The Closing Days of 2009

Wow I haven’t posted for ages; I have been grappling with the elements you see. The closing scenes in the studio were very dramatic, Christmas was incidental compared to the problems I and the population of Southern Spain were experiencing in the dying weeks of 2009.

It all began and ended with the weather; first the freeze; Madrid airport shut shop it was so bad; my Jessie arrived, delayed from London at Malaga and was lucky to get a plane out quite frankly. But then no sooner did the temperatures go up then the rain came down. On a biblical level the floods followed and roads disappeared and bridges threatened to collapse. The Sierra Guards came to our little village with a clipboard to close our bridges, thankfully they didn’t because the only other road out had fallen away and we would have been trapped.

We went to Morag’s for Christmas day. The track up to her house is brutal at the best of times but in this weather it was akin to the sort of roads I saw whilst watching The Long Way Round , in particular those of Kurdistan or the Road of Bones in Russia. If I tell you that the reason there are no photographs of this epic ascent and descent to their house it is on the grounds of my being too terrified to think of recording what I felt were sure to be the last moments of my life you may appreciate how dangerous it was. It was terrifying!

All of this adversity brought more problems of course. Our village had no clear water in the taps, just a thin gravy like mud gush, but worst of all there was no electricity supply to fire the kiln and finish the commission. I still needed to do 1 biscuit firing, 1 glaze firing and two luster firings and all before the 28th of December when I was due to set off with finished said commission in the back of the car! I did it (just) and made it back to England. The jars are done and in position, photographs tomorrow.

Happy New year everyone……..photographs of the village clean up in Fornes, Spain.