DP:Glastonbury: One year on… (My final blog post for 2017)


https://dailypost.wordpress.com/prompts/silent/

Glastonbury: One Year On…

After this post, I shall be Blog-SILENT until the start of 2018.

On December 20th 2016, I finally moved to Glastonbury!

Next Tuesday marks the one year anniversary of this move – and, since I am going to take a couple of weeks off the blog (starting tomorrow), I am going to celebrate and acknowledge now.

I was both excited and anxious when I arrived: Excited because finally I was free and about to put the key in the lock of my very own house; worried that I would not make friends; that I would not be able to cope with house and garden; that I would struggle financially; that the continuous panic attacks and pain would continue forever…

The reality has been incredibly, magically, different.

Morgana West (whom I have known for a few years) very kindly alerted key friends that I was arriving – and, though this act of generosity, I have met, and become close to, the lovely women I refer to as The Witches of Widdershins Hill  – J, J, A and A!

Through each of them, I have been introduced to a host of other delightful people, both men and women.

In January, I got back in touch with two friends first met in 2012, Sally and James North – and, through them, I was introduced to Shadow of the Tor. I still vividly recall my first visit to the King Arthur pub, on March 5th of this year, and the initial sight of these two long-haired young men, Brad and Francis, (both of whom have become friends since then) and the plethora of other interesting people (most of whom I also now count among my friends).

One of them recognised me! This was the lovely Aelph Edgewood, who lives down my road and has become such a close friend in the intervening months. Well met, indeed!

I did have a moment of severe financial insecurity (unnecessary, as it turned out) and, in a fit of panic, applied to join a Supply Teaching Agency. I think, in retrospect, I wanted to prove that I could still do it (though I knew, in my heart of hearts, that the events of September 2011 had shown very clearly that I was burned out as a classroom teacher) – and the following four months showed me, with painful clarity, that I was no longer up to the job.

The coming of spring allowed to me flex previously untried gardening muscles and I discovered a real affinity with the earth and flowers and herbs. As an Earth sign, this should not, perhaps, have been the surprise it was!

April saw my first performance on stage with Shadow of the Tor – and great fun it was too – as well as my first public ritual (I was a Quarter Officer) for the Beltane Celebrations on the Fairfield, just below the Tor.

It also marked a return to my status as Community Reviewer, though I did not realise this at the time.

Early April marked the departure of my son, and his girlfriend, on their five month Gap Year adventure abroad: China, Hong Kong, Vietnam, Cambodia, Laos, Thailand, Australia, Canada and Iceland – all were experienced by the intrepid pair!

May and June marked the start of a clear deterioration in my elderly dog, Jumble – and, for a while, I was scared that he would not live long enough to see the return of the Young Things at the beginning of September. In the event, he survived not just for that, but also for the Lad’s birthday in mid-November.

May saw the start of festival celebrations in my garden and house, something I am keen to continue.

In May, I finally gave up the supply teaching (with vast relief) – though, through it, I met another lovely friend, David Greenway (Glastonbury’s esteemed Town Crier).

July was busy and exciting: I was cast as the Vicar in ‘The Amortal’ and Witch 1 in ‘Macbeth’.  The filming days were hilarious and huge fun. Many ‘Macbeth’ rehearsals took place in my garden, which was bonding – and, through both ventures, I got to know five more delightful Shadow members.

August also saw the arrival of my first private pupil. I hope to teach more young things in time.

August was full of intense rehearsals and, at the start of September, I travelled up to Heathrow Airport, with Lass’s dad, to pick up our beloved children: Such an emotional day, and so lovely to hear the details of their many adventures.

October saw an intensification of the rehearsals and, sadly, a fracturing of a bond.

November was a very mixed month: ‘Macbeth’ was performed on the 1st and 2nd, and the Variety Evening and film premiere followed on the 17th, Lad’s birthday falling between the two.  I was ill for most of the month, and hurt my back on the 27th. The emotional fracture turned into a break – and, although the vast majority of my friendships remain intact, I had to let this one go.

The worst moment in that difficult month, however, came on the evening of the 24th when I had to make the heartbreaking decision to end my beloved dog’s long life.

Now, approaching that important one year, just before the Winter Solstice, mark, I look back at my fears and realise how cribbed and confined by previous events I had become. The anxiety and pain have diminished hugely (though they still pop up when I am under extremes of stress); I have coped with house, garden and finances; I have met some truly wonderful and special people, and now have lots of friends; I have joined a thespian team and tried my hand at Morris Dancing; I have been so lucky with my neighbours (who have been incredibly kind and helpful) and Jumble lasted far longer than I had privately feared.

Old friendships and bonds have stood firm – and I have seen my pals from the Silent Eye, Scotland,Wrington and other places at least once. My increased happiness and fulfillment shows, I think.

A huge thank you to everyone who has helped, supported, befriended and included me this year. I know that I made the right choice coming here – and the generosity of so many people has been a vast part of that.

Happy Solstice/Christmas/Yule!

I’ll be back in the New Year!

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Ruminations on approaching sixty!


This is me portraying Witch 1 (shown, in the photo, with Stephen Cole, who played the eponymous villain of the piece) during Shadow of the Tor/His and Hers Theatre production of ‘Macbeth’.

I think it apt – as the months, and then weeks, roll up the carpet of fifty-nine and, very soon, propel me into the new weave of my sixties – that I was able to enact on stage something of my own beliefs concerning Crones, age, witches and women – and, indeed, that I got the part in the first place.

My birth sign of Capricorn starts in ten days’ time – and my sixtieth birthday will occur two weeks after Christmas. I love this time of year, and always have. My spirit often blooms with life and colour and joy, and I adore Yule, Christmas, the Solstice. I love wintery weather and the fragile beauty of days like this one. I cherish holly, the red and the rarer golden, and thrill to the sound of carols, both ancient and more modern.

I feel, at present, lively, spritely and inquisitive about reaching sixty. It is a number I have not attached to myself before and I am curious to see what it feels like and how it fits the bundle of youth and age I have always been!

Thinking of the Triple Goddess, I love all the stages therein – and do not think we ever stop being Maiden entirely, nor does the Mother aspect leave us. Crone I have been, in many ways, for several years now – and it does not frighten or disgust or worry me. It just seems like the logical next step upon Womanhood’s rich and diverse Path.

I think I have strong roots and, though my bark is a little bit bald and grey in places, and some mossy clumps have infiltrated the clean lines of youth, the early morning December sun still shines gloriously upon my trunk and leaves and, as the solar orb climbs and radiates, gives a russet glow to the mistletoe at the top.

There seems to be a deep-seated, and widespread, fear of darkness, Winter and age, especially amongst women. I attribute this to the common assumption that Cronehood confers ugliness and takes away sexuality and the power to attract – and, of course, death’s ability to terrorise. And yet, for this, I think my extended Winter-based metaphor works very well. A morning like this one is every bit as beautiful, as inspiring and as conducive to inner fluids flowing and loins stiffening as is its Spring counterpart. Increasing age is the same!

So, I look forward to reaching sixty! I hope to celebrate it with family and friends – and I am determined that this sixtieth anniversary of my birth year will finally see the publication of ‘Heneghan’!

My garden, caught in these images this very merry morning, is every bit as lovely now as it was during the burgeoning of Spring, the heights of Summer and the colourful glories of Autumn.

Female power and loveliness does not depend upon the smoothness of skin, the lustre of hair or brimming fertility. Beauty, to my mind, is bred deep in the bone – and the power to attract both survives youth and goes far beyond the sex act!

With thanks to John. G. Moore for the ‘Macbeth’ image.

Thespian Self-Reflection: Ali as an actor! DP


https://dailypost.wordpress.com/prompts/patina/

Yes, age has given the bronze of my essential character, and physical self, a certain greeny-brown layer – which can be deceptive. This patina convinces some that I am more confident and sure of myself than is the case, and others that aged looks and chronological years confer ancient attitudes and hardening of the emotional arteries. But, scrape said patina off…

What with one thing or another, I have not got round to reflecting upon my own recent acting roles (as the Vicar in ‘The Amortal’, Booby Fellatio in the Variety Show and Witch 1 in ‘Macbeth’), though I reviewed all other cast members for both ventures.

I will start by saying that, although I consider myself to be a natural comedian, I am not, and never will be, a natural actor. I do not have sufficient range of ability, to be frank – and lack the ease and inspired genius on stage of the true talent!

I do not feel sad about this, oddly enough. I am at my best in comedic and villainous roles – and, if I get one that combines the two, I am as happy as Larry/a pig in shit/ a dog with two tails.

I will start with my strengths on stage. I have excellent voice projection (a military background and a stentorian roar both help in that regard!) and am a speedy – and, in the main, accurate – learner of lines. In my limited way, I think I have strong stage presence.

My weaknesses are, to my way of thinking, far wider! The narrow range, which I am totally open about, means that I am poor at any kind of romantic, heroine-based, serious or non-comedic sexual role. The last of those causes me particular difficulty because of a long history of being sexually abused in my past.

By a singular irony – of which I am well aware – I can ham up a heroine or revel in a completely over-the-top, tongue-in-cheek old slapper (think Booby Fellatio – and shudder!) without any kind of problem. Comedy is profoundly healing for me – and I often instinctively reach for it when the axis of my world has tilted in a threatening way.

I understand that this is very hard for some people to understand – but, to give a recent example, the recent vet-assisted death of my beloved dog, Jumble, brought out gallons of tears and, as an antidote, the latest Booby Fellatio-related blog post.

So, how did I do in these most recent roles? I wasn’t bad as Witch 1, though I forgot a line on the second night and would not say I was exactly the best mover on stage. Unfortunately, my washing machine chose that time to go on Spin Strike which meant that I was unable to wear the, by then sopping wet, lovely reddy-pink dress Aelph had so kindly loaned me for the final night. I compromised by wearing a scarlet cloak over a black robe – and tried, when I could, to envelop myself in the former (which could easily have fitted an entire coven in its abundant depths!).

I was not that impressed by my own performance, to be honest – but then I rarely am. However, with that one exception, I was word-perfect and could be heard at the back of the Assembly Rooms.

I most certainly would not claim that I have the golden touch when it comes to work in front of a camera – though I loved the novelty of it all, and had a ball! I don’t think I let the side down or anything – but I can see many areas for improvement (movement can be stiff and unconvincing; being largely stage-and-classroom trained, my voice needed tweaking in order to achieve the natural sound needed for film; my facial expression was, at times, self-conscious).

On the costume side of things, I used my black ritual robe – and created a dog collar from an old shirt! But said robe is very long (put it this way: a friend of mine, who is six foot one, tried it on once and it reached his ankles!) – and, without my usual tightly-cinched cord, a bit of a tripping hazard. One of the funnier moments, while we shot the graveyard scene, was when I caught a hoof in the trailing yards of black material, skidded on wet ground and fetched my length on the sward!

Because Booby is a comedy role, I felt I could go into exaggerated, modern-day Fanny Hill mode – and wear clothes I would not normally be seen dead in a ditch with! Very confronting. As long as I was emboobying Booby, I was fine; but my natural self-consciousness and lack of self esteem made parts of the evening very challenging, though Aelph’s small filmed section was incredibly healing and reassuring.

So, what have I learned from these recent Shadow of the Tor performances in terms of my own acting ability?

I am extremely self-critical. I find it easier to praise others than myself. Hang-ups about my looks, my body and so forth continue to haunt me, though some welcome degree of exorcism has occurred in recent weeks.

This last part is, I feel, reassuring – and marks a coming to terms with my own limits. I am happy to be a comedian and a villain! I love both kinds of parts and relish getting into them. I recognise the narrowness which characterises my work on stage – and am fine with it. I no longer have any desire to be the heroic main part (of either gender) as I know I lack the skills this entails.

Booby Fellatio represents the best of me on stage, in my opinion – because she is a complete maverick and unashamed of it, and because she sees no need to fit in with societal mores with regard to female appearance and behaviour: She does what she damn well likes!

And, if I am honest, Booby is a sexualised version of the maverick I was for the whole of my teaching career! She is an exaggerated version of the Alienora who never allowed herself to be crushed by pointless jargon, self-serving government initiatives and the whole bag of educational bollocks!

Booby is the courage I have, to a certain extent, lost. She is the libido which has (I hope temporarily) buggered off. She takes the stage in a way I, Alienora, cannot!

Working with Shadow of the Tor on these three projects has been, for the most part, enormous fun and I feel I have learned a great deal – both about my own stage habits and about the mysterious world of filming – from it.

 

Dragons, Dancers and Shadow of the Tor: Glastonbury’s Samhain Wild Hunt


This evening, as I stood on the grass up at Fairfield watching a beautiful sunset, I felt enormous pride in, and love for, my Shadow of the Tor friends – and, indeed, for the creative spirit within Glastonbury that brings to life the Wild Hunt, the Dragons and all the other wondrous ritual drama.

When I woke to rain, I confess I did feel fear, but was determined to robe-up and toddle up there to support the team. So, black robed, red corded and with my signature ribboned purple cloak, I set off towards the Marketplace at the appointed hour.

There I was accosted by Francis (who wrote the script and ensouled the Northern Quarter). He asked if I would be one of the Dragons’ legs. I was delighted to accept, having secretly longed to find out what it was like to be inside one of these mythical beings!

So, nipping down to Hawthorn’s car park, I found the Red and White dragons, half full of ‘legs’, idling in the strong November sun. Within two gulps of a wombat’s weasand, I was clutching a blue hoop and balancing a crosspiece of wood, while a tent of white stretched above me: Yes, I was, as you might say, a rib of the White Dragon, and jolly proud to be included, let me tell you.

All I could see was the woman in front of me, swathes of white draconesque ‘skin’ and, occasionally, footwear stomping along to my right. But, oh my, the atmosphere, what with the Dragon Banner carriers, the drums and the horns blasting, was amazing; I felt as if I truly were part of this long writhing creature being summoned up, up, up to the place of ritual.

Sun bloomed, a large golden rose, through the dragon’s ‘hide’. Rhythm tranced. An ancient walk began, or continued, as if, for that half an hour or so, we were one creature, moving in unison, moving without thought, going with the pulse of the Mother’s heart, the waving autumnal leaves, flitting and flurrying underfoot, the sense of wordless community bonding us all.

Ah! Slipping out of the dragon was magical too: The long grass was bright as vision glimpsed after tears. The banner carriers stopped. The Lord of Crows strode past. Gwyn ap Nudd’s chariot, carried by the bale-hounds, led by Dormir, was brought up the track. People swarmed.

We stood, all of us, in a vast circle, two, three, four deep – who knows? There is a time for mathematical exactness and this is not it. The thronging was more than human in any case. Shades and shadows, Fey and foe, they all gathered.

Glastonbury Border Morris came on first – and great it was to see them once more. They did one dance we could all join in with – and I leapt into the ring with huge enthusiasm! When they announced that they were doing the Crow Morris, I was delighted, having practised that one myself a few weeks back! Very eerie and effective!

The buzz grew stronger, more edgy. Sun shattered and reformed into kaleidoscopic prisms of gold and orange and lilac and blue, all tumbling and merging and puffing out great breaths of colourful cloud.

The lovely tale of Gwythyr and Creiddylad, the former giving way to psychopomp and Winter King, Gwyn ap Nudd, was beautifully enacted by Kaiden Blakely, Pixie Rees and Ross Bambrey. The symbolic ceding of Red to White Dragon, the latter garlanded with flowers, was most moving and effective.

The fire, heaped with wood and letters to departed loved ones, was lit.

The Quarter Officers – Lysah Hughesman, Barry Koppe, Sol Nigrum and Francis Oliver – lit their torches with great grace and then spoke their parts clearly and strongly. B.M Crowley as the Lord of Crows was mesmerising, and Arya Barlow was superb, enormously powerful and strong as the Dragon Priest.

Gwyn addressed the field, the sky, Above and Below, his voice, with its Welsh intonation, carrying far.

Ross was terrific as Gwyn: Clad in brown, with huge antlers, he towered above the rest and was slightly menacing in the way of all inhuman beings, but clearly bent upon the good of mankind too as he spoke of the Ancestors.

Again, the order may be jumbled in my mind by the sense I had of being in two places at once: I was just underneath Glastonbury Tor, with friends – and I was also back in West Wales – a foot in each camp, you might say – hearing Gwyn ap Nudd speaking in Welsh, and seeing the blood-red eyes of his hounds as they bayed and pawed the grass and whined in their desperation to be up, up, up chasing in the real Wild Hunt.

Back I tumbled. Reality, whatever that may be, shimmered slightly and then settled. Fire burned. Cauldron did not, in this instance, bubble – though a melange of voices, in a tight ring round the fire, burbled and boomed.

I did what I had come up to do (for the purposes of this blog, that was a private matter) and then dashed over to my friends, hugged the Lord of Crows and Gwyn, turned once more to the West, to witness the final fiery falling of the sun into night’s darkness – and, purple cloak flying out with the wind and my vertiginous movement, slipped down the slope towards town.

I took no photos. Words will have to paint the scene for me. Magical, it was, though – and lovely and bonding.

A joy to behold. A pleasure to be a part of.

NB: Any factual mistakes are mine alone; I took no notes and was in a semi-dream most of the time.

Shadow of the Tor: Bard, Banter and Bonding in Beckets…


https://dailypost.wordpress.com/prompts/ghoulish/

Ghoulish? The title of the play might have inclined some to think that way! But,I think not! A gargantuan feast of gregarious giggling…

So there we were, a motley crew of ten or so, gathered within the welcoming walls of Beckets Inn, Glastonbury. Sunday, it was – and we intrepid Shadow of the Tor members were there to let down our hair, sample the product of grape and grain and, with luck, laugh until dizziness or darkness intervened!

With the first night of ‘Macbeth’ a mere seventy-two hours away, and with some harrowing rehearsals (inevitable in any dramatic production!) behind us, we were athirst for relaxation and the company of one another outside the dramatic setting.

Crowded round two small tables, we drifted spontaneously into rehearsal mode – but with a significant, and hilarious, difference. For starters, the music in the small room was cranked up to such an extent that coherent speech had to wage war with every metallic note – but, far from putting us off, this actually enhanced our merriment and sent us upon the slippery road of utter hilarity.

Egged on by that kind of instinctive bonding that comes to encase a group of friends in its multi-coloured shell, we roared and raged in our roles as Macbethian characters and then, nothing loath and lured by lunacy, introduced a certain four-letter word into most lines of our diabolical declamation of dramatically doolally dialogue.

And, for all that purists would claim that such plosive perfidy, such shaming of syllables, would have dear old William Shakespeare turning in his grave (or oscillating in his urn, as the case probably wasn’t!), I have a sneaking suspicion that the bawdy creator of Falstaff, Bottom et alia would have had a hearty chuckle, and probably a fart or two of approval, had he heard, ‘Thrice the effing cat hath mewed…‘ or, ‘How does my effing wife?’

You see, I think we brought out something vital, something too many people forget when they moan and groan about the baffling badinage of the brilliant Bard: Shakespeare was a wordsmith, a raucous rogerer, a jolly old soul and his medium was meant to be enjoyed, cat-called, stamped and clapped and commented upon. Far from being the kind of po-faced, serious and literary experience we so often demand these days, the plays originally were meant to be visual, sensual and interactive experiences, full of in-jokes and heaps of wondrous vulgarity.

My feeling is that our two hours or so in the pub, laughing and lollygagging, quoting and quaffing, cursing and cackling brought the spirit of the time and the enduring popularity of the playwright fully into our lives. By embracing what he probably was – this roistering and riotous old roue – we came far closer to understanding his oeuvre than any intense professorial type.

Of course he would have added ‘effing’ to his language! And worse! Of course he would have howled with mirth, slapped his thighs and spilled his stoup of ale whilst eyeing up the wenches in the tavern!

Yes, ‘Macbeth’ is a serious play – but loving the wit behind, glorying in its creator’s language and adding our own take upon it, seems, to me, to be a way of meeting Wm. Shakespeare, esq, in the flesh that words can confer upon their writers – and, as it were, buying him a pint, handing over the bag of Pork Scratchings and settling down for a bloody good guffaw.

We bantered. We blathered. We blurted. It was magnificent. I laughed so much, I came over all unnecessary! The jollity, like musical jamming, bonded us effortlessly and was enormous fun.

The whole experience allowed me to see, with absolute clarity, that this gallimaufry of gradely gals and guys represents far more than a drama club (though that, in itself, is lovely); those people in the pub with me have become firm friends and, as I have said before, part of a tribe.

We reached, I feel, the true spirit, and the egregore, of tribal connection and, through shared humour, advanced the cause of our play hugely. By inviting Shakespeare in, as himself, we gained something of inestimable value: The man behind the myth; the drinking partner behind the dry words.

Go Shadow! Go Shakespeare!

Coming off Amitriptyline


Heavy sadness holds me captive in its net; yet, through the woven gaps, I can see great beauty and flickers of enchanting happiness and humour. Lozenges of light, fired by a crystal in the Living Room, fall from adjoining walls, colourful descent that never actually lands. Last night, as a friend and I sat amidst the magical night lights of the garden, bats – two or three of them – flittered overhead, a lovely sight and a welcome.

Birds, absent for so long, begin to nestle in bushes, and a throng of thrumming bees buzz busily in my Japanese Anemone.

The sad emotions are essential, both chemically and cyclically – perhaps definitively so. I am in the process of weaning myself off Amitriptyline (an old-fashioned anti-depressant) and of opening the gates to floods kept at bay too long. I cannot be chirpy and cheery, supportive and elderly aunt-like forever.

No, reshape that thought: I can be all of those things, for they are part of my nature, but not exclusively or to order.

My silence – for I am a writer and speaking has always felt like a foreign language in many ways – has long been an Open Sesame to the ruthless, the thick-skinned, the vampiric. I have allowed this to happen. My sense of entitlement is almost non-existent and I have always been gulled and guilt-tripped by those possessed of a more robust one!

But things shift in the sands of my soul. Partly thanks to Shadow of the Tor, my ability to speak up, to disagree, to insist upon parity with passion, to assert my status as a creative and strong woman, is slowly flowing back into the arid basin, covering rocks and dried mud with life-giving water.

It has become abundantly clear to me that a non-reciprocal bond has the consistency of a dead twig: it snaps under the tiniest pressure. It has become clear to me which people in my life seek only, or predominantly, to suck what they can from my vitality.

But, by the same token, I am gifted with true friends, reciprocal vessels in the sea of relationship. These people see the light shining through the shattered glass. These people see me as equal and not vassal. My beloved Witches of Widdershins Hill have been an ongoing source of strength and comfort, as have B, D, J, S, J and K from the world below the hill! The true friends outside Avalon – and dear ones from Silent Eye – who saw me through last year’s horror with kindness and utter loyalty, remain deeply loved and appreciated.

But, as the Mists of Amitriptyline slowly clear, levering the tight lid off powerful emotions bottled for too long, I shall emerge, wraithlike initially, a writer-priestess in my own right, with increasing clarity and assertiveness. I do not doubt the warmth of my heart, but it needs to be tempered by a greater dash of steel in the forge of mind and soul.

Avalon allows people to do, and be, what they will. This is very much a double-edged sword. It means that true talent can be subsumed by mediocrity, and genuine spiritual journeys jostled by a full motorway of aggressive charlatans tail-gating their way to prosperity and recognition!

I think it would help everyone on this planet to remember that we are not here simply to showcase, and gain adulation for, our own gifts; but, like the spirit that informs Shadow of the Tor at its best, to open the space for, and encourage/nurture, the needs, talents and personalities of those around us. Reciprocal talent, freely given and generously acknowledged, is a fine thing indeed, and, however you define ‘talent’, a better way forward than the meanness, the hoarding, the selfish need to be top dog at all costs which so tarnishes our world, so fractures our egregore, at present.

I speak my mind. Increasingly. This long-hidden talent is coming back in ever-stronger waves. My ability to say, ‘No!’ returns, as does my infamous (in certain quarters) Bullshit Detector!

I like most people I meet, and have inherent prejudice for no one; but I reserve the right to distrust those who motivation seems suspect or whose ability to deal in a reciprocal manner with others is stunted.

Saying a relieved ‘Farewell!’ to Amitriptyline will open all the drawers in my soul – inevitably! – and garments for defence of the body and spirit will be put on alongside those made of a gentler and softer material!

So be it!

 

 

‘The Amortal’ – a Shadow of the Tor production


Did I ever think, when I joined Shadow of the Tor back in March, that I would get involved in a film? No, not in a million years!

Written and directed by B. M Crowley, ‘The Amortal’ is a short film all about the life, and frustrations, of an Amortal (a man to whom death is an impossible dream!).

A couple of months ago, film tests were held, locations decided upon, lines learned – and, in July, filming started in earnest.

To my surprised delight, I got a part! Not saying anymore than that! Nor am I going to divulge any further details of the storyline and actors. The trailer is above for your delectation. It gives a fabulous flavour of the finished product.

Shooting this film was tremendous fun. We traipsed to graveyards, loitered in flats, lurked on various Glastonian streets and, one hot sunny day, took two cars, divers cameras, a plenitude of actors, drivers, film crew and our be-hatted director  and drove down windy country lanes to a secret place (which is, I suspect, literally not on the map!) for a fun-filled, hilarious – er, I mean, serious and consistently industrious! – few hours out in the countryside!

The première takes place in the autumn – and I am looking forward to it enormously.

The whole thing has been an incredibly bonding experience: fabulous script, concept and directing skills from Brad Crowley (whom I have mentioned in these annals before); great acting by the two stars, Jon Coyne and Lysah J. Hughesman – and many memorable cameo roles and hysterically funny moments from the filming days.

I urge you to watch this short clip – and see for yourself the talent that lies within the Mists of Avalon and is the shining light illuminating Shadow of the Tor!