Tuesday, August 30, 2005

befuddled and bewildered, but home

I've spent much too much of the last three days driving first to Detroit, then to Cleveland, and then back, with an astonishingly patient small girl in the passenger seat of the Mini. And I got a total of 14 hours sleep spread over three nights (most of it on the middle night, when I wasn't driving) so am more than a little befuddled, but happy to be home.

Miss Madeleine, who was the passenger in question, is of the opinion that having the Ditty Bops ( dedicate "Sister Kate" to you from the stage, when that happens to be your favourite Ditty Bops song, is the kind of astonishingly cool birthday thing that's right up there with, er having the Ditty Bops sing "Happy Birthday" to you backstage, not to mention being surprised by Tash and Tori and a secret birthday cake she wasn't expecting. Plus, Maddy got to have a crisis of conscience in a restaurant the following day when she had to decide whether or not she, as a newly-minted eleven-year-old, should order off the ten-and-under kids' menu. (She did.)

It was a grand birthday expedition, and we had some wonderful conversations while she was awake, as the sun came up, when I told her everything I could think of about her great-grandfather, and everything I knew about her great-great-grandfather. Fun.

I was vaguely surprised to discover that the Phil Silvers Show/Sergeant Bilko DVDs I bought from recently, which I played to keep me awake on the drive back (as they work almost as well if you can't see the screen) were bootlegs. At least, I assume that a legitimate DVD wouldn't have a BBC 2 continuity announcer talking over the end credits and telling you that The Weakest Link is coming up next on BBC 2.

Anyway, I'm home, and have just finished signing all the Anansi Boys endpapers for Headline in the UK.

I'm way behind on email and messages, but a host of people wrote to tell me about -- the Unshelved comic that's all about Coraline...

And I just noticed that, now Wolves in the Walls is out in paperback, there are bargain copies of the hardback around (Amazon, for example) while you can get the Dawn French audio cassettes of her reading Coraline at at an extreme discount...

Right. A nap is in my immediate future...