I’m never quite sure if a busy day is best with a backdrop of rain or sun? I’m also not sure if waking up to an alarm is healthy? That horrible shock of being in a deep sleep and some cacophonous siren in the distance getting closer and closer until you finally have to address it, waking with a start to realise that dreamworld is over. Today I woke up two hours before I needed and happily went back to sleep to wake up again three minutes before the alarm went off. Perfect, but then I looked out of the window and it was pouring with rain and I imagined the twenty-minute walk to the pool and the drenching I would get. Then I thought back to those days in Australia and the blistering sun and the days when the sun wakes you up whether you are ready or not and that trip to the grocery store for the soya milk you forgot to buy and the slapping on of the suncream and then the melting. Back home with the suncream slimy on your body and tired because it’s 9 AM and you went to bed at 5 AM. This of course is just one scenario as is today’s Porto rain and as Olivia and I ventured out, her in her Docs, me in my Blundstones, it wasn’t actually cold and the rain had us splish-splash through the recently resurfaced park and the Rua da Constituição all the way to the pool – where I was only going to get wet anyway.
Back from the pool to seshes with Ali in LA, Fred in Minneapolis and later Noel in Surrey, bookending the England – Scotland game which was supposed to be the event of the year. It was a glorious 0-0 and therefore a victory for Scotland. But watching games on ITV where it keeps on buffering will drive you nuts. In 50 years they will look back and laugh at buffering – “How did they cope?”. I’ve also decided that I need a stand-alone computer, a desktop Mac for my home studio setup. The recording programme just takes up too much memory on the laptop but it’s not just that, I don’t really like the idea of everything being in one place – studio, seshes, entertainment, blog, email, language lessons etc, etc. If I’m going to be a computer slave, I’d like at least to be able to move from one side of the room to the other.
The doorbell rang halfway through the sesh with Ali. It was the electrician and Adélia who works with the landlord. They were carrying a giant oven and box with a brand new hob. The next two hours they were in the kitchen installing it, from Ali to Fred. Speedy fix, but I guess if the tenants’ cooking facilities go down you’d want to fix it pretty quickly. So we were grateful for that. We have a list of domestic needs that we can live without but would like to have, you know the kind of things that your parents always had in that drawer in the kitchen that seemed to be messy and disorganised but in fact revealed items you desperately needed, like a tape measure or a bottle opener or scissors. Then there’s the kitchen things you have to have, like a masher or a garlic crusher or a colander. It takes a lifetime to accumulate these things and that’s the thing about parents, when you hit twenty, they’ve lived a lifetime and have the masher that you are too young to acquire.
Out of the window tonight a chill, a dampness that gets into your bones and then over the roofs of the house a creeping mist that seemed to be powered by supernatural forces as it enveloped the top floors and the street lamps. A poison gas, an alien entity, an unknown being whose presence has you fear the dark. It’s penetrating the bedrooms of the children in total silence, hovering above the pillow before sweeping down and disappearing, permeating the skull, inspiring a twitch and a flicker of the eyelids and a personality change in the morning.
Music today was Revolver (1966) by The Beatles because it keeps on coming up in seshes, the simplicity of Eleanor Rigby, transformed by strings, the harmony and guitar part on And Your Bird Can Sing, the influence of Love You To, the bass playing and the drumming on Tomorrow Never Knows, the sentiment of I’m Only Sleeping, the brass on Got To Get You Into My Life, the melody of Here, There And Everywhere and the general singing and songwriting of For No One or She Said She Said, that was so brilliantly produced and enhanced by all the band members adding their skills, magic and chemistry to each other’s songs with the addition of a sympathetic technical crew that captured the whole thing on tape. Thank you.