Over Easter week I produced (and starred in) a documentary about Vermouth. It is in the editing stage but here is the start to the four diary accounts I kept during that time.
There is a feel to mainland Europe, its freedom, its culture its influence. It spreads down from Germany in the north and influences as far south as Morocco and North Africa in the South and it stretches across to Israel in the east, its influence can be felt across much of Eastern and Northern Europe yet it bypasses Britain. I can’t quite put my finger on what it is, apartment living maybe, wide tree lined boulevards littered with cafes and cigarette machines; yet its none of those. It’s in the air, its in the blood and the bones of its inhabitants. It has a character that differs from the rest of the world, yet is part of that too. I can try and weave a sentence or two to grasp it and I’ll never get to the core, a mystique a magic a feeling or if I was so inclined a vibe.
And here I sit in the heat of a spring night, the vibrancy of a European city all around, wine opened and being drank on the table and a week ahead of more of the same. I feel at home and alien to it, the dichotomy of my makeup fighting amongst itself.
This is Turin, much like Toulouse or Antwerp at first glance and this is all I’ve had. A few streets, the taxi journey from the Airport, excited exchanges between two languages. Yet the beauty of the alps are on the doorstep, the tall magnificent old men. They hold 10,000 years or more of human happiness, of awe, beauty, amongst them live the spirit of generation, of cultures that have fought changed, come back to where they started.
Perhaps this is what Britain can never have, perhaps the line of these markers of the last Ice age, the last of mans great struggles with his own mortal right to this beings existence.. That’s what’s missing. A shared joy, a knowledge of something larger than our consciousness.