There are some places where you feel at home and I would say New York and Hebden Bridge in Yorkshire have the right vibes for me to feel at home. They both just feel right. I used to love Hebden Bridge when I lived in the North of England years back with my ex-husband and I’m back here now for the next week to do my event at the Town Hall on Wednesday at 7pm
(bit of promo now for a few days), but then will live here in January and February and the first week in March. A friend is going away and asked if I wanted to rent her house whilst she was gone. Yes, yes, yes!!!! There’s a creative and alternative vibe here. There’s loads of countryside walks, it’s not too commercial either and mainly small local businesses, so this place suits me with it’s mentality, and I will be so happy to have a pit stop for a few months where I can actually live alone again.
It’s time to just ground myself, reconnect and be warm and cosy and not here, there and everywhere and hibernate a bit in the countryside. Much needed!!!!! There’s a real fire where I will live so I’m going to just enjoy having a little haven for a few months and I can just get the practise done that I need on my opera arias ready for when I go back to New York. Right now I just can’t do it because I’m on the road too much but I really need the time to do it.
I’ve only been back just over two weeks and I’ve been home to my brothers; down to London; over to Belgium (two gigs and some singing on the streets in Brussels);
back to London; up to Sheffield working for Lost Chord in old folks homes (I did 15 concerts in 5 days), and now I’m over in Hebden. I’m glad to be working and earning money and not having the ‘find a way into America’ pressure on my shoulders but it really has been ‘a Soprano and a suitcase’ times. Up and down steps, on and off trains, walking all over with it. I was dreading it a bit when I was about to leave America but it’s not been as hard as I thought. It’s actually been good that I’ve been busy and occupied. By the end in New York I was twiddling my thumbs too much and now at least I can get on with it and enjoy the things I’m doing back here. I’ve had some really good times catching up with friends I’ve not seen for a while these past few weeks (and the whole year too), and I know if I had my own place it just wouldn’t happen so I’m really grateful for that, and that people have really helped me out. Without a home I’ve had to rely on people and it’s felt nice for me that I have places I can go. I’m in a lovely place for the next few nights. The woman at the air bnb where I am staying
just came in and asked if I wanted to join them for some curry). Going to go up and just say hi to them. I’ve only been here a few hours and already I’ve got invites for over the weekend. People leave their houses and cars unlocked too. Not heard of that in years. I’m going to try to see what opportunities I can create here whilst I’m here too. See if anyone wants any singing lessons or anywhere where I can sing for people. If I can do it in New York I can do it here.
I’m starting again for a few months I suppose. Not something I haven’t done before.
On the one hand exciting again and on the other ‘here we go again’. I think I’m learning to just go with it and stay open and see what comes along and who I meet along the way. It’s been a year of experiencing so many different things and places that I definitely feel enriched from it all and have learnt a lot about myself. I’ve met so many different and new people and built so many new relationships. Just fantastic really now I look back. Probably one of the best years of my life. Stressful and scary at times but so worth it. The stepping into the unknown has nearly done me in at times but
no regrets at all!!! I remember being so scared the day before I left Canada with my friend Joe before I flew into New York. I was nearly in tears with fear but I did it.
I listened to a podcast a friend told me about about Opera Singers in America talking about mental health of opera singers. At one point one of them said ‘if you are not on anti depressants you will be’ and they all laughed. It’s stuck with me that. I know the business. I know what it does to you. I know it makes you feel so insecure and worthless and in competition with so many other singers, all panicking to get work and then panicking when you have the work that you won’t be asked back and ‘what will people think’ and ‘does the conductor like me?’ etc…… I have so been there and will be there again if I do actually get work again from others, but there’s one thing I am so determined about. I know what music is for. It’s light and it’s a gift and it’s not there to be spoiled,
but to bring pleasure and joy to others and to be shared. Doing my own thing keeps me grounded and in connection with that.
Thank you all for being part of the journey and reading my blog and following me on Facebook and giving me so many encouraging words. I’m going to take a break over Christmas and return in the New Year. I have no idea what 2019 will bring. It’s an open book waiting to be filled. Take care everyone and see you next year!!!!!!!! Here are some of the many highlights this year……… London, Monaco, France, Derby, Lancashire, Yorkshire, Antwerp, Brussels, Ghent, Knokke, Canada, New York…………..and about 30 different homes……