Ignorance is bliss
I am trapped inside today still waiting for this important letter that I keep missing. It's now a week since they first tried to deliver it to me, unbelievable. Yesterday I was in the shower and the phone rang, I wasn't going to answer but then I thought it might be Gerald so I got out. Turns out to be a woman from a small publication wanting to do an interview and I had to quickly compose myself and get my head together. Always be prepared for the unexpected, talk about catching me off guard. I think I managed to answer her questions effectively, fortunately she had done her homework on Cling which made it easier.There's been qutie a bit in the news recently about not protecting your wireless network with a password, any old fool could sit outside your house and with the right software they can see eveything that you're doing on your computer and get access to all your personal stuff. It just goes to show that ignorance is bliss, we have had our wireless system for over a year and didn't even know anything about protecting it, it was only because we suspected that someone was using ours for free that Gerald did something about it. Why do people have to be so unscrupulous, there's always some buffoon ready to steal your money, or your identity, at the drop of a hat. I can't believe how naive we were.
Dancing in the Rain
Hi everyone, I don't think Gerald and I will ever forget Africa Day because it was freezing cold and raining like anything. When we got to Trafalgar Square, Miriam Makeba was on stage singing and despite the fact that it was literally pouring down there was still a massive crowd there and everyone was just dancing to the music in the middle of the deluge. Only Africans could have such spirit, nothing was going to stop them from enjoying the tunes. And I had many a tear in my eye as she sang songs that were so familiar from my childhood. What a voice that lady has!Yesterday we went rehearsing, Gerald was very peeved because he had bought a brand new foot pedal and when we were going through one of the songs, I think he became a bit over zealous because one of the switches packed in, we both just sat and looked at it in shock. The worst thing is that it will take two weeks to get a new one, so annoying. Now today we have to go all the way over to the depths of North London to some obscure music shop to pick up some more equipment. So I better get ready, catch you later.
Come and visit London
Today is Africa Day in Trafalgar Square, I have been looking forward to going and the weather is blowing a gale and raining, not as much as yesterday though. We will still go, it's something different to do. Sometimes when I have to go into London over the weekend, my route normally takes me down near all the main tourist attractions and people always seem to be so happy and excited. Sometimes when you live somewhere you take things for granted and you just become used to everything. I often forget what a stunning and magnificent city it is and I think parts of it will always be that way. When I was about 11 our family visited London and I remember standing on Bond Street with my Mum saying that I would live here one day and I have no regrets at all, I've had some of the best times in my life here. Even though my heart longs for open spaces, I think I will always enjoy London, so I suppose the answer is to have a bit of both. Gerald is still working tirelessly, he will wear himself out, but he won't listen to me, he will just carry on and won't be satisfied until everything is perfect. All I have to do is run and sing.
Stopped and searched
This is me doing one of my favourite pastimes. I tried to be a model for Yoga Magazine but they weren't interested. They wrote to us and told us that they were going to review our cd and then we never heard from them again. Shame.Last night I got stopped by the cops under the anti terror act. Never mind that I was on my way somewhere, they insisted on searching my car and asking me all sorts of silly questions. I asked them if I looked like a terrorist, they apologised and said that they had to stop a wide cross section of people so that they couldn't be accused of discrimination- let's just waste everyone's time and stop the most unlikely candidates, better not stop anyone that looks suspicious because it's not politically correct. They made me late as well, cheeky monkeys.It appears that the weather forecast was right for the weekend, it is the perfect day for running, all overcast and cool. Hope you all have a great day!
Who's at the door?
It's so warm and muggy today that it woke me up. Apparently the weather is going to change again though and I'm hoping it will be ok for Monday because we are meant to be going to this big African Festival in Trafalgar Square. There will be some familiar musicians from South Africa playing there which is one of my main motivations for going.Yesterday someone was persistently ringing on our doorbell, he was casually dressed and driving a green car. I wondered what on earth he was up to, but I was reluctant to go and answer because I thought he was probably trying to sell something. I wish I had gone down now because he was trying to deliver an important letter to me and now because of the Bank Holiday I will have to wait until Tuesday before they try again. Doesn't anyone wear uniforms anymore? It also started me wondering who on earth would send me an important document? Instead of telling myself it could be something good, my mind started to try and make me think I was in some sort of trouble, well I better forget about it because I still have four days to go before I find out what it is! It might teach me not to be so suspicious in future, but some would say better safe than sorry.
When I was meditating yesterday, I saw some really deep healing colours, vibrant purples seem to stick in my mind. It reminded me of when I went for my Reiki attunements. I am actually a qualified healer, I went to level 2. I tried to start up my own business from home, but I was very lazy at the time and found it hard to generate clients, so now I just practice on friends and family, and I use it on myself every day. My Reiki master looks like the last person you would ever consider to be a healer. He is a huge man with a bald head, sort of like a truck driver or a bouncer, it shows how deceiving looks can be. Anyway, he is the most powerful, yet gentle healer I have ever come across. During our attunements we used to do deep meditations and visualisations and I wouls sit there with my eyes closed and see the most amazing colours, similar to colours we see every day around us, yet so much more vibrant, almost neon. I don't know why I chose to learn Reiki , it's got to be one of the best decisions I've ever made. The most rewarding experiences are when I've healed people that have been a bit skeptical to start off with, and the wonderful thing about Reiki is that you don't have to believe in it for it to work.
I read an amazing book once about this lady, she was a Buddhist monk and she went to live in a cave by herself for about ten years. I recall that she was somewhere like Tibet and she just shunned all material comforts and basically just meditated in the cave, the only people she ever used to see was when she had to make the occasional trip into the village to get essential provisions. She was pretty much self sufficient though, in the summer months she used to grow her own vegetables, like potatoes and things. She must have had a lot of guts and determination as well, imagine doing such a thing. I think the object was to gain some sort of enlightenment which she did, but when she came back into society it took her a while to integrate again. It was really a fascinating encounter, one that appeals to me. Maybe when I am old and grey and all alone I will become a crazy hermit and live in the wild, close to nature. Perhaps when our governments all want us to have microchips inserted into our skins I will be one of those rebels who refuses and then it will be impossible to live in society anyway, we will be outcasts. Already we are moving towards cashless society, it won't be long before the micro chip arrives. Perhaps we are already being subliminally brainwashed through mass media like TV, you never know what people in power are up to.
Hi everyone, I'm sitting here munching on a piece of toasted fruit loaf, isn't it weird how you associate different foods with your own personal experiences, fruit loaf always reminds me of my Mum.The first time I took Gerald to Zimbabwe, we both got really ill with some bug and we both ate things that seemed to act like a catalyst. For me it was a Viennese shortbread, within half an hour of eating it , I started to feel really dodgy and several hours later, that was it, I don't really want to describe it , but it was like having severe food poisoning. I remember Gerald rushing off to the chemist to get some fluid replacement tablets and other medicines. We didn't know at the time, but lots of people were getting ill from the tap water, so of course every time I had my medicine, instead of making me better, I got worse and worse.The night before we were due to come back to the UK, we drove out to my uncle's place to say goodbye to him and he offered us some scones, When we arrived back at my house, that's when Gerald started to feel really ill and he had to travel the next day, it was truly, truly awful, I don't know how he managed to get on the plane in such a state.Anyway the point I'm trying to make is that I can't even look at a Viennese whirl without feeling sick and poor old Gerald has never been able to face another scone in his life!
Hi everyone , hope you all had a fabulous weekend. For the last few weeks I have been really pleased because in all the time I have done yoga, I have not been able to do the crow posture, it is the only posture that has evaded me for ten years, mainly because of a weakness in my left wrist where I fell off a galloping horse and broke my arm. Now , after running for a couple of months, I have obviously built up some muscles and some strength and I can now do the crow, it is fantastic to know that persistence really does outweigh resistance and also goes to show that you should never give up on something as you will get there in the end.A very kind person has created the most amazing visuals for our gig, I can just imagine what it will look like on a huge screen, it's so encouraging when people want to help you out just because they like what you do, it shows that we must be heading in the right direction.So what are Cling doing today? It's rehearsal studio day, every week I have to lug more and more equipment down there, I need a servant to help me pack it all into my car, I think we should just get two of everything, it would save us dismantling it all the time.
Sorry if you missed us these last couple of days, I think we are both heading for burnout at this rate, we just seem to be rushing around all the time. The live set is starting to come together now, Gerald is working endlessly as usual.I am currently in the process of doing a ten day mental challenge. This is where if you find yourself dwelling on anything negative you must immediately change your thoughts and think of a solution or something positive. If you fail and you find your mind goes back to dwelling on nasty things again, you have to start the challenge all over again. This all sounds very simple, but try and put it into practice, so far the longest I have managed is a couple of days. I suppose the whole idea is to change your thought process and condition your mind to respond differently to negativity. The ego always says "What about me?" and finds the most devious and crafty ways to start you thinking and before you know it, you are mad at someone or worried about something that hasn't even happened. I always enjoy doing stuff like this though because it helps you to learn a lot about yourself.
Eating humble pie
So here I am again, it's quite warm today, warm and grey, sometimes the sun manages to blast through with a glare and you have to squint when you look outside. Spoke to my mum yesterday and she is getting ready to go and see my uncle in Cape Town next month. Isn't it strange that I have family there and yet the only time I have ever been there was when I was a little baby? I still have have a photograph of my Dad holding me in the sea. It does sound lovely there, every time we go in that direction though we only have a couple of weeks, not really enough time to start touring around. I actually feel guilty because a couple of years ago I really blasted my uncle and wrote him an incredibly rude email because I thought he was taking advantage of my Mum in certain situations, now he is really helping her and I feel a bit disrespectful because I shouldn't have spoken to him like that. I suppose I should apologise to him. At the time though, I thought I was doing the right thing, my Mum was full of complaints and then when I did something about it all of a sudden she said everything was fine. I think it was then that I learnt that it's pointless interfering in situations that people have created for themselves. So there we are, at least I learned something.
These days when my computer takes ages to get going , I just sit and practice the guitar, I even cut my nails really short so I can play properly, not that I'm Carlos Santana or anything, oh no I'm just in the process of learning. I love the guitar , it is a beautiful instrument and not as hard as I thought it would be to learn. Where I went to school the emphasis was very much on academic subjects, the only music lessons we had were singing lessons where we had to learn all the songs , well they were hymns actually, for assembly. If you wanted to learn instruments then you had to have private lessons which were really expensive.I'm afraid by the time I got to High School I had turned into a bit of a rebel, when I think about it now I guess I just wanted loads of attention. I would get up to the most awful pranks and I was always in trouble with one teacher or another. I think one of the worst things I did was to jump off the high diving board, fully dressed in my school uniform, whilst a synchronised swimming lesson was in progress. Those poor girls got such a fright and I got a real blasting, but it still makes me smile to this day.
Why can't we have solar power
Hi everyone, it's raining again, yesterday was great as I was out running in it and it really cooled me off, enabling me to go further than I ever have been before. There is an almighty din outside as the refuse is being collected. Yesterday I noticed that a lot of people do recycling on our road now , there just used to be a few of us, I think it should be compulsory, especially with the warnings in the news today that there is only five years left to save the planet. Do enough of us care? The amount of waste that humans produce is scary, especially all of those plastic bags. We really are destructive creatures as well.One thing I don't understand is why there is so little solar power in the world, you would think in all those hot countries it would make sense ,and it would be a lot cleaner as well. Everyone's excuse is that the solar panels are so expensive blah, blah, but if everyone made them , then they wouldn't be. Why keep plundering the earth of oil and coal and gas, when the sun is there with limitless energy? Why don't governments move more towards solar power and make it more accessible to people? Is it because it makes sense? It's probably just a lot easier to carry on as we are, gives us something to moan about!
Hi everyone, hope you're all having a lazy Sunday, I didn't post a blog yesterday because I was out running. The wather was a bit grey and raining and the park was virtually empty, so for the first time I went round there unchallenged, not one person yelled out to me. What a refreshing change!There used to be a train that went from my home town of Bulawayo to Victoria Falls, it was like an old fashioned steam train and at one point lots of tourists used to go on it because it was very safe. I went on it a few times, it would leave Bulawayo in the early evening and travel all through the night. We would get in a first class carriage, because there were little bunk beds inside and a wash basin etc. The conductor would come round with the bedding and it was all very colonial. There was always such an air of excitement when the train departed and chugged slowly out of Bulawayo, it used to go on a route through the high density suburbs, which were areas where we had hardly ever seen in our lives. It was fascinating to watch the hustle and bustle of people trying to get home from work.As the sun set we moved further away from town and the scenery would give way to the darkness of the African night. We used to stumble down the swaying carriages to the dining cars, where they still had china plates and sterling silver cutlery and fill our stomachs before retiring back to our carriage. Eventually the rhythm of the train would hypnotise us into going to sleep. Every now and again the train would stop in the middle of nowhere at these tiny stations, places with names we had never heard of. All of a sudden the darkness of the bush would come to life as people emerged out of nowhere, passengers and people selling snacks and all manner of things. There would be a few minutes of chaos as people embarked and disembarked and then we were on our way again, swallowed into the blackness.Dawn was always beautiful, the view of the open savanna coming to life, so vast and unspoilt.The conductors would come round with steaming mugs of tea to help us wake up. At about 7am we arrived at our destination, welcomed by tropical palm trees and the ever present roar of Mosi-Oa-Tunya ( The smoke that thunders). I always thought that it was a much better way to arrive, compared to driving or flying even, it was always such an exciting journey.I think the train still runs, but it's not like it used to be, mainly because of the political situation frightening all the tourists away. It also became quite dangerous to travel as robberies and beatings became common. So I was lucky to experience it all when I did.
My poor little lovebird is very ill today, she had another one of her seizures and this time I really didn't think she was going to make it, until Gerald came and did some healing on her. As he says, she has had more lives than a cat with all the things that have happened to her. Now she is recovering in her cage and seems to be alright again. The one and only time I have ever taken Nyo to the vet, she got her beak stuck right into the poor bloke's hand and held on like a pit-bull , he tried to grimace bravely, but you could tell he was in agony. Today she was so weak that she let me hold her in my hands without even trying to bite. The survival instinct in animals is incredible though, they have a lot of determination and resilience.Anyway, all we did yesterday was practice on the set and Gerald stayed up till the early hours trying to sort out all the music etc. It's a good job we started preparing when we did , imagine if we'd left it all till the last minute, I didn't realise that there was so much work involved, but it's so much fun, this is the thing that I am enjoying most in my life right now.Nyo is sleeping peacefully in her cage now, sweet little creature.
My sister sent me photos of her wedding that I attended last September, actually I was the witness and the only one from my family who was there to support her. In every single photo, Gerald and I are canoodling like a couple of lovebirds, I remember the groom's brother was always trying to catch us unawares, in the end we started playing for the camera on purpose, kissing wildly, etc, etc. It was a happy day though, like all weddings should be. After the ceremony, my sister had hired and old fashioned red London bus to take everyone to the reception and we had a little tour of London, it was unusual and really good fun.I am the only adult in my family that has never been married and the last person to carry my father's name. Apparently he was hoping that I would be a boy after having two girls already. He wanted to call me Christopher, and look what he ended up with! It's very strange, because my dad left this world a long time ago, but I can still see him clearly in my mind and I often wonder what he would have thought about all this music. I think he would have been very happy for me, he loved music and had a vast collection. He banned TV in our house, it used to make me mad being the only person without a TV, every evening we would listen to music for our entertainment instead. I didn't understand at the time, but I can see now how valuable it was and so much better than being glued mindlessly to a box.
Just when I though it was going well
Had a disastrous rehearsal yesterday, I suppose it is inevitable really to have a few really bad ones. My confidence took a real bashing as every time I opened my mouth, my voice just sounded terrible, it was like it didn't belong to me at all. But at least I learned that you have to be prepared for any situation, I also have to become even stronger mentally, because if I make a mistake I need to stay focused on what I'm doing, rather than let it put me off. So today I have to overcome all the negativity that's trying to lurk in my mind. At least it didn't happen on the day. And then Gerald wrote me a sweet letter expressing his love and support, so at least I know that he understands what it's like. Anyway, today I am going to go and get some in-ear monitors so at least I will be able to hear what's going on. It was quite funny, because normally the guy who runs the studio is quite chatty after our sessions, but yesterday, he took one look at our faces and didn't even ask how it went, mind you he probably heard how it was all going. Anyway, I just have to work harder, that's just the way it is.....
It feels like we did so much yesterday, no wonder we are stiff and aching. I managed to catch up with everything though, I was even on-line till late last night answering all our messages and comments on Myspace. Gerald is busy learning how to use some new equipment for the show. This week I have to get some in- ear monitors so that I can actually hear what I am going to be singing. We now have a little warm up gig a week before, we will be doing a promo in a record shop, probably just sing a couple of songs, but it will be like a dress rehearsal. It sounds like fun anyway, I think Gerald mentioned something about us being outside, so I hope it doesn't rain! Anyway, at the festival they want us to play at around 5pm. We wanted to go on later so that the audience would get the full benefit of our light show that someone has kindly organised for us, we can still have it, but it would be much more effective if it was a bit later on in the evening. I think 5pm is a good time to play though because by then most people would have arrived at the festival and had the chance to settle down and get a bit merry, or whatever it is that people do. Anyway today we are back in the rehearsal studio for a couple of hours. Hope you all have a great day...
Blast from the past
Discovered today that Nyo has deliberately set out to destroy our new sofas. We can't watch her all the time and she uses every opportunity she can to find an exposed area and then either try and chew it, or poo on it. She really is a naughty creature and it proves that pets are intelligent.Saw one of my old friends from the meditation centre yesterday, she was delivering leaflets down our road, not to our place mind you, I must be on the blacklist which isn't very spiritual. It was quite funny because she was all dressed in white, hair scraped back and no makeup, and I was in my car, dressed in black with loads of makeup and blond hair, the perfect example of body consciousness. They would say to their students, you see this is what happens to you when you don't come to meditation classes anymore. It was good to see her though, because we used to get on really well, apart from when we went to India and she became really bossy and disapproving of my antics. In fact if she ran the meditation centre, I would probably go there now and again, but unfortunately it is run by the Indian version of Hitler in a sari, I'm surprised anyone goes there really. Still, it was all a good experience for me and I did learn a lot about myself.
Tonight we are going to have a meal in London and treat ourselves because we are working extra hard at the moment. I now have to practice my keyboards whilst waiting for my laptop to start up because there is no other time I can do it, unless I just start getting up earlier. I'm not complaining though because it's all so exciting. It will be interesting to see how I feel closer to the time of the festival.This year for my birthday I would like to go to some thermal spa waters, like in Bath. The last time I bathed in such waters was in a place called Hot Springs in Zimbabwe. The water from the spring was pumped into a swimming pool and at certain times of the day it would be really hot. There were so many minerals in it, it used to have a funny smell and you could easily float on it. We used to sneak down there in the middle of the night, when it was pitch black. The sky would be ablaze with stars and we would lie on our backs in the hot water and just look at the moon and the milky way. It was a very trippy experience, must have been the effect of all the minerals seeping into our skin. Sometimes the moon would be so big you could almost touch it. I remember how soft my skin was after a few days and how relaxed we were. So I would like to find some healing waters to go and collapse in. My birthday is a few days after the festival, it will be perfect timing.
The mind boggles
I'm blond again after several years as a brunette, and three hours at the hairdresser's I emerged, loving the transformation. It was worth every penny and the discomfort.A colleague I used to work with had a thing about girls from the Orient, so he took himself off to Thailand for a while in search of a girlfriend. On his last night there, he went to a bar in Bangkok and got very friendly and amorous with one of the young ladies. They made off back to his hotel and things were getting rather steamy, they began to take off their clothes and everything was getting more and more passionate. All of a sudden this ex-colleague of mine looked down and noticed that the young lady had a bulge where there shouldn't have been anything and in his drunken stupor managed to realise that he had picked up a lady -boy. Most guys would have either run a mile or beaten the poor creature up, what do you think this person, my ex-colleague, did? And then told everyone? I mean it was hilarious but shocking at the same time. The world is a crazy place. The mind boggles.
Hello everyone, I'm back, I had a long and arduous dental appointment yesterday which is why I didn't write. It was strange because I had to have a filling done and there weren't even any drills involved, they just stuck this stuff which smelt like superglue on my tooth and then used some kind of laser to set it, and that was it. I was quite impressed, unfortunately I had to have so much anaesthetic for the other work that the one side of my face was all numb and itchy and dribbling, I ended up with a strange expression and it was most difficult to talk for a couple of hours. I always get paranoid that my face will stay numb forever.When I was about five I had a terrible experience at the dentist because I had to have all my front teeth out, my Mum had given me too much Ribena and it really messed up my teeth. In those days in Zimbabwe I think they still used laughing gas and to this day I can remember the awful feeling of coming round, my mouth full of blood, it was so traumatic. And then because I had no teeth I felt like a really ugly child and was embarrassed to smile at anyone. I really grew up thinking that I was ugly, even when my teeth did grow back. It's funny how something traumatic can affect you for years afterwards.
Today was the first time this year that the heating didn't come on in the morning, does that mean we can turn it off altogether now? I always said England would be the perfect place to live if the weather was good, according to the weather reports we are warmer than Spain at the moment. Is the UK becoming the new riviera? I am trying to organise an afternoon at the hairdresser's to have some highlights put in my hair, I must admit their attitude annoys me because they seem more interested in grabbing your money more than anything else. It's a shame that there is not more competition in the area, they might treat their customers a bit better. Gerald is getting stressed because we can't get on MySpace and now the printer has gone up the spout and he feels like chucking the whole thing out the window. I know how it is, sometimes my laptop plays up so much, I could actually go for a run around the park before it gets going, I'm not even exaggerating! It's actually frightening how much we depend on technology in our day to day life now. Even those sci-fi movies from about 20 years ago don't seem so far fetched now.
Another day goes by, I was harassed in the park again yesterday, it seems I can't just go for a run in peace, I don't know why, everyone else seems to jog about with no problems whatsoever, but I get chased and screamed at, unbelievable.My little niece is writing to me at the moment, my sister and her family are relocating to somewhere in Montana and my niece isn't looking forward to going at all. I know how she feels as my dad also uprooted us when we were kids, only it was worse for us because he took us to another continent! So I am doing my best to help her feel positive about going. It's only fear of the unknown that stresses people out, instead of embracing change, they want to hold on to what is familiar to them. It's something we all do to a certain extent. Look how long it's taking me and Gerald to move out of our flat, we always have something else that crops up, but really it's because we're comfortable here and lazy I suppose.Since the weather has become warmer, there are lots of people in their front gardens in the mornings, everyone seems to bellow to each other at the tops of their voices, it's a sociable little stretch of the road. The good thing is that we all seem to tolerate each other most of the time, for example no-one has ever complained about our loud music belting out. I think we are actually the most intolerant people because we are always complaining when people park across our drive. I don't know why it annoys us so much, maybe it is a subconscious feeling of being trapped!