17 April 2010

I might as well. Everybody else is. And I was on the wrong side of it until about twelve hours ago.

Well, not on the wrong side, technically. That would have put me 40,000 feet up in the air, and then we’d be talking about more problems. All I really was was somewhere my home isn’t.

‘Was’, because either the things I read and write or the work I do, or both, leave me thinking things like ‘Act at the first sign of trouble’, not to mention ‘Volcanoes don’t stop erupting in six hours.’ I hate to go somewhere without knowing at least two ways back, and most of the time I end up feeling silly. (Ever since the flu scare, my kitchen cupboard has been full of tins.)

I still write worlds where something like this always happens. Being single, solvent, non-visa-dependent and reluctantly cat-free, disruption isn’t really that upsetting. (I didn’t used to think that. I think more like a protagonist since I started to create some.) The sense of What if things didn’t go back to normal after all, and nobody thought it was remarkable?, maybe. An extra night in a big city with a hotel room booked, not so much.

I still dreamed about trains. Not unconsciously, like the kind of dreams I had for days after reading Paul Cornell’s novel about a civil war in Britain, and then I dreamed I had to promote a concert full of soldiers, and then there was a wedding in a two-up two-down house, and then a famous novelist arrived to make the seating plan. Not dreams like that. I dozed off thinking about European trains, my schoolfriends in a three-person couchette laughing at petty gossip into the night, painting my fingernails for me with a glaze I chipped off day by day until we finally flew home, and me wishing somebody mature would knock on the compartment door just to tell us how petty we all were. Now I’m that age, and maybe about to travel a lot more on European trains, and I’m nowhere near as mature as I thought somebody that age would be.

I still think I’d rather leave my characters to go twitching at the curtain on their own.


5 Responses to “Volcano”

  1. Old Kitty Says:

    And now they say stay in if you have respiratory problems especially if you live in Scotland!

    And my trains have been so empty since Thursday we regular commuters now probably hope this state of affairs will continue but that’s being selfish! Poor people getting stranded away from home or a holiday destination is not fun at all! 🙂

    A work colleague booked a flight for yesterday for Italy to specifically see the Turin Shroud. From what I hear, she’s still nowhere near that medieval fake or quite possibly the face of the Man himself!

    Now I’m dying to know what you saw on our trip…??

    Take care

  2. I’m not sure anyone’s been told that down here yet – but a light aircraft did crash in north Hampshire (they don’t know whether it was anything to do with ash or not… unfortunately it’s not the first light aircraft crash round here this year).

    There are some family friends who live under one of the big London flight paths, they must be having the quietest time of their lives!

  3. AlexJ Says:

    Wondered about you and that volcano…

  4. I couldn’t remember if I’d said anything on here about where I was or not! I tend to stack posts up in advance so that people won’t notice 🙂

  5. Ann Says:

    I dream of train travels. Sounds like a good plan to have information on two return routes.

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