Jan's View

By HarlingDarling

the building supplier's store room

Oh how I love places like this! Love the smell, the order, the amount of stuff, the usefulness of everything and the nice men who work there. Some women these days, but still a preponderance of blokes. Nice blokes. Helpful, knowledgeable, encouraging. We spent about £5 on some sheets of polystyrene to insulate the door that Keith has botched repaired temporarily for the winter. Super friendly even though it was mere pennies. We'll be back to buy more blocks of polystyrene to lay on the roof of the van to protect the hatches and the solar panel from the snow.

I was in the second hand shop, mooching for ages. I don't wish to reveal how long so I am being deliberately vague. Here is the haul: 
*A small decorated egg from India.
*A patterned bowl that matches two other china things we have, from Spain. For snacks, such as carrot sticks, definitely not for crispa although that was my first (fat) thought.
*An unused hanging wash-bag to have in the bathroom in the van.
*2 balls of white mercerised cotton for knitting with (needed to mix with some gorgeous wool that I need to "fill out" a bit). (I have tons of yarn, I'm sorry for buying more) (not really though)
*A string of really poor quality but some are excellent amber beads. All are polished, come on, a bargain!
*4 wooden knobs with screws to use on the stupid table + two drawers in my work room. The drawers are lacking handles and have a lock in the middle so I have bought two knobs for each drawer. Mad.
*A beautifully crafted, wooden rocker-blotter? not sure really. It's called Puchi and I can find nothing about it on the web. I will use it for bookbinding, pressing glued papers together. It's lovely (£1)
*A spiral bound book of black paper for mounting some of my drawings into. the binding is huge and will accept the thickness of the additional card. Excellent, I am still trying to present the work from 2019, never mind the current drawings.
* a pair of black padded trousers with zips from waist to foot, perfect!
* A huge table cloth in stripes of autumn rainbow colours, ie muted. It's so lovely and will cover the boring but comfortable armchair very nicely. Or even the table.
* John Le Carré's A Legacy of Spies
*Donna Tartt's The Little Friend
*Ocean Vuong's On Earth We're Briefly Gorgeous
*Dr Rangan Chattergee's The 4 Pillar Plan (he has a great blog and podcast, suggested by GreenGirl)

All this was marvellous of course, but for a mere 25 Swedish Kronor, £2 to you, a hand made wine glass from the studio of Åsa Brandt in Torshälla takes the prize. I was given some of her studio glass when I left Sweden (briefly as it turned out) in 1983. My friend Sine lives down the road from her and has known her forever and bought her glass forever too. It's unmistakable and I knew it was Åse's as soon as I saw it. We have celebrated it coming into our home by getting the other (pink, present from Keith) one of a similar size out of the cupboard and filling them both with a good red wine!! The new one is clear with speckled white that looks like snowflakes, and with a bit of amber coloured glass below the bowl. Understated, Scandinavian elegance. (About 40 pounds a pop on the web)

Total extravagance: A bit south of £40. Considering how crazy the rules on getting books from the UK are, this is an absolute snip for the books alone. I love my second hand shop, there is no reason to buy anything new as long as you are happy to browse and enjoy hunting and gathering. For ages. Regularly. Everyone says hi to me, which I like.

In other news: The Conversation went well, we were speaking for 90 minutes, about three quarters of which was general conversation around politics, and the rest was more the nitty gritty. We had a very good exchange of thoughts and all three people came away with new things to think about and work on. Pretty good result I think. (I was so busy second hand shopping I was almost rushing to be on time!)

In other other news: it has rained quite steadily all day, but not a lot. I am not a fan of dampness but have renewed my promise to myself to love rain, life giving water, think of those places longing for water etc etc. The garden isn't singing though, it's managing. Good, because we have a lot more on the way. It is no longer summer, it is deepest autumn, the trees are turning golden and red, and dropping their leaves when it's windy. Not the evergreens of course, they are as ever, green.

In other other other news: I did my drawing early today, as in back to the norm. It's a springtime Betty's, my workroom-house, and it was nice to work on it. I love this little cabin! Extra.

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