10 April 2006

Robin Watch (1)

Near my flat there is a garage, and this garage has been converted into an art studio/workshop by a Canadian guy called Robin. He is Canadian in the sense that he has a vaguely American accent and I like him – therefore he must be Canadian rather than American. Anyway, Robin makes things out of wood. Sometimes they are abstract objects made out of uprooted trees and sometimes they are more practical things, like tables.

He is a real neighbour, in the old- fashioned northern way. He knows everyone who lives within a mile radius and he usually has one of us installed in the doorway of his studio with a cup of tea. He knows all the local gossip; his story about the day we found a gun lying out in the street outside my house is hilarious. No really, it is. Only on my street could someone leave a gun in on the pavement for two hours and not one person picks it up and shoots anyone. We are fabulously middle class. I expect some people tutted and rolled their eyes a bit when they saw it; we’re not made of granite after all. This is perhaps why the police didn’t rush to our assistance. Although when they did finally arrive they use so much tape to close the road off they mummified the neighbourhood. I missed all this – I was in the pub. Although my garden was…wait a minute, this is a whole post in its own right, or even seven posts. I’m saying no more.

So, where were we? Oh yes, at the moment Robin has been very busy. He works as an osteopath as well and sometimes he can’t spend as much time as he would like at the studio. But for the last week or so he has been there when I leave for work and then he comes back and works late into the evening. He seems to be working on a long, slim tree trunk which has some roots twisting around it one end and some branches, straighter and shorter, at the other. He has been varnishing it very carefully, with a number of coats but only to halfway up, from the roots. At the other end he has painted a lattice design in pale pink. I don’t know what it is yet but it got rained on last night. I was concerned for its well being but it seemed to be fine this morning. I guess he knows what he is doing, and I am determined to find out exactly what that is.

Tune in for Robin Watch (2) next week, or sooner if he does something madcap and Canadian.

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