And so 2010 limps to its close and I am heartily glad to see the back of it. Not that it has been all bad, and really, even when one is miserable and despairing, the good thing is that one is alive to be miserable and despairing; and when life improves, because it always does, the comparison is all the more marked. If you can’t have the highs without the lows, then I’ll take both, ta very much for asking.
So I remember the summer as golden and glorious, punctuated by several excellent dinners and marvellously drunken staggerings home along the moonlit river. From autumn, what stands out is a good, long hike that took in hills and woods, mud and fallen leaves. On Boxing Day, University Parks was a fairy landscape of blue-whiteness.
Every season here so far has been bitter-sweet, bringing its own reminders of the Stateside equivalent in a sudden bodyslam of memories that sometimes, literally, stops me in the street. Who knows what the new year brings? I’m planning simply to play it as it lays.
Meanwhile, to distract me from January’s traditional austerity (it’ll be no cheese, no booze time again), and because life goes on going on, I’ve been looking at pretty things. As I do.
First up, and because my white plates are proving unsatisfactory, I spotted this Jasper Conran chinoiserie pattern at John Lewis:
Floral patterns are everywhere at the moment, as it seems Orla Kiely and Kath Kidston are battling it out for domestic interior supremacy. Neither quite works for me, and instead I’ve been won over by this pattern, Dandelion Clocks by Sanderson. I like its retro, 50s feel, the cool colour and the texture. I have a throw pillow in a variation on this fabric, and I don’t want to overdo it, but this is a definite contender for that day in the future when I don’t sleep in a crazily wallpapered bedroom.
In fact, it turns out that Sanderson have a positive treasury of fabrics, many of which look like the kind of thing Persephone Books plunders for its endpapers and bookmarks. In other words, my kind of thing!