Thursday, January 07, 2010

twilit breathing

It's quite odd being somewhere that has broadband access but no mobile phone coverage. Another laptop, another opportunity, more rain, this time there's thunder rolling around the valley as well, which is usually a sign to unplug & switch off, but not here where the computer is on my lap and the only noise beside the thunder is a horsefly buzzing around behind my head and the sound of my fingers tapping.

I'm in Kyogle with my beautiful siblings-in-law. Best Beloved has driven into Lismore to have some kwality time with his nephew watching Avatar in 3D (something you can't do at the Kyogle cinema), and I'm coming out of the fug that my brain became after reading all four Twilight books bumper to bumper in three days.

I've been wanting to read them for ages, to experience them firsthand but not keen to purchase them. This time last year we bought them for the niece, so now I was determined to get my money's worth. The first two books went down the gullet like McDonalds burgers: no chewing necessary; by the last two I'm guessing she'd had some professional plotting help, and it improved them enough to make me chortle occasionally. I can't say I actively disliked them. They reminded me of lying in bed furtively reading Flowers in the Attic when I was 13 or so, without the stomach-churning naughtiness. I can see why women are enjoying it as much as girls, but not having seen the movies I can't understand why they're obsessing so much about the poor actor who plays Edward so much that they're actively screwing up his life. He's going to split at the seams soon, poor dear.

Wow, there's a thick curtain of rain outside, and I feel guilty at being annoyed with it. I've had one full day of sunshine since leaving home, and my poor parents are sitting at the dessicated Prickle Farm watching the grass curl up and die. I wish I could shoo some rain south for them, and for Ronnie, and anyone else who needs it. Right here we need some sunshine, or we won't have enough solar power to run the home theatre tonight :) Luckily there's a back-up generator. In the meantime, we're sitting in the gloaming, using whatever natural light we can find.

Today is our last day here, and then we're wending our way home. I keep thinking of the things I want to do when I get back, and then all the things I HAVE to do, and then I remember that it's also school holidays, the last before high school (!) so I should make the most of my time with Bumblebee before he starts morphing into teenagehood, and then I just stop thinking, because it's so quiet here and green and damp and calming. Breathing is about the only thing worth doing in steamy heat apart from reading. And at least there's plenty of water, so baths are in the picture too.

I can't remember if I told you about Byrd's latest show? It's an online show, so anyone can attend. I was just thinking about the hand-painted stickers he'd given us when we caught him in Coff's Harbour on the way up; I put some around the Woodford site, and also in the carpark of the MOMA in Brisbane when we went to see the Asia-Pacific Triennial a few days ago. It was fun, being furtive. The Triennial was fun, in parts. Sometimes I felt a bit frustrated by the way people respond best to art when there's a bit of novelty or 'magic' to it. I really enjoyed Tracy Moffatt's video, I always like her sense of humour. We ran into a number of Canberra people, which was surprising... and yet not, since they were all artists.

We had a music night here a couple of nights ago, enhanced by the presence of an old friend from Canberra who had moved to Sydney and was visiting her old friend in Lismore, who was a musician himself and greatly enhanced the family musical moments. We played music all over the spectrum, from Van Morrison to Van Halen, Abba to Green Day. It was hot & sweaty and completely amateurish, but excellent fun. I sang a song I used to belt out with my old band but my voice was so rusty I can't bring myself to listen again to the recording we made of the night. The tantric-sex version of Gloria sung was so funny I'm still hugging the memory close, and I suspect I always will, with all of the musicians on their knees and the lead singer doing a deadpan monologue about touching palms & letting the sensuality of the universe flow through each other etc etc before launching into the full-blown screaming of G-L-O-R-I-I--I-I--I-I again.

This is such a lovely mudbrick type of house, with lots of wooden beams and chunks of tree-trunks as poles inside the rooms, bright colours and inspirational pictures everywhere and outside there is a lovely fishpond full of purple-blue lotus flowers and a waterfall that houses a wild carpet-snake. The atmosphere is relaxed and loving, and it's the perfect place to wind down before launching into another busy year. On the cards this year: a couple of exhibitions, some workshops (including a typography summer school in February that I really need to advertise more -- watch this space or go to my website for details soon) and a conference or two, some writing gigs and a residency in New Zealand in August/September followed by a stint as artist-in-residence for the Majura Women's Group...

Stop. Breathe. Breathe... listen to the waterfall. Find something else to do. Bye!


ronnie said...

ahhhhhh I'm touched that you've at least tried to shoo the rain south for all of us

travel well - remember to keep breathing - sounds like a busy year ahead

seldom said...

hey nice to see you at Woodford. I second you on the dampness. So guilt-inducing to be annoyed with it, but oh!

genevieve said...

Kyogle sounds brilliant. Best of luck to your boy for the school year.