Or rather: 'At Benedict XVI House... a week is like an afternoon'.
I signed off the last post on Monday morning of last week with a cheery 'More later!', and with every intention of posting again later that day. In fact, I had in my head a whole series of posts to gradually roll out over the week. But it was not to be.
The past week has passed very quickly indeed. Jo has come and gone again. The students - Shaun and Emily - have each come, gone, and come back again. (In fact, they're preparing dinner for the three of us as I'm typing this - which is rather nice of them, I have to say.) Various jobs to get the House up to speed for the new term - sorting out the internet and phone, getting someone to come and fix the boiler, putting up a bookshelf or two - have been done. Most importantly, as far as I'm concerned at least, we now have a bird table (albeit a fairly ricketily-assembled one), plus several bird feeders. Not that we've fed many birds with them yet: the squirrels have seen to that. This morning, though, I did say some magpies, a crow, a couple of woodpigeons and a fairly ballsy robin braving the rodentine hordes. Not that I mind feeding squirrels of course, it's just that I wish they'd leave some for the birds.
Last week was also the annual conference of the Catholic Theological Association, conveniently this year located just across the road at St Mary's. It's been up at Ushaw College near Durham the past few years, but they had a bookings clash this year, so we relocated. The theme was 'The Theology of Cardinal Newman', for obvious reasons, and it was as enjoyable as ever: all the usual faces, plus several new ones.
This week, of course, is another busy one. We're gearing up not only for the new term (freshers week, as well as teaching for the 2nd and 3rd years, kicks off next week), but also - naturally - for the Holy Father's visit across the road on Friday. It's only really started sinking in how near it is now: Mulier Fortis has recently written well about the mounting excitement. I'll write about the preparations at St Mary's in the next couple of days - and then, hopefully, about what actually happened on the day itself. (Though that may prove tricky - Benedict XVI House will be hosting a post-Papal Visit afternoon tea party immediately after - then a visit to friends in Surrey in the evening - then a trip to north Oxfordshire on Saturday in order to travel to Cofton Park with our former parish on Sunday morning... Ah well, it all get fitted in somehow.)
Off to Compline...