Not the most enjoyable of flights, but I am arrived intact by Budget air : ) Revisited Brussels airport, where as a 9 year old I arrived back from Africa… and breathed with the most profound and lasting joy the chill mist laden air. The Agia Napa accomodation is blissful after the cooped up chicken house of the aircraft… white marble floors, enormous windows and a balcony beneath the ink blue sky. Bizarrely above my bed in letters not of fire, but steel I am instructed ‘You are beautiful’. Corporeally, I beg to differ, but I do not think that is what is intended : )
The Thalassa museum… huge pine and corrugated iron space, beautifully engineered. Thin alabaster walls let light through into the hall, half filled with an ancient boat, like Jason’s Argo… If I ever doubted the power of place, or the massive influence it has on a performance, well no more. It’s a significant experience, here beside the wine dark sea, thinking of Colchis, Medea and the fleece.
I remember as a teenager sitting in the front garden of my parents’ council house reading Homer, while they scratched their heads at me and went to work. Hadn’t thought of that for a long time… dwelling strangely among those so-long dead, sailing their creaking boats around this very sea next to which I now sing my songs…
Last night of the tour and last beneath this azure sky… Home tomorrow to the possibility of snow and a cold Northern Christmas : ) As a kid in Africa I disliked the hot Decembers… seemed wrong. It’s been an amazing year… the biggest tour of my life. Agia Napa’s been a lovely way to conclude … the museum venue with its giant ancient ship was, for this bookish man, about as good as it gets. Nervous the night before feeling the weight of the great tradition, not wanting to shame myself in front of the traces of the ancient… the consequent extra rehearsal was worth it… A warm happy audience, wonderful expience and I didn’t feel the stones disapprove. Afterwards we ate Cypriot Mezze on a huge table… home made halloumi, local brandy, at a lamplit limestone house amongst the night green olive trees, kids everywhere. Today the light up snowmen and cotton wool snow in the still warm flagstoned square make me think of home.
Until next time…
Thank you (I can’t find adequate words to say how much…) to everyone who has come to a perfomance, smiled in a photograph, spoken kindness and counsel… and felt their heart beat in these same short moments as mine has. I have loved sharing time and life with you, and I hope the fleeting traces smudged across your memory will bring joy in the recollection, as they will in mine : ) x