Saturday, 20 February 2010

Visit to Llangollen

The sun was out today so we drove into Wales and visited the little town of Llangollen. It always offers more than it provides somehow, and today Thomas Tank Engine was in town so the place was full of children and their parents making it busier than ever.

Nevertheless it was a good afternoon. The hills around were covered in powdery snow, making the world beautiful without any danger as the roads were clear. I had a look in a couple of little craft shops, watched Martha running around looking like a mad March hare rather than a dog. She amused everyone who watched her chasing her tail around the little park by the river, rushing up and down the mill race as if possessed. We drove home via the Horseshoe Pass, stopping to admire the view from the top, and making a detour via Hawarden because I had mentioned a wish I have to go into retreat and there is a library there offering scholars the chance to research and write without having to look after things like washing and cooking. Oh, if only.....

Then we walked along the prom and Liverpool glittered across the Mersey. I said to Joseph that I had expected to spend a lot of time visiting the city and getting to know it, but that I had lost confidence. And I know I have done so. There has just been a catalogue of nastiness over the past few years and I am beginning to lose heart. Apart from anything else, I feel a sense of agaraphobia when I am away from familiar surroundings and that is truly dispiriting. I fear pushing into places that are dangerous or into groups who are unfriendly, and my experience lately is that my fears are justified. I tried to explain this to Joseph - it isn't a matter of being shown round, or being taken to different places, its just a need to be safe within a familiar space and within that I am content.

I need to be with Joseph to go out and that frustrates me so much. I need to regain my independence and my strength and my confidence.

The question is - how?

I have had a lot of online support from people. Someone from the Reform Shul in Leeds who also has a bookshop in Headingley (this we must have a look at!), Jane, David, Orysia, a Rabbi Shoshana, my cousin Sidney (a true happenstance getting back in touch with him at my mother's funeral meal when he phoned from Canada and I managed to persuade my sister to give me the phone to speak to him). Nobody at all here in Wallasey has put a foot over the doorstep. Nobody. Not Joseph's mother, not his sister, I haven;t had a call from Hilarie, I haven;t had a card from anyone, and I am totally alone in this town apart from Joseph. I don;t mind living here, but I won;t care when we leave. I have no wish to be here anymore. I have tried to love it, but since I finished the Pain Mismanagement Programme at Walton Hospital, I have had little contact with anyone. The friends I made disappeared. The person I was began to dissolve and only began to reappear a little when we bought the flat in Leeds.

I love living on this coast. I love being able to see Snowdonia. I love sunsets here. But I am so alone in this town. I have never felt so bitterly lonely, apart from the months after Glyn died. I cannot believe that nobody has sent me a card, made a call (other than Christine at Joseph's instruction) or anything else. I know that if I behave like this if Christine and Hilarie lose their mum, god forbid, then I will be the devil incarnate. But its ok in their world, because I don't really count for anything. The proof of the pudding, as they say, is in the eating.

I haven't heard anything from my son since I told him that he couldn't come to stay with me for six weeks and challenged him about his bank statement. It is up to him. I can;t carry on carrying his financial burden through the rest of our lives. He puts all our future plans at risk if he can;t get his act together and keeps expecting me to pay for him. I can;t do anymore. That has to be over.

I have lots more to write but I need to download some photos and get them up to date. I saw a huge drift of snowdrops today, and four yellow crocuses that had battled into the sunshine. And Joseph and I managed to have a cuppa out of doors for the first time this year which was lovely. There is blossom coming on the trees, and the daffodils are struggling out but there is still sleet and snow, and today a flood has decimated Maderia in Portugal. The weather has been so strange this year, and then to add to it all, the huge catastrophe of Haiti and its earthquake.

Meanwhile in the papers - lots about the assassination of a Hamas leader by Mossad. They are running very close to the wind. Zionism is becoming a danger to European Jewry and it should take responsibility for Jewish safety in the Diaspora.

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