Staying at The Hotel Du Vin in Harrogate. It's gorgoeus. Been travelling for ages. Too much work – too little time. But time management is my job. Woke at 7am andat 9.20am I am on stage at a conference for social services in West Yorkshire. It's a beauitiful day and I enjoy the reading and feel that I have enlivened and envigorated a conference that was already lively and upbeat. It was populated by policy makers and ground workers. The sun bursts out over the harrogate pavillions. and I find myself being interviewed for a tv programme.
By 2pm I am on the train at harrogate station wending my way after three train changes to Nottingham where I am reading this evening for Blackdrop, a lively poetry collective. The hotel is a short and beautiful walk down the canal, from Jongleurs where the event is. This ends at 11pm and as I walk back in the pitch darkness I see the black water of the still canal buckle like black ribbons in the wind at night. slowly slowly from beneath the bridge a white swan emerges through the milky reflection of the moon. I watch as she glides past turning her head slightly to me. She sweeps past into tomorrow. I shall be up at 5am and on the 5.30am train to back to London. I pick up my step to Jurys hotel.
I love what I do and the things I get chance to see. It's not the readings or the stage. It's not the bling. It's walking by a canal close to midnight in a full moon while a swan emerges from its reflection and turns as it melts past. I have been given one gift in my life. I am lucky enough to have realised what that gift is. I must learn to cherish it. I can't let it swim past while looking at me questioningly.