Tuesday, 2 November 2010

Here's to the Night!

On Saturday Fruity played some gypsyish accordion ditty. It made you want to be sitting in a Paris café by night, hugging both your absinthe and a sailor. Well it would have made me want to be there if I hadn’t been at the Don’t Dali with the Devil party.
Brassai photograph.

Night is a world lit by itself.  ~Antonio Porchia,

People are cat or dog people. They are hate/love Marmite people and they are Day or Night people. I’m a dog/hate/night person. It’s physiological if nothing else, some people don’t really catch up with being awake until, oh, about 3pm. Even when well getting out of bed before nine am is like pulling myself from a vat of treacle. Fortunately my chap is the same, unfortunately unless I choose to be a waiter, actress or night bus driver most of the world isn’t.

For the happiest life, rigorously plan your days, leave your nights open to chance.  ~Mignon McLaughlin

Biology aside it could be upbringing, or being brought up properly. Until they are about nine most children need to be in bed well before that hour. For myself and a few others this was terrible, the adults had the best television and the best fun when we were dismissed. Being an adult I now understand the necessity of getting downtime from brats but then it was just cruel, especially as I really really wanted to watch Monty Python’s Flying Circus sooo much and it came on just after the deadly strike of the clock at eight. So the evenings are a time of promise, and dusk (the most beautiful time of day to me) heralds all the best kinds of fun. Not for me  larks, yomping and breakfast.

‘Whoever thinks of going to bed before twelve o'clock is a scoundrel.’  ~Samuel Johnson

I'm romantically drawn to the night and three ideals appeal. One is the Paris of the twenties as shown in Brassai photos. All those deranged art students, hard drinking plebs and stylishly skanky ladies of the night. Lots of gypsy accordion music there. Then I like the idea of the West End in the late 20’s and early 30’s, supper clubs, dazzle balls and grand dinners all converging like a scene from an Anthony Powell novel, laced with dangerous foreigners, looming wars, glamorous cars and furious dancing. Finally Soho in the 40’s and 50’s, dingy bohemian and clever. Spivs, painters and nutters roaming through the streets looking for liaisons, free drinks and a clever quip. All at night. 

Chelsea Arts Club Ball.
 Night is the other half of life, and the better half.    GOETHE

We look better and sound better by night. It doesn’t matter so much how young and fresh you are, a few sequins or an old little black dress goes a long way in the inky twilight and where and who you know are more important than daddy, your job or your income. The night is mysterious, the later it gets the less boring the people become (or possibly the drunker you get). And when the night does end it comes with the challenge of the journey home: classic black taxi if you are flush but lairy night bus more usually boarded. My life  so far and most of the best memories are a combination of nights, it’s where you make and break romances, meet your best friends and your best enemies. The thing I most begrudge work is it’s curtailment of my nights and the imposition of mornings.  Should I win the lottery I imagine mentally the parties I’ll throw, the places I’ll drink, the clubs I’ll open. The worst aspect of my illness at present is the fact that I tire and retire at a stupid time. Everyone will know I am well when they see me careering down Greek Street at 2am with a stupid grin on my face reeking of tequila. Here’s to the night! xxx

Soho in the fifties.


Straight Talking Mama! said...

You are quite frankly a lady after my own heart! I am also a dog/hate/night person. Sadly my OH is more of a morning person, to be fair we always just worked with it and that's fine.

My happiest time of life when I was a singer and when I went on tour to places like France or Switzerland, getting up at 2pm and going to bed at 6am suited me just fine thank you very much! Eating breakfast in the afternoon, and hanging out in bars til the sun started to show itself, ah yes that's the life. I never struggled with this, I ALWAYS struggle waking up in the morning and I agree it is entirely genetic.

If I win the lottery I may resume this life, however I may only see my husband for a few hours a day ;o) I hasten to add he too was in the band but often went to bed not long after the gig and he totally didn't mind me staying up drinking all night! Yep I've got a good guy!

Retro Chick said...

I'm a dog/love/night person!

Left to my own devices bedtime gets later and later. Sadly the pressure to get up early (or at least wake up early) means I end up zonking out around midnight these days.

Roll on Christmas when I can slowly turn nocturnal.

I'm also have an OH who is much more a morning person. He leaps out of bed at an early hour and makes me feel guilty for going back to sleep!

RedlegsinSoho said...

Nice to know I am not alone, vintage girls seem to rise in the morning to eat muffins, love marmite and are obsessed by cats!
Some lovely night times coming up in run up to Christmasx


Related Posts with Thumbnails