Friday, February 20, 2009

redressing the map, the universe

Yesterday at work I was asked to sort out my long-service leave plans.  I was almost startled by this request, realising that my time for extended r&r was coming fast and I hadn't made any decisive plans.  I've still yet to purposefully decide my dates.  My instinct is to stay with the eight-week stretch of mid-May to mid-July, or I could do it Sep-Oct.  Either way I'll have to decide soon.

I was pondering what I'd do with that time off.  Perhaps I'll do some recording.  I was thinking of renting a shack for a week down around the North Wollongong strip and with me a laptop and guitar, and write.  Writing what you memoirs?  Hmmm.  It will be a refreshing break in any event.  There is sea, clifftops, mountains behind.  There'll be lovely walks to take and brisk sea air to breathe in.  It will be holiday downtime too so the rents will be cheaper, and the weather cooler.

I was thinking of driving to Melbourne and catching the car ferry to Tasmania, and make my way slowly down to Hobart to visit my sister.  I'd probably spend a night in Launceston on the way to Hobart and walk around the town's university.  After a weekend or so with my sister I'll wind my way around Tassie and head back to Burnie to catch the ferry back to Melbourne where I plan to do some serious window shopping.  Melbourne is great for shopping apparently but all I care about is the 'Bass Centre' and 'Acoustic Centre'.  I'm not likely to buy anything but being in a large shop full of acoustic guitars to me is a form of worldly heaven.

I'm hoping that the weather's sunny as I'm driving down to Melbourne.  I'd like to stop off at some tiny town overnight and rent the room atop the town's pub.  I'd be hoping the sun will be glowing through the town's poplar trees whose leaves are amber and red and slowly peeling in the calming berth of autumn.  I'll be transcendent, still, as I stroll amongst these trees with the quaint sweet-box houses by the side and no-one in sight and it'll be quiet as love.  It's the kind of translucent, yet utterly passionate experience, (or non-experience), I crave my entire life.  I'm not being silly when I say in my profile blog that I like "tiny towns and abandoned railway stations".

More about the railway stations another time.  And the long-service leave.  This is all yet to be finalised.  I could go overseas but I'm not in the mood for it right now.  I like what Australia offers, namely sea, mountains, land, and poplar trees in autumn.

I could go to Canberra and stroll around the National Art Gallery, and while I'm at it the National Library of Australia too.  I could seat myself down at one of these clinical-white cafes they have at these places, take in a stiff cappucino, and gaze furtively over fake-lake Burley Griffin.  Then I'd get back in my car and come home.

I'd like to spend some of the time around Sydney too, doing things.  Recording, as mentioned, getting the music more organised, getting what I really want out of life and having the purpose and intent to follow it sorted out once and for all.

I work in a cool place but it's not my be-all and end all.  It's very theatre while I'm very primal-inspired music.  It's almost as if i'm almost an imposter there, lurking in the shadows of my own particular talent while everyone else is free to explore theirs.

Tomorrow night my imposterdom will be put to the test as I'm attending (and helping out with) the party of a lifetime.  The institution I toil at turns 50 this year, and so does my brother actually, tomorrow of all days.  He did theatre at the Ensemble back around '79-'84 but is totally out of the scene now.  Like me he happily buries his talent working in a library and being curtly satisfied with that.

I've no idea of what to expect from this party tomorrow night.  There'll be theme rooms for the 50 years of the instItution, 60's 70's 80's 90's naughties.  Staff members are able to choose an armband theme of their choice.  I should be 90s because if I attended this school I'd be a 90's grad.  Naughties may suit me better but that's arguable, depending on who you speak to.  I may just do the 70's thing because I was a child in the 70's and I'm terrifically nostalgic about that era, wishing we could revisit the era again with the boxy cars, ungentrified inner-city lots, the smell of leaded petrol, abba, hair, sideburns, moustaches, number 96.

There'll be free sauce up to 10pm.  While that appears tempting I'd much rather slip some mescalin and mushroom myself out a bit as I trance around the theme rooms and bump into people I knew, but I'm not about to go scoring and I wouldn't know when to start so I'll leave it at a glass of red wine, or two max.  If the wine is cheap shit I'll have a hangover after one glass.  I don't want a hangover.

I wonder if mad max is gonna be there.  I imagine Cate B will be there.  That'll be swell, I'll walk up to her and say hi, I'm Ross B, your 'B' namesake, and shake hands vigorously.  She'll look at me strangely, painfully, glancing down at her hand getting shaken like a milkshake.  She'll excuse herself fast.  I did meet her years ago in the library anyway and besides, I don't fall in awe for theatre-actor people.   Music is my particular bag.

I can imagine leaving as the party is in full-swing.  I'll slide out through the front-doors and the security guards will nod me and wave the way out with their apey arms, at which I'll sweep out fast, cross the road, and notice how the luminous noise and light dissipates rapidly which each step I take.  As I walk up the University path and up the stairs towards upper campus I notice everything is pitch-black, and save for the noise of the party still reverberating in the air and in or at some distant heaven, everything is silent.  I recall that I hadn't seen a soul since I left the building.  I continue walking up the University walkway stairs in pitch dark.  I'm guided purely by instinct.  In my imagination or reality I hear the faint yet loud head-sounds of the party that never ends.  I turn around and face my Medusa.  The building is the only thing I see, glowing in the near distance and I can almost see in sense form the entire world in this one building, all the people and the entire universe of everything I've ever known throughout all life, partying their lives away.  

I turn forwards again and continue up the stairs in nothingness black, knowing that I shall never return.


Marco Crupi said...

Hello I really like your blog, I would like a link exchange with you, I insert your blog to my favorite blogs ;)

the address of my blog is:

My blog deal of the art of photography.

( photo technique, post production, photo retouching, Reportage, how-to and articles )

The Knitting Songbird said...

Wow Ross, sounds like you've got some really great plans up your sleeve. Wish I could join you in Tassie, I've always wanted to go there, looks so lush and green.

Yeah, I also imagine that everyone is partying their lives away - everyone except me! I know I shouldn't complain but that's really how I sometimes feel. With three kids and all the rest of it to handle, it sometimes is anything but fun and games around here. But like I said, I shouldn't complain and if I had the choice, I would never give it up.

And say hi to Cate for me :)

ross b said...

Hi Marco, thanks for your comment. The photos are wonderful! You Italian? I'm an Italian Australian which doesn't really count as being "Italian", unfortunately. My parents are Calabrese and I never learnt how to speak, except the dialect, although my parents did speak Italian well, they just picked it up.

All the best, Ross

And Mary, Cate wasn't there!! We'll have to see how the LSL transpires...I will take it and I look forward to it. Talk soon, Ross.


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