Monday, 9 June 2008


I love books.
I love reading.
I feel sorry for people who don't love reading books.
I love re-reading favourite books. It is like visiting old friends.
I am lucky I have friends like Dell and Adam. They have sent me these beautiful books they found at a Berlin flea-market. Sadly my German is getting progressively worse the older I get and these are in old German script and are a bugger to decipher- but they are gorgeous!

Thanks to a romantic notion of my mother's I got saddled with the name 'Penelope'. It wasn't 'romantic' in the notion of lovey-dovey but rather her admiration of someone she knew as a child whose name it was and who she thought was a lovely person. She stuffed up there!
I only ever got called Penelope when I was in deep doo-doos and was being sent to my room. Everyone in the family and friends of my sisters called me Nel or Nelly and it was only when I changed schools on Grade 2 that some bright spark of a teacher decided I would be called Penny- hmmm- I had no say in this and was never happy about it. Not long after a Greek friend of my mother's told us that it could be spelt p-e-n-e and I went with that. In classic Australian style it always got shortened to 'Pen' anyway. It's funny but I've never felt 'Penny' (spoken name) was ever me. Occasionally  I won't answer to it, just to be perverse/annoying.
My relationship to 'Penelope' is strange though- I like the story of Penelope and Odysseus. It may not be politically correct to like a tale about a man going off to war and slutting his way around the Mediterranean while his wife stays at home fighting off suiters. But I think she is pretty clever and wily. And most of all she is a weaver- Penelope the Weaver. And that's how I started out in this game- I was, from a young age, a weaver, with little looms and then big 4 shaft floor looms. Penelope the Weaver. (And maybe deep down I am  waiting for my Odysseus to come home.)

But 'Penelope' by Elizabeth Kirby is one of those hilarious books you stumble across in a second hand store. It's from the 1920/30s and it's a trashily good read. And she gets the right man in the end!


  1. Penelope is a lovely name, but talk about romantic notions, my mum is Prudence, her two sisters are Pamela and Penelope...

    Anyway, Macht Nichts miss pen, happy to find a treasure for you... But yes, that olde German type is a bitch...

    Hope you are feeling better, REST!


  2. now which novels did these names all come from....... and all Ps -your gran wins hands down! cab you imagine the mail arriving ad no-one knowing whose it is!


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