Monday, April 14, 2003

Weekend? What weekend?

I've just had the most bizarre weekend. Fleur and I weren't feeling particularly well, so we slept through Saturday. No joke. I got up for a couple of hours between 6pm and 11pm to watch The Man Who Wasn't There on DVD and read a bit, but otherwise, the majority of Saturday was spent asleep.

So after this most relaxed of Saturdays, I was determined to have a more energetic Sunday. I got up at 10am, mainly because I had to - being on call - and since Fleur showed no signs of getting up, and me being all slept out - I got back to my book. I'm reading Paul Auster's New York Trilogy at the moment, having recommended it to Jim earlier last week, I wanted to re-read it myself. It's as good as I remember it, and I finished the first of the three short stories inside of two hours. There's a scene near the end of the first story, where the main character, Quinn, actually meets Auster (a characteristically self-indulgent touch by the author), and is introduced to his wife Siri.

Her name stuck in my head, because it's such an unusual one.

Later in the afternoon, Fleur and I headed off to Guildford to do some shopping, where I picked up a delightful Le Creuset griddle pan in granite, which was on sale. As usual, we headed into Waterstones, and during my usual trek down to "S" to look at all the Will Self books I never quite get around to buying, I had a very Auster-like moment.

I noticed an unusual name on a bookcover as I was passing it - Siri Hustvedt. I thought that they can't be that many Siri's around, so picked up the book, called The Blindfold, and had a poke under the front cover. Sure enough - "Siri lives in Brooklyn, New York" and the dedication was to one Paul Auster. I read the overview of the book, and quite liked the sound of it, so I bought it. Auster's always writing about chance and fate, and had I not read the first story of The New York Trilogy that morning, I never would have made the mental connection and bought his wife's book. I think he would have liked the thought of me being introduced to her work like that.

As if that wasn't enough to make it a memorable weekend - the flushing mechanism broke on the bog, necessitating a plumber having to come out to replace the mechanism for a tidy £110. You never really appreciate just how vital these things are until they break - so it's a bit of a bargain, really.

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