I can remember playing ‘rain, rain, go away’ as one of my first pieces on the piano, along with ‘merrily we roll along’. The mothership taught me the piano while we were living in house no. 5 (Auckland) and I used to play down the phone to my grandmother in the UK, the days before FaceTime… Not that we FaceTime her now! We do sometimes FaceTime our grandparents in South Africa but they are very good at putting their fingers over the camera which always makes it interesting. You also have to try and catch them at a moment when South African internet decides to have sufficient bandwidth to reach the UK.

If you live in the UK then you will have probably noticed the rain, although Talulah told me that it was really nice weather today where she is so it’s not country wide. Anyway, rain equals mud and I had to walk home from work this morning as everyone else was out at tennis tournaments. The first ten minutes along pavements were fine but after that it all went downhill. To walk to our house from our local town you have to go across a deer park. There is a tarmac drive across it but what would be the fun in that and you have to stray off it eventually anyway. It was a bit like walking on the spot. I was wearing my old tennis shoes which have zero grip so every time I stepped, my foot slid backwards. I am very impressed I didn’t fall over! It was tipping with rain as well but I was quite hot from walking so it was a catch twenty-two situation whether to zip all my layers up or not. I made it home eventually and ate lots of chocolate coated flapjacks, best thing ever! I was so sad that my mum forgot to get some for my stocking. I might just go and buy myself a packet and eat them all at once… I really want to go sales shopping but I’m not sure when, maybe on Monday. How long do the sales last?

Back to the subject of rain, I once read a book called Apple and Rain and those were the names of sisters. I think Rain is a really cool name although if I ever have daughter I have a not-so-secret urge to name her Sakalendukiranaisanagunadharmalakshmidharavijayottunggadevi after the Balinese queen. The only problem would be if it is too long to fit onto the birth registration form, I don’t know if there is a maximum length. Also, I would have to make sure I wasn’t living in a place where there was a baby name list as somehow I don’t think it would be on it. Of course I could just go for a different name, one that you didn’t need to look up every time you wanted to spell it. A few years ago I started writing novel with a character in it called Lendi, short for the above (even though Lendi never appears it the name!). It had so many characters in that I forgot who was who which was a bit of a problem…

This afternoon I did a lot of essay writing and clarinet practice before the others got home. We had stew with mashed potatoes and vegetables for supper. My father has lit a very symmetrical fire, it looks a bit like he is trying to build a Kerplunk tower (my brother and sister helpfully pointed out to me that this is actually called Jenga but Kerplunk makes much more sense in my head). I’ve just googled it, Kerplunk is that other game with the sticks and marbles, oh well, I’ll just confuse everyone by calling them all the wrong things. Oh, apparently the fire is built like that in order to throw out more heat. He learnt in from the Norwegian wood stacking book.

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