I’ve taken to my bed with the ‘flu and, mostly, it’s been an unpleasant affair and I’ve not been nearly as productive as that most famous bed-loafer, Marcel Proust (1871-1922) who lay propped up in bed all day writing the later sections of his seven volume novel À la recherche du temps perdu.
It doesn’t do for neat writing as you can see in Proust’s bedroom style – messy. He might have had even worse handwriting than mine. I’ve done some writing in my notebook but I may not be able to read my handwriting when I recover.
I started out in this bedroom exile with just some drugs and a glass of water but as I’ve begun to feel better, it’s felt right to use my bed-ridden state the Proustian way and to continue my reading of his massive novel on my Kindle (In Search of Lost Time translated by Monchrieff/Kilmartin/Enright, 1992).
I think Proust got up in the evenings for some gentle socializing so, continuing in Proustian style, well, I have to get into the spirit of the book, the last couple of evenings, after finally finishing one of his extremely long sentences, sentences that can meander along with many sub-clauses for page after page, after finding a final and much needed paragraph ending, I’ve descended to the bottom of the house for some other medicine, discovering that a fine full-bodied red wine in front of a log fire can produce all sorts of pleasant sensations.
I hope that this style of recuperation will work and that I shall feel better long before I get to the end of Proust’s 4215 page epic.