This week things are not as shiny as they should be in the run-up to the 27th – when everyone and their maiden aunt get to hear that I’ve written a book, and more importantly: that some pretty groovy people are going to publish it. Well, as it’s technically only my family and friends, it would really just be my maiden aunt, rather than everyone’s. Only I don’t have a maiden aunt. Not that I know of anyway. There may be one hiding in a broom cupboard somewhere, nibbling the legs off spiders, but I’ve never heard of her. (Mind you, if she’s the kind of person who does masticate the appendages off arachnids, maybe that’s why I’ve never heard of her! She’s some sort of stain on the family’s mental health record, so nobody talks about ‘Mad Old Aunt Euphemia, The Spider-Munching Agoraphobic’...)
The reason for this lack of gloss on the week is the sad news that Kim (wife of my brother Christopher – he of the nosey ego-style Googling) lost her father on Sunday. And while we never really knew her father, we’re very fond of Kim, so are deeply sorry for her loss.
And it also means that She-Who-Must-Be-Indulged and I have been discussing the appropriateness of having a big jelly and ice-cream style party (complete with balloons and party games – I’ve suggested ‘pin the nose on Michael Jackson’, but Fiona fears it may be in poor taste) so soon after Kim’s father’s funeral. OK it’s a celebration of something good happening and we all need that now and again, but on the other hand we don’t want to be insensitive.
And if we delay it much longer the whole announcement will be moot anyway. My birthday (think I’ve dropped enough hints about that now?) is only one week before I’m due to jet off to Norway to do the scary publicity thing.
I think we’re going to have to go ahead with it anyway, and hope that Kim feels up to coming along and letting her hair down. It really doesn’t help to say, “Life must go on,” when you’ve just had so clear and painful a reminder that sometimes: it doesn’t.