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Tuff

It’s written on her wheelie bin. I don’t know what it means. Perhaps it is the Welsh for rubbish or bin or garbage or somesuch. It looks like a phonetic spelling of tough. I like that.

The Chinese girl in No. 1 has finally taken in her parcel. It has been leaning against her back door for oh, ages now.

A discombobulating day yesterday. There is so much to process, to put in the right boxes in my head. And always it comes down to a letting go of ego, of dreams and of fantasies. This is what is. And it is enough, if I let it be so. I try to focus on the detail. Even when I am doing something I’d rather not do, like cleaning. I concentrate on the action of my hand, sometimes watching it or just feeling it, or the smell of the wood polish, like rhubarb and almonds, or on the end result and how I love to have things, clean, neat and ordered. It helps that.

And there are other compensations – such as my current joy in the re-reading of Austen’s canon. I thought I knew them inside out but with each re-reading there is a new spark, a new bursting of something marvellous.

I dream and dream, no doubt down to the moon, just as shining this morning but a little more round, but I cannot remember them at present. I feel a little lost at this unremembering. What if I am losing some much needed wisdom?

By Ellen Bell

Artist and writer currently living in Aberystwyth.