Monday, 12 October 2015

Welcome to Night Vale

I've always loved having a long, relaxing soak in the bath: scented bath products, candle, glass of wine maybe and music. For a long time, my music of choice would be the album Come Away with Me by Norah Jones. For me it was perfect bath music. I listened to it so often that if I ever heard a track outside of my bath time, I would experience an echo of the feeling of nakedness and vulnerability that accompanies one's ablutions and was exploited to the extreme by Hitchcock in the shower scene of the classic movie Psycho.

I am now smiling as I remember a short video I made a long time ago for a competition to win a Macbook Pro. The brief was to recreate a scene from a movie using potatoes. (The competition must have been sponsored by a 'potato related' company, I can't quite remember). I attempted, with my limited editing skills and equally limited artistic ability, to recreate the famous shower scene. I did not win the Macbook but I did have a such a good time making "Psycho Potato".

Norah Jones no longer provides the soundtrack to my bath time. Instead, I listen to a podcast entitled Welcome to Night Vale. My daughters introduced me to this little gem. It is in the style of a community radio broadcast set in an unusual town where events such as a portal opening during  a PTA meeting to allow flesh eating dinosaurs to pass through and cause bloody mayhem, are not uncommon. It is entertaining but at the same time, gently challenges your belief in self, society and existence.  Welcome to Night Vale! The real magic of the show is the combination of clever scripting and the beautiful voice of Cecil Baldwin who narrates it... a voice more mellow even than Norah Jones singing Come Away with Me.

I used to listen to the podcast in bed but there were two problems with this: my husband hates it and the soothing tone of Cecil Baldwin sent me to sleep almost instantly. Listening in the bath is perfect. I don't generally tend to fall asleep but I can achieve a wonderful level of relaxation and enrichment (especially when the glass of wine option box is ticked). There is a segment during the show called 'The Weather' which consists of a song or instrumental piece (that usually has nothing do with the weather!) It is just the right length of time for me to wash my hair so I don't miss any of the main show. This makes me happy.

Last night, I couldn't sleep. I put on the podcast hoping that Cecil could work his magic but he couldn't. I don't feel as frazzled as I thought I would this morning but I am weary. We only have this week to get through before our half term break begins. I am very ready for that break.

I feel that we have achieved a milestone having nearly completed the first half of our Michaelmas term. Now, we need some time to process all the changes that we have been dealing with since we first arrived here at the tail end of August. We need a quick life audit to see where we are and where we want to be. I am hoping for some 'two episode long' bath times.

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