My first donations from the huge costume intake have left the flat today. I’ve been characteristically disorganised so it took a little longer than it might have for me to start giving people clothes. Jack and Max showed up at mine and pressed the issue. They’re making a ghost tour in Stoke Newington imminently. They knew I had lots of stuff. They eventually left with a waistcoat, two of the 23 moleskine capes and a large grey top hat. Nice to finally see some items making their way back out of the flat. They seemed happy with their haul, and I can see them being useful. Even though I have a huge pile of those moleskine capes, every individual one is an excellent piece of workmanship and a valuable and expressive piece of costume. I just donated a few hundred quid to the Covid Fund of the place that gave them to me – it seemed rude not to. Already they’ve been useful for self tapes, tomorrow’s costume will be from them, ditto my costume for the ghost walk, and today… Today on this clement October day, I mostly swished around my flat in a broken down green raw silk nightgown. Once upon a time somebody sang incredible songs in that gown. Today it was the perfect loose garment for a Sunday-Al who didn’t want to wear clothes but was a little too cold for strolling around naked. A lovely relaxed day at home in silk, followed by a hot bath and now I’m already safely wrapped up in a lovely bed with clean sheets. Incense burning, candles lit and a lovely glass of a Crozes Hermitages I opened a couple of nights ago, because I haven’t got one of those vacuum pumps and it’ll go to vinegar otherwise. Life is pretty good right now.
Tomorrow I’ll be off to Crowborough with my stovepipe hat and my cape and maybe a tailcoat. I’ll be away to read scary ghost stories to the good people of Tunbridge Wells. I’m going to spend the morning thinking about interesting props I can incorporate. Then making sure I have the stories I’ve chosen to read properly highlighted. I’m tempted to bring my little portable audiobook rig and record myself “Al Barclay Live at the Women’s Institute!” I’ll have to clear it with the venue first. Lou was gonna come down to watch, and she can’t now with work. Maybe I’ll be able to share the fruits of my labour with you in time for Halloween. Maybe I’ll just record the stories separately anyway. Two of them are not yet on Audible so if I do it high enough quality I can whack them up there in time for Halloween and see if anybody bites. First though I’ve got to make sure they’re ready for a live reading Tunbridge Wells. Allegedly its very easy to disgust the people of that ancient town.
I’m looking forward to tomorrow but I’ve not been able to see beyond it yet. The first time will be the last time and then it’ll be done and I’ll magically discover that I have lots of space in my head. I’ve mostly just been preparing for it today. I did just one practical thing in the whole day : I fixed the Mucha print that got disrupted for the self tape. My room is back to its comparatively spartan art-deco glory. And I’m going to finish this glass of wine, have a cup of chamomile tea and drift off into dreamy reverie. It’s only 9pm. How is this even possible?