“…200 bricks and 2000 words a day” —Winston Churchill to Stanley Baldwin, 1928
Agonising, back-breaking but very therapeutic and ultimately rewarding. For a change, I’m not talking about wrestling to capture and organise disparate words to form a novel, but piecing more than 13000 separate bricks to make a wall to surround the new garden. Bricklaying was Winston Churchill’s favoured way of keeping the ‘black dog’ of depression at bay. In fact, he wrote that an ideal day would include “the laying of hundreds of bricks”.
As with many tasks (especially writing a novel), it was as well to be somewhat ignorant of quite how arduous and daunting it was going to be. Several months later, it’s almost finished…
“There are four kinds of people in the world, Ms. Harper. Those who build walls. Those who protect walls. Those who breach walls. And those who tear down walls. Much of life is discovering who you are. When you find out, you also realize there are places you can no longer go, things you can no longer do, words you can no longer say.”
― P.S. Baber, Cassie Draws the Universe