The storm that was predicted has arrived. It is hard to believe the weather forecast since it is so often wrong, and I would not have been surprised if it had by-passed us here on the coast. Nevertheless, here it is. The wind is howling and the snow is blowing. I ventured out to take water to the chickens, which always makes me feel like a farmer when the weather is bad. I picture myself trudging to the barn to care for the livestock, stomping my feet on the threshold before entering that space warmed by the bodies and breath of animals. It's not the way it is at the chicken house, but the dream has many advantages over the reality. When I re-enter the house it is with a sense of fulfilled responsibilty. Little is more satisfying.
My head has been full of Anna Heycroft (Alice Thomas Ellis) ever since the last book group discussion so I have been living a parallel life as I go through my routines. I am in a necessarily vague English town, either one of her characters or Anna herself. I've had the idea to write my own story, and I do it as if I were Anna, or a version of her I have formulated from reading about her and listening to Meg talk about her. The view from my window is of the English countryside or sometimes London. It resembles the landscape from the TV series "All Creatures Great and Small," since that is my only reference. There are people around me at times. I am a gracious hostess, if somewhat aloof. Part of me is always thinking about my writing. I stand a little apart, always observing.
The part of me that is not Anna keeps her regular schedule, though I may appear a little distracted due to my alternative exhisitence. I have my car running again after a dead battery forced the purchase of a new one and have driven it quite a few times now. It has no new feel, since it is only what is right for me. It is a question of returning to what should never have
been otherwise. My financial situation is still disasterous, but there is hope on the horizon with my alimony check due to arrive this week. It will not catch me up, but it will start the slow process of recovery.
I talked to Mike this morning, as we do on Sundays, and he tells me he received a ten thousand dollar bonus from his boss, with another nine thousand due in material goods to fix up his house. He has worked hard all his life and is reaping deserved benefits. I have shunned gainful employment, and am reaping my rewards as well.