Monday, 10 September 2012

A quick recap

I’m so far behind with this blog, my head’s spinning.
On 31st August, I went to Nottingham for the NAWG Festival of Writing where I was teaching a short story course. I had an excellent time, mainly down to the wonderful people I met there. I’d name some of them but that would mean leaving others out!
As always, the organisation was a bit shambolic, but everything worked in its own, wonky kind of way. I’d just like to say to all those lovely people I met, PLEASE do keep in touch. I was very bad about collecting cards and taking phone numbers because my head was already in Exeter!
I came home from Nottingham late on Sunday afternoon (September 2nd)  and spent a chaotic few hours rushing about finishing packing for my trip down to Devon. My mother died in March, leaving me her house. There was a big complication  in the shape of her carer who was still living there. This is a very long story, so I’m not going to tell it here, suffice to say that having found out certain things through doing probate, I gave him a choice, leave or face the consequences.
He moved out on the 24th August. If it hadn’t been for NAWG I would have gone down the next day. As it was, I had to wait until September 3rd. When I got there, the house was in a right old state. Filthy just about covers it. The garden was also in a mess, overgrown and full of weeds. I also discovered that quite a few things were missing, including the three piece suite and other furniture.
I set about putting the house to rights. I’d been concerned that staying there might have been upsetting. I have few happy memories of the house and wondered if I’d have trouble sleeping there but it was fine. In fact as I cleaned and scrubbed and tidied, I found myself starting to like the house and wishing it was in Leeds so that I could live there!  Without the clutter and the angry vibes, its sunny, spacious, light, side began to show. 
John, my ex, took me down in his car. I had him going back and forth to the skip with car loads of rubbish probably a dozen times.
Once most of the furniture was cleared, I could see the potential of the place. Of course, that made me sad as I hadn’t been able to do anything to improve things while Mum was alive. Once Denis came along, I was elbowed out. I let that happen as I thought it was best for Mum. I know better now.
While I was there, I spent a pleasant evening with some friends (they used to be my neighbours when I lived in Exeter) which was great. I also took a morning off to tour the shops, and had a few hours in Exmouth so that I at least got to see the sea!
The estate agent came round on the Tuesday to measure up (he took the photos after I’d had the furniture cleared) and the first viewers started to come along. I took a liking to family with 3 small children. They made such a noise exploring, it was lovely to see. It would be nice to sell to a family and think of the house being a happy home again.
I left on Sunday, coming home by train. John is still there, visiting friends and family.
By the time I got to Leeds, I was so tired, I couldn’t do very much at all except unpack, check some emails, then go to bed (8 p.m.!).
I’m still feeling tired today. It feels as though my feet have hardly touched the ground since before Swanwick.

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