Papa's faith is peopleWhen I first heard this (opening lines of 'Let the Wind Carry Me' on For the Roses), I related to it at once, but on further reflection I think my own version would go
Mama she believes in cleaning
Papa's faith is in people
Mama she's always cleaning
Papa's faith was MamaNot only have I not inherited my mother's genius for good housekeeping, which she combined with a firm belief that everyone was Christopher Robin till proven guilty and which provided a husband and three children with clean, quiet, orderly comfort, good meals, clean clothes and good health on a daily basis for quarter of a century, but I have reacted the other way and tend to live in squalor. I haven't yet been dug out from under a pile of garbage like those people in the news yesterday, and care is taken in bathroom and kitchen, but I live a paper life and most of its detritus is in tall, dusty piles around the house. Ma really did believe that cleanliness is next to godliness and I fear that by her standards I am far from being a good person.
Mama she believed in people (also cleaning)
The very entertaining Robert Dessaix was talking at Adelaide Writers' Week earlier this year about the way that writers he's written books about -- Turgenev, André Gide -- thought it was important to live a good life. Not the good life, as in wine, women and song, nor yet the 'goodness' of church on Sunday and no sexual irregularities please, but what Robert called a beautiful life, one with depth and content and meaning.
Here at Chez Cat Hair today, a good life would consist of the following:
1) Get weekly copy written and filed ASAP and vow to catch up and stay caught up with proper deadlines.
2) Visit father.
3) Plant tulips.
Finishing and filing the copy is vital. No excuses, no shortcuts, do it now.
If I don't actually visit my father, I will at least be calling him for a long chat as per our weekly routine, which I think suits him more and more as he gets older.
Perhaps I'll put the tulips in the fridge to get properly cold before they go into the temperate Adelaide earth.
Note no mention of vacuuming.
I really want to do the vacuuming. It's just that I think the deadline, the father and the tulips all matter more.