November 16th, 2007


Late autumn morning

The sun has just come up and to the right the river is pink with a rosy haze over it. And the blocks of Victorian flats facing it are just glowing their little hearts out, red light on red brick, softened through the water droplets.

Meanwhile the river right in front of my window, on the other side of Putney Bridge, is still in shadow, and little clouds of mist are rising from the water like steam from a cup of tea. The tower of All Saint's church is turning an ever more golden shade as I sit here and type.

But I had to go potty!

So ... I had a strange encounter yesterday while attempting to hit the head.

The story is: I was at the Battersea Arts Centre to see Human Computer last night (babysimon, trishpiglet, and cipergoth, you should all go). It's in a kind of warehouse space, so it's not like the ladies' room was apparent. I asked at the door, and the gentleman there said, "You'll have to go to my colleague around the corner, and he will escort you."

Okay, fine, I figure, I'm heading into the darker depths of the warehouse and they have liability issues. I can handle this. So I go around the corner and ask the guard if he can take me to the loo.

"Sure, but you're going to have to put one of those on," he says, pointing at a row of masks.

Not hard hats, not gloves, not rubber clogs, not any kind of protective gear: we're talking Commedia Dell'Arte, big-nosed, Venetian carnival-type masks. To go to the bathroom.

Okay, well, I was game. I put on the mask and followed him to a big, metal door.

He pushed a button, cracked the door, then waved me through. I slipped in, he followed me and immediately shut the door behind me.

I was suddenly in a completely different environment, as if I had slipped through a portal into another universe. I was in an alcove near a stairwell, and a madman was thrashing around and moaning on the floor while masked folks in formal wear stared at him. Cement pillars disappeared into the gloom. My now-masked guide put his arm out and I grasped it tightly. We walked through a darkened room that had a continuous stream of faceless party-goers passing through it. In the distance, through another doorway, I could see trees. The moaning and disturbed mutterings faded behind me; ahead, I saw a well-lit doorway. I dashed in and dropped the bar behind me. Sweet normalcy!

Anyway, returning back across the hall was just as odd - I mean, I was aware that Masque of the Red Death was taking place next door, but being plunged into it that quickly was really - hard on the system, somehow. Can't wait to go back, but next time I'll make sure to put on my formalwear first.
Cards on a Train

Tonight I went dancing

Ceili dancing at Hammersmith Town Hall is a BLAST. I rocketed up and down the dance floor for two hours (not quite straight), polka-ing and twirling and do si do-ing and promenading. I did a special basket where we went ultra fast so the girls (me!) got lifted off the ground and swung around with their legs in the air ("Girls, arms on top, and don't let go!"). I asked a man in his early sixties to dance, and when he held my hand up for my turn, I did some kind of hopping skip with my hand behind my back that he thought was marvellous, thanking me later for making his night. Of course the whole time I had an ear-to-ear grin on my face.

My only regret was that I wasn't able to get wechsler out with us, as he was cutting a fine figure at djm's dance (and needs a break from his packing), but I did manage to convince mirrorshard to extract himself from the wilds of Leytonstone to join us, so I did alright. I am bound and determined to do the one they're hosting at Battersea Arts Center as a Masque of the Red Death late night on December 9th - it should be cool.

Work has been utterly packed this week and they've kept me going as fast as they could, though I did managed to have lunch with "the girls" on Monday and a really nice team lunch at Il Tartufo today, plus Pilates yesterday. I'm very happy with my short work week and even more happy with the way the hours fly by. Unfortunately I have to go in tomorrow, but I'm going to pull double time while I'm there, thereby feeding my crack theater habit. I also have to work on December 15th, which is going to play havoc with party co-hosting. Hopefully I can make it work somehow, and hopefully tomorrow I don't have to stay too late so I can catch the 6:15 Wayward Cloud at the BFI.

YAWN. Okay, have to go to bed now so I can be pretty for work tomorrow.