Boiling hot, I sat in the reception of Observatory on Poland Street, and somehow it felt like an adventure in the familiar. A casting! In the baking heat of a London summer. In a 3 piece suit. The usual wait beforehand. The usual feeling that it’s over before it’s begun.
Name. Agent. Hands? Last time I was in that particular casting room I sang a song and clicked my fingers and a few months later my agent paid me a few grand. That was three years ago. This time I improvised quickly direct to camera and did a spot of oozing. With any luck the result will be much the same. In the end these things are the bread and butter. They pay for the slump periods.
Now I’m in Berkley Square. I’m walking home, still in my winter suit, picking my way through the streets. It’s busy here now. Oxford Street feels closer to the familiar. People walking too slowly, people walking too fast, people walking. It’s good to retread the roads that have become my pathways. To be back here and to immediately hit that recall, almost before I’ve landed. No matter how it falls I still get fifty nicker for my work today. Fingers crossed the job comes in. I fancy a day on set. Hell, I liked the director. It’s down to the client now, and of course to the cut of my jib.
Berkeley Square. Twenty years ago I walked disastrously in this square before my first agent’s meeting, just after rain, treading mud up three flights of stairs and into their office. “Is that your feet?”
The square might carry a version of my name, but it wasn’t lucky for me then. A sliding door shut. Maybe for the best. There’ve been so many doors opening and closing and here I am still, putting on the suits and doing the talking and enjoying whatever work I can carve for myself in this strange job in this strange town in these strange times and fuck-it-all I still love it. And I’m finally learning how to process this post audition adrenaline without the magical numby-juice. Walking. Thinking. Breathing.
Berkeley Square is full of wicker elephants, made in rural communities in India, touring the world for #Coexistence. Art that’s trying to do something. It’s why I’ve stopped here. I wanted to be with these elephants for a while as the adrenaline pumps through my brain. There’s been a certain amount of Ganesha energy flowing through me these last few weeks, unlocking obstacles in my life and in my outlook, and grounding me as it does so. Despite my immediate hayfever from those bloody plane trees, I’m sitting with these beautiful wicker elephants a while as the words I’ve just spoken zing digitally to a client somewhere whose decision will directly inform how nice the bathroom will be in my refurbished flat.
London again eh? ‘ere we go. I’m ready for you if you’re ready for me.