Thoughts on helping friends move

Moving house… It’s a really bad time to move house if you’re renting right now. It’s pretty shit if you’re buying as well. But from what I understand, all the prices are hoiked up horribly because of lack of properties coming up on the market or greed or unsustainable intergenerational financial models.

Nevertheless, Tristan and Tanya’s landlord good and karked it in lockdown and whoever inherited is gonna gut the place so they can charge more. It’s a shame really as it worked with the cat and they had upstairs downstairs and a little spare room stinking of weed where I could curl up and pass out if I had too many gins to drive home. But today they had to move.

Strong men speaking a slavic language were hauling things into £750 worth of white van when I arrived with Bergie. I took the boxes that weren’t in their budget. Tristan supervised the lads who, of course, were seeking ways of charging more. Tanya packed a zipvan full of plants.

I hauled a load of stuff into my whip. I’m not being paid for this in any traditional way. “Money or food?” That was the offer. I know them well enough to know that “food” is the correct selection in such an instance. I’m likely to have paid Tristan £120 for a day like that. He’s likely to take me out somewhere glorious and put things into my face that come to as much if not more. What though I’m broke after the Bergman clutch incident? This is my version of avocado toast. Without occasional conscious indulgences, life isn’t anything like as much fun, and we mustn’t just be slaves. Sure, learn to cook cheap. But from time to time just get someone else to do the cooking and the buying and the washing up. Life’s too short.

All the narrative though is about how we are all about to be broke. We are pushing that Sysiphean boulder up that hill. We are at the point where every step comes with failing strain. October and we all expect the moment to come again, where the rock rolls over us and back to the bottom of the hill.

This winter is being prepped to be a hard one. The buggers want to drive the final nail into the NHS and hand us to the American healthcare system with insurance forcing us all to conform in our life choices or die when we get sick. They want to make standing charges so high in theatres that suddenly the Sam Wanamaker Playhouse’s much criticised decision to light themselves with tallow candles will be looked on as the cheap option. Even The Willow Globe is feeling the pinch – they are going to try to go off grid and maybe they can – if they can afford the outlay for the infrastructure. It’s gonna be a long December. My friends and I are going to feel the pinch. Thankfully the film and TV industries remain robust – entertainment hasn’t all shifted to self involved demagogues ranting on internet videos. I might be ok for work. It’s not like I’ve auditioned for theatre for years now. Things might change though. Things change quickly. And I don’t think the relationship with Extreme-E is broken even though I’m upset I couldn’t make it to Chile.

Another early start tomorrow. I’m going to try to fly to Cornwall again. This time though I’m driving to Gatwick in the morning and not fucking around with trains…

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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