Then over lunch the conversation got round to my problem in writing sex scenes. Ric reminded me - and everyone else - about my Bathsheba.
In my life I have made plenty of mistakes; near the top of the list must be reading my Bathsheba, harlot or innocent, monologues to the gathering at Zac's. For weeks afterwards every time Martin saw me he sniggered. But, as I was thinking after lunch and after the opportunity to rebuff the rude remarks had passed, that was sensuality rather than sex. There is a difference.
Anyway, that wasn't what I was going to say. When Ric had mentioned Bathsheba I chipped in, 'She was David's bit of stuff.'
Ric looked at me disapprovingly, 'I wasn't going to be patronising and say that.'
Again, after the opportunity had passed, I thought what I should have said was, 'I just wanted to make it clear which Bathsheba from the bible we were talking about.'
It wasn't until I was lying in the bath this evening pondering these imponderables that it struck me: the other Bathsheba I was thinking about wasn't in the bible. She was in a novel, the title of which escapes me, by Thomas Hardy. The one with a very young Terence Stamp as Sergeant Troy. It can't have been Tess of the D'Urbervilles (unless it was subtitled The Story of Bathsheba) and I'm sure it was nothing to with the charge of the light brigade, which is where my mind took me next.
I shall have to google it. Tomorrow. My brain has had far too much exercise already.
P.S. Far From the Madding Crowd. It came to me in the middle of the night as these things are wont to do.