Monday, 30 June 2008

Today I rose early, wakened slowly by the cool air flowing through the house. As the day started and the bicycles slowly left our courtyard, itself a constant source of fascination for the improbable size of the chestnut tree that dominates, the noise of the city began its ascent towards rush hour. Now at its peak we hear the sounds of summer, reminded again that summer is remembered not by warmth but through sounds, and not just those peculiar to the season (roadworks, grasscutting, birds, children walking to school) but by the fact that these very sounds, which after all can be found at other times of year, seem to carry further.

Yesterday was a day in which to consider sound. Mauerpark, in the blistering midday sun, was packed. I bought three items: lights for my bicycle (which I then promptly forgot to use that evening); a Sony walkman, quite a new one; and my favourite, an old handheld German boy’s radio with two transistors. The radio is great – it was broken when I bought it, but I took it apart and reconnected a few things, borrowed a screw from elsewhere and now it works well, scanning through longwave frequencies picking up the occasional stern, ghostly voice (German and Polish) but even better are the ranges which attract interference. Hand movements, electrical items, the mixer; all solicit a selection of cracks and whistles, oscillations and thrums. I think it will go in my next performance, if I am allowed. I think my next performance might be tape only.

The evening of yesterday was spent in the Prisma Pavilion watching the football, which turned out to be a drab, anticlimactic affair, not just for the result in which my adopted country lost, but ofr the tedium of the game, the lack of verve and direction, two halves entirely bereft of any real ambition or bravery save for one sublime goal.

Today – writing this morning, taking in Austerlitz, yawning, then time to perhaps visit some galleries and Staalplat this afternoon.