An A to Z of what’s ahead

I didn’t mean to disappear for quite so many days, but I have had a difficult week.

I finally left the job I used to love that had turned into a nightmare. I shall miss the staff team terribly and I shall always believe in the work we did, but there was a change at the top and … for the sake of my family and my sanity, I had to walk away.

But I don’t want to dwell on the negative, I want think about other things …

A is for AUNTS with birthdays in April. I’m knitting a lovely neckwarmer in Posh Yarn for one and I have in mind a cowl from some lovely Fyberspates DK that has been in my stash for so long for the other.

B is for BLUEBELLS. I love walking through the woods when bluebells are out, and they should be very, very soon.

C is for CLEARING THE DECKS. I have a final batch of books to introduce, a project page to update, and an update post to write.

D is for DEAD SMILE.  The only novel by C C Vyvyan, whose writing I fell in love with last year. It’s a very rare book but the Morrab Library has a copy that I can read there. That’s just what I plan to do before I find a new job.

E is for ETTA. I’ve not knitted a hat for a while but this one is calling and I have a skein of the recommended yarn that I could use.

F is for FILLING THE GAPS. I need to read those books I’ve been meaning to read for ages as well as new books and books to be cleared out. And I’m sure there are some posts I need to add to the project blog.

G is for GROOMING. Border terriers have double coats and twice a year they must have the harsh top-coat stripped to reveal the new coat beneath. So very soon Briar will be off to the groomers and she should look very smart, and feel much cooler, when she emerges.

H is for HAYLE RUGBY CLUB. They have a weekly car boot sale. We’ve been a few times and now we’re decided to pay our £5 for a pitch and clear out some books and some other things that have been hanging around for far too long.

I is for INVENTION. The Invention of Murder by Judith Flanders. I have been in the library queue for ages, but now I have had an email to say that it’s waiting for me.

J is for JAMRACH’S MENAGERIE by Carol Birch. I loved the look of this book when I saw it on the longlist for the Orange Prize, but the Cornish Library Service doesn’t have a single copy. Jennifer from Canongate was kind enough to send me a copy, and reading it is high on my list of priorities.

K is for KNITTING. It’s lovely to have a little more knitting time. First I shall finish the aforementioned birthday knits. Then I shall look at the other projects in progress and decide whether to finish or frog. And when I am up to date and organised I shall look at reducing my stash and my Ravelry queue.

L is the next letter is my Crime Fiction Alphabet. The book is read and a post should be appearing tomorrow.

M is for MALABRIGO. I have one lovely read skein, and it is calling loudly.

N is for NOTHING. I need to wind down and learn not to feel guilty about sometimes doing nothing at all.

O is for ORGANISATION. Needed on many fronts!

P is for PYM. On my last day at work I had to go to the bank to sort a few things out. Afterwards I popped into a nearby charity shop and spotted a collection of Barbara Pym’s writings that I didn’t know existed: Civil to Strangers and Other Writings. It was just 75p, so of course I snapped it up.

Q is for QUEUE. I am in the library queue for rather a lot of books at the moment. When I resigned I decided to line up a few books for when I wasn’t working, and then the longlist for the Orange Prize was published. I found more books that I wanted to read that weren’t in my library but could be ordered in from other libraries in the county …

R is for RIVER. I’m halfway through Invisible River by Helena McEwan and it’s lovely. I must thank Alice at Bloomsbury for letting me have a copy.

S is for SCISSORS PAPER STONE by Elizabeth Day. A debut novel that doesn’t seem to have received too much attention, but it should because it is very, very good. A post is formulating in my head …

T is for TIME. There are so many things that I can do with just a little more time.

U is for UNMATCHED MITTEN. Last time I wrote an A to Z post, quite a few months ago, it featured a single mitten. I still haven’t knitted its partner but I really must.

V is for VACCINATION. Briar has been summoned by the vet for her annual check-up and booster. She doesn’t like it, but it’s got to be done.

W is for WHEN GOD WAS A RABBIT by Sarah Winans. A lovely debut novel, recommended to me by Helena at Headline.

X is for … I’m not quite sure what. I have possibilities for all of the outstanding letters in my Crime Fiction Alphabet but X is going to be tricky. There are a couple of possibilities, but neither of them are really calling me.

Y is for YARN FORWARD. One of my favourite knitting magazines, but I must remember that it has been renamed so now I need to look for Knit!

Z is for ZZZZZ. Well, it is getting late!

17 responses

  1. What a lovely post! And what an exciting time for you – the start of something new!! I am in a similar position….left a job where I’ve been for yonks and really enjoying librarianship studies online….your Barbara Pym looks a fantastic find!!! Hugs and kisses to Briar for being such a brave puppy at the vets….I hate needles too:)

    • Exciting yes, but nerve-wracking too. Librarianship studies online sounds wonderful and I hope it leads you to some wonderful places.

  2. Good luck with all the changes in your life!

    I was expecting to see “B is for BRIAR,” or “D is for DOG,” and was surprised Briar didn’t make an appearance until V, and for something unpleasant at that.

    How about “X is for XTRA SPECIAL DOG” ?

    • I am sure Briar will get a whole A to Z one day. But for the moment she does have G for grooming as well as the nasty but necessary V.

  3. Love the hat…how about posting the instructions. Also glad to see someone else loves Barbara Pym. I thought I had all her books, but apparently not, since I don’t own the two you mention, My only friend who loved her as much as I do died 4 years ago, and there are not many people here on LI who even know who she is when I mention her name. I bought her books when my daughter lived in London,

    • The designer has copyright on the hat pattern, but she has made it available for free on Ravelry. It’s definitely worth signing up if you haven’t already.

      And had you noticed, I wonder, that Virago have reissued a few Barbara Pyms in the last few years? It’s a quiet revival, but you will find many other who love her in the LibraryThing Virago Modern Classics Group, and I believe that there’s a small group devoted to all things Pym too I believe.

  4. Sorry to hear about your job, sounds painful but necessary. But some bright spots with the knitting and Barbara Pym, what a great find! Sadly, the used bookstores and charity shops here seem to have a dearth of such things. I’ll have to keep looking. Or maybe a trip to Hay-on-Wye? I can only dream.

    Please keep us posted about your knitting, that hat is adorable. Will you knit it in purple or another color?

    • Painful but necessary is it exactly. I always meant to do regular knitting posts, and one day I will get organised and actually do it.

  5. I haven’t been by for a while but now I see you have lots of changes going on. Good for you for having the courage to walk away from a nightmare. I love your A to Z, especially all your knitting plans. I’ve been very lazy with my knitting the past few months but I’m itching to begin again. I’ve missed coming by here and promise I’ll be back again soon.

    • Margot, I know you’ve had painful changes of a differnt kind, but it will be lovely if we can both get back to exchanging regular visits when time allows.

  6. What a lovely post – I like the challenge of trying to fit things to an alphabet. It sounds like you have many positive things despite the nightmare of the job; I’ll join with the other commenters in wishing you luck for the next few months.

  7. A great post with a lot of things to look forward to 🙂 Well done on spotting a rare Pym! I’ve not done any knitting for ages but it has been whispering to me of late… Be brave, Briar, it’ll be over in the blink of an eye!

  8. A wonderful post filled with so many great things…especially that Pym book! What a steal, of course you had to grab it!

    Here’s to enjoyment-filled days and more cuddle time with Briar.

    • I couldn’t quite believe that Pym appeared just as I needed bibliotherapy. And it’s been lovely to have a little more time with Miss Dog today instead of rushing out after her morning jaunt.

  9. Take care, Fleur. The temptation when you finally walk away from a job is that you try to do too much in all that time you now have when what you ought to be doing is taking it easy and getting over the experience. Take warning from one who knows, don’t set yourself too many goals, just rest for a while.

  10. I like others wish you well for the forthcoming months. I hope things turn out right for you.

    I agree with Annie, do not set yourself too much as it can be counter productive. Plenty of Z an T I think.

    Look forward to reading about some of the books. And glad to know there is another knitter out there! Even though mine is rather lacking at the moment.

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