Thursday, 2 July 2009

Suddenly She Turned Into a Gerbil



Hello, this is Chris and i am happy to be back in the blog-seat. This is a blog about last week, last week was brilliant...

Last week was a brilliant brilliant week!Firstly, my bro and his wife rushed off to hospital to have twin baby girls (both very cute and tiny), which left me looking after my 4 year-old nephew. He is great fun and he took great delight in soaking my shorts with the hose while we were supposed to be watering the plants, for my revenge I beat him at draughts. Like every wee lad he is going through a cheeky-phase and is calling everyone Mr or Mrs Poopy-face, so it’s especially hard not to laugh when he calls the check-out girl in Sainbury’s Mrs Poopy-face (a silent chuckle from me instead).

It is Wednesday already and for our final Big Issue event of the 08-09 school year we thought we would try something a bit different: rather than us going into the school we thought it would be great if schools would come to us. So out went the invites, in came the responses and finally in came the pupils from Newcraighall, Burdiehouse Primary and Leith Primary School.



John Fardell talked about his latest exciting novel, The Secret of the Black Moon Moth, before guiding the children through the art of storytelling, imagination and illustration by asking them to think of what happens next and getting them to draw their suggestions. All of this happens on the flipchart at the front of the stage and it always reveals a mad story, crazy character and even crazier plot twists “suddenly she turned into a gerbil”!






Philip the photographer for The Big Issue then gathered the pupils around John for some group shots before Jane (Big Issue’s wonderful reporter) interviewed a small group of the children for the magazine feature which should be out in about a month or so. John’s events are always such a pleasure to be involved with because his enthusiasm and love of writing/illustration shines through and it is infectious – a little like swine flu only without the nasty side-effects!

Ok, so where are we now, Wednesday afternoon. Following our Big Issue event is was time for me to leave the office and take my shiny new car on its first road-trip: 3 hours north to Aberdeen. What was waiting in Aberdeen for me? One ticket to go and see rock icon, Neil Young with my dad! The gig was truly brilliant, loads of great songs, big-,loud riffs and outros that just went on and on and on and on – watch highlights of his Glastonbury set to see what I mean. Stayed with my cousin at her nearby cottage then up at 6am back in the car and back at my desk by 9ish to start another day - well worth the early start and the 6hr round trip.

Thursday, a peaceful but busy day back in the office tying up most of the loose ends of our Highland Tour in September with Paul Stewart and Chris Riddell- we are officially now good to go. All we need is somewhere to rest our heads each night, some places to fill our tummies and to get our stars up to the Highlands and back to London.

Finally Friday night, work is over for another week and it’s time for another gig – this time it is part of the Edinburgh International Film Festival and sees 3 local bands (Eagleowl, Meursault and Found) scoring music to some archive film footage; a lovely piece about a fishing boat, the postal service and Laurel and Hardy visiting the Playhouse in Edinburgh (they were the Brangelina of their day).

The event made me feel nostalgic so as well as reading Fergus Crane by Paul Stewart and Chris Riddell, I picked up Michael Rosen's Sad Book off my shelf and read it repeatedly as well as Days Like This from the Scottish Book Trust as its full of people’s memories. Apart from spilling an entire pint of Guinness down my jeans I had a great time and it was a perfect way to end a brilliant week.

Over and out.






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