So I went rushing headlong into Waterstones today and more or less said to the hapless assistant: I NEED Bring Up the Bodies by Hilary Mantel and I need it NOW!!! Gimme, gimme, gimme, PLEASE!!!!!!!
The assistant duly obliged, and led me to the best-seller shelves, where I found that the princely sum of twelve pounds could buy me a hardback edition the size of a small breeze-block, which would neatly double up as a murder weapon, if so desired, which considering the subject matter, is probably quite appropriate.
I spent thirty seconds deliberating. I'm desperate to read that book, but... In my view, books are for life, not for Christmas. I don't have the space on my shelves for a hardback, and since it's a book I'll probably be re-reading on a semi-regular basis, I really don't see myself lugging the damn thing across the world in a plane or a train or whatever. So I left in on the shelf, and now I guess I'll have to wait it out until the wretched publishers finally get around to releasing the paperback.
I WISH they wouldn't do this. It's really annoying. I mean, who actually buys hardbacks, anyway??? Am I in a minority here, or what???
On a lighter note, I am delighted to report that our bee box, which was placed carefully in the garden near where my beloved Clematis montana used to live (sob!!) several winters ago, has at last got residents. It is currently occupied by a colony of bumbles - I couldn't tell you what type of bumbles they represent, though they are rather tiny. I like to call them 'mini-bumbles' for this very reason...
I'm delighted by this turn of events. In a time where bees seem to be under attack on every quarter, it's wonderful to see them buzzing in and out doing their bumbly things and generating more and more bumbles to populate the garden. It means that as far as my stakeholder gardening system is concerned, I must doing things right!
I'm so impressed that I might invest in a second bee box for next year, which I can place a discreet distance away. I'm assuming the creatures aren't too territorial...