Oh this is not fair – I have been waiting to download part two of Passage (about Arctic Explorer, John Rae) off BBC iplayer (where I watched part one, broadcast 3rd August). It is not there! (Read Epilogue, below).
Like a baby I wail, wanting to get my fix. What is worse is I could have watched it on television – at a friends house, since we have forgone television (Rachel has the jitters, what with the Olympics being on. It was this sporting fest 4 years ago that made her bring the tv into our lives, and after 3 years of many other shows, from Time Team and Ray Mears to Midsummer Murders and Family Guy – all research, of course, the tv went. Now we only get to see downloads via iplayer).
I should describe the situation. Rachel is at her Apple Mac watching streaming footage of syncronised diving (I have images of Peter Kay “bombing”) whilst I head butt my computer (which is retarded by Microsoft’s clumsy coding and corporate strangle hold). Today’s yoga is on hold, whilst we digest millet gruel (tasty breakfast and healthy). A walk is called for but no sooner do I utter the word than a heavy cloud previously unnoticed, sidles in like a drunken ram, obscuring the meagre warmth and flattening my hopes of a summer stroll. Rachel is less likely to want a walk in this wind without compensatory sunshine.
Any roads, I am hoping to get part two of the Passage programme off iplayer some time soon. In the mean time, the stairs are narrowed by piles of books (somehow I like this scene, but like it less when travelling the stairs at night – now I notice it is actually dark at night, and I am excited! Excited by the darkness, not because of vampire tendencies but because the dark is soothing, awakens other senses, calms and aids sleep. I often consider reincarnation as a bear, that hibernates, however winter is such fun I could not sleep). Passage …
If anyone out there decided to record this part two, broadcast Sunday the 10th August, let me know and I’ll offer big bribes to let me see it. I might even learn from Bruce Parry’s Tribe to overcome “desire” and thus stop my wailing.
This is one of those blogs that doesn’t really go anywhere – I have not thought what to write and have no axe to grind, no pen to scratch. It is not really going anywhere, intellectually. However, like the mortar between the stones, it has value and cements the pieces together. Some might say it has more value for being honest, unplanned and flowing. That is blogging for you.
One day I believe all this I write will be lost – some electronic storm or corporate explosion (I wish), a fizzling of the internet airways and suddenly a blank screen. An absence of pictures on Flickr, words on blogs, knowledge on bookmarked sites. This computer screen is my portal to a world yet it is a tenuous link, an umbilical cord I need to prepare to do without – like the television … because, some day, what if it just doesn’t work? All that I write, customer details, contacts, email addresses … my life hangs by an electronic thread. My next life is free of this. Until then, I cajoule clumsy fingers to type (why???) and strain my eyes before the alter of our religion – the internet.
May you rest in peace, a while at least.
For myself, I have work to do. Another family want to be instructed in the finer art of fire making – and where better than on windy and damp islands in the north of Scotland? I accept the challenge with a soft smile. It is easy when you know how. Life, I mean, not just fire making.
Another time I will blog about Stefansson (1920’s Arctic Explorer).
In desperation, I contacted the BBC in Orkney – that is Radio Orkney – to see if they had a copy, which I kind of expected them to have archived but the didn’t. However, they said they’d put out an appeal for anyone with a copy to get in touch with me.
Now – I am not one to regularly listen to radio orkney in the mornings (shock confession) as I find news at 7.30am to be too much to bear. If I need it I’ll listen to the broadcast online later. This particular monday though, I was driving to Kirkwall, for an early dental appointment, whenup pops this announcement on the radio! Good for them!
What is even better, four people phoned me that day all kindly offering copies that they had. How kind. How wonderful, that in a small, island population there should be such a response! Another reason to praise Orkney. Thank you everyone, and Radio Orkney too.
I now have a copy, on DVD, and all is well.