January 18th 2019
Dad is mystified. He stands amidst a spaghetti of cables at The Exchange (North Shields). Someone is sound checking on the stage.
“What’s the point of all the 1, 2, 1, 2? They should just get on with it. All these cables.”
I explain that there is a sound man. I point to (perhaps) John E at the far end of the ridiculously long venue. He is hunched over a sound desk.
“He’s in charge of getting the sound just right.”
“They should just start singing.”
I don’t really have an answer. He walks away, shaking his head.
“1, 2, 1, 2.”
Suddenly, I notice that the person on the stage is Joanna/Anna (she looks, as ever, as she did in 1990s, when she was alive, except… when she opens her mouth I see that she has two sets of teeth – one set are a kind of veneer. The other set sits behind the extraordinarily white front row).
She asks if I want to dance.
January 19th 2019
The tide is high at King Edwards Bay. The water is flat & duck eggshell blue (like gloss paint?). Riley’s Fish Shack bobs around on the water. It is anchored, I suppose, to the sand. A crowd of people are treading water all around it, waiting for food. The sunlight passes, in shafts, through the ruins of Tynemouth Priory onto the water. But, as I look closer, I realise that it is not that sunny at all. A series of lanterns/spotlights, have been set up behind the ruins to create the light effect. It is still rather pleasing.
January 20th 2019
In the kitchen of the flat at Bridge Street. I have a telescope & I’m trying to paint a picture of Charmouth. Everyone is stood still in a silent procession: a tableau. Banners and balloons hang static in the air. Confetti & leaves. Frank J is the only one moving. He runs up and down the length of the parade, arranging and rearranging people into ‘better shapes’ – everyone is pliable – he offers advice, such as – ‘too egg box’, ‘look at your memory’, ‘you are melting cheese’. People try to comply to his stage direction, but look utterly confused! I am laughing so much, that when I look down at the paper, it is blank & the floor is covered in puddles of paint!