or are you in Bilbao
Hi there! It’s hot here again, rain threatens, it always seems to be the Olympics & I still can’t work out why my wastepaper basket is so full of chicken & bacon sandwich wrappers. Despite that I’ve had an enjoyable morning, watching two experienced tightrope artists balance their way between oppositions: Will Self quartering London in the New Statesman; & Manuel Vazquez Montalban, prowling the subterranean power gradients of Buenos Aires in the first part of The Buenos Aires Quintet (which I’m re-reading already). I wish I could be as clever as these men, especially in the way they tease out their conflicts & contradictions via the contradictions & conflicts of eras & cities, but I can’t. I wish I had their amused calm. Compared to them I’ll always be a rhinoceros in a horse race, a rhinoceros saddled up by a clown. Other than that, I’ve had a lunchtime walk by the river, where I met a person with two unimaginative dogs; eaten without noticing it another of those mysterious sandwiches; & tried to work out who I am by writing: that is, by bashing my head through the overgrown fence &–snout draped in convolvulus–staring bemusedly at the landscape laid out with such cunning on the other side. I start with the best will in the world but it always ends in anger & blunt enigma. I hope you’re well & that France is suiting you. Or was it Bilbao this week? I have to say I’ve forgotten. I love that coast! Anyway, enjoy your holiday & I’ll see you when you get back to the UK.