148. My son’s friend came today with a mandolin and played Edelweiss while we all sang. This is the first time I’ve seen a mandolin being played.
149. My local pond has so many cut reeds spread over the surface that they have formed a roadblock for the coots.
150. This morning I listened to a 1956 French recording of Claude Aveline in which he said ‘men think about things and women think about people’ (les hommes pensaient à des choses et les femmes pensaient à des êtres). Later today a man in my family coincidentally said that his favourite philosopher, Jordan Peterson, says ‘men like things, women like people’.
151. Two years ago today, two translators started a site called Translators Aloud and invited others to record themselves reading their literary translations. I was one of hundreds who were accepted, and today they put up a celebratory Youtube video: https://youtu.be/17QeLosu9Dk
152. First day of winter. Light pinpricks of snow fell this morning. It rarely snows in Canberra let alone when winter has barely begun.
153. Saw two swans swimming close to the edge.
154. I was awake this morning from 2 am till 6 am. At about 3, I heard swans on the pond calling to each other. What’s unusual? I’d read a poem yesterday by Wendell Berry, ‘The Peace of Wild Things’, which he wrote about waking in the night and going out to be with birds. When a newsreader told me tonight that it’s the 100th day of the war between Russia and Ukraine, I remembered the first line of this poem.