Drumuri si locuri inversate. Life anapoda.
Bournemouth 20-21 May 2016
Contemporary dance show
Lampeter Hotel. Ajuns tarziu in noapte, pe la 10:30 dupa spectacol.
Seen May Contain Food de Protein Dance – Luca Silvestrini’s company at the Pavilion Dance.
Met and talked with him as well. His protruding chin standing out. (same chin across the table from me now when I write. A girl in a two family, pier, rainy day out). A fost incantat sa ii spun ca Border Tales mi-a fost mai aproape de suflet. Si ca ii admir/urmaresc piesele. That one was closer to his as well. More personal and relevant. “Where are you from?”, after learning my name. “Aha!, so it’s this immigrant layer, cause I’m an imigrant too, (we all are) that talked to you!” imi spune.
E cam de inaltimea mea, dar in gestica si .. acum abia ii descopar o feminitate si sensibilitate in miscari. Pana atunci parea liniar, consistently masculine. E cald in reactie. Imi pune mainile pe umeri, aproape a imbratisare, like “you are my brother if you say that!”, si aproape spune asta. Ma intreaba de FB sau asa ceva. To stay in touch. “So, Valentin from Romania!” mai spune inca o data inainte sa ne despartim. As if to remember. I only asked a couple of questions. This world of art can be deceivingly intimate sometimes. This time seemed sincere. It was more like me pulling my hand out of his. Foarte subliminal poate stanjenit de dedicarea asta a mea. De familiaritatea lui. Had followed them to Bornemouth to finally see this show. “We’re thinking of restaging Border… . Trying to find ways to tour it.” “Ah!, I can’t wait!” As fi vrut sa vorbesc putin cu dansatoarea aia finlandeza. Mi-amintea de Ioana. Ioana si Alexandra. A cross. But in a quirky way. O sensibilitate blonda. Identity tags in her stagetale. Plus accentul. The ugrofinic adjacentias that appealed to me… in what way? I believe now it was an echo of Aniko, and her aquarius sensitivity. Ioana, Alexandra, Aniko. All born within the same week. Da. Asta era. magic specie unawaringly fitting into my fault lines. Vault lines.
Stepped out into the drizzling rain veils. Thin across the night.
Hilly Bourne! Centru. Daring the wavering showers. O usa inchisa. Asta e hotelul?.. Changing streets. Nearly every building in the centre is a hotel, motel, hostel. I shd’ve just showed up, picked any. But getting there in the end.
Inversion or “hostel california”
The main entrance became the back one, blocked, dezafectata. The backdoor one is the main now. Intricate ways, fire escape type. Feels like a hostel. Meeting some students in the dinning area. Alejandro, Pablo, Javier, Adrianna Jordan si Dan. Mostly spanish, the girl – italian si Dan român. What do I know, like a backpackers place. But nearly renovated into a motel. Almost 3*, or about to. The libian’s nephew, a 26 year old, looking up a room for me. Literally. With a master key going from room to room: “Asta! Ba nu, Asta! Ntz!, ASTA e!, am gasit-o! Pardon, scuzati!, nici aici.. turning from a brazen room conneseur bursting with ownership when opening each new room into a cheshire cat, smooth, silently and most carefully closing back the door. Some were sleeping in the shower, some flooding the room, some in autistic suspendus, or sewing the carpet to the curtains, supergluing the pillows to their arse, others, who knows, shagging before shooting themselves. You know, those intimate moments neither you nor the owner want to share. I drop a joke here and there. Some not so dogmatically correct maybe. Not sure how he takes them. Gasim una libera. 1209.
Dropped my bag on the spot and joined the guys in the dinning downstairs. Garbage bins overfilled, pizza boxes and rezidu bags stockpiled on top. Chairs in disarray. Management’s business. The teens had left a room key, a stack of playing cards and other stuff lying around. Probably out for a fag.
Otherwise a v clean kitchen, all washed out and arranged. New fridge. Lots of guests’ personal stuff and food. Turns out the lebanese (or libian?) owner was renovating and all’s been more or less open for just 2weeks. Still unfinished. While most if not all guests actually work in the town. Cooks, cashiers, waiters, casino dealers. Some barely speaking the language. Most young or very young. Between highschool and university. Or students. Drifters. Day shifts, night shifts. This is their refuge. A cheap one. I somehow strangely fit within their spare time window of amicitiae. I later get out with Javier, him with a skateboard under arm. In the rain, so he can buy some cigarettes and do a sketchy orientation midnight tour with me. Or talk a strange mix of spanish and english with Alejandro – an ambitious money driven kid, with a bit of smarts – about spanish politics and corruption. Basics. Or get out for a smoke with him and Adrianna. She’s looking for work. Sort of nearly in a relationship with Alejandro. Flirty with each other. She’s 20, tall, brunette long hair, blue eyes, beautiful, but clueless. Smokes too much.
The dusty angel
But now, it’s only Dan in the dinner, lost between tables. Tired. 50 ish, looks like a 65 dusty-ruster. A mechanic, handyman from Timisoara. Came here with his wife two weeks ago to join their kids and find some work. There’s nothing to do home. Not in that town he says. Used to transport people across to Budapesta and back for a while. His own business. That’s over with though. His daughter 23-25 married to a guy from Brasov 25-27. Both worked on a ship in management or catering business for a while. I meet him later as he prepares for his casino 10h night shift. Drunkard clients mostly at this time. Not the ideal set up.
Just me and Dan now. He mutters his words. But a generous thread in him. Fatigue?, or maybe half hungarian?, not sure. Looks romanian. A modesty in his demeanour. Unassuming. Thinks I must be a drifter. Or like him more or less, just younger. Must have felt lost for purpose at some point. His wife already at sleep. In life transit. Both waiting for NI numbers. Applying everywhere for cleaner/whatever jobs.
“Mânci o ciorbă?” imi spune. Actually, was more like: “Let me get you some soup!” A very romanian rendition of good will, very much from home. Reaching through drapes of solitude and grabbing your shoulder with familiarity. Shares his food, his bread from casseroles of a make ends meet universe. As if I was the one in need.
Tells me of the kids again. There’s a pile of stuff being thrown out with the renovation. He spotted a kettle or two, a couple of ironing devices and boards. Maybe he should salvage some these days.
Who’s this guy? where does he get his hope from? Seems more at the end of it than me! I pass by the stash of discarded things the next morning. He’s right. There is still some, left there on the bottom of that pandora box – a trace of humanity.
Night a danced. In Slug and Letuce for a beer. Moving my … feet between a hen party and some goofy semi drunk guys. Ok for warm up. But moving on.
Drifting in the drizzle outside. I follow the noise into HALO – a dance club in a church in the centre. Lots of students hanging on a smoke in the side alley. Getting in. Two guys tryina get me to buy a tkt. I need a peek first, see what’s the fuss about, not paying £10 just like that. One of them more sober, “look mate, you’re gettin in – you’re payin!”. The other, a bit more chemically engaged and I guess more in charge, starts questioning me: What’s with you?. Looks me deep in the eyes for a few secs, do you sell drugs?.
Do I look like one?
But this is how he gets it: that I’m fussy about paying cause I may be a pusher not having sold much this night.
My first night in town man!,
Where ru from?
from Romania, geez!
Wait wait, yeastyurop! (might as well), right? next to Russia aaaand Uruguay!
Well, you got half of the planet right. Ukraine u mean.
Yea yeah! You know Transilvania?!
Yea I know Transilvania.
Look, mate!, sticks index to slushy lips, shh!, get in!, just get in! SHHH!
Drum n base, breakbeat, lasers, trancehop. Vibrant grounds. Mostly teens and early 20s, plus some late 30s. I can’t find a link age group between these. Hunched over girls and boys dancing or jumping on it. A juvenile dancelinquency. Engaging, but I still manage to stand out a bit. Not overdoing it though. I wasn’t drunk. But wanted to flow in with them. Some were already flying, others a bit more in control. A few times mostly twentyolds asked me if I was ok. Donno why. What was the difference?, felt part of it and even those few opened up to a high five or a dance along. Nothing odd, or fishy. A vigorous plasticity, where the dynamic flirted with but overcame eroticism. Some vulnerable in-beteens. Young inbetweens. You know, been there, when you start going to clubs and are not yet sure how far you can go, or what’s with the craze, but do feel the impulse to engage. I felt that back when turning 18 I guess, when first out in club Martin on Stefan cel Mare, dancing to Suie Paparude. This comes to mind even now, with the backstory of Matze and the Undergroove armada that to me still play better than these guys here. But stayed with it. Watching those guys more into dance, those girls, some unclear if this was socialising, flirting or whether to just vibe into music and lose control. But mostly ending up doing the latter.
Crashed back in the “hostel-california”. Had a brief urge to night-stroll either out to the seafront, just 500m away, or deeper into the park, the opposite way. But I did that next mo(u)rning.
Woke up to Ethiopique – another incredibly impressive discovery in this series of dedicated albums (after finding The Homeless Wanderer by Tsegue-Maryam Gebrou last year). Fip radio be praised for that. Downloaded in full and loop-listened that for 2-3 hours. Especially Heywete by Tesfa Maryam Kidane
(acum vad ca inseamna “you are my life”). Very slow pacing the 2-3 miles Bournemouth central gardens. First hour without an umbrella. Just taking in the fresh green around me and the grey thick sky. Then hide-covering under a broken one. Stopping at times, video briefing a stream of water over to G. when she messaged to check on me. Or testing Heywete for chacha rhythmicity. Thoughts and mood full of En. of what happened. One should have his tango teacher with him. ALL the time! Especially on walks like this. A perfect tool for feelings and thought, for the need to translate all this. No desire to mood out of this dread, but slow simmer it up and down, vaulting along in dramatic dance shapes. An image of a lover. That’s what can keep me afloat these days.
Called Adalina again on that walk. Long talk. About En, her, the inconsistencies in the stories she was given. Her hopes. Still churning through superstitions, her needing clarifications. Asked me if I dreamt of him again, wanting to know if he was ok. Well, I didn’t, not after that day, not up until tonight (26th May): We met up with former classmates, my ex-lover there as well, colleagues. Like a “20 years after” reunion. But different from what it actually was in reality. As MG wasn’t in fact present last year when we had it, En was. While now she was, very much her, very like a high-school tone to her relation to me. Ambivalently (dis)connected that is. More of a context. We were watching high trees up beyond a fence. Green trees full of snow. Lime trees? oaks? And Ana N. was climbing those fences. checking. Then I looked back to pictures. Somehow there were pictures brought over for remembering those times back years ago. And there he was! Two photos of him. One where he was looking up, same as the rest of us were looking up to that corner of gardens and sky, over the tall fence in front of us. Only he was looking up from the photo I was holding in my hands. But present with us, engaged in the same gaze. The second picture,.. of me and him. Like the one I had from Eforie Nord, with the sunset behind, the real one. Me in a red tank top. On the pier. Just faces this time. His and mine next to each other. Like in that one. But somehow I couldn’t see his eyes, as if I had sun-spots in my view. And these blind spots were overlapping on his eyes in the picture. Then, when my vision cleared a bit, his eyes still seemed affected, as if stardusted. Didn’t know what to think of it. As if he’d been crying..? I associate. Didn’t actually feel like a crying face. Just blemished a bit. So I kept trying to clear my view to see his. Thinking look, there you are!, though knowing he was not with us anymore. And that was all. Then I tried to follow MG and the girls in an elevator taking some of us down. As if we’d been in a tower. Told them to hold it while I dashed back to give a bunch of hyacinths to Andrei F. who stayed behind (not sure there’s any literal connection to either his Andrei or Adalina. don’t think so). But somehow they couldn’t hold it. And I couldn’t block its decent or jump in. Though I tried, smash footing the door. But then I dashed down around the shaft and the cables. Light-speeding down some virtual stairs. On improvised narrow metal steps zooming around and just under my feet. Got to the ground floor just after them. Stepped out of the shaft. Out.
Woke up to find a message from Lemi. She thought of this. some interference!