I haven’t written to you in a long time, Sarah, but I’ve got some very important news. Banarama have reformed in their original line-up. Can you believe it? Now, I know you weren’t their biggest fan. In fact, when we saw them play, as a duo in 2008, we both agreed they sounded like two little girls singing into hairbrushes, but that’s beside the point. They’ve come back to save us all, raising their tiny voices and mediocre talent up for us to take comfort in. That is the state of the world now, Sarah. Honestly, you wouldn’t recognise the place.
Since you left, the whole world has become a frightened, cowering mess, hiding behind bullying bullshitters and making the most stupid decisions on a daily basis. Everything is crumbling and human decency is severely on the decline. I won’t get political, but trust me on this; everything is totally f@*%ed. I actually stopped watching the news, because I don’t believe anything anymore, and the stuff I see, I don’t want to believe. Apparently, North Korea is threatening Australia with a nuclear strike because of its ties to the US. Isn’t that lovely? All the movies have Australia as the last place that people survive after the nukes have been deployed, but I guess they don’t watch those movies in North Korea. The ballsacks.
Over the last four and half years, not a single day has gone by where I haven’t thought of you. In fact, as time goes by, I need you more, and you aren’t here. I know I’m not the only one who feels like that. Talking to you would give me something of an antidote to the continual bullshit that’s flying around. Whatever the opposite of bullshit is, is what you were. I wish I could write that more eloquently, but you’ll have to make do with that rough sentiment. I didn’t wake up feeling terribly clever or profound. Life is making me very blunt and direct, and flowery descriptions were never my strength. I leave the poetry to others these days. The frustrating thing is, I know exactly what I need right now: A five-hour chat with you, with a million cups of tea and the thought that there would always be a million more. I need your boot up my backside, and your relentless cackle in my ears. I can’t count the times you set me back on my feet without seeming to even try. Remember that time we went to Majorca when I was fifteen? All that ice-cream, schnapps and dodgy Geordies? We had rum soaked conversations on the hotel balcony that inform my decisions still. We were so daft back then. One night we thought there was a body in the pool. Turned out to be a big leaf.
So, you ain’t here, and I still am. I’m still an idiot with big feet, trying to work out what the hell I’m meant to be doing. The road I’m on right now is dusty, lonely and isn’t heading to anywhere I want to be. I know it’s a road I shouldn’t have ever have followed in the first place, but like Dorothy you sometimes have to realise that before you can come home. (And while I know they make ruby slippers in my size, I’ve never been that keen on wearing drag queen shoes.)
So that’s this morning. Talking at you is never going to be the same as actually talking with you. I cannot summon your ghost. I must admit it is weird, that at least three times now, when I have been feeling particularly low, your friends have found pictures of Egham Station and tagged me in them. I’d give vital organs away to be able to go back there for a day, and be five; bothering you in your bedroom and spraying your Impulse Gold in my face. For the longest time I accepted your death as ‘that’s about fucking right’, but last night I was angry. Why did that have to happen to you? Maybe being in Australia makes me feel the stages of grief in reverse, just like the water swirls down the sink the wrong way. I dunno.
Anyway, this is now. Being lost and angry in a selfish world. If there is some way you can hear me, please send me a little grace to survive it. A little grace, and a million cups of tea, should do it.