Tripping Oot In Glasgow

Okay. I need to look to the good things I have coming up. Even though I am absolutely skint ta bloody fook (all of this stuff was arranged MONTHS ago with the optimistic viewpoint that I would have the funds now to manage it. NOPE!) – I have THREE gigs and one BBC Radio Scotland recording to go to. So, whilst being skint TF, I’ll be busy AF too.

I arrive in Glasgow on Monday morning, January 28th. Dunno what I’ll do through the day that day. Will probably get to the city centre around 11am – flight arriving to time, that is.

First gig on night one is Massive Attack at the Hydro. Never been a “HUGE” Massive Attack fan, as such…but have always loved what I’ve heard. Never seen them live. Never been to the Hydro – so, it’s going to be a new experience all round. Night one I stay at a hotel a short walking distance from the Hydro, to save myself the hassle of trying to get elsewhere within the city, and only needing to walk less than half a mile.

The 18 year old me would be ASTONISHED at what the 48 year old me will be doing in a couple of weeks time. Not only am I travelling to a city MILES away (approx. 370 of your finest imperial miles, in fact) but I am staying there – alone. Gigging – alone. Walking the streets of Glasgow – at night – ALONE.

I didn’t go to my first gig until I was 19 – a date with my new (and subsequently only) boyfriend. Every gig I had been to from there I was always with someone. Sheltered. Too scared to “live a little”. I never went to a single gig alone until 2017. And, funnily enough, it was in Glasgow. And, well, I walked the streets of Glasgow alone that night. And last year as well, when I was up there in January, taking part in a TV quiz. I’d gone to see a play the night before recording started – and had to walk through the city centre to get back to my hotel. So these days I very much try to live by the “life’s too short” philosophy and just stop trying to be a chicken shit. I am still a chicken shit about loads of things.

Anyway, I digress. The next day – I don’t have much planned. I’ll be staying up around the Finneston way for the rest of my stay in Glasgow. So I may just meander around Kelvingrove, The Hunterian, take another visit to the Mitchell Library and I want to check out the transport museum this time round too. THE CRAN! Got to check oot the Cran this time.

Wednesday I am going to a recording of The Afternoon Show at the Cottiers for Celtic Connections. There’ll be some free live music to enjoy, so that’ll be cool. It’s an early start for something called “the Afternoon Show” – admission to the recording starts at 9.30am for a 10am recording start time. I changed where I was staying, cos I was over the other end of the city staying somewhere else which was 4 miles away from the Cottiers so thought I’d better get my butt a bit closer. Had I been in better condition than I am currently, the notion of a four mile walk wouldn’t have worried me at all. And had it only been two miles away, I’d have stayed where I was, but there we go.

Thursday…nothing planned for the day, yet…but the evening is the Bard’s Tale concert. So I’ll need to be in the centre city and down by the Royal Concert Hall around 6pm.

Friday, a similar thing. Nothing planned for certain during the day, but the evening is the John Grant gig. And I am staying only a quarter of a mile from the venue, so, very handy.

Saturday – my flight leaves Glasgow at 3pm, so I won’t have a lot of time to do too much.

There’ll be a few people to catch up with through the week as well. And I wanted to take a look at areas of the city of interest for OTHER reasons. I may even sneak over to Edinburgh for a day as well. We’ll see.

So…it could turn out to be a jam packed week! And I really don’t want a cloud of negativity hanging over me during this week. No way. Despite being worried about the money situ…I can enjoy myself while being careful.

The Leopard

Brought up by a certain someone in a post talking about wanting to die under a lemon tree, thinking about his age (again!), being in Sicily, and loving a good story.

He always reels me in with his recommendations.

I used to listen to Radio 4 dramas a lot for a certain period. I still listen to the odd thing. There is a serial-based drama that has just started up again called Love In Recovery, about a group of people at a weekly AA group meeting.

I like the freedom radio dramas give you of being able to conjure up your own images and scenes. You can, quite literally, make your own film…paint your own characters exactly as you would want them (minus any vague descriptions of how a character looks to the novelist). The level of concentration for these is different to reading a book. I find it allows my imagery of things to be much more vivid.

This wasn’t a radio play but an abridged reading of the book. The way in which Alex Jennings read it was wonderful. I can certainly see why he was hired for the job!

Of particular enjoyment through the whole reading was the description of the days in which the newly betrothed Tancredi and Angelica would escape their chaperoned walks through the far flung quarters of Donnafugata. In the mind’s eye, such beautiful sensual images of soft pink skin, rose coloured lips (both male and female), fingertips delicately touching skin, etc, etc, quickened one’s pulse. Eluded to seductively, but all very much left to the imagination. Isn’t that how all the best written sex is? All the parts that you, as the reader, (or in this case, the listener) are left to imagine yourself? And of course in my current circumstance, my imagination ran amok!

I listened to all five parts in one sitting. Only breaking after part two to listen to the latest instalment of The Archers (some habits die hard).

I have never been to Italy, or indeed to Sicily…so my experiences of Palermo, Catania, the towering presence of Mount Etna, the deep azure of that “middling” sea are still somewhat a composite of things I see second hand…so far not experienced with my own naked eyes.

Perhaps that may change sometime soon?

I enjoyed listening to it very much. I may just download all the parts to it and share them here. It’ll only stay on iPlayer (ahem), I mean BBC Sounds for so long. And I’d like to keep it to listen to again and again in future – not have to rely on the Beeb to repeat it. In the meantime, if you click the image above of The Leopard – it will direct you to the BBC page for listening.

I think it may also be wise to invest in the novel, to read it in its entirety, unabridged.

I may also get back to listening to more BBC Radio drama.

Thanks for sharing it, Sir. As for the desire to die under a lemon tree? I’ll leave you with this…