All the veterans from the Royal Artillery and their guests were so nice and warm and friendly yesterday. They revealed a huge birthday cake made in the shape of an old war cannon to celebrate the birthday of my dad and another veteran, their ages adding up to 185 years! Prior to that we had a lunch of fish and chips washed down with a pint of ale, all in the British Legion hall. So old-fashioned (and maybe a perfect manner to say goodbye to Blighty). All my reservations concerning their motives for belonging to the organisation evaporated as we became engulfed in their hospitality. They were so welcoming and, as part of the year ahead, were looking forward to a peace talk to be given at one of their meetings. What’s more, we won three prizes in the raffle!
Today is given over to resuming my Russian language studies, by way of Duolingo to get back in the groove. This is all in preparation for a proposed trip to the country in 2021 to mark the bi-centennial of Dostoevsky’s birth. I was there in 2001 and actually attended all the events as they occurred in Staraya Russa, the small town where he both set and wrote ‘The Brothers Karamazov’. That was the best individual trip of my life and a video I made from the stills taken on my rubbish camera during the stay is up on my Amazon Author Page. Or just click on NOVELS below. More particularly, an account of the visit – and my relationship to the writer more generally – is included in my book DOSTOEVSKY’S PLACE.
In that vein, my intention is to make videos based around my novels and have them made available on YouTube. Quite what format I’ll use is yet to be decided. In the meantime, I hope you might enjoy reading some of them.