Four weeks after returning – alone – I am still run down. Cough. Was it the horrible journey, or the virus I picked up just before it? I've been prescribed some antibiotics, to try to clear my lungs, so maybe a change is in sight. Cough. I read through stacks of comics and spend a lot of time on the sofa. Horizontal. The occasional stray breeze is the only thing to stir in the studio. The works in progress gather slowly dust to their oil and graphite surfaces. I watch.
Grumbles of thunder. In the middle of the week, in the middle of the loudest storm I've heard in Edinburgh, I begin a new piece. I am not well, exhausted and with aching lungs. I paint that exhaustion and my sore muscles. Cough. This new painting looks nothing like my recent work. The dark heaviness is not visible here, rather it is a skeleton of a painting. I do not know what to do with it. Struck motionless. I leave it, like the others, for the dust to gather on.
I wear painting clothes every day. I do not paint every day. I leave the door open. The rain falls again.