exhibition at Tate Modern a few weeks ago, I had a bit of an epiphany. It was a Friday evening. The gallery was packed with people. But sitting on one of their wooden benches, I managed to do that thing that accomplished commuters can pull off after years of practice - completely disengage from the hubbub around me. (This can be a troublesome thing - I have several times in the last few weeks gone past my stop on the tube as a result of complete disengagement.) And that was it, looking at his brown and gray paintings, I got that quality that Sara Maitland in her Book of Silence described as as silence made visible.
Being a shallow individual, I got something else too - how well brown and grey work together. I pulled out all my grey stuff and started matching it up with brown and managed to recreate a rustic-fifties- spinster look that was just about perfect for the time of year. I've been very pleased with my drabness.
I've spent today sitting by the fire, reading a Brunetti mystery (more brown), darning those moth damaged scarves and polishing my shoes, no radio, no noise, revelling in the peace and quiet.
And now I feel quite recovered from the nasty bug I've had this week which left me unable to stomach anything other than Heinz tomato soup and milky drinks. It's snowing outside. The garden has disappeared under an icy duvet. I've just taken a carrot and two pieces of coal to some boys making a snowman. Magic.