September 16th 2018
Writing a letter to Rob W. to thank him for the CD artwork he designed for me. He has an odd fascination with Albert Eichmann, so I decide to include a photograph of him that I find in a magazine. The photograph turns out to be too big to include in the envelope: even as I fold it it doesn’t seem to reduce in size! Instead, I put a photograph of Eichmann’s girlfriend into the envelope:
It is a tiny ‘thumbnail-sized’ picture. A young, pale & blonde woman in a German WW2 uniform smiles broadly from the page. Her features are impossibly angular.
Sometime later Rob arrives at my door to thank me. He has a book in his pocket & he shows me his bookmark. It is a thin card with a birthdate on it: 13/12/11.
September 17th 2018.
Belvedere Road looks as it always did after the war. The bottom of the road is littered with debris. The houses are derelict. It has been this way for sometime: trees burst from the opened roofs, weeds overrun the pavements. Pigeons coo in broken window frames. A streetlight is bent double & cars are overturned on the tarmac. They are reshaped into strange, twisted shapes of orange metal. I stand among all of this. At the top of the hill the Crystal Palace is still intact, unscathed by the chaos. Lights twinkle throughout the glass structure.
Caroline P lives in a ruined house midway up Belvedere Road. I go in through a hole in the wall. The house (as always) is a wreck. Two Turkish men are arguing in the kitchen. Although they speak in Turkish I can get the gist of what they are talking about: Caroline P. owes them money.
Somewhere in the house someone is thrashing at an electric guitar. The house rings with amplified noise. There are no chords, no structure, just feedback. The Turks decide that they will take the guitar & the amp as part payment. Caroline P couldn’t care less. “Help yourselves,” she says. She is curled up on a wrecked & dusty sofa.
September 18th 2018.
A fleet is in the bay. More & more ships are arriving from the horizon. The sea is calm & clear & clean. I wade out into the water. I can walk like this all the way out toward the anchored ships. The water is warm, chest-deep. The bottom is sandy.
A silver airship floats slowly across the sky & lands on the water. A crew of thin men climb out & begin to throw ropes over it to secure it to the seabed. A complicated cat’s cradle is arranged & eventually the zeppelin deflates. I shelter in the shadow of a ship. It is fun. Suddenly, Martin S appears! He is looking down at me from the ship’s deck. “Come aboard,” he says.
Martin S is the ship’s barber. He cuts my hair with a set of clippers. It is a dreadful haircut! But I’m not too bothered as I am pleased to see him after all these years. And, also, I know that I can wear a hat as it grows out! The clippers buzz back & forth. We chat about the old days. After a while he has finished. He holds up a mirror. It turns out to be a ridiculous haircut, but brilliantly done! He has carved a checkerboard effect into my head & beard! A channel runs from my eyebrow, over my head, to my scalp. I laugh!
Someone else arrives & he begins to cut their hair. When I look into the mirror I am surprised to see that the client is actually, somehow, Martin S as well!