Yeah, it’s another ‘Blind man takes a camera and goes mental with it’ type thing, let’s see what you make of it shall we?
Here I am, some probably 37000 feet up, on a plane to Barbados, writing to you. And although I cannot send it because well, no data, I’m still doing it.
The flight has been fantastic and the staff wonderful, not just because I got a free upgrade to premium class either. I have been made to personally feel like I matter. Like I’m important, and not just that the cabin crew are doing their job. They checked up on me multiple times throughout the flight, made sure that, if I wanted it, I had access to the in-flight entertainment system, walked me to (but not inside) the toilet and talked me through a great deal of the duty-free catalog, and made me buy something as a result.
I asked when I got on the flight if it was at all possible to move to a seat where there was an electrical outlet and was told to sit in my normal seat first, but that they’d ask the manager and if, when everybody was seated there was room in another class, they’d come and get me which they did.
I explained the reason for wanting to move, that being the difficulty with the touch-screen in-flight entertainment system and that naturally, I couldn’t ask them to come back and forth changing channel or program at my every beck and call. They were incredibly understanding and I didn’t feel like a self-entitled blind prick for asking. As a result of that, I’m sitting at the front of premium economy right by one of the toilets which is in kicking-distance to my chair, and no it doesn’t stink, and I’m close enough to cabin crew that if I just wave gently, they’ll see if I need anything. It’s been a great flight so far and as I write this it’s 12:28 Barbados time or 17:38 UK time, I’ve already set my clock back, so there’s not much left to go now. I really don’t have one single complaint. One of the staff even filled out the landing card you’re required to fill out upon entering Barbados, which was on-paper not electronic so I couldn’t have done that even if I’d have wanted to.
Anyway, I’ve waxed enough about the flight and the crew, it’s time for the food. What, you thought I wasn’t going to mention the food? Who do you think I am?
I was told very apologetically I might add, that they counted the meals up, and there were only enough for the people that had actually, you know, paid for seating in premium, and that as a result I could either wait and see if there were any meals left-over, or get a standard meal. I chose the standard meal and let me tell you, I was not disappointed.
I got some kind of chicken dish with rice, slightly spicy, followed by a passion-fruite moose of some kind and it was incredible. The hot food and the cold food. I’m not usually a moose-fan, although my wife does call me a moose often, but this really was exceedingly good. I think it was made by Goo, or some such, and I fully intend to have it again very, very soon. Somehow.
I’ve also been snacking on priseco (how do you spell that anyway?) a glass or two of wine, some orange juice and the most exquisite pretzels I have ever tasted in my entire life. tiny little packets of which by now I must have had at least 4. And I think I have another 2 in my bag, because they’re so so good I couldn’t resist taking some with me. I’ll have to ask my nan when I get there, what make they are and if we can find some more. Or whether Kirsten can because she would absolutely love them to bits and pieces and pretzels as I do.
When I was offered them at first, I was kind of skeptical you know, pretzels aren’t exactly the most interesting snack imaginable but well, I’ve had my taste-buds severely reeducated and now I am a big big fan.
That’s that. I know the ending is rather abrupt but well, I think there’s more food near me and although my name isn’t Ron Weasley, I appreciate food like the next Black man so yeah. that.
Thank you for reading. Or something.
Last Saturday, so that’s, uh, the 23rd of May, I was invited to play at a house-party where there was much Barbecue food to be had. In doing so, I had the absolute pleasure of playing keyboard with Linda Muriel who is an amazing personality and a joy to work with. She’s down-to-earth, humble, and can sing up a storm without even trying.
It’s been quite a long time since I was asked on my own merits, to be the keyboard player for something like this, so naturally I was nervous.
We didn’t rehears as there was no time, and I probably talked on the phone more on Friday than I have in several years.
I’d never met these people before, and it’s very easy to be worried about performance when that happens, especially playing in a house.
On Saturday morning I was rehearsing a few things, and I put together a handful of loop ideas because I knew Linda, like me, enjoys jamming. I thought of a few recognisable tracks people *probably* would know and went with it.
Here’s one of them, which I certainly had fun with.
move On Up: A sort of not quite version of it an old Curtis Mayfield track from back in the day I certainly loved as a child, and appreciated way more as an adult. In fact I appreciated it so much, I made my own, custom version of it and we had fun jamming it at the party.
I should also add that along with myself and Linda Muriel was a quite phenomenal guitarist, Mike Collins who I met last year when working with my dad on his album.
That small excerpt was recorded in Mike’s home-studio, where he has many, many many things and gave me some kind of keyboard envy to be honest, but anyway that’s somewhat off-track.
As well as playing Curtis Mayfield, we attempted a bob Marley track, Waiting In Vain but well, that kind of didn’t work out for reasons you’ll hear in this piece.
Linda got side-tracked, the piece took on a mind of it’s own and it was fun.
With all that, and having to make up content on-the-fly you can probably imagine I was tired by the time I got home around midnight. I unpacked my keyboard, copied the recordings from my recorder to the computer for safe-keeping, obviously, had a drink of water and flopped into bed about 1 AM. Yes, it really takes an hour to unpack and do all that. I was meant to attend a party on Sunday but felt too sleepy to do that, so I chilled at home.
Thus ends the unusual tail of barbecue party and keyboard playing that was last Saturday.