The Importance of Being Moira

I did two significant things today.

First I posted off my application for a writer’s bursary. If I am lucky enough to be selected for this I will receive money to continue the research for my novel and further the development of my creative writing courses.

The second was to go to Glasgow’s Western Infirmary for a chest Xray. My doctor suggested this because she is not happy with my persistent cough. While I was sitting in the waiting room I finished the excellent book, My Year Off by Robert McCrum, which is an honest account of the author’s recovery from a stroke he had when he was only forty two years old. This may not have been the best book to read in a hospital waiting room but a loved one recently suffered a similar fate and I wanted to understand the condition.

As I walked out onto Church Street I thought about the fragility of our lives and how, in seconds, our futures can drastically change course. I thought about the possible outcomes of my application and my Xray. One I hope is positive, the other negative, no guesses as to which outcome goes with which event.

Such ponderings could have led to low spirits, but they didn’t. They provided me with a startling clarity of what is important in my life. My spirits lifted, I treated myself to a delicious lunch at Peter’s Restaurant, Hyndland Street, I tried on expensive dresses I couldn’t afford in Hyndland Road and I found and bought the handbag I have been seeking for almost two years. This seems very indulgent and it was, but I also had fun haggling with the fruit seller in Bryes Road and selecting fish for the freezer from the fish monger.

Now I am at home, when I should be somewhere else.

I am sitting in a cosy kitchen, sipping a glass of my home made wine, listening to the radio and admiring the ruby red pots of plum jam and plum compote I have just made for Colin and my lovely family who I am going to visit tomorrow.


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