Since The Last Supper gig in London things have been pretty quiet for me, there hasn't been much going on to tell you about and I didn't want to ramble away on here just for the sake of it.
I think maybe I wasn't expecting the comedown to be as big as it was, but then for eighteen months of constant work to suddenly be over, it would be a lie to say that it didn't affect me. This isn't a sob story looking for pity, don't worry, I'm just trying to explain the long silence. One minute you're out there, travelling all over the place, meeting hundreds of people every day and night, and the next you're on your own in your local with a pint of europiss listening to Chris Rea driving home for christmas. The phone goes quiet, there's no interviews at silly times of the night and at first it's like a holiday, not having to pack and say goodbye to your home. And then a few weeks later you realise you're saying to people: when I used to... and it brings it home that it's over, done with. Self doubt slips in and your confidence goes and you find you can't think of anything to say or write without scrutinising it and then dumping it because it's crap. The worst moment is when you look along the bar at the others and think: I'm just one of them now. That gave me a boot up the arse. The night that happened I came home, opened the bottle of wine I knew Jona had stashed away for when visitors come, put the headphones on and played Stratford Mercenaries and Schwartzeneggar. And I realised that some of those songs aint bad, some could work as acoustic versions...hmm, that's got me thinking...
On a different note, a few weeks ago the Caister Independent Lifeboat crew payed us a visit as they wanted to see if they could use a trailer like ours to launch their small boat from it. They very kindly invited us to take a trip from Caister to here on their larger boat and we jumped at the chance. On that morning they had to perform the spreading of two peoples' ashes and it was great to see it done with dignity and sympathy. It's something we've done on our boat many a time and it's always done as caringly as possible. Then we set off for Sea Palling. Man, that boat can move. It just cuts through the waves like anything and you hardly feel it. A great way to spend a Sunday morning. Thanks Caister for the opportunity.
Still on lifeboats for a minute - well I am involved - we take possession of our new lifeboat in a couple of weeks time. Our old boat met with an accident so we had to salvage what we could from it and get a new one built. Fortunately we're off service during winter so it hasn't meant we've missed any shouts, but we go back on service very soon so that means we've been working really intensively on chartwork, first aid and stuff in readiness. Once the new boat gets here it's going to be full on getting used to it and practice practice practice out at sea.
Also in June there will be a naming ceremony where a Bishop comes down and blesses the boat (it's called Lionheart) and there's a church service, yeah I know you don't have to tell me, we're also having an open day at the boatshed, and in the evening there's a 'do' at the pub. Clarkey asked me if I'd think about doing something, and yeah, Im going to. I'm planning to do a spoken word thing that'll last 30 to 40 minutes, Carol and Pete have agreed to back me, so that's what I'm working on at the moment. I don't know if anyone's interested but hopefully it'll be entertaining and there is a band playing as well, you know the usual keep everyone happy sort of thing but apparently they've got a great brass section. It's free to get in but donations would be welcome. I'm not giving the date yet as I don't want people booking flights and christ knows what, it's going to be a very small local thing but if anyone thinks they can make it you'd be welcome. Let me see what the response is and I'll give more details. I'm not teasing, it's just the way it has to be done for the moment.
Right, I'm off down the pub and think up some things to say. It's good to be doing something like this again, good to have something to talk with you all about. Till soon, Steve.