Thursday, 21 June 2012

Turned out cold again....

After some rather grudging sunshine yesterday, I woke to the sort of greyness which makes it very hard to get out of bed, so I picked up my book so that I could defer the dreadful moment. It made me smile to find Dandy Gilver feeling exactly the same way in An Unsuitable Day for a Murder, the sixth in the series:
"...the bedrooms at Gilverton are amongst the chilliest bits of that chilly house and June is always the coldest month of all; we give up on the groaning, clanking radiators after Easter whenever it falls and the servants have an unshakeable penchant for throwing windows wide as part of their big spring cleaning. I sometimes think, in a spirit of mutiny, that if we hoarded the hard-won warmth of winter fires a little more jealously we might, in those odd years when the weather is kind, float all the way to summertime with the house snug about us like a tippet, instead of spending May and June noting that every day a little more comfort seeps out of the old stone walls until at last it is colder inside than out in the garden.
Mrs Tilling, briefed by Hugh one assumes although I cannot imagine the scene, sent up supper in the shape of egg and bread in a cup and a flask of cocoa and Grant, heaven be praised, left my clothes overnight on a chair. All in all, I do not think I have been so comprehensively coddled by the members of my household in the entire course of my life, and as the the dire warnings always have it, it very quickly spoiled me: the next morning, lying stretching deliciously in my warm bed with [the dog] Bunty rolling and moaning just as deliciously beside me, the thought crossed my mind that if only I had a telephone in my bedroom as they do in pictures from Hollywood I could ring Alec and begin to chew things over without the nasty preliminaries of cold floor, uncertain bath water, wet neck and draughty corridors. In my imagination my bedroom was flooded with light, my bed jacket trimmed with swansdown and my bed itself was oval in shape and raised up on a platform like a sacrificial altar in a jungle clearing. I looked around and sighed. My bedroom faced due west and was gloomy as a cave in the morning, my dressing gown hanging on the back of the door was best tartan felt with buttons from neck to ankle and my bed was one I rather suspected Hugh might have been born in; I had always been very careful not to find out for sure.

'Anyway,' I said to Bunty, who recognised my tone of voice and slithered to the floor, stretched and shook herself all over, 'what possesses a person to sleep on a platform? And how does one tuck in the sheets on an oval bed?' "

How indeed?  I wish I could share the whole book with you, really, especially my pleasure that Dandy's long-suffering husband Hugh, who rarely lifts his nose from a grim perusal of the household finances long enough to do more than grunt disapprovingly, has just come storming onto the scene in satisfactorily heroic fashion. Good old Hugh - that cheered my morning up considerably!

(My own dog is still in bed....when I got up she rolled her eyes at me and stayed firmly put.)

8 comments:

  1. I have no idea what this book or series is so I think I'll go and look it up as it sounds great. LOL.

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    1. Cath, start with After the Armistice Ball and ideally read them in order - I think they are terrific. The period detail is excellent and Dandy is a woman of great character!

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  2. This sounds positively delightful! Another author I'll put on my list...

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    1. It's another series that gets better as it goes on, the author is really steeped in the period now.

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  3. Sounds like great fun and a book I should be reading right now, as it's so hot here I'm melting and can't imagine snuggling in bed to try to stay warm (ask me about that again in, say, October). Perfect description, though, if I recall correctly of the one spring I spent in England (wondering why it was so frowned upon to light the fire in June, when, certainly, the temperature was no different and the sky was no grayer than it had been in December).

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    1. A fire!? In June!? Good grief, woman, it'll encourage softness in the chaps...we quite often light the fire, actually, but for my parents it's almost unheard of now until at least October (which is why I'm always wearing 4 sweaters when I visit). I'm sorry you're melting, it's freezing here.

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  4. I saw After the Armistice BAll once on Amazon and didn't get it.....I've been trying to find it ever since, because of your review back then! lol I've seen a few other reviews and they are all raving about this author. I'll check Amazon again. I have a gift certificate from my birthday to use :-)fingers crossed it's listed again! Otherwise I think my library has a copy.

    Lovely review, by the way, I like the clash between her daydream and the reality, satisfactorily realistic, aren't they? at least that's the way it goes between the picture and my head and what it around me, too! lol

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    1. I love them, Susan - if you can't find it let me know and I'll send you a copy! I think I've spent my last gift certificate six times over now - they *do* renew themselves, don't they?

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