur pen, and none afterwards. Somewhere between the woolly monkeys and the chimps, my writing implements wound up on the floor beside me. Shameful; I am now up-to-date with all the goings on with every monkey in Dorset, but I am no further in my writings than I was the day before yesterday. Shameful.
Another issue here is the distinct lack of desk space. The computer desk is really only big enough for the PC and its accoutrements, and is otherwise just a strand of frosted-glass. Meanwhile, my usual place at the dining-room table is also unavailable, because my parents are having the garden landscaped, and the top is a mess with garden-catalogues and pricing charts, and numbers of vendors for guttering and plant life, and I have a fear that if I shift anything I will hear about it, and probably in a loud fashion. In the living-room there are two small end-tables, which sit the same size as the arm-chairs, making them too low for a comfortable writing posture; bad for the back. So, I am left to shuffle about with my notepad on my lap supported and lifted by a padded folder. Why not use the laptop, you may be asking? Simply because in the laptop world its the equivalent of a ninty-year-old woman, and Microsoft-Word take a few minutes to register a sentence has been input. The circumstances here are not ideal on the writing front, but I hope they will be a testament to my resolve to finish at least two chapters in my time here.
During the weekends my folks will be at home, but while they work during the week I will have the house to myself to get some reading and writing done. Well, apart from the cat, who often deems making his presence known more important than anything else. He’ll probably sit on my paperstack, nestle himself down and prevent pen ever meeting paper, that’s if the pull of the TV doesn’t get me first. Hayden Gabriel’s senses must be tingling.
Tomorrow, I am riding up to Wellingborough in Northamptonshire to visit my grandmother; it’s a two-hour car-journey, so at least I’ll have some reading time available to me, and both my sisters will be meeting us there. We’re having to prepare a gluten-free meal before departure, because my dear-granny doesn’t quite understand the concept of the dietary requirements. I don’t think she has a desk either.