I'm glad today has darkened into evening - it's barely been more than crepuscular all day and after the fun of watching the waves drown the rash cars venturing along the front this morning (above) the tide receded and I had to work. And after hours at the computer writing the minutes of a meeting in November - I should'a done them immediately - I was left with a numb behind and a numb brain. I feel marginally better after a walk in the dark - it's still quite dramatic out there, with the shingle roaring under each breaker.
And I've finished my book. The Private Patient by P.D. James has been a companion for the past week or so, in the quieter aftermath of the Christmas socialising, and I feel the regret that I always feel by the time the relationship comes to an end. There are hints towards the end of the novel that Adam Dalgliesh wonders if this case will be his last as he moves into a new phase in his life; I wonder if the author herself wonders how many more novels she will write.
This one has all the hallmarks of a successful mystery - the closed environment, the limited cast, the revelation of past complications and red herrings. But more than any of these I relish the depth of characterisation of the regulars - Dalgliesh the poet-detective, Kate his number two - which is sketched in with economy and a light touch. And I enjoy reading a book where I don't have to worry about infelicities of style or syntax: James is in full control of both.
Actually, the euphoria of the found music has made today bearable despite weather, minutes and THE END - heaven only knows what it'd have been like if we'd still been searching.