Monday, 26 September 2011

Mumps - hopefully the final part

Another day off work, considerably less mumpy around the face, starting to feel a bit more cheerful and although I woke up with a tremendous headache and nausea, I have been feeling better throughout the day. Fingers crossed I can make it back to work! I've started to read again (nothing too exciting - Enid Blyton, that sort of thing!), and carried on with endless endless cross stitching. As you can see, I've done two little snowflakes and a Christmas pudding design which I'll make up into little cards soon, and today I've been working on a bauble design.

The highlight of the last two days, apart from having Mr W at home to "look after" me (inverted commas as we differ slightly on what being looked after means), was being alerted to this fascinating programme on Radio 4 which is still available on listen again (certainly to UK readers anyway). It's the author Val McDermid talking about the Chalet School series by Elinor M Brent Dyer. This series is a definite Cardigan Girl Favourite, but here Val McDermid puts it into context and explains how affirming the series is for young women because it shows them that they can have careers, go onto university, and balance having family with work and friendships. She credits it with her discovery that it was possible to earn a living by writing. In the programme, she gives The chalet school in exile to 3 ten year olds to read, and it is fascinating to hear how whilst they found it dated in some ways, they did very much enjoy reading it. The best part is the master mind style quizzing of those being interviewed - some of the questions were quite hard, but I only missed two! Anyway, do go and hear it here, and for those of you who can't access iplayer, then do read this review (and the comments) on the Guardian website here.

Finally, again, big thanks to those of you who have sent me well wishes, especially those of you who had never commented before. It gave me a big buzz to realise that perhaps there were a lot more people reading the blog than I thought!

PS: One final game that you can all participate in. I have been playing #replacebooktitleswithmumps on twitter with the lovely Yvann today (which followed on from me singing mumpy Christmas carols (e.g. Ding Dong Mumpily On High and Mump the Herald Angels Sing). How about The lion, the witch and the mumps? The remains of the mumps? Mumps and prejudice? The mumps of one's own? Please put your favourite mumpy book title in the comments!


  1. How miserable for you, Verity. Hope you're feeling much better soon!

  2. I loved the Chalet School radio programme too. Made me feel very nostalgic, and tempted me to go rootling about in my parents' loft when I go home at the weekend. There must be a few Chalet School books up there...

    Glad you are on the mend. Hope you feel properly fit and well again soon. I had mumps as a child - can still remember how horrid it was.

  3. Glad to hear you feeling a bit less mumpy. Perhaps Mr W needs some more training on looking after?

    Enid Blyton is such a comforter and I love the cross stitch, putting me to shame at the moment.

  4. Verity so glad you're feeling better. I definately do not want to ever have mumps having read about your experience.
    My book title? Harper Lee - To kill a mump.

  5. Mumps sounds terrible, I've never had it thankfully. How long does it last?

    There are some books I'm sure you would love to read - some authors and titles have completely gone out of my head, although I only thought of them yesterday! But The Children Who Lived in a Barn, one of Persephones publications, I have read about two or three times. Have you ever read Mrs Robert Henrey's books about Madeleine, actually her life from childhood in France to her life in London. They're quite sought after nowadays. If I think of the others I will let you know.

    I've just photographed my O Douglas books, I think I'm going to sell some of them again and just keep a couple of favourites, as some are a bit too 'sweet and good'. I did enjoy reading them though.

  6. From Erika:

    I am sure that there are many, many readers who have given up trying to post replies to you. Now That I know how to enter as anonymous you will hear more from me. I only read 6 blogs consistently and you are one of them. Yours is delightful and natural and you are a charming person.

    I hope this doesn't sound patronizing--I'm 70 years old and have reached the stage where I happily say what I think...very glad that you sound as if your steps are on the road to recovery.

  7. Oh no, I'm just playing catch up with blogs and I didn't know you had been poorly. I had mumps when I was younger so I know it's not very nice. I hope that you are starting to feel better, it looks like you've been keeping yourself busy!

  8. Have there been problems posting on this blog then Erika? I don't know how to post as anonymous but use my Campfire on a few blogs/forums.

    I've only found this one quite recently when I was looking up Lorna Hill books. I'm enjoying reading it immensely. I can't do cross stitch though.

  9. Cornflower - I am back at work today and feel amazing!

    Jo - it was you who put me onto the programme with your tweet in the first place!

    Jo - I think actually you shamed me into getting back into cross stitch in the first place!

    Campfire - I have read ALL of the Persephones so I have read the one that you mentioned. I had Anna and her mother (O Douglas) out of the library but it wasn't as good as the ones I've read before. I shall look up Mrs Robert Henrey.

    Erika - Hi!! I'm so sorry you've had problems commenting, do use anonymous and add your name. I might change the bit at the top of the comments page. It's nice to hear from you. I'm glad you find my blog delightful - I'm only sorry that it has somewhat degenerated from a more bookish blog!

    Dot - I missed you on twitter last week - I hope you and the bump have been ok.

  10. From Erika.
    Don't say "Degenerated"; it has rounded out. Lovely to find a much younger woman with the same interests--baking, reading, crafts and also working in an important research library. I sew but don't embroider much. I have worked in rare book collections but mostly in museums before retiring--conservation of paper and fabrics = my areas and I still do some consultation work. I have lived in Cambridge and also know Oxford well from past years. My husband is a university librarian. We have a daughter and two grandchildren.

    I don't subscribe to Typepad, Twitter or Facebook and this may be the problem but now I have solved it in my own way and will continue to enjoy your blog--more actively I'm sure. If you are curious, the Blogs I enjoy consistently are Dovegreyreader, Cornflower, Savidge Reads, Argumentative old Git, Normblog and Mary Beard. You are in very impressive company!

    I have whole hearted admiration for those of you who put yourselves and your lives into blogs--takes courage and I hope you never feel battered by the odd unpleasant response: may they be few and far between.

    I hope you are continuing to feel better all the time.

  11. Never ceases to amaze me how such a nice lady as Val McDermeid can write books filled with such horrors. I read one once - never again, I was traumatised:)
    Mump from the Madding Crowd.
    The Mump of Casterbridge.
    Hickory Dickory Mump.
    I'll shut up now :)

  12. Hi Erika,

    Goodness, I am in rather good company indeed! I have only been to Cambridge once, in fairly early days of the blog - - and posts also from that month I think.

  13. I Capture the Mumps - Dodie Smith.

    Glad to hear you are feeling so much better and are back at work.


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