Day 30 November 30, 2009
I dreamed all night ... and remembered the dreams ... that's rare for me ... but I didn't dream about Mark even though we talked on the phone at about 9 p.m.
I dreamed about George ... Big George ... the incompetent worker who messed up a great deal of my house ... for some ungodly reason I had hired him again ... and he was busy making my life hell by setting my radio on some awful rock station with the volume on high ... and then when I protested, he turned on the television to something equally inane and just as loud ... and I don't even own a tv. And he had not become more competent in the past couple of years either.
Bill showed up in that dream too ...sharing my house ... and giving me his laundry to do ... and then I found myself in a laundromat with former colleagues who were all more competent than I was. I escaped with the wet clothing by car with two men and a woman ... we were all leaning against one another ... sort of like kittens in the back seat of the car ... and all the wrong couple members were cuddling ...
I am sure there is some deep important message in all this but I haven't time to figure it out just now ... maybe in the second draft ... I still have about 4000 words to write today. And this novel is about as coherent as that dream sequence was ... sorry.
This morning I cuddled for a while with Kenya. her coat is luxurious in the winter ... thick and smooth and smelling wonderfully clean. And she is building it rather than discarding the ratty bits now so the house is a little cleaner.
It snowed in the night. I love the look of fresh snow against the dark grey of the lake and the black skeletons of wintery trees.
I will have to pay Leonard soon. Tanya gave me her share of the plowing yesterday and I offered to look after Oberon (her cat) for a month while she goes to visit Jordan and Egypt with her sister. Kenya will be delighted. She likes cats that like dogs, and she has lived with Oberon before and likely will again this summer when Tanya goes to Scotland. Tanya came back to the house with me and picked up all my literature on Jordan including a huge scrapbook type report I created after my sojourn there.
CBC (no, the dial had not been changed in the night) was re-broadcasting an Anna Maria Tremonte interview with David McGuinty, the Liberal environment critic. I turned it off partway through. I hate being reminded of the stupidity of the Conservative government under Stephen Harper ... and therefore of the stupidity of Canadians who keep on giving him another opportunity to make Canada look like a totally uncaring country.
The other day an American very carefully added his voice to the criticism. He didn't want to dump on us because he wasn't Canadian ... but he pointed out all the occasions when Canada has been a moral leader in world opinion. He emphasized that the weight of our positive influence has always been much greater than the power that might have been expected from the size of our economy or population. Then he said that, in light of our history, it was particularly surprising that Canada under this prime minister would be so recalcitrant on the issue of the environment.
So then I moved to the computer. In my Quarantine Box were a whole bunch of those weird little subjects ... the ones that are just words strung together without meaning. Two stood out: "ago finished gotta" and "really truly finished". So I decided to stop procrastinating and get back to writing those last 4000 words. I feel a little like the male lead in You've Got Mail" as I flex my typing fingers and set to work. Remember the scene in which she asks for business advice and tells her to go to the mattresses?
Okay enough procrastinating preamble ... on to the night and day before the train trip to Toronto.
Oh ... I've almost got it written ... She drives to the train station dropping her dog at Tammy's enroute.
And now here she is on the train. Nothing much happens here. She plays with her journal. When she was traveling to and from Britain she discovered how to use water colour pencils and a brush with a tank of water while traveling. She discovered that it worked better on a plane than on a train.
"Damn," I muttered as the water made a jagged gash over the page. I had been trying tp map out a schedule and was using the water colour to separate the itinerary from the rest of the page where I hoped to add little drawings to illustrate this first meeting with my cousins. "You'd think they'd repair these tracks. After all this is a well-used route. Train travel used to be pleasant."
I thought about the trip from Ulaan Baatar to Beijing. That was a dream of a trip ... but except for the beauty of the landscape and the very few signs of human or animal habitation, there had not been much opportunity to draw anything very interesting. No, it had been a trip that reminded me just how vast and empty Mongolia was, and one that gave me a new insight into how rough Chinese justice could be. No friendly faces when these customs officers boarded the train after we switched over to the different track system. It took hours to re-fit the wheels so that they would work on the Chinese gauge tracks. Both sets of tracks, however, were superior to these Canadian tracks. It really shouldn't surprise anyone that Canada is dragging its heels on the energy stuff ... they allowed the less polluting train system that linked all Canadians to wither away over thirty years ago.
I slept for a while and ate a snack. Then I knit several rows on the LONG foot of Tyren's second sock, read a chapter of my book (Iced Under) ... and soon we reach Union Station.
It took a bit of work to find out how to get from downtown Toronto to Mimico, but it was less wearing than traveling under London ... and not nearly as crowded. Canadians use their cars far more than do Londoners so passengers on public transit in Canada tend to be poorer generally ... immigrants ... students ... the old. Everyone takes the tube in London so you are likely to travel standing up in the midst of people of all ages, classes and colours. It helps to be older there, though, because the young are still inclined to offer you a seat, especially if you hang over them looking pained. Canadian youngsters are better at ignoring you. Or maybe it never even occurs to them.