Friday, 20 May 2016

Last day of work

It's the last working day of an 8 week notice period that has been a bit of a marathon. I sit here in the window of a cafe watching pink blossom flurry in circles on the street in the sunshine on my last Peckham lunch hour. 

We were inspected by Ofsted this week. In my last week. It felt like all the bad karma I have developed in life flopped down on my lap - informed on Friday 13 May (my birthday). It worked out OK in the end (results are confidential) but was a very intense end to my 12 year tenure. 

But now with the marathon almost over the details of Peckham are playing over in my mind. The mass of trendy cafes that have sprung up since the overground came from shoreditch to here - there was only one over priced homemade cake cafe here when I started. Feeding the arty Hoxtonites who are moving in. Clashing culturally with little Lagos and their cloth, hair, nails, gracious and beneficial back room churches and live snails. It's definitely colourful. And I've enjoyed that aspect. 

Friday, 18 March 2016

Hearing the blues

Gradually become aware of blues music, heavy twangy electric guitar and black male voice drifting up from the street. Remember the last time I was attracted to this music enough for it to break through the concentration on the screen - it was summer,  I looked out and it was emanating from a  little two-door black hard top MG parked outside our building. I think of this car and listen to the music. I want to be in a dark bar, drinking thick whiskey, tapping my head to the strains of the music, it transports me from my office. I look out the window. There is the little black MG. An arm reaches out of the car, slams the drivers door shut, starts the engine with a roar and drives off. The silence in the room is deafening. The clock ticks. I make a coffee.

Friday, 29 January 2016

Return to Thatcher's Britain

My overwhelming memories of the endless Thatcher years were of striking teachers, striking miners, war mongering in far off places and abject poverty for a growing underclass living in cardboard cities that spread out from the centre across the city. 

I witness begging on my tube journey home three out of five journeys - heart wrenching stories from a variety of people needing hostels and food. In the morning a different kind of begging - sellers of packs of tissues to feed themselves and their children. Equally heart wrenching. A recent trip to see the London Lumiere on some of the coldest nights of the year - homelessness like the 80s in doorways along the strand and all over the West End. We came across a soup kitchen with a queue of people going round the corner being given food just off the strand. Regular beggers at all the stations I use, even in the outer areas. 

It didn't take long for the carelessness of goriest to take hold again. 

Wednesday, 20 January 2016


Unusually a gridlock at the end of my street - cars from both side roads bullying their way into traffic on opposite sides of the road, lines of cars on the through road stuck behind buses trying to pass one another. 

White van drives up to the stuck traffic on my road. His frustration overflows. He honks loudly for a long time then smacks his steering wheel.
"You fucking imbeciles - couldn't fucking wait, had to push through and NOW look at you - gridlocked. Absolute. Fucking. Assholes."

In the middle of the gridlock school children spill out of cars trapped at 8.45 to finish their journies on foot (I do always wonder why they aren't walking anyway - we had to and were probably fitter for it). A tiny space is inched as the traffic lights onto the main road far down the street go red once more and white van joins the queue towards it. Walking I reach the main road far in advance of the cars in the gridlock. 

Sunday, 17 January 2016

Lumiere London 2016

Thursday, 14 January 2016

Trafalgar Square

Coldest night of the year. "Meet me in Trafalgar Square at 6.30. Dress warmly."
He panics as the phone loses power. "Go somewhere wait for me. Tell me where you are. Maybe order something." She looks around. Decides.
"Bottom of Trafalgar Square. 4 lions around Nelson column. South west facing lion - looks at cafe Nero - I'm in there. It's the road that goes towards Piccadilly."
She drinks hot chocolate. Thick and warm. Bought from a Barista who made the drinks and transferred the payment to his on-shift-coming colleague. "The señora had a grande and the señorita had a small." The new colleague tried to charge the señorita for both drinks until she said they weren't together.
She sat in the window waiting and warming her fingers. Watching the traffic wend it's way round Trafalgar Square and the crowd gathering to see the exhibits of the London Lumiere. Plastic bottles in the fountain

Monday, 11 January 2016

David Bowie RIP

Absolutely shocked and strangely devastated by this news. It's making my stomach upset... Maybe we never expected such a weird oddity to age (although we occasionally saw him older) or be anywhere close to death, or other mortal worldly states. 

Wednesday, 6 January 2016

Belated Happy New Year

Been back at work for two manic days - full of enrolling students and left over building maintenance from last term. 

But in the most welcomed time off I have had for an age, we did have a rather marvellous time and I forgot to say Happy New Year to the world at large. 

Best present to ourselves was a new mattress which made getting out of bed increasingly difficult - didn't surface at all on New Years Day following the celebrations at two parties - getting home at 4.30am after the panther secretly threw up - far too generous portions of rum given on the final lap. I didn't manage to drink most of mine after being commandeered to dance with a talk skinny woman who was trying to attract the attention of her partner by engaging in some girl on girl play (dancing mainly, and I seem to remember some forehead pressing and fierce staring)... 

Back from the weird and wonderfulness  of a Christmas period wholly played out at other people's parties where the only pressure was to be pretty and entertaining (I made the panther a necktie that matched the dress I made myself - in a sort of bronze fabric - appropriately shiny for the season - a Christmas bauble of a dress). It's all back to normality. Colder, but with lengthening days. 

Happy 2016. 


As a fan of the eyebrow (I have been known to fall for a person on the strength of their eyebrows alone) I am having an anti-reaction to the fad of the heavily drawn on version sported by some women in recent months - those which are not just filling in the blond or patchy versions but are fiercely drawn with a high arch and squared off inner eye ends that give a sort of Cruella De Ville fakeness to the face. It comes after the fierce pluck fad where natural eyebrows were plucked to within a millimetre of their lives, and goes with the over-groomed male eyebrow in attraction terms - i.e. most unattractive in their fakeness and particular trying-too-hard style. I blame celebrity adoration for this live of all things fake - hair extensions, collagen lips, fake nails, drawn on brows, coloured contact lenses. Cheap versions of all these things add to the plastic-fantastic looks of women at the moment. Kim Khardasian has a lot to answer for. 

Friday, 11 December 2015

Ann Veronica Janssens - States of Mind


So into a room filled with carbon dioxide vapour, so thick you couldn't see past about 30cms from your face. Totally lost instantly. No idea of size of space. Walk around hands out in front of you because you suddenly can't sense the space at all. People loom out of the mist into your tiny sphere of vision and disappear back again. Hear voices. See no one. Ghosts and shadows materialise into human forms. The mist has coloured light through it, as you move round the room the colours blend and merge. And then hit a wall, can inch round the room to the exit.

At the Wellcome Institute until 3 January.

Thursday, 10 December 2015

Frances Ross Duncan

29 July 1943 to 10 December 1995
20 years ago today. 

Wednesday, 2 December 2015

Over- emotional

Having an attack of over-emotionality that I can't exactly explain. Two huge tears crept out when I was reading about a couple who had twins the first one of which died at birth due to a defect they had but they donated her organs. Then this evening a man stood in the carriage and made a speech about going to dalston to stay in a hostel and he'd appreciate any contributions including left over food and I got a lump in my throat thinking about him and humanity. My paper is open on the pages about Cameron calling to be allowed to start bombing Syria. Bomb them before they do us - never minding about the kind of retaliation that could bring down on us. Fight them in that country when the threat to us is more than likely already living amongst us here now. 

Monday, 23 November 2015

Phoenix Pottery

From the ashes of our ceramics department closed despite protest the Phoenix Pottery arises. Smaller. More compact. Delightfully non-governmentally funded (for now). And tested. Will be ready for opening in January.

Monday, 16 November 2015


"You're everywhere", he said.
"I need you to certify my existence", she said over my head to the man smiling broadly, pink face, a couple of pews ahead.
"I can certainly do that", he said. I laughed - it seemed a powerful position to be in. My laugh caught his attention. "I'm a justice of the peace", he explained.
"Oh", I said, "I thought you were just being helpful."
"He's god", the lady boomed over my head again. It made me laugh again.
"Do you need anything certifying?" He asked.
"I'm sure I do but you don't know me to certify anything", I retorted.
"I could certify that you seem nice", he said in triumph.
"That would be nice", said I.

Saturday, 7 November 2015


Darkened space, white body stood with blacked out eyes and blacked out genitals, breathing, music thumping blood. Muscle tight against ribs, ripped. Arms. Rib cage expanding and closing. The body walks on all fours across the space, deliberately, hands and feet placed as a big cat, the only sound of the touch against the floor. Alien. Creature. Spit hanging from its mouth. Front leg and back leg in unison. Fingers bent like claws. Reach the wall, turn face to the audience. Breathing. Like a spider moving towards us. Francis Bacon-risqué. Human as animal. Watching. Then up on two legs. Out of the primordial soup we dragged ourselves upright. Carrying a tray of tea things precariously balancing on tip toes. Naked. Placing it back down carefully and returning upright to attempt to whistle. Trying and trying and almost but not quite managing. Gone. 

Then returned. Dressed in white lace. Proper. Balancing on buttocks legs and upper body extended without touching the floor, effort, strength, muscles tested, limbs quivering. Moving across the floor to pick up a mobile phone whilst balancing o n the shoulders - body up like an s shape. Light from the phone highlighting the neck, retching, throaty, primeval calling, pre language. Return to animal. And light. And light cast out putting the performer in solid darkness. Finally the exuberance of jumping up and down a strong shadow reflecting against the back wall. Big menacing robot on the wall. Small white body jumping up and down in front of it. 

It made me want to run out and help. To look in the same depth as I would look during a life class. Body as object. Alive machine. It made me want to draw. To make studies of the human body again. In its raw form. Stripped down. Stark. 


Thursday, 5 November 2015


I'm fascinated by this grown man colouring in his "Calming art therapy colouring book" on the overground this evening. I might need to do that - it might make the journeys more bearable. Everyone all around him is watching as he felt tips between the lines. It's a queen (like on a deck of cards). 

Monday, 2 November 2015

Happy Halloween

So we had a party to attend on Halloween night and decided we should dress. After the Panther's niece's 5th birthday party we couldn't quite bring ourselves to go home so were on our way to a joint we thought might be a bit happening when we bumped into a lot of similarly dressed ghouls on their way to a party, so we tagged along. It was an old school house party with quiet music and lots of talking. I'm guessing the costumes meant people were less hung up than usual. Best place in the house as usual - swinging between the kitchen (which included a queue for the lavatory) and the roof terrace for smokers (one has to frequent the terrace even if one isn't a smoker - just for the company). We left about 4am without realising it had become so late. The mist had come down and we walked to the bus stop feeling very suitable to the weather, two sheets to the wind, and glad of the back seats of the warm bus once it came. The Panther kept looking at me saying he was trying to see me inside the face. And was greatly looking forward to me washing my face at home. Tres effective make up I think. 

Tuesday, 27 October 2015

Two things

Big fad currently seeping into London - the mini-Segway hover board. First time I saw them two men were on their way out in Shorditch (one assumed from where they were) gliding down the road in hats holding umbrellas against the rain. Then next there was a group of seven youths all riding them down the street in Peckham in a range of colours. Yesterday a woman using one along my street at home. These are electric powered boards to assist walking. It isn't as fast as a bike. And it costs nearly £300. The 'riders' stand bolt upright and still (it appears). It's not about tricks (like a skateboard). And it isn't going to transport you for long distances. So I'm guessing in the future when we all need them we will increase our obesity through lack of needing to walk. 

And then, one hopes, that soon we will get a surgence of 'old style' cafes where it is deemed inappropriate to be using a computer or linked into a screen all the time. The cafe opposite work today was filled with single computer users drinking cups of tea (cheapest item on the menu) at each table. A request to share a table was met with a shrug and when my colleague arrived to drink coffee with me the table 'owner' huffed off elsewhere. Perhaps small cafe owners will tire of providing free electricity and wifi and try to get back to encouraging socialising... 

Thursday, 22 October 2015


The halls are full of commuters slowed by the few who can't tear themselves from the news popping into their tiny screens long enough to put one foot solidly in front of the other and join the pace of the road. Trip hazards. It used to be wheelie suitcases. Things have changed. 

Tuesday, 6 October 2015

Oddities of Brixton

A man and a kid carry a stack of chairs across the street accompanied by the wife who has two chairs and is walking in bare feet. It's raining. 

Wednesday, 30 September 2015

When is a skirt not a skirt?

Taking the concept of "skirt" to its extremes - she walked through the commuting crowd standing guard at Liverpool street station eyes tied to the departure boards like a hypnotised audience - brown felt floppy hat (hippy variety that seems to be in vogue just now), white crochet cardigan, brown miniskirt that wasn't skimming her bottom, rather more blatantly showing her ass cheeks hanging out as they would in a pair of hot pants a la 1970 beachwear. No visible sign of any undergarments either. And certainly no tights. The voice of a thousand mothers echoed in my head, "you can't go out like that". And then she was gone. The departure board platform numbers rolled over to reveal 3 and the hypnotised moved as one towards the appropriate barriers. 

Tuesday, 22 September 2015

The Man With Two Umbrellas

The majority of people do not attempt to board the train. I have a connection to make. I squeeze in between a man lisping to his friend - reasoning as to why people wait for every third empty train - and a black woman in a blond wig playing candicrush. 

It's wet. It was wet yesterday. Not when I left home by bike but by the time I was coming home with dirty water spraying up my backside from the wheel. And it's starting out the same today. 

A man sitting. Brown beret. Long thin greying dredlocks. Reading the paper. His jacket is hanging open. He has propped his long umbrella in the crook of his knee and it leads against the glass beside his seat. Then I notice he has a folding umbrella poking out from his inside jacket pocket. The man with two umbrellas. I can't think of an explanation. With a large umbrella you can sheild a companion and yourself comfortably. Why would you need a second one? 

Friday, 4 September 2015


So I'm sitting on a northern line train from London Bridge to Euston (damn lucky to get a seat, think I) and on the right there's a man sleeping who's eyes keep rolling back in his head and an umbrella in his backpack who's handle keeps hitting me on the arm. And on the left is a woman playing candicrush with an umbrella in her bag who's handle is poking me in the other arm. Feel like I'm in the middle of a joust. 

Wednesday, 2 September 2015


I wrote a lot more than normal in August. Its because I was miserable. I have always written more when miserable. For a month I have been struggling with the sudden departure of the panther. Sudden and all-encompassing. I've talked a lot. Spent time considering why. Figured out how I actually felt. 

And then there was the slow return. At first difficult, unhappy, angry. The juxtaposition of the passion felt. In fact a passion still, just one from suddenly unrequited love rather than mutual love. I had a hole, and filled the void with old friends who listened (thank you all) and understood also. I felt stronger, even though abjectly lonely. Men kept insisting on speaking to me, its something to do with the damsel in distress signal that I must have been putting out accidentally. So I then started feeling attractive despite the pain. I occupied myself, however I saw fit, on my own whim. Cycled, spent all day in the pub for Leo's birthday, went to Norfolk and swam with the seals, saw a band playing in Brick Lane, bought their CD, went to the Curve Garden in Dalston, went to a gig, ate out, threw myself on the mercy of friends and family in search of entertainment and cheering up. 

I decided not to jeopardise what I really really wanted by messing about with people from whom there was no spark. 

And the panther wanted to see me, weekly at first. Despite my pain I agreed. It seemed to help me deal with the never coming back thing by seeing him in his different state. It didn't quite appear that his chosen path was making him happy but that was his choice. We started talking in more depth than we ever had. 

At the end of his visits I was having to get ready to go out. We would ride the bus to Seven Sisters together. Parting would seem like the old days with a long look back. Once there was a long kiss watched by a newspaper distributer who sighed as I went down into the tube. There was sorrow. And regret. And lots and lots of talk.

Then there was realisation. Of love potentially lost. Of a happier time. Of deeper meaning. Of great desire. From both parties. 

And today, we are on the third day of his return. New harmony, or perhaps restored harmony. With greater understanding. Deeper. More meaningful. Having remembered what it was all about in the first place. So we embark once again on a reconciled path. 

Tuesday, 1 September 2015


I've never seen that before, he said, tears well up like a pool in the basin of the inner eye before running over. He is smiling. It's beautiful, he said. And leaned down to kiss her. I'm sorry, she said. He stroked her hair and wiped away the trail of salty water. 

Saturday, 29 August 2015


There's a girl sitting next to me with an angry red spot on the side of her mouth. 

Kebab shop in Stoke newington with 8 Turks in white teeshirts and paper hats waiting for the early evening crowd. 

A woman with check trousers and a bare lower back where her tan jacket doesn't join walks along while trying to smooth her hair against the rain. 

Reminds me of the warm rain drops falling on my bare shoulders while I gardened this afternoon. 

Pink hair holding hands with her boyfriend wearing his hoodie like a kid being batman.

Everybody waiting to cross the road. Man in bike, red hood. Blue anorak. Shopping bags. Blond hair. Black boy. All looking right. 

Station attendant on a cigarette break having a long look at a large ass walking by dressed in tight black leggings. 

Bus stop - scene of the man running up after I'd gotten on the bus - shouting  - that woman! Turning to my companion that evening urgently saying - I've seen her before you have to give me her number - she's my ideal woman. My companion didn't. But was intrigued at such outpourings. 

Man handed back his mobile phone after the Chinese takeaway proprietor shouted after him - must have left it on the counter.

Tight striped pencil skirt and very straight hair walking accompanied by a man riding a bicycle very slowly along beside her. 

Canal - long expanse of murky green into the distance. Narrow boats.

Tall bush of red geraniums in a window of St Leonard's Hospital. 

Man in a navy blazer, driving a blue jaguar. My father's car is a jaguar. Kate and her elocution lesson rings in my ear.

One Good Deed Today the neon tells me.

Thursday, 27 August 2015

Magic Wand

Just when I hit the depths of misery that was becoming unbearable to even myself, let alone all the people I had unleashed it upon, a jeweller I know came for a meeting and was carrying a piece of live edge plastic. Curious to the point of nosiness I asked her if she was taking it back to her studio and what she was going to do with it. She said that actually it was a magic wand and she was indeed returning it to the studio - it was her daughter's and she had now grown out of it. Incredulous I said, "what?! No way." Whereupon Vicky said it's fairly pointless material because when you chop it into smaller bits there isn't enough shaft to focus the light in this way as it does whole. "But it's lovely", I said. You can have it, she said. And my heart skipped with glee, I'm not sure why. A tiny drop of magic in a gloomy time. I carried it around all day, it's end gleeming in this weird unnatural way. Magic wand transferred from teen to ever so grateful 45 year old. 

Wednesday, 26 August 2015

Hoxton Beard - the end

Woke to a huge commotion - next doors dog scrabbling up against their garden fence and a massive thud on my mat. IKEA delivery of a new catalogue. Flicking through before relegating it to the recycling I noticed that the male catalogue models were sporting a lot of Hoxton beardage. Even the cover boy. If that is not a clear, CLEAR, indicator that the Hoxton beard has ceased being ironic and should forthwith be shaved off I don't know how we can let them know. 

Tuesday, 18 August 2015

Day 18

It's been 18 days since the panther left. I've seen him twice. I'm getting worse rather than better. I realised I've never really been left before. Not when I wasn't ready. There have been fizzling-outs. There have been mutually agreed endings. I have dumped people (and it was necessary at the time but boy I didn't realise how painful it might be for the other party). But left, no. 

It has raised up all sorts of weird connections with death - reminding me of the grief I felt/feel at the loss of my mother. 

I'm very conflicted - feel I should move on and yet can't (I know it's soon but the abject loneliness is extremely hard to bear) - it feels like waiting-in-case is the thing the body, head and heart wants to do. I remember when my mother died I was desperately upset that we cremated her body because it meant if she wanted to return we had gotten rid of her body so she couldn't (and I don't even believe in an afterlife - it was just some irrational fear). So doing something that may jepordise a return is not a current option. I can but hope that will not last for months. Moving on is a must. I can't live a life on hold.

And no amount of anyone telling me there are plenty more fish in the sea, or it's not you it's him, or any of the other platitudes people tell you that are supposed to ease your pain and make you realise that they are on your side, makes the blindest bit of difference to the void and pain that sits in the chest resting heavily there like a lead weight. 

Victoria Line

On a normal day at a normal time of year the platform may have a queue of people one deep spread along the whole length of seven sisters southbound platform. Some of these will only get in the approximately 1 in 4 trains that start there.

It's August and they are doing engineering work on the northern end of the line. All trains start at seven sisters. And all the people from Walthamstow Central, Blackhorse Road and Tottenham Hale are being bused over to seven sisters. The station is crowded. And those from the burbs seem to walk about more slowly. As a usual passenger from the station I'm finding myself falling over people at my usual pace. I was told on the weekend that perhaps I should think about the opposite - what a nightmare it must be for those from the burbs to have to share their journey into the station with all the angsty tottenhamites they never had to meet before!

The platform is two or three deep but all the trains come in empty and can accommodate everyone so once we all get on the train and set off its just like normal again. Although it does seem a little dress-down-August-y. 


We crowded on. Standing around the central pole. Next stop a very short woman got on. Face down to the floor. Stood by the pole but didn't get a grip. When the train lurched forward she staggered backwards and grabbed hold of my upper thigh to stop herself falling over. It made me feel both slightly inappropriately touched and like a pole - in an inanimate sort of way. A fellow passenger smiled at me once we had all recovered our composure. The little woman didn't look up once. 

Thursday, 13 August 2015

Naked girl

So our building has just had its windows replaced with new sparklingly clean uPVC versions that are actually totally in keeping with the original rotten wooden ones from 1869. 

I have mentioned that across the street from my office is a young woman who seems to forget that our building overlooks hers. I've seen her fresh from the bath, combing her hair looking in a mirror propped up against the window without a stitch of clothing on and the cat rolling itself across her skin. I've seen her get up and throw on a teeshirt and deal with something on her roof terrace only to turn around and head back through her French doors flashing her naked behind. I've seen her rolling out of bed at 11.00am on a weekday and being a naked sleeper, she's nude. I've seen her in her altogether more times than I care to mention.

This week I was talking on the phone in the office standing up looking out of the window. I like to rest my eyes looking at the Shard. Movement in her window drew my attention from the perifory, I turned my eyes rather than my whole head to see a naked young man lay back across the bed and she put a knee down on either side of him and slide her naked self over him to rest chest to chest, her butt in the air. And then they looked out of the window and looked directly at me. They went from disbelieve to nervous laughter and then drew the curtains. So finally they discovered that people might be able to see them. Perhaps I should have sent them a note. I have been tempted to put letters in my window spelling out I CAN SEE YOU but I never did. Since this meeting of eyes they have been much more discrete! 

Street music

So in going about this week I was persuaded to buy two cheap CDs after listening to live music being performed. Just to remember the sound by.

On Sunday I was wheeling the bike down brick lane through the massive throng that it is - food stalls, trendy shops, craft beers. Came upon a band playing on a corner playing funky rock tunes. Three up front all with big Afros and a drummer. I listened. It's the kind of music that just gets into your skin and makes you want to dance around. And then there was the hugely sexy guitar player. The crowd moved about between songs and at the end I decided to get a CD. They were The Thirst. And i wish they had some gigs coming up before December because they may be one of those bands that just has to be seen live.

On Tuesday I swang by the Dalston Curve Garden after eating with my dad. It was having an acoustic music evening. It was drizzling. The queue for drinks (elderflower cider I ended up with - that wasn't bad) was long and the first band was a bit too miserable for my current state of mind. But the garden itself was a tranquil idyll and at 10ish some musicians started fiddling around on the stage and then broke into a most amazing sound - driven by a drummer without a mounted drum kit that included a cymbal on the floor that he still managed to make ring, and some roasting tins. The sound was like techno dance music - accompanied on some kind of vibraphone and a guitar. Really got the young hippy crowd dancing. Truely remarkable sound from live instruments. Street Kit Project - well worth catching if you can find them. 

Thursday, 6 August 2015


People that know me would be surprised to discover that I have taken to riding up and down the streets, towpaths and byways of London on two wheels powered by my own energy. But that is what I am doing. It's an activity that gives a sense of freedom, it's outdoors, wind in your hair. 

Yesterday I cycled to work - that's Tottenham to Peckham. 13.6 miles one way (if you don't get lost - which I did). Totally energised by the time I got to work. Strangely. 

At the top of Stamford Hill after the slight but persistent incline (not fit enough yet to make it all the way up sadly!) I suddenly discovered that I couldn't push my foot round the peddle because it was tied by the shoelace to the pedal - I did manage to freewheel onto the pavement and then because I am so right footed attempted to stop on the right (trapped) foot and therefore fell off in what I like to think was an elegant sprawl (oxymoron I know). Sitting on the ground with the bike between my legs I found I had to get my shoe off in order to release myself. I started laughing. And then found there was a van with a driver sat inside watching. He mouthed, "are you ok?", to which I answered yes. Embarrassing. But not injured, I carried on. 

By the time I got home I had done 26 miles - that's a marathon. I've never self-propelled myself that far in one day in my entire life. It was epic.