To those who know Roman fiction writer, SJA Turney,
you will know that this is his birthday weekend. What better way to celebrate than to find out what he would cart to a desert island?
Okay! It’s not a new idea. In fact it’s been done everywhere. But I find I like reading what people would take to an island to sustain them…
I like listening to Desert Island Discs too – wondering whether, if the island is truly a desert island, they dance to the music, conduct a symphony orchestra, play air guitar truly fortissimo – and all without being embarrassed! And I wonder if the music would be a solace, soothing ebbing spirits as passing days get notched into the trunk of the obligatory palm tree.
But back to the books…
Sometime in the naughty nineties, I enrolled at the University of Tasmania Art School. Specifically the Paper Mill with a view to learning about paper, binding and artist’s books from the inestimable Penny Carey Wells.
It was a fabulous time – not least for the people I studied with who became such friends. Most had degrees in Fine Arts and were teachers of Art. I wasn’t, but it didn’t matter because the level of paper knowledge and binding was pretty well even throughout…
It’s a rainy day today.
My garden needs this, especially the herbs and veg which were considering turning their rooty toes up. Today, they are spritely and beaming at me as I look out the window.
More than any other year, this summer has given me a plethora of veggies in the garden and so I invested in the River Cottage Veg Book. And have we been eating flavoursome food?!
My love of boats began as a child and my attitude toward boats is rather like Ratty’s: that ‘there is nothing – absolutely nothing – half so much worth doing as simply messing about in boats…’
But perhaps I should qualify that.
Whilst I love being on rivers and round the coast, the idea of tackling something like the Sydney to Hobart Yacht Race in the vicious Tasman Sea and Bass Strait is a step too far. Mind you, in my youthful late-teens/early twenties, myself and other friends all thought seriously about putting our names down to be the ‘Return’ crews, sailing the racing boats slowly back to Sydney. Ha!