A lazier start to the morning today. Feel I might have been coming down with something (pause for swooning ...) but have had a dose of Lemsip and feel much better, thank you. Played golf with Marian before lunch - the course was pleasantly empty in spite of the school holidays. And, pleasingly, the two lads that started behind us were actually slower than we were (rare in today's young male golfer, I have to say!) so we easily pulled ahead. Oh, and I got a par (a par!! Ye gods, the age of miracles is not dead!) on the first and looked - for a brief while - like a super-hip golfing professional. However I might have peaked too soon ... All in all though, we had a good time and didn't play badly. We both managed to get our balls in the pond on the sixth though - which is nicer than it sounds as we don't usually manage to strike them so far. Luckily, the ducks paddling on the pond at the time survived the experience. Well, they should be more careful on a golf course ... What do they expect?
Afterwards, we were chatting to the club receptionist about life, the universe and golf (in order of rising importance), and she was apparently startled to realise I am only 42. She thought I was in my 50s. Yikes! The optimist in me is hoping that this is due to the fact that Marian is in her mid 60s and I am deemed old by conjunction, but I now fear that too much staring at the computer screen and lack of decent beauty products in my 20s are at last taking their toll. I am rushing for more of Jane H's special Nutrimetics (http://www.nutrimetics.co.uk) apricot oil and a date with the plastic surgeon even as I type. Alas, I fear however that particular horse may have bolted a long time since. I am a Hag before my time! Thank goodness Lord H's sight is so bad. He probably believes I'm Marilyn Monroe. I wish.

I have done some more scribbling to The Gifting, and am getting Simon to a key scene with his father (it's a flashback). At last. But I don't really feel able to start it today - though I might do some over the weekend depending - as I think that one will take a tank-full of energy. At least. And I am within a whisker of 109,000 words, so feel I am possibly approaching the final lap. One hopes. Bloody hell, I can almost imagine a time when I might have finished it. And what the hell will I do when that happens?? Ah, edit, edit, edit ... Oh, and I've uploaded the next section of The Gifting up on the Writewords (http://www.writewords.org.uk) site for comment (the Groups continue to be a good source of support), so I'll see what they say.

And, once again, I am proved wrong in my pronouncements; two of the old university gang emailed me yesterday, after I'd moaned that they never communicate. C'est la vie, eh? Though actually, I only understood one of the messages. I suspect the old friend who sent the meaningless email (twice!) probably needs either (a) a crash course in how to communicate through the Web in a non-abrupt way or (b) not to use it at all, really. Either way, I've been invited up for a gals' night out in London in April which is, to be honest, filling me with dread even though I should be delighted. I mean, I'll be going up to the Big City in May anyway to see my old school friend (thanks, Bryony!) and I'd much rather do that than go up to see a crowd (well, three or four, but to me that's a crowd) in order to say the same things we always say and have to perform the same social tricks I always perform. Um, yes, I am cynical. You've guessed it. So anyway, I have sent a vague reply and not promised anything. I'll see how brave and strong I feel on the day.

Tonight, it's pizza, garlic bread and ice cream - hurrah! Followed by shed-loads of TV, so my life is complete. I suppose I ought to do some cleaning, if only to show willing, but I don't know if I can be arsed, and I might leave it till tomorrow anyway. Hmm, I'm never going to be a serious entry for the Enthusiasm Olympics, am I? And my latest self-help read is called "Authentic Happiness" and even has its own website (http://www.authentichappiness.sas.upenn.edu/) so I really should make an effort. Sigh!

Today's nice things:

1. Golf
2. Writing
3. Getting a date to meet Bryony - hurrah! (though she's unlikely to recognise the grey-haired, wrinkly old slapper I'll no doubt have turned into by then ...)

Anne Brooke

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