has it really been twenty years?
but it only seems like yesterday...
i was living in lymington with my boyfriend simon, in a small flat above a tyre garage accessed by a long, steep, narrow stairway, that had old metal framed windows and was too hot in summer and too cold in winter. our 'garden' was a small paved area just outside the front door and the flat roof of the garage if we opened the narrow french windows in our lounge.
it was actually a seriously funky place made more bohemian by our ideals and lifestyle.
a small portable tv was balanced on an old suitcase (these days it would be called 'vintage' back then it was just old) and the stereo and our tape collection stood on a pine shelving unit, there were plants, pictures and guitars. in the bedroom another small tv sat upon a large amplifier and clothes were piled on another shelving unit. we had a small spare bedroom that we used for storage, the space mostly taken up with a windsurf board, snowboards, washing that needed doing and a huge book collection.
the kitchen still had old (vintage?!) cabinets and had a long window crowded with plants.
that morning we opened our newspaper and found that Kurt had taken his life. back then this was how we had the news reach us, there were no mobile phones, no instant 24 hour news channels, no internet...we were devastated, could not believe it, if i remember rightly we bought flowers and put them out on a windowsill as a memorial...
i loved living in lymington back then, it was before it became a millionaires playground and we knew most of the people of our own age.
i had moved there a few years before with * into a flat at the top of town...
let me explain lymington, it sits on a steep hill, the 'top' of town literally is the top of the hill and the main high street is on this hill, leading down the the lymington river, the quay and yacht harbour...
...our flat at the top was above an art supplies shop and this flat too was very funky, set on different levels and my bedroom was right up in the attic~a long, low room where the sloping ceiling were my 'walls', with one small window and accessed by a small flight of stairs that had a small landing at the top where i had rigged up a pole to hang my clothes.
my room was papered in posters and had parts of song lyrics and quotes from deadline written on the spaces between. the room was dominated by my bed which was just a mattress on the floor. fruit crates acted as my bedside table and a stand for my stereo.
next door to us was 'the black cat' pub, our 'local', there are several pubs along the high street and crowds would generally go from one to another during their nights out.
back then the 'drinking culture' was totally different to the one seen on tv these days.
people would go out not to get falling down drunk and fight, it was a very sociable thing, yes we would drink but not get drunk, and just enjoy each others company.
when we moved there we knew no-one but gradually became part of a small group of friends which is how i met simon~a motorbike riding, guitar playing, socialist. he lived at the bottom of town in a big Victorian house with our friends scott, who was incredibly tall and wide and drove a very small fiat 500 and bill, who, despite having room at the house and his family live only a few doors away, chose to live on the small family boat that was anchored in the harbour and accessed by a small row boat...bill was a funny, but very complex character!
elsewhere in town lived nick, a merchant seaman, and brothers adam and jake.
i look back on my lymington days with great fondness, although grown and leading 'grown up' lives with jobs, i can only remember all the fun we had. fun that didn't mean getting falling down drunk , taking drugs or getting into fights...one night we all made our way to the flat after an evening out only to have bill appear stark naked apart from an advertising flag from a building site wrapped around him and a traffic cone clutched in his arms...sailing out to the isle of wight in bills boat, anchoring just off shore at alum bay, swimming to shore and walking up to the needles old battery, impromptu trips to Glastonbury in our old mini.
in the years before moving to lymington were the years i spent travelling around the county seeing live bands, i would go to these events weekly, seeing mostly local bands or small bands that never really made the charts here~the cropdusters, the levellers, mega city 4, the judacutters. this was also the time i started going to festivals, namely the reading festival where i had seen Nirvana play in 1991 and '92.
such good memories to have
it seems i have been living a lot in the past since the loss of cecil.
actually i do live in the past a lot these days
some days i find myself frustrated with my life and wish i could turn the clock back...