Running out

No, nothing to do with running, unfortunately – I don’t have enough time to go running at the moment. I miss it. Running out of ink, of steam, of time…
So, on Monday I did loads of prep, got up to date with emails, and went flyering. I delivered flyers to some of the posher houses in my village; the problem with posher houses is that they tend to have long drives, so you walk a long way for each flyer. But – who knows? – perhaps it resulted in few more ticket sales for the play. I started printing the programmes – and the cartridge in my laser printer ran out. I shook it and got a few more copies, but it was no use really, so I had to order a new one (which, fortunately, arrived on Wednesday, so I managed to print all the programmes). I wrote a proposal to the funders of my work in the hospital, too, in the hope that their funding will continue for next year. People do seem to appreciate it, and I’m sure it’s worth going on with; it would be a shame if the money ran out for this. I did a bit of work on the Poetry on Loan website, and then took the final rehearsal for Quartet, the play I’ve directed for TADS. The cast were brilliant – full of pace. I felt a lot better after that. I finished the hospital proposal when I got home and did some bits and pieces for the play.
I wrote a poem on Tuesday, and did some prep for a little taster session I was running on Wednesday, and more prep for work in another hospital. And I queued for hours at my branch of NatWest (name and shame) which is now open only two days a week in Tewkesbury. It’s ridiculous! I paid my car insurance (I know, I should have a more sensible car), and went off to work in the care home in Worcester. It was a good session, and they produced some interesting words. I do find it hard to call the pieces poems, though; I do think that a poem has to have some intention behind it. But perhaps that’s just me. I did the writeup when I got home, and handled emails, and realised that I was running out of time to get everything done… but in the evening we went to see The Guest, which was really intriguing until two-thirds of the way through when it degenerated into lots of killing. Shame.
On Wednesday I did my taster session, and signed up one person for a new group, and practised for a gig, and handled lots of emails, and did more of the care home writeup, and mowed the lawn – and had a bonfire! I haven’t had a bonfire for ages, and I thought I should before it starts raining again.
I’ve got a Poetry on Loan meeting this week, and I spent ages preparing for it. And I wrote my thank you cards for the cast and crew of Quartet. I like doing this.
More gig practice on Thursday, and a bit of work on the prison book, and then a session in a hospital in Hereford, which went very well indeed. This is a bit of a trial project; so far so good. In the evening I had a gig with Speakeasy in Worcester, and for a change I did some poems I’ve never read before – and I had to read them rather than give them by heart. It all went well, but I had to run out, or at least creep out, before the end because I had so much to do. I caught up with the emails and did some ironing.
Friday was a busy day. Weekly accounts; prep for this week; a trip to the doctor about my eye, which still isn’t working properly; the Hereford hospital writeup; more prep for the PoL meeting – and the first performance of Quartet. It wasn’t perfect, by any means – some of the cast made mistakes and there were some technical problems; and the audience didn’t realise it had finished. Unfortunately the adjudicator was there that night, although the cast weren’t aware of that. Still, the audience (69 people) enjoyed it.
Friday was the closing date for the Poetry on Loan poetry competition. It was the first time we had run a competition, and I was delighted to count up and find that we had received exactly 100 entries.
The matinée performance had a small but beautifully appreciative audience, and it all went better than the night before. The final performance was excellent, with a good audience; I felt very proud of the cast and crew, and also of my amaryllis hippeastrum. Yes, a plant – it was part of the set dressing. It flowers once a year, and it came into flower last weekend and has lasted for the whole play. I was also really pleased that everyone seemed to like the set for the play, because it’s the first time I’ve ever designed a set on my own.
It all felt a bit flat on Sunday morning, but we had to go back to the theatre for the get-out – clearing everything away. I was running out of energy by the afternoon, and managed only a quick trip to buy a new pot for my rubber plant, whose roots are invading the room like some kind of non-aggressive triffid, and finally I did some work on the prison book.
Then I fell asleep. I had run out of everything.
But today – back in harness again, for a whole day with a primary school. This was a bit tricky, because we had to write poems about abstract ideas, and no-one – not even in year 6 – knew what the word “abstract” meant. But we did it; each class produced a poem, which they will perform on Friday. I’d like to have seen that – but no time! I’ve run out of capacity; must work, must work, must work…

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