We returned to the snow wilderness. Tiny flakes spilt into my mouth with the consistency of freezing sand. A never ending wind whipped up in every direction. A path surrounded by palm trees was under out feet somewhere, but the snowbank hid the point where the road ended, and the landscape began. White dust frosted the tops of my shoes. Every so often an unexpected drift meant my leg vanished all the way up to the knee.The Butter Mouse padded along on the snow next to me, a pastiche of an artic hare.
I was pissed off. No matter where we walked swirling snow and darkness disguised any sign of an audience waiting for a comedy gig. We had booked this all the way back in Lozowick when the idea of performing in a snowy wilderness seemed like a right laugh. Now we were freezing, with no magic flamingos with light up umbrellas to guide us into a jacuzzi filled with self-heating lemonade. The Butter Mouse paused, flicking snow out of her eyes with her tail.
‘So, shall we start?’ She said.
‘The gig,’ The Butter Mouse says. ‘Lets get cracking.’
‘We’ll perform it to the snow shall we?’ I said, kicking up a chunk in frustration.
‘Better than standing around.’
‘Any preference in terms of which way to face?’
The Butter Mouse responded by shouting part of our routine into the blizzard. I expected the words to get lost in the gale, but the gust amplified them, catching the echo of the open landscape.We had travelled this far. There was no harm in barking our routine out one more time. At the very least this was a good practice for any new material.
From somewhere in the snow, a laugh popped out. I spun round to greet it, and find our audience in the maelstrom. But still there was nothing but a uniform sea of white. Another line, another bubble of laugher. We carried on.
I thought we were done with surprises in Nadada. But this audience was there, and wasn’t there at the same time. They may not even be in Nadada at all. Wherever they were, at the end a round of applause that followed us round in a perfect circle. This was the last gig of the year, and we didn’t know where to bow. Certainly beats struggling against drunks in the week up to Christmas.
So next week is my last blog. The final one. I am not sure if I will continue on the surface. I suppose the last piece should be about what we’ve learnt along the way.
But I have to say goodbye to The Butter Mouse.