I needed that

Tuesday July 5, 2005

It’s probable that, when you reach the seventh anniversary of an on-line journal, you ought really to take it as a significant event, pause to think about all those entries, all those words… and all those days. Not to mention the pitfalls, contradictions and minor controversies covered in all that time.

Some people might take it as a sign that this would be a good time to stop. After all, is there anything left to say, stories to tell that haven’t been said before. Several times, likes as not.

To me, that’d be a mistake. A deeply faulty understanding of what a journal is about, online or not.

See, a journal is a place where you record the days. What happened, if anything. What thoughts occurred, if any. The smiles, the tears, perhaps. The joy, and the sorrow. Day by day. Day after day. Until the days stop.

And that’s when I shall stop. I’d already been keeping a journal for forty years when I went online with this. On that scale, I have a good few years left to go before the online version reaches an equivalent word count. I might stop then, though the idea of keeping going well into my nineties does have a wicked appeal to it.

Unusually for me, I knew this anniversary was imminent. I woke this morning, thinking that today might be special in some way, marking seven years of diligent online journal authoring. Sadly, not a special day at all. I don’t have a grand photograph to mark it, not a story to tell of it.

It was to have been the day Graham returned from his stint in Somerset but events of the staff shortage kind down there at the edge of the Quantocks overtook him and he’s had to delay his return. Shame that, because the coincidence of the two events—the return of the wanderer and the anniversary of the journal—would have been special. We’ve determined, best we can, that it’ll be tomorrow without fail, but even so we’ve been obliged to keep it open. Can’t be too many more days, though.

“He’ll be home tomorrow, Dolly, like as not. You’ll just have to put up with me for another day, I’m afraid.”

I swear she gave a huff of disgust as she stomped off along the hallway and into the bedroom for her morning nap. Maybe, maybe not. Even if she was a little on the disgusted side, though, she came along for a small snack and drink at lunch time and, when I went for my siesta she came along and gave me a lovely cuddle, all soft, purring and affectionate.

I needed that.



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