Monday, April 16, 2007

Memories or not

Following on from rediscovering the pile of photos mentioned below I have also reopened a diary from 1993. I haven't kept a diary or journal all my life by any means but for periods of a year or so at a time I have done quite well. The frightening thing is that there are many things in this diary which I simply do not remember. One expects I guess to 'be reminded' by an old diary of things forgotten - and there was a great deal of that - but to find things that I still can't remember after reading about them is disconcerting to say the least: as though these things happened to someone else.

It transpires I was reading much more widely then, inspired by the man I was living with and working for in Nice on the south coast of France, who would throw - almost literally - books and CDs down the stairs to my basement flat from his house above. Some entries remind me that I did once listen to music: Beethovan piano works, Mahler, Rachmaninov and Britten. I was reading Derek Jarman for the first time. One note quotes him talking about Kings College London - where I did my degree too - he says it was as strange mix of 'Rugby, theologians and the rest of us', you can guess which of the three I was. I was also reading things as diverse as Jo Orton's Diaries and The Art of War in the Middle Ages (a whole journal page devoted to my fascination with the Battle of Adrianople where, apparently, the Romans were routed by the Goths!)

Here too is an account, word for word, of a visit to a young offender in the segregation wing of Her Majesty's Young Offenders Institution XXX, which I don't remember at all.

And most surprisingly of all, apparently in early 1993 my then boyfriend and I saw a production of What the Butler Saw in Salisbury starring a very young Ewan McGregor. The diary records my impressions of both the play and Mr McGregor's cock. You might think I would remember that!

How different a person one is at 21...

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