I came back home late with my new haircut. The last of the trick or treaters were making their way back to their homes. Come one kids. It’s 8:55PM. No one has any candy left. My older one and her friend were upstairs. “We’re trying to find something scary to watch.” I walked into the kitchen felt my socks get soggy. The floor was covered in water and turning on the lights I discerned that someone had left the nozzle on the faucet open. “Hi girls. Who was the last one to get water?” I didn’t really have to ask but the guest piped up and said “Me” with a smile and then screamed with disbelief when I reminded her of the importance of turning the nozzle off.
Neither of them seemed to think it was especially necessary to offer to clean anything up. I took a towel and dried the floor. Everyone else had already eaten. My wife and younger one were at a friend’s who regularly had a Halloween party. So I took a package of tofu and mushed it up with raw onions and sesame oil and cherry tomatoes and called it a meal.
I had plenty to do. Today I am flying off the U.S. and I was conscious of all that was yet to be done. But the last eighty pages of “A Tale of Two Cities” was also before me. I sat in my chair and began to unwind Dickens’ improbable ball of yarn, unable to resist the urge to finish it off. Dr. Manette is able free his son in law, Charles Darnay, only to have him returned to death row based on his own, testimony from thirty years prior. The plucky Miss Pross squares off against the reprehensible villain Madame DeFarge: “You’ll not get the best of me. I’m an Englishwoman.” It seems its only Sydney Carlton, Darnay’s unlikely double is the only character who undergoes a transformation in this story. Everyone else is a stereotype of goodness or evil whom you can rely on to remain that way throughout.
I get to start something new today. I suppose I will take on another of these Alexandrian Quartet novels, though I can’t say I loved the first or the second. Don't know if I’ll get lucky and have a big fella like me next to me for fourteen hours this evening or enjoy an empty seat as it appeared when I did the online check in last night. I don’t really want to travel today. I’ll be in the U.S. for week. Sometimes that’s a treat but this time really does feel like work. Post all this then. And go get some lunch on this overcast Sunday in Beijing.