Winding down

I’m in my bath after successfully remaining sober whilst leading an enthusiastic Friday night pub crawl – with spooky stories. Groups like tonight’s are joyful. There were quite a lot of them. We oversold. But they did reasonably well at sticking together, and they were all pleasantly trolleyed and playful without being leery. We all made it across the heath and then I made my excuses and got out of dodge. I want a good night’s sleep tonight.

It’s strange doing entertainment right now. We only have a small group at cap, but they still automatically spread out from one another. I still feel like some weird pied Piper, leading this long tail of giggling pissed people through the darkness of the night-time Heath. It’s black as pitch now at 7. Considering the first time I walked the route it was September, I can really see how the world has gotten darker here. Thankfully the rain has continued to hold off…

We only go to pubs with outside seating, and frequently lots of the audience remain masked in the pub garden. I’m wondering how it’ll feel with Christmas Carol this year. I’m glad it’s on again but I suspect it’ll be much harder to connect with the individuals who are watching it.

These weekends I’ve been glad of the focus this walking tour has brought me. It feels a bit like having a job again, although really it’s just three nights a week and some of the other guys have a nine to five in the week while I’m going to the opera and looking at mushrooms. With the Hampstead flat I don’t feel like I have all that much free time coming up now though – I’ve been much slower than I might have been at the process of boxing up and removing my friend’s stuff. I still kinda keep expecting her to tell me she’s back in London. Still, I’ve ferried a few car loads out, and with one more good load I reckon I’ll have most of the things she’ll miss. If push comes to shove I’ll just have to pay a removals company, knowing they’ll do it in a matter of hours. But I’ve been trying to avoid it, even though it’s getting less and less comfortable in there. I’ll sleep there tomorrow night so I can wake up and start doing things. Tonight I wanted to be in my space with my things.

I’m gonna get out of this bath, make and consume a huge cup of chamomile tea, and sleep like a baby.

Two nights to Halloween. The veil between the worlds is thin. I’m pretending to be the ghost of the pub we start in, which is a genuine reported haunting. This evening, just before we started the tour, there was a brief power cut that dropped the lights for a second or two and stopped the tills from working. Hopefully it wasn’t the strange Victorian man showing his disapproval…

Author: albarclay

This blog is a work of creative writing. Do not mistake it for truth. All opinions are mine and not that of my numerous employers.

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