Let's do the alphabet first - I promise it wasn't a 'fix, but I was very pleased that the letter E conincided with EPIPHANY!
So I went out this morning and 'chalked the door'
I only came across this custom a few years go, and this is the first year I have had any chalk (about 30 sticks - I ordered three packets by mistake)
20 + C + M + B + 21
the 20 and 21 make up 2021, and in between are C M B; this could be Caspar, Melchior and Balthasar, the traditional names for the three wise men, or it could be for Christus mansionem benedicat, meaning Christ bless our home.
You can google and find complete litanies and make a ceremony, or, as I did, just stand there in front of the door for a second and say 'Lord have mercy' which is about all I can manage at the moment.
The letters will be gone tomorrow - it has been raining of and on most of the day.
No proper walk today - I did have a quick look around the garden this morning but it was so cold and raw outside that I didn't stay long. Just long enough to see that this year's sweet peas which came back to life after I cut them down and put them in the 'waiting to go into the compost bin' have all sprouted again and survived the frost, and to notice the shoots for bulbs poking up through the ground here and there.
I had some good news this morning - I've been using a new exam board for students wanting to take piano exams. Last term two young lads took their 'Prep' test and both passed. This is a slightly more nail-biting exam than the old Associated Board version which didn't have pass/fail - just an encouraging report. Today I leaned that the girl doing her Grade 2 a week before Christmas passed, in spite of being quite distracted by everything Christmassy in her life. I had my fingers crossed for her, and my toes, but all's well that ends well. Phew.
Today has been remarkably free of chocolate and so on - I expect we will hit the biscuits quite soon. We did have Christmas pudding after lunch - Green Thai Curry (Waitrose cook from scratch meal) followed by a Heston Bluhmental pudding and clotted cream> Perhaps a tad more international than normal but these are Strange Times.
Here's a poem to finish with, by Edwin Morgan;
What I love about music is its scale
what I hate about muesli is its adherence
what I love about meaning is its itinerary
what I hate about the printer is its reproduction
what I love about the sky is its aspiration
what I hate about the world is its weight
what I love about saltires is their ire and their salt
what I hate about Kings Cross is its intersections
what I love about chickens is their coronation
what I hate about morning is repetition
what I love about Veronica is her proliferation
what I hate about Janus is his duplicity
what I love about the sprite is its effervescence
what I hate about tower blocks is their eyelid-batting
what I love about nostrils is their déjà vu
what I hate about candour is its putridness
what I love about closets are their ecosystems
what I hate about springs is their optimism
what I love about deviance is its recreation
what I hate about absence is its omnipresence
what I love about discretion is its sensibilities
what I hate about poetry is its abandon
what I love about headlines is their brevities
what I hate about the universe is its expansiveness
what I love about love is its inheritance
I found this poem here when I was looking for his first version of the poem, written much earlier, called
'A View of Things'. I like this one better.