So. Over the last few days, I have mostly been unpacking. It's been a long term operation. After all, I had to build a bookcase in order to unpack in the first place. In fact, I didn't really build the bookcase, I persuaded the brother to do it. He seemed to enjoy it. I got to watch Heston Blumenthal making Black Forest gateau instead, except during the difficult bits. It's sort of nice to have all my books on a bookcase properly again - it's been a while. I'll bring the rest of them up from Cornwall at some stage; I'd like them to be all together. Besides, the ones that are still at Lanner Mill are mostly the crappy easy-to-read things (not Discworld; that has traveled with me) that I actually WANT now. I actually bought books yesterday, as well, which was bad of me, since I've got loads of stuff to read at present, but I went deliberately for stuff I thought would be good fun to read. As it turned out, I bought Brideshead Revisited (Evelyn Waugh) and I, Claudius (Robert Graves), which are proper classics and don't really count as trashy novels, and a historical crime book called Sovereign (C. J. Sansom), which is not and does. Ah well. The first of the three I know as a fantastic television series (Granada, 1981, starring Jeremy Irons, but with cameos from the likes of John Gielgud and Laurence Olivier) , so should be ok. The second is a great TV series too (BBC, 1976, starring Derek Jacobi), but I've not seen it. Maybe I should - Jacobi's great. Will see, anyway.
Had lunch with Katy yesterday. Nice to see her. I've hardly seen her at all over the last few years when we've both been away at uni, so it was good to catch up. Her parents split up in April, so she's been coping with that. She's changed - and I don't think it's to do with her parents. She's much more outgoing than she ever was before, or so she seemed, but then I think I'm probably far more reserved than I was. Hard to tell. That doesn't really interfere with how well we get on; it was just a change. Still feel unsettled about being back here and seeing all these people again - it's all such hard work. The flat feels strange. I know I'm not living with my parents or anything, but it almost feels like I am. I couldn't say why though. I suppose it'll be better when I've found something to do with myself. Must buy a copy of The Stage tomorrow.
I had to buy a new air pump for the fish tank yesterday, because the one I was using died completely. I inadvertently bought a huge one, designed for a vastly bigger tank than mine. Until I figured how to limit the flow, Boris and Azrael were a little non-plussed at the jacuzzi that appeared to a come into being in a corner of their tank. I was debating taking it back, but it's only a matter of time before I DO get a bigger tank - albeit still one where I don't need so enormous a pump - so I've decided to keep it for the time being. I was admiring the fish they had though. I think I'll buy a thing called a 'butterfly ghost koi' when I get the bigger tank. I can't find a picture at the moment, but they're mostly black with gold sheen and scale tips, with beautiful long feathery fins. That is, if I can get a guarantee they won't grow too big - the smallest ones I saw were about 3 inches, but they're koi, and can end up a good foot long. I was admiring the big koi as well - the largest they have there (Hertfordshire Fisheries) are about 18 inches long and sell for about £500. I was talking to the guy, who said they'd sold one in two years. It's such a shame - they're beautiful fish and they're trapped in a completely bare tank not big enough for them. It would be great if they could have a proper pond, but these days they're an insurance risk, beside the fact that you need a pretty much a country house to keep them in. Bah.
Off to Cam today, hopefully til Saturday morning, when I head to London to see Graham. Really looking forward to having a few days up there, even if I'm going to be camping on a series of floors.