Third day… beginning to warm up

Things are beginning to rev up here. I remember this from previous races. I find myself thinking I’m gonna have time to think and then more stuff happens. When I’m part of the team, the team knows I’m part of it and good people make good use of me.

The St Helena is moored up in Fairlie. There’s a narrow jetty, and the old mail boat is there at the end, larger than life. “Not electric yet” it has, blazoned on the side. This is still a race with big ideas, a team buoyed up by that drive to find joy but do it ethically.

Today I met a train into Glasgow. No time to see family sadly. Hopefully one day I’ll be in less of a rush. The passengers were good sorts and got involved in my latest car game.

Last season I built up a playlist on Shazam from Saudi, Sardinia and Uruguay. My obsession has been local radio stations. Charming clumsy earnest DJs and often eclectic often local selections. I’m happy to listen to them talk in a language I don’t understand in order to hear their selections and save them. Last season’s playlist could use some trimming for sure, as I don’t just Shazam songs I like. I get curious when they annoy me. Nevertheless, the lists are an artifact of these short and intense international jobs that I’ve got myself tangled up with and they will hopefully give me pleasure in time to come.

My passengers got right behind it, thankfully. There’s a station you can only get within a few miles of Glasgow. Celt95. It puts out an earnest and eclectic folksy range of tracks. We are clinging onto it as we pushed to the marina, and building an odd and memorable artifact of this race via Shazam.

(For those who don’t know, Shazam is an app that listens to music and tells you what it is. It remembers what you’ve searched for, so later on I can add it to a playlist.)

I was taking the storyteller out to the boat. She’s going to live there for nine months. That’s a whole pregnancy. I wonder what she will bring to life. Her job will be to do roughly what I do on this blog, but with more pictures, better links, less vulnerability and more polish. I partly envy her that existence. It’s a different style of writing though, and it would make this thing I do almost reflexively into A JOB. And we all know that things change when they become your work. I still switch off adverts. I still give my money to WordPress.

I dropped her off with the crew. The first time in my experience the boat has not needed a tender to get to it. In some places you have to go through passport control to get there as on board it is technically England.

Turning round on the narrow jetty in my vast borrowed pick-up was hairy, but nothing worse than I’ve done before. I shot home to my little Ayr Apartment. It’s late. Tomorrow I’ll be covering just as much ground but in the other direction. This part of the world though – it’s beautiful. “I would have stayed there if they weren’t all so buttoned up,” dad used to say. And that seems to have changed. In Ayr, in Edinburgh, in Glasgow I’m seeing interesting looking young men and women. I’m listening to better than generic music on the local stations. There’s spark here. It’s going on the list.

WordPress has decided to stop me from uploading pictures. I’m too tired to try to work out why. That’s why you’ve had no images. Will sort it anon…

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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