A couple of days of attending to the needs of home and hearth, with a frustrating buildup of musical intentions.

Decoration – of all domestic chores my least favourite. Madame says I hate everything in the house but it isn’t true. I actually enjoy cleaning things. But I hate painting. Even buying the paint this time has been a headache as Madame decided the first lot, which which we’d already painted a wall or two, wasn’t really the shade she wanted. There are a few basic skills like cleaning a roller in such a way that it doesn’t slop watery paint everywhere next time you use it, that I make an irregular intention to master but never do; indeed I forget it’s a problem until the next time I find myself spilling milky emulsion onto carpet and clothes.

Yesterday we drove to Tillicoultry to buy a bed settee from an
enormous warehouse there. There was at least some sense of adventure as
we followed directions from AA Autoroute instead of going the way we
knew. Madame was navigating and I was driving through the teeming rain
as we traversed the B-roads of Fife in what felt like wayward loops,
always with that nagging doubt – have we missed a junction? Passing
through Dollar, one of the most beautiful parts of Central Scotland and
home to the magic of Castle Campbell, we arrived at Tillicoultry in time to queue for lunch in a barn of a canteen where
we found ourselves behind a Yorkshire woman who seemed compelled to
speculate out loud about every detail ‘I wonder why there are two tills?’ ‘I’ve
been right round and can’t see if it’s one queue or two.’ ‘I wonder if
the cup of CocaCola is cheaper than the bottle’ ‘Do you think that
includes chips?’ ‘Do they bring it to your table or do you have to come
back for it?’. Her husband seemed to do no more than sigh and gaze into
space, which I suppose he’s learned over years. Perhaps he mentally
writes operas, novels, new scientific theses or soap scripts while she
witters. Of course we all wonder about these things – but unless you’re asking the question to someone who knows the answer, why waste airtime on it?

Today thanks to the miracle of annual leave, I have a day to polish
up the tracks recorded so far for the next CD. Part of last week’s
master plan relied on Electra being available to create a vocal
backdrop for a short song, but her schedule won’t permit it until May
at the earliest, so I may do without or, preferably, keep the song on
hold, as it seems from her email that she has exactly the right ideas
for this and it will be better for waiting. Today, then, I’m finishing
the drum track and mix for IOU and the loops for a strange little thing called At the Harbour.

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