...WITH ONLY THE BAREST OF ESSENTIALS TO CAMP (IT UP) IN HACKNEY
Ever left someone in a hurry, having to grab basic kit and go?
I just did it to myself as soon as I had somewhere to run to: my newly acquired flat. Still don’t really believe it’s happened, but evidence such as having keys to an empty property in E5 suggests it has. I had to be up early on Saturday morning to meet my Chippy, Ian the Chippy. Thought to self, ‘don’t go out and get lagging and then struggle to get up’. Then it dawned. Go and stay in your new house. Instantly I entered a new realm, as I threw together what rudimentary stuff I needed into a big shallow cardboard box. It was like walking out on yourself. There is an exhilaration attached to rapid change. It happens so rarely. See below for guide to 'leaving chic'.
Never consider absconding or camping without these three devices.
My Roberts radio, my unused Alessi ‘90-90’ award winning espresso maker (that someone so dear to me gave me for my last birthday and I saved for this very day), the bronze shining magical blanket, two wine glasses, one bottle opener, two Global knives, a set of fancy cup and saucers with matching cake plates and a gold Dunhill Rollergas lighter. You know, just the really gritty basics for living. That was it. Obviously a couple of outfits too, mainly sort of camp Alan Whicker joins Japan on tour in Paris kind of looks. Should blend right in Hackney, and cover my social schedule for the weekend.
Whicker-encyclo-pedia. Japan 'relax' on Avenue Antole, Paris.
Dressing in this parody of posh gives me the urge to call the place ‘Hackers’. More of blending later. (Incidentally, Blending is part of one working title for my novels about operating in the fashion industry: ‘Blending With Benders’). Throwing together this stuff out of the blue into this box was just like walking out on my old self. It was surreal. Leaving a gaff I’ve lived in for 13 years, more than a third of my life, and starting again. I’d had about nine (ish) proper girlfriends in that time, and even lived with one. I was leaving a place full to the brim with memories and stuff; to go to a fresh new blank receptacle with nothing in it but the sofa I bought from the last owner. Oh, and the hammock in the garden he kindly left me too. I was leaving my chattel and baggage laden old self behind to camp in a new realm. I even have an empty cellar*, to be converted into a walk-down wardrobe archive. I now have a kitchen you could swing an Hermes cape in, and a lovely bathroom. I also have mouldings and window shutters. M-en-tal. I lay in my hammock later that evening listening to Radio 3, smoking cigars and gazing at my flat. Thanks life. This is the best I’ve felt. Ever.
And things have sort of stayed like that. A calm, steady feeling of that this is the beginning of something. Uncluttered and uncomplicated, totally new. Spoke to a pal who said isn’t it great when you look at life and think, ‘yeah, I could do this, and be happy with it’. Don’t know what I’ve been doing all these years, but its not been thinking like this. Wait till I get the Madre up here. Then we’ll have a hoot. Could not have done it without her, believe me. Thanks Mary. I'm wondering if I should add a formidable Global to the ensemble tonight. Gonna be walking about in the early hours, and can't possibly dumb the whole look down. A Global or the bronze magic blanket maybe?
Stubbs has left the building (and arrived in another).
PS. I haven’t actually moved yet. Just tried a skimpy, well-dressed rehearsal. The real move happens next week.
* Henceforth to be referred to as the Jurgen. Work it out darlinks…