Thursday, 5 April 2012

Crikey, a month since I wrote anything!!

I seem to be forever saying “I’m so busy!” lately.  But tomorrow is Good Friday, which means church for my church-going friends and for the rest of us, a four day weekend.  Oof. A chance to catch my breath...

I worked through my lunch break today; but it was the first time in over two months that I have done that.  In the previous job I had to do it two or three times a week.  The new job remains refreshingly structured and organise-able compared to the old one, too.  And my new manager Paul still hasn’t shown his Dark Side – if he has one, which I am beginning to doubt.  So busy or no I am feeling decidedly cheerful about work. 

Of course there is the odd chaotic group planner, and the odd startlingly rude one, and as always from time to time I have IT problems.  Next spring is going to be a harder sell than usual because we don’t have our regular Trop-Ex tropical flower exhibition in February, which is a great pity.  And the weather has turned chilly after a beautifully mild March.   So it isn’t all shiny, but shiny enough for now.

But Kew is looking lovely, with delicate new leaves opening everywhere, glorious displays of magnolias and crab apple blossom, the first cherry blossom, early lilac species and azaleas, and great banks of native fritillaries near the river; and my own little bit of garden in Chiswick is looking lovely too in its more modest way.   I have been busy outside of work with sketching (I’m having a real fit of duck-drawing) and sewing, and tidying the garden, and I’ve been to the David Hockney exhibition at the Royal Academy (wonderful: if you possibly can, go!) as well as two very enjoyable mixed bills by the English National Ballet and a couple of excellent concerts, including Britten’s “War Requiem” with Mark Padmore, the chap who was at school with my brother Steve, a heart-rending tenor soloist. 

ENB are in good form, though I managed to get rather a lot of Dmitri Gruzdyev, a dancer I find dismally uncharismatic, both nights – I would much prefer to have seen pretty much any of their other men as Nijinsky’s Faun, never mind as Balanchine’s Apollo – I don’t mean to sound bitchy, but Apollo he ain’t!!  The three Muses I saw were lovely, though, and Erina Takahashi was a terrific sacrifice in “The Rite of Spring”.  David Dawson’s “Faun/e”, a new piece on me, was gorgeous despite the men’s silly “will it fall off or not?” costumes, and “Suite en Blanc” looked even more luscious second time around.  

Steve, incidentally, has got his plaster cast off and is progressing well with physiotherapy.

A ray of watery sun has just filtered through the clouds; may it be a good omen for the weekend ahead! 

Against the blanched white clouds
Where last month there were only
Dark branches like scars, now
Everywhere I see shivers of green. 
Birds sing, or hop scuffling
Among the flashing celandines.
The swans stake out their usual demesne
By the lake, and a thousand coots
Chase one another like ninja chicks
Across the grey spring waters.

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