It was craft and cake today and, because Nathan was doing a morning shift at the theatre, I drove alone to Catford. It was about as bad a journey as I could ever have imagined. There'd been a lot of sleety rain throughout the morning which had caused drains to reverse all over London, and as a result, traffic was gridlocked everywhere. The situation was so bad that I became almost insulted by the speed cameras on the Holloway Road which, at the best of times force drivers to crawl along at 20 miles per hour. Today the chance would have been a fine thing. Furthermore, everywhere I went, there seemed to be a myriad other hazards; pedestrians stepping out from between parked cars, every traffic light on red, enormous puddles everywhere which sent great waves of water up the side of the car.
When I got to the South of London, the bus drivers turned into Kamikazi missionaries. In fact all drivers are rubbish in the South of London.
...And as the minutes turned into hours, and my foot started twitching on the clutch, I found myself increasingly desperate for a wee. It was horrifying. Truly horrifying.
It was much more pleasant at Julie's. Sam was ill, and spent the afternoon sleeping, so there were just a few of us there. Julie had made scones and a sort of apricot cake, which was most pleasant. I did crafting for the first time ever, and decoupaged the front of an enormous card which all the Brass cast had signed to say thank you to Cameron Mackintosh who gave us a generous donation towards the recording. Nearly everyone else was knitting. Nathan worked on the beautiful shawl he's been developing for the past six months. It's a stunning piece in variegated shades of orange and green. Very pleasing to look at. Every bit a work of art...
We came home via Canary Wharf and Bank, where we deposited first Tina and then Abbie.
I had a bit of a panic on my way home about money, wondering how I'm going to deal with being unable to claim benefits. We talked a lot about the sorts of things I could do to earn enough to pay the rent. Nathan suggested working as an usher in a theatre because it would free the days up for me to write, but the thought of going back to a job I did exactly half a lifetime ago is almost too horrifying to contemplate. I wonder whether it's worth contacting a few universities and colleges and offering my services as a teacher of musical theatre composition, but I wouldn't know where to start. The problem is that working as a composer and film maker hasn't provided me with a great number of transferable skills. I'm even wondering if it might be time to acknowledge that a career like mine is impossible for an older bloke to maintain. No 40-year old should be without a mortgage, or a pension, or enough savings to see him to the end of next month! Maybe I should be entering some sort of Arts administration position where I can use my expertise and understanding of creative minds to help the younger generation of writers... Lots to think about tonight.
I better eat some food!