Barcelona. Where to begin? I went there last week, following my son's school chamber choir from cathedral to cathedral, celestial voices ringing out in heavenly locations. As this was a school trip, parents were welcome to the concerts but very much encouraged to keep their distance at all other times, so I was essentially a free agent - all the more so given the rest of the family was back in London.
On the plane on the way over I found myself listening to Gregory Porter's album "Liquid Spirit" and daydreaming. It took me back to the summer term of static trapeze at the National Circus, where I had nailed the needle - effectively a handstand in the ropes - while his music played in the background. Now I wonder if that was really me, for between family commitments and sick bugs I haven't made a single class so far this term, and I miss it. Badly. And in the wake of the previous post, Porter's song "Grandma's Hands" takes on a whole new resonance. Time at the moment feels like it is slipping away, and this then, was going to be a week to slow right down and take stock.
|Barcelona, never a drag|
That evening I opened an email from a friend who had sent me a link to La Central Del Circ, Barcelona's circus space. That was the gentle nudge I needed to check it out. Set in a desert of asphalt bordered by the sea, there is an oasis of spectacular architecture, my favourite being the Museu Blau, pictured. Just beyond is an urban playground, and a couple of circus tents, originally home to the Central. Inside the current building, the vibe was similar to the National Circus and I was welcome to wander round. I made my way down to the training space and found myself chatting to some Argentine acrobats who told me about a circus cabaret happening the following evening at Cronopis, an alternative circus space.
Listening to the school chamber orchestra raise the roof with Piazzolla's "Fuga y misterio" in Tarragona Cathedral, my mind flitted back to the tightrope tango earlier, and attempts back home on a slackline the week before. Life is a delicate balancing act, I reflected, a series of constant, tiny adjustments, and those moments when it comes into tune make all the hard graft worthwhile.