How's this for a pleasing co-incidence? It's a bit convoluted, but bear with me, it's worth the wait:
- when I was a kid, I always thought that James Garner from out of The Rockford Files was the spitting image of my dad. I wasn't alone in this belief: kids I hardly knew would come up to me and say, "Your dad looks like Jim Rockford". Sometimes they would go so far as to say, "Your dad is Jim Rockford";
- for the record, my dad's name is not Jim Rockford, it's Norman;
- entirely unrealted to the above—or so it would seem—my mum's favourite film of all time is Oklahoma!
- while I was in totally shattered mode after my big walk last Friday, I turned on the telly, and they were showing The Rockford Files. While I was watching it for old times' sake, I found myself wondering whatever happened to James Garner. He must be getting on a bit by now, I thought—assuming he is still with us, that is. So I looked him up on the Internet Movie Database;
- the good news is that James Garner is still very much alive, and is still making films, but GET THIS…
- James Garner was born in the city of Norman, Oklahoma!
I lied when I said it would be worth the wait.
From Nature Cure by Richard Mabey (p.135):
The tawny owl's generic name is Sirix, Latin for witch, and there are stories of the Church burning owls for witchcraft in the Middle Ages…
The above quote is taken from the final paragraph I read over breakfast this morning before I put on my coat and went to get the car out of the garage. As I stepped out of the door, a tawny owl flew across my path and headed off down the hill. I have heard it hooting for the last week or so, but this was the very first time I have seen a tawny owl in my garden.
I think you'll find it was.
I have just sent the following email to Stense (WARNING, it might freak you out):
S T E N S E !
O H M Y G O D !
You are so not going to believe this. It's going to do your scatty, little mind in, mark my words:
Every now and again, I like to see what I was doing on the current date X years ago by going through my old letters to you (they're the closest thing I have to a diary).
Well, brace yourself, Stense, I know you're into all that mystical shit, so this one really might freak you out a bit. Here's something from the beginning of a letter I wrote to you three years ago today (look it up, if you don't believe me)—I have emphasised the key phrases in bold so you don't miss them:
I had a strange dream about you last night. No, not that kind of dream, you naughty woman. You turned up unexpectedly at [my house]. We were walking along the drive together, and you were telling me about something which was evidently very important, when I suddenly noticed that your hair was very different: it was incredibly straight and incredibly black and incredibly long (finishing about half way down your back). Once I'd noticed this amazing barnet, I became completely distracted by it, studying each strand of hair in great detail (no, really) and admiring how all the strands swished backwards and forwards together when you moved your head. Needless to say, I wasn't listening to a word you were saying by now, so have no idea what you were trying to tell me. Stense has got long hair, I kept thinking to myself. Suddenly, I decided that I had to show Jen this remarkable haircut, so I ran into the house to get her out of bed. When I came back downstairs (leaving Jen to get dressed), I couldn't find you anywhere. I ran all through the house (which turned out to be the mirror image of Irish Mick's parents' house, and not like [my house] at all), looking for you, but couldn't find you anywhere. I kept calling out your name… By now, Jen was on the landing (which was Carolyn's parents' landing—the right way round), and said she'd come and help me look for you as soon as she'd been to the loo. She then stomped off (as only a person on a landing can stomp off) in the general direction of Carolyn's parents' spare room. Then you stuck your head round the door of Irish Mick's parents' downstairs loo with a cheeky grin on your face… You'd been seeing to your hair and had cut it into a short, stylish but clumpy affair, and had dyed it pure white with a few pale yellow highlights. The overall effect was not unlike a cockatoo. Then I woke up.
Jesus Haircutting Christ, Stense!
Is this totally freaky or what? Did I foresee your Hippy Chick Wig and your new blonde with highlights hair style THREE WHOLE YEARS AGO?
Coincidence? I don't think so!
Listen, Stense, we have simply got to go to Australia together! (If you can't work out why, check out my letter of 29th March, 2003.)
Love and psychic hugs,
P.S. This one is going on Gruts.
It's a gift I tell you.
(No, I'm not going to tell you what was in my letter of 29th March, 2003, but here's a clue.)