"She lives the poetry she cannot write" – Wilde
At last Fourpenny Circus has been able to finalise our summer tour dates – and there will be a little mini-tour in the autumn further afield. We had four solid days of rehearsals this week and at the end were gibbering wrecks, but my whip-cracking technique is coming on nicely and we have now run through the set with our costumes on. In retrospect, planning a summer tour for which I have to wear a thick velvet jacket, waistcoat and jodhpurs was not so clever.
I have started writing a series of deeply moving poems about potatoes, which is my mission for the National Trust at the moment. They need pieces about local produce, and in a separate commission have also asked me to write about Coleridge and his Somerset connections. But I took a break on Tuesday evening for a social with The Loop, where Tim Woodhouse performed his brilliantly funny songs with his eyes closed for the whole set.
On Saturday I practised drowning. Friend Lindsay had a hen do – which once involved a short drinking session at the local, but now means that we all pay to be fondled by strangers at a distant health club. The Nidd Hall Hotel in North Yorkshire did us proud, and we were having a perfectly nice time until I started drowning melodramatically in the pool. An ill-timed bout of cramp nearly did for me, but I am still here.
Easter approaches. You may recall that that nice gentleman Jesus fed the five thousand with a few loaves and fishes. Our new landlord Kevlar demonstrated the same instinct on Palm Sunday by feeding the gathering vultures/ boaters with sausages from Aldi, using only a barbecue the size of a Nurofen tablet. We drank and bonded, and received a brief visit from tiny boater Mathilda.
Consider, dear readers, the question of karma. A cheque arrives for £550 in payment for some work I did last year. This makes me happy, and I deposit it in the bank on the way to collect my car from the garage. The bill at the garage is £542.42. Hey ho. Did I do a very good deed in a past life, or a very bad one?