Yellow lilies

I think I rather owe you all a bit of an update, but I don’t really have anything in particular to say, so this will be a bitty, somewhat under-structured post. Oh well. You love me anyway. Don’t you?

I have successfully endured the second week of term, and the first week of lectures. I think I can now reliably get my self from the main library to any given lecture theatre I am time-tabled to be in. I can also reliably name at least six classmates, most of my tutors, and most of the buildings; I can catalogue most anonymously authored books according to the British Museum Rules (which are stark staring bonkers), I feel that one day very soon I will know the difference between cataloguing and classifying, and I have memorized my computer services user ID. On the other hand, I have yet to cry in public or go to the pub with my new classmates, and I can’t for the life of me work out why Management lectures are so astonishingly boring. On balance, however, I think we can safely say the docking process is complete and all shall be well, and all shall be well, and all manner of things shall be well.

[As she is in a sunny and optimistic mood this weekend, she probably won't mention just how frazzled she was by Friday afternoon, and how she had a little tantrum about what with full-time degree and part-time work, she had no time to study during the week and she wanted her weekends back already, thank you. As she has since found the time to mess about online and then write this, I have no sympathy whatsoever - Ed]

[Also, she is writing this on her lap-top, in bed, at 5pm, with tea brought to her bedside by kindly elves. And she wanted sympathy for her stressy life. I hate her.]

The Literate Kitten is holding an exceedingly cool Horror Short Story Short Challenge this month. She has listed her top ten horror stories; we, the volunteers, are each reading one we like the look of, and for added bonus points, we can always list our own top ten, and thereby create a general, LK’s readers’, top ten horror stories of all time. I am reading The Horla, by Guy de Maupassant. I am also covering the bedside table with ghost-story collections so as to post my top ten by the middle of October, and feeling agreeably nervous of the dark.

[And the Inner Goth is demanding we dye her hair black].

Anything else? Oh yes. I am making myself a sweater, as you do when large quantities of discounted yarn swim into your ken. I was working away at it on the bus on Friday, as knitting on buses is a surprisingly good way to make sure nobody sits down next to you if they can possibly help it, and also it soothes the general desire to stick something sharp into the ear of the extremely noisy person shrieking into his mobile phone like a man trying to spread inanity to Cardiff by unaided lung-power. [The cute irony being that you are actually and for once holding an appropriately-sized sharp object]. A lady got on the bus with a large bunch of heavily-perfumed lilies and sat across the aisle from me, and I remember being vaguely aware she was watching me. By all means, public, please do watch me knit. I am very good at it [Just don't shout 'Oy darling! Make us a scarf then!' if you want to live to see the next stop].

As I got off the bus, the Lily Lady caught up with me and asked if she could ask me a random question. I said yes, slowly, in a ‘what? Why?’ voice.

‘Are you going home or going out now?’

‘I’m going home,’ I said, still somewhat bewildered, and I hope not actively frowning or raising my eyebrows sternly (my face gets away from me when I am startled).

And she gave me the lilies.

It was her last day at work, and the lilies were a present, and she can’t bear the smell (much as S can’t bear the piña colada smell of Broom in flower). As they were a present, she couldn’t bear to throw them away either. Someone going home, who liked lilies, could have them for the taking, and I happened to catch her eye, because I was knitting. So she asked me. And I do like lilies.

There was a time Serendipity was one of my favourite words, until I found out it was everyone else’s too.

Thank you, Lily Lady. They are blooming on the dining-room table now, and are inexpressibly lovely.

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4 Responses to Yellow lilies

  1. Charlotte says:

    Glad to hear you are finding your way around and getting settled in. I imagine studying and working part-time are not easy.

    Yay for the Lily Lady! Nothing like a surprise bunch of flowers for cheering-up purposes.

  2. LK says:

    Yellow lilies–now, that’s a good name for a story.

    Hope The Horla is sufficiently maddening for you. Guy deMaupassant is a complete nutjob, and I love him for it.

    Can’t wait to hear if you have more recommendations from your ghost story collections — please let me know so I can include them on my Readers Choice list.

  3. Helen says:

    Wah, that is so lovely about the lilies! Funnily enough, I am allergic to them, and probably would have chucked them away if someone gave them to me. It was a nice idea of her to pass them on. (My constant bland use of the word “nice” is catching – it is now Kikzy’s new favourite word – everything is currently “nice”… which is nice, only I feel guilty that I’m not enriching his vocabulary more. At least it makes a change from toilet terms, which were wildly popular until a few days ago).

  4. archie FCD says:

    Unexpected gifts are the best. There is at least a short story in the lead-up to that gift. I wish I had the talent to write it :)

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