It's 2023!


A tabby cat inspects an ornate faux-silk scarf

In fact, we're a jolly long way into 2023, so I am going to bullet-point this entry otherwise I'll never get round to doing a post. So, what have I been up to?

* Been ill. For about a fortnight from New Year's Day, in fact. If people tell you they had their worst-ever cold this winter, believe me they're not joking. Mine got on my chest so I'd wake up coughing up snot every couple of hours in the night. Thanks to the laptop I worked from home throughout, but I felt like crud.

A russet-coloured bolster lying on a brown leather armchair.

* Made a bolster. That's better than being ill. We brought two scarves home from India and I've been planning to turn them into bolsters for the six years since. With a little help from Ziggy (oh, so helpful!) one got done. I used the border of the scarf to make piping, to make the most of the lovely fabric, and while it turned out a little loose – the circles at the ends needed to be slightly smaller – I'm pretty pleased with it overall, given I'd never made piping or bolsters before. I've got a green one to do next, and I keep berating myself for being rubbish and not doing stuff, but I then have to remind myself that I was ill. 

A three-storey 18th century house built of gold sandstone. It has a russet brown door.

* When I did get back to the office, I went on goth hunts in my lunch breaks. First to see the house where Jane Morris – beloved of the preraphaelite artists, and a skilled embroideress whose work for Morris & Co and influence on the company's designs has been sadly downplayed – passed away. There's no plaque on the house, so tourists going from the Royal Crescent to the Circus probably wondered why I was taking pictures of such a nondescript building. It's not even the nicest building on its street from the outside. The arched windows look like a later adaptation to the Georgian building; it's probably old enough for them to have been there when she was, but why couldn't they be put at the same height as all the others?

A gold sandstone building. In the background is an Abbey church with a huge gothic window, and that's built out of the same stone.

* But then on a different lunch break another part of my goth hunt took in the site where the house where Mary Shelley wrote Frankenstein once stood, close to Bath Abbey. The house got pulled down by the Victorians to make way for an extension to the Pump Room. It was about where the blue notice is stuck to the railings in the pictures above. She does have a plaque, but it only went up in the past few years, after 20 years of campaigning. I can't work out if the authorities thought horror/SF was too lowbrow, they were embarrassed to admit to the demolition, or they simply don't like female celebrities not called Jane Austen. I started that day's goth hunt at the house where Horace Castle Of Otranto Walpole stayed in 1766. Of course he's had a plaque for decades.

* Made it back into the gym at the end of the month, once my lunges felt up to it. I should probably start hitting the salads again at some point, but maybe I'll wait for brighter weather.

*Booked a trip for Mr Robot's 50th birthday later this year. I'd tell you more about it but I don't know if he ever looks at my blog. It's going to be great.

Anyway, I hope your year's beeng going well, and that you're in good health and have avoided the cold of doom!


  1. Sorry to hear you've been ill, Mim. So many people I know were ill before Christmas and between Christmas and New Year. Luckily both OH and I escaped...

    Loving the bolster; it looks beautiful and well done you.

    Nor surprised about the lack of blue plaques to women - that's the patriarchy for you!

  2. Happy New Year, Mim! I'm sorry that yours has been dogged by that lingering cold, luckily for Jon & I we caught ours in October and it didn't hang around for long, loads of our mates were less fortunate.
    The bolster (and Ziggy) are gorgeous. Has it really been six years since India?
    Fascinating to see Mary Shelley and Jane Morris's homes. I've been listening to the Pre-Raphaelite Society podcasts, they're fascinating.
    Exciting to have a trip planned! xxx

  3. Sorry to hear you've been ill, and you're right about that worst-ever cold. I had one in the two weeks leading up to New Year!
    Well done on finishing that bolster, and educating on the house Jane Morris passes away in. The fact that the arched window wasn't put in at the same height would bother me too. xxx


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