Not much to report on today. Just a nice lazy day in Calella. We hung around reading and getting free drinks until lunch then went down to the beach for a few hours. I finally went swimming in the Mediterranean rather than just wade in it, but it took a while to get used to the cold. I know I should just dive in and get it over with, but that’s never been my strong point except when I did the Polar Bear plunge a couple of times in January.
Once I got used to it Gill and I went swimming about. Gill’s not a bad swimmer. In fact she was more confident than I was – I haven’t been swimming even in a pool for years now. I just don’t like the cold, is all. I figure I swam for a good solid half hour out there, and soon the various techniques came back to me. I practised them all for a while just to get comfortable with them again.
The Mediterranean is blue, more or less. I mean, it’s the colour you expect the sea to be when it’s perfect for swimming in. The beach itself consisted of fine sand, but closer to the edge the grains are much larger. If you can imagine getting wet and covered in sand, the fine sand in the back makes you look like you’re covered in sandpaper, while the sand close to the water’s edge makes you look like you’re covered in sesame seeds or whole grain.
I can’t say I have many complaints about the hotel, really. It’s true the walls are paper thin (before I wrote this the couple next door were really enjoying their holiday… several times. Well, at least she sounded like she enjoyed it) but thankfully everyone is considerate enough to be quiet after midnight. The food is good and varied, each day there have been different things to try at every meal, which only makes me not gorging myself like a pig harder. The
weather has been perfect. It rained a couple of times but only after dark, which as far as I’m concerned is a win-win, since the land needs the rain, but it shouldn’t be on my parade.
I haven’t written nearly as much as I’d like, but again, that’s okay. Gillian finished a book called Mystery Man by an Irish author who only calls himself Bateman, and now I’m reading it. It’s quite funny and is also a kick in the ass to remind me I’m supposed to be having fun with what I do. I’m trying too hard to be serious and amusing when really I have no right at all to be serious with the story I’m trying to write.
The problem is I assume that people have zero suspension of disbelief skills, and that if something doesn’t feel like they can look up my facts on the internet or interview relevant people to see how close to the truth what I say is they will dismiss it.
I suppose my radical pendulum swing in the other direction getting the better of me. One of my greatest pet peeves in stories, be it print, TV or movies, is how writers can blatantly insult your intelligence and expect you to go along with it. There are times where this is okay, but even in silly fantasies you need to establish rules and stick to them. If you break the rules you need a reason.
Anyway, while I still believe this, I think it’s getting in the way of my writing, to the point where I’m paralysed at each step I take asking myself if I can get away with it. One of these I’ll be able to mentally slap myself, get on with it, and worry about that crap during the editing, where it belongs.
Well, time for dinner now, so I’m just gonna chill and enjoy the evening. Tomorrow is our last full day here, but we haven’t made any solid plans yet as to what we’re going to do. For now you can settle for a picture of Gill on the beach and one of her reading her new book (look close at the title).