Sleepless in Liverpool

Its 3pm, Liverpool Time, the ones I think of are probably sleeping away back home, maybe rising, to the sun, morning birds, getting the coffee beans prepared.

Im having my first of the day, at a Starbucks I found near the waterfront. All of my stuff is still locked up at the hostel, about a 20 minute walk away. However, they are fully booked for tonight, everything is fully booked tonight, I cant find a place to rest my head anywhere, Ive searched for an hour online. People must be flooding in for this SoundCity Festival, all looking for an affordable place to lay there heads. I did find a Hotel that is available and its around 430$ Canadian. Its outrageously expensive here, average beer is about 10$, a simple Subway sandwich the same. I’ve been dropping pounds like crazy, money that is, and my appetite has been high which is good, but costly. I found a place to get some affordable fruit in the mornings at a marketplace near the city square. I have 15 pounds left cash, which is 30$ Canadian, then I suppose I will resort to my master card for the last few days.

Liverpool is exotic, and quite touristy in areas, more air to breathe here than London, I spent some time out on the docks yesterday and people watched, then I visited the museum and got the camera vibes. The seagulls are massive here, there was a fat neckless looking one that scared me yesterday when I dropped a chunk of my samosa on the sidewalk and it came right up and rubbed against my leg to grab the fallen crumbs. I have to learn to relax, like when I see a mouse for example.

Last night was the worst sleep here, up until then it has been quite good considering the odours and other things people can bring into a shared dorm room.

There was a guy in the bunk above me, and he came into the room at like 2am, woke me up, and then every 15 seconds would squirm about, as if he was kicking his legs against the side railings. Obviously the bolts in this bed were loose because every time this happened it shook my whole body around. As if I was in a ship, getting flopped around by the waves. Felt like this dude was getting up and coming down the ladder to take a piss with each movement, not to mention the awful squeaking noise that came with it. I already had headphones on and was listening to Radiohead to drown out the old man snoring from across the room, snoring louder than my friend Earl snores, now thats saying something, the kind of snorting that can clear out a room.

Of course, I just laid there for a while, hoping it would eventually stop. I literally couldn’t sleep this way, I thought to myself, is this dude sleeping and just having little spasms in his dreams, or is he awake and struggling with the snoring or something. It went on for a bit, at one point I aggressively grabbed the poles on each side of me and shook the bed back at him, hoping he would get my message, this didn’t work. I had to say something, I suppose my somewhat submissive demeanour held me back from this, but I had enough. I jumped out of bed, and said “Hey man, whats with all the shaking? I CANT SLEEP, you think it would be possible to try and lay still!!” and then I think there may have been a fuck sakes kind of grunt under my breath as I crawled back into my quarters. After that, there was not a single jolt, and finally I got some rest. Then I thought to myself, why did I wait that long to say something, why don’t I just deal with this stuff right away instead of letting it grind my insides for an hour, anyways, I hope you get a good laugh out of that one.

Tonight, I don’t know where Im going to sleep, Ive sort of been scouting out the city, looking for a nice patch of grass, or a cemetery of some kind where there wont be any traffic. My first plan is to show up back at the hostel later and wait for everyone to fall asleep then try and crash on the couch downstairs in the rec room. Would save me some dough on these final days as well. We shall see

Im reading the best book I have picked up in a long time, it is so fascinating to me, and a true story, called Just Kids by Patti Smith. It is bringing so much light and joy to me when I read her words and the way she writes. Really opening me up in a weird nostalgic way, like when I was a kid and the first time I heard Paperback Writer spinning on a record player. Hard for me to explain, but something inside of me feels like a flower budding when I read her. Its magic. Makes me feel ok about not being able to afford a fancy hotel for tonight. Everything is ok.

Tomorrow I play at The Cavern Club, which I didn’t know before my arrival here that it is quite a legendary veune. I told the lady who runs the hostel when she asked me what Im doing here and where Im playing, and I said a place called The Cavern I think, and she just laughed and sorta sarcastically replied, oh just a little place called The Cavern hey?.

Thats when I found out, it is the room that The Beatles first ever performed and cut their teeth in. I researched it a bit, and John Lennon would play there even before The Beatles had been formed. Pretty crazy! This is my second last show, then one more in London Monday night, i hope they end off on a high note. I haven’t broke any strings yet, not that Im very superstitious in that way, but fingers crossed. And even then, a little rain never hurt no one. The sun is shining high today. I might try to get to the infamous Abbey Road crosswalk before the sun droops beneath the trees.

See you soon

Joe


Tornado
( February 2014, Six Shooter Records )