6.00 am: My lower back was still stiff, but far less painful. A periodic auto-knuckle massage either side of the coccyx helped to release muscular tension. Running would have to wait until at this afternoon. Time to reflect and commune, as what promised to be a remarkable day presented itself gradually. (Premonition.) 7.30 pm: I eat a slice of glutenous toast and marmalade for breakfast on Saturdays, and only on this day. If I don’t eat some gluten occasionally, my body may develop a more severe allergic reaction to it. The immune system has to be trained to suffer small offences, in other words. (‘It’s not an enemy!’, I tell it.) The scarcity value of something heightens the pleasure principle. Although, on balance, I’d prefer far less ecstasy far more often.
9.00 am: Off to town for a ‘mow’ at Dicky Snips, undertake some domestic duties, and take the occasion to look beyond. I’m walking the sea’s edge more often these days. Today, it was as though she’d been awaiting my arrival. We were alone together for some time, demanding nothing of each other, other than to be present, gentle, silent, and grateful:
9.30 am: At the hairdressers: I looked inwards:
10.15 am: Into the studio to strap-up for a respiratory recording. My experience of the heart monitor at the hospital this week had made me curious about the ‘noisy body’, and how its sonic traces might be captured. I focussed upon deep breathing in relation to the heart’s beat:
The interior of our bodies is something of an ‘undiscovered country’, even though, metaphysically speaking, we (our spirit, soul, and consciousness) have inhabited it ever since we were ‘knit together in our mother’s womb’. The sounds are disturbingly intimate and, yet, at the same time, utterly otherly. The heart and the breath in unison: variously, signifiers of sexual consummation, exaltation, fear, and the final life-signs, before the body and soul are rent asunder. My adult body sounded like a womb within which a formative and precious life was evolving. (As an aside: scientific study has shown that the foetus is capable of hearing and remembering sounds from the eighteenth week of pregnancy: the mother’s internal noises, her voice, music, and language. So, at the beginning of the second trimester, he/she is already learning, acoustically.)
I returned to ‘Saul>Paul’ to micro adjust the samples along the beat spines. Likely or not, I’ll need to generate further ‘spit and crackle’ loops to mitigate the rather blunt and bald thump of the beat tracks for sections 1, 2, and 4. 12.15 pm: I confirmed arrangements for next week’s postgraduate presentation assessments.
1.30 pm: After lunch, I took a gentle run into town, via the opticians (to book a mid afternoon appointment), and across the Promenade, towards the southern beach – the one with the pebbles. By the time I’d got there, the sun had gone behind the clouds and a chill wind was incoming from the sea.
3.15 am: I returned to the optician and put my eyes in the hands of Phil, a punctilious and throughly methodical optician, who made some minor adjustments to my new spectacles. It’s curious, I’ve never read the statements on the reading card; merely identified the readability of the type. There’s a metaphor in the making here:
3.50 pm: Homebase. There was correspondence and thoughts to process, work to bed, and equipment to power-down. A shower was in order … with a Radio 3 jazz programme blasting from the windowsill.
5.15 pm: A mist had followed the landward breeze. Let this be an end of things, for now.