I’ve just returned from an intense two and half adventure down to the Cornish coast, during which I caught up with friends, drank myself into a Newquay stupor and attempted to create a sand scale replica of Battersea Power Station . The sun came out when it was supposed to, took some pretty pictures, I like the people I went with.
So why do I feel so bummed out today? I haven’t felt down in absolutely ages. Waking up to find out that Tony Scott has thrown himself off a bridge probably didn’t help (I wasn’t the biggest fan of his work, but admired his style and I love any British director who out-Hollywood’s Hollywood), but I’m reckoning it might be my friend mix worries popping up again.
Basically, three or so months ago, after consulting with various friends, I made a conscious decision to spend more time with people in the arts, and cut certain others out entirely. This wasn’t done because I have a sudden dislike of anyone, but more that a recognition that spending more time around people with similar struggles, lifestyles and aims is the way to gain some confidence and mutual understanding in the shaky career path I’ve chosen. A javelin enthusiastic might be friends with a Grandmaster, but will find himself a tad alienated if all he does is constantly turn up at the local chess club and expect them to know a thing or two about hurling sticks over distance.
More practically, it’d probably help my career if my social and professional worlds were a bit closer than they are right now, especially since theatre in particular is about the relationships you have with others. But that doesn’t change the fact that the most solid friendships I have are with graduate young professionals, and I resent any shift in the terms of our friendship on these grounds. It’s a bit shit, and I’d be mortified if they did it to me.
I have a lot of time and affection for everyone I went to the South West with, even if I still don’t think I really know them incredibly well (with one exception – I’d count one of them as one of my favourite people), and I had a great time…but finding it hard to shake the nagging suspicion that though they’re closer than ever, my life is going to stratify further from theirs, partly because our lifestyles are different and partly because we value different things overall. Need to make up for it by trying to understand them better, trying to worry less and by maybe booking a pretentious holiday somewhere. Rome/Florence/Barca are you listening?