I think the BBC could have done away with trailers for this series because I'm aware I've hardly shut up about it but I make no apology.
A series like this which take us nicely up to Christmas feels like a variation on a weekly Advent calender.By the end of Episode One I'll suffer a brief pang of regret, yet again, that I didn't make the Christmas cake in October and by Episode Three I'll know I really should have thought about our Christmas cards.
By Episode Four I'll be wondering whether anyone would notice if we didn't send any and by Five the decision will have been made. As evidence, I submit the year I wrote great long epistles to all foreign friends, had the cards ready to post long before last posting date and then found them gathering dust in the glove box of the car in February.
We'll also have decided which bit of the house gets the most decorations, this year I'm voting for the kitchen to get the bling.I'm up for the Christmas bough in the corner which I haven't done at least since last year, more of that soon if I win the vote.
In preparation Cranford proved to be pure reading manna from heaven and one of the loveliest of books I've read in ages.
Loveliest doesn't really do my delight at the read any justice at all, but if you are planning to watch the up-coming series then it's really worth indulging in this little ounce of perfection beforehand, you've got a few hours left.
My recollections of forty years ago a little hazy so it was like a new read and one that I indulged with an eye on the cast and the roles they will play and, not being much of a film-going person, this was quite a treat for me. Suddenly I picked up all the little nuances and character traits so exquisitely placed by Elizabeth Gaskell and found myself marking up in my mind what I hope to see in the production.
Cranford is in places an almost laugh-out-loud funny book and in complete contrast to the melodrama of both Ruth and Mary Barton which rest half read on the shelf here. They both felt much to overwrought for comfort reading over last Christmas and in the end I gave up.That said the content of both books is still in my mind and I know I could pick up and carry on where I left off with ease and will do soon.
As I turned over the final page of Cranford my eyes settled on an unread copy of Sylvia's Lovers and I almost, nearly but not quite, opened it to make an immediate start, so full of the joys of Elizabeth was I. That's my trouble, off I go on a gorge and feast on everything there is, then I dilute down that original brilliant read and get hyper-gaskellitis or hyper-eliotitis or worse.
I needed to let the Cranford experience stand alone because it was truly a very special read and one to be cherished.
So with a gargantuan dose of willpower I stopped myself.
All that aside I can't wait for the moment when Matty Jenkins explains her method for dealing with her fear
"caught by her last leg, just as she was getting into bed, by someone concealed under it."