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It's Been A Long Time.

It's been a long time since I wrote. I'll explain this later. But first I want to congratulate Sara Paretsky for being the first winner of the Sue Grafton Memorial Prize last week. This is bitter-sweet because I really do wish Sue had not died. I wish she were still with us and writing – in which case there would be no need for a memorial. But I'm so pleased for Sara – no one could deserve honours more.


Two months ago, when I was rushing to the post office, I had a contretemps with one of Bath's notoriously uneven kerbstones. The kerbstone won. The result was a broken upper arm too close to my shoulder to be plastered. It hurts, so I've been self-protective and horribly self-absorbed ever since.


There has been something of an identity crisis too, because only 24 hours previously I had been on a squash court, leaping about like a young goatess. Then, suddenly I was an old lady lying helpless on the pavement being called 'dear' by several lovely but unwelcome strangers to whom I'm very grateful but who, at the time, I was wishing a long way elsewhere.


Meanwhile my beloved country has become even more of a thought-free zone and consequently a scarier place.


And there has been another attack and killing in a Californian synagogue on Shabat two days ago. An act of antiSemitism. This follows the utterly horrifying bombing of churches in Sri Lanka, which in turn had followed the shameful attack on a mosque in Christchurch, New Zealand. No community, it seems, is exempt from the hatred of others.


This, tragically, is the zeitgeist we're all suffering from. This is the zeitgeist all thinking people should try, in their own ways, to contradict.


Shalom, salaam and peace to all.

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