Seldom Said

Monday, April 03, 2006


With the exception of a few splendid days of winter walking at the beginning of March and my brother's extremely jolly stag weekend at the end of that month, most of my energies have been devoted to (a) playing Guild Wars, (b) recovering from a nasty virus, and (c) the anxious anticipation of impending parenthood.

I won't bore you with too many details of (a). Suffice it to say that, as games go, this one has proven to be an unusually enduring obsession in our household. Perhaps it's the simple fact that Alice and I can play it together online that has fuelled our enthusiasm, but credit is certainly due both to the admirable inventiveness of the designers and to the ongoing expansion and refinement both of the game itself and its extensive and beautifully realised world. We haven't even finished the first story arc yet and we already can't wait for the second installment, which is due out at the end of the month.

The details of (b) are likely to be of even less interest, so I'll skip them altogether. Besides, if they haven't already heard it on the grapevine, it's undoubtably (c) that will be of interest to my devoted readers (all 3 of you). So, without further ado... towards the end of August, if all goes smoothly, Alice and I are expecting to be embarking upon our next great adventure: parenthood. We were hoping to know which flavour to expect by now, but when we went for the charmingly-entitled "anomaly scan" last week, we were so entranced by the little blighter's antics that we completely forgot to ask its sex and didn't notice any tell-tale signs. It definitely has all of the other important bits (heart, stomach, spine, etc), though, which is certainly reassuring to know.

We've had an anxious few weeks since Alice finally twigged that there was a rather obvious explanation for her uncharacteristic tiredness and bouts of nausea. As a doctor she's all-too-keenly aware of everything that can go wrong and too accustomed to thinking of medical conditions in terms of pathology. Now that we're halfway through and all of the indications are still good, she's actually starting to relax a little, but I guess there's still a long way to go yet. Plus, as my cousin pointed out, a permanent state of anxiety is part of what being a parent is all about.

At least we can keep ourselves doubly busy by picking two sets of names. My recent genealogical research has given me lots of inspiration, but Alice was very resistant to my suggestion of Thomas Valentine if it's a boy and Zilpha if it's a girl. A bit mean, perhaps, but since the child's going to be lumbered with my surname anyway, I'm happy to give her the final say when it comes to the other names. She's favouring Welsh names at the moment and, having browsed through a useful list or two, I'm warming to the idea. One friend recently suggested that Taffy Albertella has a nice ring to it, but perhaps we'll give that one a miss.

One thing's for sure, though: I'll soon have some new subject matter to feed my considerable appetite for photography. No more mountain landscapes! Not until we get to haul the little one up their first hill in a papoose, at any rate...

Inconsequential thoughts rarely worth muttering out loud