I had great plans for doing a lot of work when my daughter went back to college after time off to allow a badly broken and dislocated ankle to recover somewhat. A much anticipated stay in the Tyrone Guthrie centre at Annamakerrig at the end of February, where I would begin work at last on my stunning new novel, already a work of genius in my head.. Prints to finish that I had been working on before the accident, the last story to finish for my collection before sending it out into no-mans land; a new novel to begin, a return to oil painting after many years absence, housework even (well that was a long shot!)..but the fates had other plans. Two days later I fell and fractured my elbow and wrist. A fall with no rhyme or reason. Scary that. I’d been boasting to my daughter that I’d never ‘broken a bone in my life’. I have a sense that the subconscious exerts a much greater power over our lives than we are aware of, so more scary even. Why was I subconsciously trying to wreck my own plans, stealing my daughter’s thunder?
This introduction is not a lead in to some great spiritual revelation or epiphany- I still don’t understand it except to possibly acknowledge that something was prompting me to slow down, take some time out. Meanwhile after one of the hospital appointments I wandered into Barker and Jones in Naas and picked up their newsletter. One of their recommended books for March was ‘The Future of the Mind’ by Michio Kaku which I subsequently bought. I listened to Michio Kaku on YouTube and am hoping that when I read the book I will have a better understanding of the mind….. and be able to harness it’s power to have loads of publishers bidding for my book, Eileen Battersby looking for my autograph and of course many best selling exhibitions. Fame and fortune to follow. I’ll keep you posted.You can watch Michio Kaku here:
So.. after the inevitable cursing of fate and the sense of being pursued by some malign spirit, I decided to make the best of it. Driving was out, writing, drawing (right hand of course..) so another strategy was called for. Dublin just a short trip away up the N7 on Bus Eireann, free Wi-Fi on the way, a good friend with a lovely house in Ranelagh willing to put up with me for a while..and hey ho off we go.
Some things fell into place. I was invited to be the first featured reader in the last Wednesday series- which has re-launched itself as the Sunflower Sessions in Nealon’s pub in Capel St. and takes place on the last Wednesday of each month. Link here:The Sunflower Sessions – Open Mic Night
I’d almost forgotten how much I enjoy reading. It was a great night in Nealons and I’ll be back there next Wednesday when the featured reader is John Kearns all the way from New York. Looking forward to it.
My nephew invited me to come to lunch in his work place in the Airbnb premises near the Grand Canal. What a revelation that was!. Free restaurants on site for the employees (and their guests), breakfast when you go in in the morning, and if its anything like the lunch- for someone like me who loves all types of salads it was like being in a sweetshop with far too many choices and wondering what to leave behind. I never even made it to the hot food section. And of course a big bowl of fresh fruit salad for dessert. Only healthy food on offer, no sticky buns or creamfilled cakes. Work areas close by, piles of fruit and coffee making facilities and healthy snacks and juices easily accessible from all work areas…seemed like heaven to me. What I really want is to move in – the age group was a bit young but how charming and welcoming they all were! I wonder if they have any openings for honorary mammy figures. Hmmm. www.airbnb.com
I figured how to get to the Grand Canal from Stephen’s Green- no mean feat for a woman with severely delayed developmental issues in relation to a sense of direction. I wandered around Grand Canal dock. I love the futuristic design of the Bord Gáis energy theatre. Designed by world renowned architect Daniel Liebeskind, its the largest theatre in Ireland The design is set off by the installation in front and by those striking red steel poles which light up at night. And when you look down the Grand Canal and seawards there’s the sense of history, of the bustle of everyday life in previous days.
I strolled through the park in Merrion Square on the way back, contemplated the ducks and a noisy group of foreign teenage students brimming with youth and joy. All those beautiful Georgian buildings around the square built in the latter half of the 18th century. When Oscar Wilde lived at Number 1 the park was for residents only and even up to the sixties residents had keys.
Besides there was a lot of coffee with friends and dawdling around bookshops in Rathmines and Ranelagh, marvellous Tapas in La Bodega- and none of the usual quick flurry of visits to exhibitions, openings, readings, book-launches.
Besides being thoroughly enjoyable in itself I’m hoping that this is all part of nature’s great plan for me. (It better be –you can deal with the journey through the tunnel if there’s even a chink of light at the end). I love Julia Cameron’s idea of ‘Filling the well’ from ‘The Artists Way’ and that ideas that develop in this type of pause in the normal events of life will make up for the time missed in developing the projects on hold for a few weeks. And if you’re listening in, Miss Worbys ghost- no you haven’t scared me away, one of these months I’ll be along to Annamakerrig to see you , so hang in there.