this fantastic song by the dream academy was on the very first vinyl i ever owned: just hits ’86. even at 9 years old i knew it was the story of an amazing and dramatic place. and i remember the film clip being so foreign.
well, for the last couple of days i’ve pretty much been living on the set of the dream academy film clip and it’s been so ace – the perfect restorative.
after catching up with some of the northern boys and girls last night, i woke up this morning to the most amazing view of hills, hills and more hills. all green. in fact, i enjoy just hangin’ about on the hills so much that, instead of checking out all the galleries in manchester, i stuck around.
i spent rather a lot of time staring out the window. it’s still here. like properly still – with no perceptible movement and i feel like i’m watching the passing of time. it’s almost like being in a photograph. except a photograph can’t replicate the absolutely stillness – the complete absence of noise that i felt today.
the moors are like big slabs of paint, or marble cake icing, or licorice – greeny browny licorice. it’s quite tactile here and i feel like touching it all the time, or putting in my mouth like a 2-year old does to get a feel for things – to really taste it. sadly i think my palette has matured past the hills of west yorkshire to prefer builders tea and a salad sandwich with rocket, hommus and avocado.
i feel like i can think in whole sentences here. that i don’t have to speed read through my thoughts and get to the final conclusion – they can brew. and i crave painting when i’m here. i just want to get the oils and the canvas out and work on stuff. my friend has a richard diebenkorn book on her desk and i can’t think of a better match than pecket well and richard diebenkorn.
and even as i say that nothing changes, that the stillness is final, the mist has snuck in and all of a sudden it’s mostly white out there and the green is all damp.
walking back from town was fantastic. the cold was so sharp that my eyeballs felt like they’d been tattooed on. and, while it wasn’t raining, everything was wet. the greens and the greys, the browns and occasional splash of red berry were all so luscious. and whilst coming down the lane, i realised exactly why the phrase ‘middle of the road’ just oozes safe, comfortable thinking. the track, all slippery and slidy from the car tracks, was quite textured and nobbly and actually traversable on foot, so i kept to the middle of the road. it was absolutely safe so i didn’t look like a twat, on my arse, covered in mud.
i also realised how strong heritage can be, even when you try to ignore or deny it. my great grandparents were raised in west yorkshire and there’s something that just runs through my blood when i get onto the ground here – like i’m planting myself in the unknown genes of my family.