This weekend has been refreshing.
On Friday I went to a book-signing. In the moody interior of a local bookshop, I queued for 2 hours in the hope of stealing a few seconds with a hero of mine. And steal seconds I did. For many years I have basked in the the wit, humility, creativity, intelligence, empathy and true English gentlemanliness of Stephen Fry and for years I have berated myself for not meeting him when I had the chance (a few years ago I missed a similar book-signing). But now I have. And the humble, true gentleman that he truly is turned up early, signed more autographs and happily shook my hand. I could not have been happier. His new book "The Fry Chronicles" is the second instalment of his autobiography. Sadly as I embark on a second year of literary studies I am unlikely to have a chance to read it before Christmas, but the instalments I have so far read seem as promising and as revealing as the first.
Sunday I travelled to a relatively local seaside town for an arts festival. It is one of the very, very few towns that make me feel genuinely unsafe and genuinely fearful of its populace, so crowded with violence and disrespect do the streets seem. Yet the festival itself was actually very enjoyable. It had the right level of tradition and of surrealism that I often think more main-stream carnivals lack. And it proved that surrounded and engulfed and intoxicated by passion, enthusiasm and creativity, the worst of the world (or your world) can be forgotten - if only for a while.
And that, in a nutshell, was a good weekend.