Saturday, March 18, 2006

Scooter-balloon, wildlife, "livre dangereux"

Yesterday, I saw the wind swell a bin liner, and blow it upwards like a living, swaying mushroom, while it was still anchored to its litter bin. Today, a plastic tarpaulin stretched over and secured to a parked scooter, fills up with wind. It looks as though someone is writhing about on the scooter, pretending to ride it at great speed and leaning from side to side as he or she negotiates imaginary bends in an imaginary road.

In a gift shop shop, which is closing down, I find a book called Garden Wildlife published by the Wildlife Trust which has pictures of the slugs and snails, worms and centepedes, insects and spiders as well as the birds, reptiles and mammals, which visit our gardens. It will be useful to be able to give a name to a great grey slug, green shield bug or a two-tailed bristletail when next I meet one.

In Hall's bookshop I pick up a copy of that nasty French, eighteenth century novel called Les Liasons Dangereuses. The previous owner has pencilled on the fly leaf a quotation from Alfred de Musset, which clearly marks his disapproval: "Livre qui est plus dangereux que les liasons dont il parle."

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