I’m in an Uber home from Chiswick. A birthday party. Remember them?
The driver is on the phone, low volume, in an unfamiliar language. Madonna is singing Vogue on the radio. The lights of London flash through the windows. It’s a Prius, driven by 5 Star Adeel. People in cities across the world are having similar experiences right now in the same make of car.
He just got the dingle of a new job and ejected me into the warm night near enough to my flat to walk. Palpable optimism on his part. “Here is ok?” “Yes it’s fine”. It’s a warm night. Just a couple of minutes walk.
I’ve been out! Birthday partayyy!
One of my oldest friends. Copious amounts of wine. I feel happy and numb in equal measures, and I’m going to drink a huge amount of water now and maybe even run a late night bath. I pulled out earlier than my habit cos there’s stuff to do tomorrow. I’ve been carrying three scenes handwritten in my pocket to learn before tomorrow evening when I’ll have to put them down with a good friend as another of those self-tape audition things. One that for various reasons I’m very happy to get and thus one that I’m not going to interfere with by getting off my trolley and staying up until 4am. Self care now and I’ll likely go to sleep running lines in the hope they latch in my dreams. “Use an autocue,” a few of my friends say, but that just means double the work if there’s an in person recall/they book you, and I’m an optimist. Red wine though so I WILL have a bath and wash my face. I don’t want tannin lips even if it works for the character. It’d be good casting, this. God Bless the Professionals.
Bergman is chilling out absolutely full of stuff. For tonight he’s exposed but any robber would have a nightmare as it’s a huge and esoteric collection of antique furniture in there that I Tetrissed together over many hours this afternoon. The unload is gonna be interesting. Everything is dependent on everything else. There are things that I still can’t believe I fit in. It’s all going to Majorca soon, and hopefully the trip will be as stress free as the last one. They didn’t even stamp me going into France last time. My only issue was on the return, empty but for a bit of wine, when the lovely customs official in France didn’t like stamping my arrival back to England when my exit had gone unmarked. I’ve told my wonderful agent that I’m off to Majorca and she just laughed. Last time I taped for a French Captain in a little quiet room somewhere in the south of France after a long day driving and learning. This new culture of self-taping has an advantage in that it opens movement as a possibility. I don’t feel quite so strapped to London. I can do interesting life things. I can drive to Majorca and still do the auditions. Embracing the positivity of this shift in the industry towards self taping.
It was lovely to hang with Tanya and her friends this evening. Good people and good food. A bright birthday and the first of her birthdays I’ve ever managed to get to over decades of friendship. This Antisocial job and my habits do often see me flying southwards at a moment’s notice to do service for friends and there’s obviously something karmic about the thing where I move old things that are stagnating and take them to places where they are alive and loved again. Everything in that car is wanted by my client. It’s a gift from her dead parents that would otherwise sit and gather dust. Mice had been at the bird bath, spiders lived in the dressers. Soon they will be loved. I packed all the things exactly as they were found, keeping things in drawers. Photos of them as children in the dressing table. Memories memories memories… I know that complicated knife. Bereavement can stump us for a while but it can also galvanise us. I think these memories will help my client continue to propel herself forward with dynamism as she has been. And I’m grateful to her for trusting me with her wonderful things all the way back down to where, perhaps, the sun is still shining!
Bath is running. I’m guzzling water. Time to look at the lines the lines the lines.
Oh and anyone needing anything brought from Northern Spain or anywhere in France to England, let me know. I’ll be going back empty. I’ll do you a deal. 🙂