Tuesday, February 12, 2008


There's a great line in a Wilco song that recently has been playing over and over in my head. The line is "I can't find the time to write my mind the way I want it to read." I was listening to the song on my ipod while watching Liam play football (soccer) with his league team on Monday. It struck me as oddly relevant. I think about things I want to write while I'm walking to the tube in the morning, or squished in between loads of commuters, or watching naked babies wriggle in the bowl that is the baby scale at work. I often think of glorious sentences about a quirk or a funny mannerism that I notice regularly in a co-worker, or just in the British population in general. The only trouble is, when I get home at night, and I have my meal, and I sit and watch some television show or another before setting my things out for the next morning, I can't seem to give myself the time required to recreate the authorship of my daily psyche. Because of this, and often the fear that no one really cares (shameless plug for comments), I tend to shrug it off.

I started working at a health center in Camden Town about a week ago, and while I can't tell you anything specific about the babies and the families we deal with, as it is all very privacy related, I can tell you that it about 4 hours over two consecutive days, I saw over 50 naked, squirming babies placed carefully onto a piece of paper lining the metal bowl that is a baby scale. Some cried while I explained that weighing oneself never gets easier, and some grinned and played with their toes, while others looked up at their mothers, utterly bewildered by the whole process. I've seen scrappy moms with messy hair waiting to speak to the nurses, and elegant, older moms silently breast feeding through classy tops designed specifically for the job. I noticed a mom in a corner, while I was updating books and recording data, calmly feeding her child for what seemed like 45 minutes. It's all very interesting. I know that sounds generic...what's it like? It's interesting....yeah yeah yeah. But that's what I got.

A couple of weekends ago, it was very cold, but Liam and I trekked out to Hackney to the flower market. We got a big bunch of lilies, six hyacinth bulbs (two purple and four pink), a pot of tulips, and a Jade. The flowers are blooming and filling my room with lovely smells (to the contrary of the smells that usually fill my room...sorry mom, I couldn't avoid this joke). And because I've run out of time to write the rest of my mind for this evening (I'm tired) I will leave you with a picture I took at the market and a picture of Liam with the lunch we had later on Brick lane at a very popular pastry shop:


Anonymous said...

I don't write blog posts because I feel like I don't have anything interesting enough to say. Therefore, I leave it all to Hayden and feel bad when more people don't comment on his posts, especially when he is talking about his kitty cat's poor health.

But about you, I find your musings, um, interesting, and I can relate to them. I compulsively check my live bookmark for your blog a few times a day to see if you've written anything new. No lie. Of course, I know that my praise is not enough. I hope that you get more comments.

By the way, I hope that your being around babies isn't going to convince you to get yourself a baby soon. There are enough people in my life with the babies just born or on the way. And I'm not ready, so I need someone else in my life to stick with me in the no-baby zone for a while.


diana said...

I love imagining a room full of naked babies and you at the front attempting a severe expression with a very studious pair of glasses and a clipboard in hand. next!

Anonymous said...

Hey Caroline, I have been lurking for a month or so. Just wanted to tell you that I love reading about your adventures.


Anonymous said...

Thank you, Apryl. Please tell NCA Heydon's address or give me permission to read his blog. I WILL RESPOND TO HIS SICK KITTY BLOGS and others I find of merit.

NCA, I read the latest. I can only say, life is quite tiring, isn't it? You get up, go to work, come home and eat supper, talk a while, etc., whatever, and you're tired. So, you get up and start over again. I have never had enough nerve to do whatever it takes to get out of that rut. Your father did, didn't he. I still get up and go to work and pay bills, etc. And at night, I am tired.

I have few live-or-die issues. You are one. My love for you is... forever and unquestioned. For anyone/any thing else, not so sure.

Don't forget to give me Hayden's blog permission. I love my kitty (Darla) MOST of the time. We are two... Whatevers. We are two.

Love to you, NCA. MA

Anonymous said...

Again, your take on the babies is so sweet. And the moms. I remember those feelings while I was nursing you. Never befor or since have I felt such complete love. They (the ubiquitous "they") tell me it's hormonal. Who cares?

I can you see as you go through your day to work, on the tube, wherever, in the office, and wanting to remember in writing what you see and think in the moment. Writing your psyche. Keep writing, my dear. Keep writing. When you can. Where you can.

Be blessed,
Love - Mother

Anonymous said...

Ms. Allen, thank you for the concern about our cat and willingness to comment on the blog. And thanks to Caroline for thinking that our blog was worthy of linking to.

How is Darla? When I think of her, I remember a long night in Dallas when she was a kitten. She kept attacking my feet while I was trying to sleep on the futon in Caroline's living room. I imagine that now she would probably rather curl up and sleep with you than pounce.