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Saturday, October 21, 2006


Still in Sydney

Things I've noticed here:

1. Platypus are the best animal in the world. They're squashy little underwater tumblebugs that scurry from weed to weed with a bustling energy that's absolutely adorable. What's the plural? It can't be 'platypi', because that's only for words with a latinate 'us' ending, and 'pus' is Greek, meaning foot, as in 'octopus'. I think. I read somewhere that the plural of 'octopus' is 'octopodes', though, so I've decided that it should be 'platypodes'. Do tell me if I'm wrong. But don't expect me to stop saying platypodes. I like the word.

2. Platypodes!

3. They have flying foxes in the park. Right overhead in the trees. This also rocks.

4. Commuting on the ferry is much more fun than on the boring underground trains.

5. There's something very relaxing about Sydney. There are wide pavements and pleasant trees, and all the buildings are kind of cheerful in aspect. It's a real mixture of styles, but they sit together quite comfortably.

6. Thai food. Oh yes, Thai food. The day we landed, I had my first proper meal in a week. It was a whole plate of vegetables in ginger, and I've never been more grateful for anything in my life. Actually, the standard of food in general is terrific here. We've had one bad thing in a fortnight, a sandwich that was slightly off, and when we complained they gave us our money back.

7. Platypodes. Sorry, but I'm completely obsessed. They swim!

Joel (see last post) tells me he's about to enter Novel Writing Month. I'm most impressed; the idea pretty much terrifies me. I'm still plodding along with Novel Number II. Which doesn't even have a title. I have a vaguely novel-like idea for a third book floating around, but it's got some bits that need to be filled in before it's properly novel-shaped. I know what shapes they should be, but I don't know what they'd involve. Mental darkness and mists. Structural phantonyms. Does anyone else get that - the sense that you know what kind of thing needs to happen to make a plot work, but you might have to spend weeks beating your head on the floor before you can shake loose an actual concrete example of it?


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