Sunday, 30 September 2012

Writing Course at Peralta 2012

Well, I've been very quiet this week in cyberspace and that's because it's been Peralta Writing Week 2012.  This year six people arrived eager to soak up some Tuscan sunshine and have time to write - there should have been eight, but two people fell by the wayside before the week began. Sadly, also, Caitlin Davies couldn't be here this year - so it was a much smaller group than usual.   Neil and I stayed at Peralta, and it's been a lovely, if very busy, time.  We work-shopped every morning;  walked, swam, talked, and wrote in the afternoon; shared work with each other in the early evening over an aperitivo, had dinner together, and finally collapsed into bed to start all over again in the morning.  Taking part can be a very scary experience, because participants arrive from all over the world, never having met before and you just don't know if you're going to get on with each other.  But this year, it was a fantastic group of people - one of the best that we've ever had, and it was quite sad when Saturday morning arrived and we all had to leave just as we'd all become friends.   I was very touched when the group presented me with a beautiful notebook (almost too posh to write in!!) and a small 'Quaderno' which they'd all signed and written a piece of poetry or prose for me to keep - a little book of memories.


The weather didn't always live up to its reputation - we had some very un-Italian days;  rain, cloud, thunderstorms, big winds - is there any part of the world that isn't having strange weather?  But we had one lovely, blue-sky day for lazing beside the pool and going out to explore the marble mountains, and the final evening was warm enough for us to eat outside and have a lively party to celebrate before everyone left.


We had one canine member of the course - Peralta's Ellie -  who seemed to manage to attend every workshop and read-around as well as the farewell party!

Now I'm back home and stuffing the washing machine with a week's worth of clothes, looking (with a glazed expression) at the stack of unanswered emails, and wishing normal life could be postponed for just a little longer!

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