...stuffing dormice. Virtual ones of course!
Elizabeth Baines is visiting with me tomorrow. I thought, since it was the first leg of her Virtual Cyclone tour with Balancing On The Edge Of The World, I really ought to mark the ocasion with something special.
So we will be 'enjoying' a Roman style feast.
Before she gets here, I want to briefly talk about her debut collection of short stories. Right from the off, with the opening story, 'Condensed Metaphysics,' I was hooked. How can you set a story in a pizza parlour, with several people in various stages of drunkenness and still make it a story about humanity, and all our vices and virtues - but one that doesn't preach at you?
You can if you're Elizabeth Baines. This is the way she works: she makes the ordinary (the things, the attitudes, the way that people think) that you or I would pass right on by seem quite extraordinary. She does this by simply showing how characters really are, without apology.
If you read and re-read her work (yes, it really does bear re-reading), there are so many layers to it that each time there is a new freshness to each of her stories. 'Balancing On The Edge Of The World' really is a fulsome collection of short stories, each story fully realised and full of new ways to appreciate our human traits.
I'd better stop myself now... I mustn't let the fish sauce (an important element of tomorrow's meal) spoil!