First instalment of Mum’s Christmas present arrived today. A subscription to the London Review of Books. The shortest piece is around 4,000 words, and the writers are top-drawer. I’m going to savour this one over the fortnight. The first article is Alan Bennett’s diary of the year – which inspired me to do a bit more with the personal blog.

Well, I don’t know how long it will last, but I might as well give it a go.

I’ve never been good at insomnia. You’re supposed to get up, read a book in subdued light, drink hot milky drinks, whatever. I lie awake, rearrange the pillows, get short of breath, munch a Rennies and listen to M snoring. Last night the upstairs boys were in full flight at 3am, which didn’t help much. And there wasn’t a decent late night film on either. The fretting lasted until around 6-ish, when I fell asleep again for a couple of hours. M was still asleep when I woke up again, which was infuriating.

Neighbour’s music has begun to make me think she’s some kind of obsessive compulsive. She likes to latch on to a record – usually something by an R&B diva – and play it extremely loudly over and over again for anything up to four or five hours. It booms across the garden and into our flat, early in the morning, late at night, mid-afternoon. My paranoid side also thinks that she has a contact in the council noise pollution team since the music stops within minutes of my making the complaint call. Sometimes the music stops for days, even weeks, then it starts again without warning.

Sproglet is about halfway engaged and she’s still twitching like a good ‘un. The midwife reckons she’s quite happy where she is for the time being, but I can’t help feeling that the end is nigh. Not nigh enough for my liking.

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