Sunday, January 04, 2009
immigrant, food, idea
Mahonia is one of those flowering plants originating in mountainous regions of Eastern Asia (there are other varieties found in southern and central America) which survive English winters. They are commonly found in gardens round here. As with so many plants, I find that I only begin to look at it closely when I know its name, and focus on its flowers, here sprinkled with frost.
We meet some neighbours in the Compasses by arrangement. From the start, and the fault is in part mine, we talk only about food. After a while I say: "We are talking only about food. We are clearly enjoying ourselves too much." There is a murmur. To break the spell I ask: "Let us consider the influence of 19th Century German, metaphysical philosophers on late 20th Century sport in Great Britain. Any ideas?". Every one looks at me with astonishment. As the French say, an angel passes. "Er..." says George. And I don't blame him. If the earth opens up, I will jump in.
I wake up with an idea in my head. I open my eyes and I decide that it is early enough to get up and write it down. As the light picks up, the idea ceases to glow as it had done earlier. But we'll give it a try. There is a scrawl in my notebook, which I can barely read. What the hell does does it mean?