Friday, 21 September

Writers block is bad news for a writer but a much more critical condition is affecting me at the moment: brain block.

I have been suffering from it since July. The 9th of July, to be precise, when we returned from Berlin to find a very unfinished renovation project in our Paris apartment.

I have already written about the project and the frustrations of not having it done on time so suffice it to say now that the last two weeks have been particular hell. The place has been crawling with workers, making much noise and often needing my input. I have spent most of the time locked in a room with Tasha so she won’t bark at them, fuming with resentment that what should have occurred in July is only happening now, thus taking up more of my time. In fact I have wished on several occasions that I too could bark and just as deeply and scarily as Tasha can. My nerves are as raw as these wires.

What has amazed me in the course of this ridiculously long process is how symbiotically our homes are linked to our heads. If your house is cluttered, disorderly, dysfunctional, then your mind is muddled too.

Eating breakfast with the wall clock

Even when the workers were gone all August, the chaos they left meant that I was not able to work or play the piano or read much more than the bad news engulfing world. It has extended to my physical being; brain-body block is actually a more accurate monicker. The days pass and I do not get out and about, certainly not to exhibitions or other cultural events, but not even to accomplish a rather long list of chores.

Let me out!

Thank goodness for the dog or I might never have crossed the threshold these last weeks. Since I do need to take her out several times a day, I have been constantly reminded what a beautiful city I live in. Time and again it has inspired pleasure if not mental activity.

One hue of morning light...

...and another. It's not bad in the middle of the day either...

Tasha and Arco

The outside world reminds me that this too will pass. That we're lucky to be able to renovate our apartment in the first place. That we're pleased with the results, however long they are in coming.