Thursday 5 August 2021

and.... Two Tents.

The first tent is on the outside of the town, in a park; it is red and blue.

It’s a circus tent, it’s the opening night of the festival and it is full; more than a thousand people are inside waiting to celebrate.

The night is settling when the van arrives at the far end of the field, the van is red and blue too.

The driver and his companion are greeted and invited to the tent.

They walk inside, it’s the first time they have crossed the sea and they don’t speak the local language, much is communicated by smiles and gesture.

The tent is dark, but a spotlight illuminates the stage; it’s summer and the performers are relaxed in the glow of the evening and the audiences love.

Someone speaks from the stage: “and on drums, all the way from New York City…”

Everyone in the audience cheers, even though they don’t normally speak English, and then they applaud.

The driver and his friend applaud too; the atmosphere is electric though the musicians are not.

It’s the drummers turn to speak: “and all the way from Malibu , California, on saxophone, Mr Stan Getz.”

The crowd whoop.

And the saxophone starts to pulsate.



The second tent is in a field a long way from the village, and a long trek from the road.

It’s smaller than the first – much smaller - and it is blue.

There is no red, only the book that lies open, being read.

Two people are in the tent; they are lovers.

They have been in the tent for three days; it is raining so much they cannot risk returning to the village for food, so they are surviving on the bread and cheese that remains.

And reading the book out loud to each other.

The book is The Lord of the Rings, as the rain drills down on the tent they are cosy in the land of the shire.

Down the road, hidden in the rain, the ruins of a castle watch over the empty bay; no boats will come this night.




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