We have an alternative method of predicting the weather around here: we study the behaviour of our cats. Based on watching their activities this morning, I will be quite surprised if we get snow here in Edinburgh. George in particular is very sensitive to the approach of snow, but today he has behaved fairly normally – though admittedly his standards of normality are a bit different from anyone else’s – by pausing for a couple of moments in the doorway to glance round and sniff the air suspiciously, then going out for a short while, then coming back in and curling up on the nearest bed. This is what he usually does in the mornings throughout the winter months, except that if we do have snow he misses out the ‘going out for a short while’ part and if it’s really cold, he avoids even going near the door in case he accidentally sets foot outside. As he has just gone out again for the second time today, I think snow is even less likely. But of course even a seasoned forecaster like George can be wrong on occasion!
If we get the rain that a human forecaster at the BBC has predicted, I can stay indoors with a clear conscience and edit more chapters of ‘Death at the Happiness Club’. It may be too early to say this but I think the story has started to make more sense now and I am quietly confident of being able to publish it one day.
In the mean-time I have contributed a new short story to an anthology for Valentine’s Day (more information to follow later). I didn’t feel nervous about it at the time I wrote it, but I did have a slight panic attack when I opened the file and started to read, since writing for Valentine’s Day is not really my forte and I was worried that my story would stand out as being utter nonsense compared to the others. I don’t think it is, but I still live in fear that if we get a review it will say something like ‘All the stories were fantastic apart from the one by Cecilia Peartree – what made her think she could write?’. This is similar to the feeling I had when I ventured on stage in a Fringe show a few years ago, and imagined the review saying ‘All the cast were brilliant except the woman in the purple coat – what on earth did she think she was doing there?’ Of course in reality I don’t think anyone would have noticed the woman in the purple coat as she had no lines (I can’t remember lines, as I know from my experience as a pirate in a version of ‘Treasure Island’ performed by our local youth group – don’t ask) and was completely focussed on the important task of not falling off the stage.