Thursday, July 01, 2010
hope, swans, age
This dog is moored to the railings outside Arte Bianca, the Italian delicatessen at the bottom of Mount Sion. We are sitting across the pavement opposite him, with coffee and croissants. He is interested in the croissants. The pavement is narrow and pedestrians cannot pass or step out into the road to bypass him. Pedestrians are either amused or angry. We feel an innocent but childish pleasure when angry passers-by think that the dog belongs to us.
In Ryde there is a boating pond on the front where pleasure boats are shaped like swans. The boats as they are paddled over the pond, are joined by real swans, which swim beside them. To paraphrase Marianne Moore in her poem entitled Poetry, here is an imaginary lake with real swans in it.
In the small and excellent Seaview Hotel in Seaview in the Isle of Wight, there is a turn down service provide at about 6pm every evening. A chambermaid knocks and enquires after our needs. She asks, despite the fact that it is June 30 and a warm evening, if we would like Horlicks or a hotwater bottle. There are, it seems, a number of old guests in the hotel who appreciate Horlicks and hotwater bottles. We meanwhile feel exuberantly youthful in declining such kindness, which may well be in the scheme of things.