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This blog makes liberal use of AB's journals, letters, travel notes, and other sources.

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Saturday, 23 November 2013

Last times

Wednesday, November 23rd., Les Sablons, near Moret.

I noticed in the forest yesterday afternoon that the noise of the wind in the branches was indeed like the noise of the sea; but always distant - the noise never seemed to be near me. I got lost once, and took one path after another aimlessly until it occurred to me to steer by the sun. The moonrise was magnificent and the weather became frosty. After leaving Davray's at 10 o'clock I went as far as the forest, but the diverging avenues of trees did not produce the effect I had hoped for; there was too much gloom.

I have planned out in detail the first part of "Sacred and Profane Love" which is going to be entirely magnificent. I outlined the plot to Davray. I don't think he was very struck by it, and he asked whether the British public would stand it. However, from a crude outline he had nothing upon which to judge. Today I began a sort of draft. Chiefly because I was too nervous to begin the actual writing, though I had finally settled on the opening phrase.

I am waiting to hear that my mother has died. She is in hospital having suffered a stroke two weeks ago. It was a bad one and she will not recover from it. I have asked that all treatment be withdrawn because she cannot communicate and I know she would not wish to be kept alive as a dependent invalid. Thinking about time, I was wondering what her sense of time must be if she is indeed conscious at the moment. Would time seem to go slowly or quickly when you knew there was not much of it left? Also about 'last times'. There are so many mundane tasks we perform without thought, but one day we will do them for the last time, and will probably not know it. This reinforces my belief that one should attempt to make the most of each experience, the trivial as well as the great.

Additionally for November 23rd., see 'Storm in a political teacup' -

After I left the Mail telephoned that they would like an article at 2 shillings a word, as well as the letter. They said the letter was too good to lose. So, by telephone form the theatre, I agreed to both. I much enjoyed writing both the letter and the short article. I love a friendly scrap in the press.

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