My saintly friend in Venice, despite the immense variety of conflicting demands upon her time, has gone to Alberto Varese, and sent me (on request) two notebooks, one large, one small. The essential kit for starting a new novel, which has indeed, been started. With so much going on in my life, I can only find stuff if it is in a notebook, and not all mixed up with stuff of other kinds. There is ten pages of typescript in the computer. A beginning. Meanwhile, another beginning: the clearing of the ground around the bothy, first steps towards making it happen.