Boxes, boxes, boxes and more boxes. Slowly but surely shelves and cupboards are emptying and it’s about now that I’m happy I kept the boxes for appliances and the stereo. As I was about to put my cassette player away (yes, my cassette player), I realised it was the same machine (and box) that I bought in Sydney at Park Hi-Fi in 1982 (is it still there?).
So I’ve had that cardboard box for 40 years, haha – oh yeah, and the cassette player.
Carolina and Pedro have a car and today they came to help us carry a whole lot of smaller boxes, coat rack, shoe rack, kitchen boxes, candelabra, stool, and plastic Christmas tree (haha, yeah, really). So we filled their car and Pedro had the bright idea of calling an Uber for the rest of everything that wouldn’t fit in their car. So in two full cars, we sailed down to The Archive, hoping for a spot to park whilst we unloaded. Apparently, it’s a holiday here today so there was less traffic and we found spots for both the Uber and their car. It might be a holiday for business but the ladies of the night didn’t get the memo and they were out in force.
We now have an archive space filled with second-hand furniture with no electricity and no water and no archive. This week I’ll be writing to Rita Moreno, senior technician at the Directorate of Culture and Heritage from the Municipality of Porto and letting her know that we now have premises and it’s about now we need some cultural help to get The Archive into Portugal, for two reasons, firstly, it’s a crime if it isn’t here and growing and secondly, the storage rent in England is going to kill us whilst we’re paying the rent for an empty archive here. It’s throwing money away.
It’s worked out well, between leaving the flat we are in and The Archive being habitable we will be in England with our friends Biggles and Colleen and then Boydie and Trish, Boydie is putting the tour on and as we’ll be with him a week or so before the dates and we’ll be able to rehearse there, no way we can do it here with all this going on. When we return from the UK dates we’ll be spending the month of April in The Archive hoping that renovation work done in March while we were away is up to scratch. May/June will be something else, tbc. We’ll be starting a GoFundMe campaign for The Archive soon, I will continue collecting for The Archive from here and hope that one day everything will be in the same place, that is here in Porto.
We got back to the flat in time to see Liverpool lose 2-5 after a 2-0 start. Taking these boxes down has given us space to pack more and that’s what we’ll be doing the rest of the week. Tomorrow I’ll be going to pick up my baritone from luthier Jorge and hopefully meeting someone down at The Archive to sort out the impossible gate, rusted and difficult to open, really difficult to close but it’s security so we have to deal with it for now. My guitars won’t be in The Archive while we are away, I need to know they are safe, and that the building is safe and we need to inquire about an alarm, more costs, but you have to do it.
Music today has been Slade’s third album Slayed? (1972). It was a big leap for Slade (originally Ambrose Slade) from skinheads to mostly covers on the first album (oddly including a Zappa song and The Beatles’ Martha My Dear) to the glam explosion and mega success in the UK in the seventies. Bassist and violinist Jim Lea and unmistakable singer Noddy Holder’s songwriting with guitarist Dave Hill’s outrageous clothes and haircut, backed up by drummer Don Powell, was a recipe for success in the seventies with 17 consecutive charting singles. Prior to this album they had four non-album Top 20 singles in 1971, Get Down And Get With It (No. 16), Coz I Luv You (No. 1), Look Wot You Dun (No. 4) and Take Me Bak ‘Ome (No. 1). I bought Take Me Bak ‘Ome. The album features Slade classics Gudbuy T’Jane and Mama Weer All Crazee Now, and yes more hits would follow.