I know it’s been well over a week now, and I swear I’ve been making a real effort to sthu here, but the truth is that I’m still struggling with all these silly but persistent feelings of blahness and despondency and loss and mild bereavement. It’s like… these four shows were the highlight of my year, and now that they’re gone it’s been very hard to muster any further enthusiasm about anything at all. When the Sufjan tour was announced in February I still wasn’t that far off from the absolute rock bottom I hit in January. This was a time when it was hard for me to believe I’d ever be excited about anything again (so emo, I know, but unfortunately so true). But then these shows came along, and they immediately became this gigantic carrot on a stick that I used to get myself through the semester and all my personal issues and the intensive workload of the past few months.
Now that I’ve come this far I probably don’t really need a carrot on a stick anymore, but it still feels weird that this thing I spent months and months looking forward to (living for, really, dramatic though that sounds) is now in the past. Anyway, the goal of this post is to remind myself that actually, there are still quite a few carrots-hanging-from sticks in front of me at the moment. I’m still in this weird mental place where everything seems to pale in comparison to the past three weeks, but I know that feeling will eventually pass. And when it does, I’ll be able to properly enjoy the following:
- Promenade theatre adaptation of Dickens’ Hard Times: This is actually next week already. I read the book in preparation and enjoyed it a lot more than I thought I would. The most exciting bit, though, is that the play takes place at an old industrial mill and makes the most of its setting. I can’t wait.
- Then in early July I’m going to The Globe to see Much Ado About Nothing with Jodie, Meghan and Ana. This isn’t only Shakespeare at the actual Globe, but also the chance to spend a day of bookish fun with three very lovely ladies. Jodie and I will get to discuss our not-so-secret blogging project face to face (plus she’s lending me Downton Abbey!), and Meghan and Ana will surely tempt me with many recommendations as we tour the bookshops around Charing Cross Road.
- And in August there will be yet more Shakespeare, as Mathie and I are going to the Globe’s production of Hamlet at the lovely Buxton Pavilion Gardens. I’ve never actually seen Hamlet performed, so hooray for that.
- Music wise, there’s Björk in less than a month, which is actually a huge deal: she’s one of the few remaining artists on my list of all-time favourites that I’ve yet to see live (along with Tori Amos, who I’m also finally seeing this year, woohoo). Not only that, but we’re having some friends to stay that weekend: awesome people M and I have known for 10+ years and met at the same online community where we met each other. The idea of being a host is always slightly terrifying to me, but it should be a very fun weekend nonetheless.
- Then Mark Kozelek! At a church! Also quite a big deal (my blog is named after one of his songs, after all).
- The biggest carrot on a stick of them all, though, is the Edinburgh Literary Festival in late August. I’ve wanted to go for as long as I’ve known it existed, and though I really shouldn’t dip into my savings yet again I’m determined that this year will be the year. The program hasn’t officially been announced yet (which is why I’ve yet to book my train and hostel), but Neil Gaiman has flat out said he’s going to be there doing some thing or other with Audrey Niffenegger. As if that weren’t enough, Amanda Palmer is playing a show on the 24th of August and The National are playing on the 23rd. I’m just keeping all my fingers crossed that Neil’s event is neither a week before nor a week after these two shows, as I really can’t afford to stay for very long. (I also hope they don’t overlap with it – that would be even more depressing) This is all very much up in the air at the moment, but if it all works out it’s going to be so awesome.
- Not too long after that, I’m going to graduate and actually become a Real Librarian, in title if not in deed. As a fellow library student was saying recently, the whole thing will probably feel anticlimactic, and what a shame we won’t get a new shiny library job wrapped up in a bow at the end. But still. What feels pretty close now felt dauntingly out of reach at more than one point over the past few months, and that in itself is worth noting.
- Last but certainly not least: we have tickets to see Jeff effing Mangum in December. That is pretty much a miracle in itself, because the shows were announced and went on sale when we were out stalking Suf and unaware of anything happening in the world. We got some of the very last tickets for the Thursday show – a Thursday in London in December, when I currently have absolutely no idea of where I’ll be living or working after September. I realise there’s a lot that could go wrong here, but I have faith that I’ll somehow make it work.
There. I think I feel a little better already.