Monday, June 8, 2015

Voices in my head...

(Random person off web who clearly didn't listen to The Voices in her head. Everything would be a lot different if she had.)

I remember being at a party somewhere (which is something in itself. ..remembering that I was once at an actual party)  and telling someone about the voices in my head. I said “ You know those voices in your head which tell you different things?” The person quite clearly didn't, almost choked on their olive and moved swiftly away, feigning the quite sudden need for the toilet but not so surreptitiously ended up talking to Boring Handsome Polo Man at the fire instead. Who doesn't have voices in his head. In fact, he only has straw in his head it would appear.

It was after that when the invitations started falling by the way side. No. Wait. That's it! It was when Milz left town. Her parties were very memorable. Especially the kids’ birthday parties. There was always a lot of prosecco and shouting at the kids to “Go play in the traffic” sort of thing, even though there wasn’t any. So it was more like “Go play in nature and explore the karonga. What? Hungry?” 

On occasion we'd raid her mother in law’s sponge bags for happy pills, anxiety pills, aeroplane pills and what not and experiment. Always to our demise. Only if the prosecco ran out. Oh we had some parties the three of us.

Milz and Ella.

Remembering even further back now to a time when I know I hadn't spoken about the voices in my head, fully confident that everyone had them, the invitations stopped when my other best friend Alex left the Valley (Luangwa Valley.) Everything went really quiet after that. I hid in a palm forest near the airport and wrote songs. To confess, things were a little out of control at that stage. In fact way out of control. How no one died, I don't know, what with all the tequila and shot guns. There was way too much sneaking around the mopane forests after dark. All those elephants in rooms. God. It was awful. This all resulted in a lot of angry whisky drinking late into the night. I remember the party on the bend in the river when Alex walked over the burning coals to punch Jake and the sun had only just gone down. We hadn’t had dinner yet. Or the time we gate crashed the poker party we weren’t invited to at Nkwali. We walked in and it became very awkward. Nobody wanted us at their parties. I’m still not sure exactly why not. Apparently we were too fierce, too scary. Bollox. They all had straw in their heads. No voices.

We were outraged, naturally. So we resorted to gate crashing as one does in places where the wild things are. One must understand the location and the situation, you see. And my beautiful friend Alex. 

Here we are together. Long ago. Waiting to be invited.

Me and Alex.

Witchy, huh? It isn’t nice not to be invited when you’re living in the middle of bloody nowhere and the other five people are and you aren’t. Ok. The other ten. It’s dramatic to gate crash those kind of parties, I tell you. It’s, well, noticeable. Really noticeable.

Then she left to go ride horses on the Nyika and then Montana. After that (and after S’s dramatic departure - another story running tandem to present one), the parties stopped. We were, frankly, exhausted. Not long after, a year maybe, I left too. And came here. And that’s the short of it. The really short version. To write it all down would give War and Peace a run for its money. In length only.

Anyway. This post isn’t about all the parties and the damage done. Or the trashy books I will write one day and the millions I’ll make from them. One day.  It’s about the voices in my head, remember? I know everyone has them, don’t they? Be honest now. Seriously?

Well, the voices in my head have been loud and clear lately. Things like, “Everything’s going to be OK in the end.” (This morning when I was putting the kettle on and it made me cry. From relief, probably.)

And “Life is a thankless task. Go home to your dogs. Take comfort in them.” (Yesterday after the horse show and I jammed the boot shut in the car and Lea had to sit on the food trunk and the hay on the back seat.)

And in big colourful capital letters tattooed into my head: DO WHATEVER IT TAKES. STOP BLAMING OTHER PEOPLE OR SITUATIONS. WE CREATE OUR REALITY. IF YOU DON’T LIKE IT, CHANGE IT. DO WHATEVER THE FUCK IT TAKES. I think they were bigger and louder than the rest because I am so rubbish and passive and not being responsible for myself and my life and I am obviously not listening to this one.

Haven't a clue where they all come from and who they are exactly. Obviously parts of me. But they sort of stand out from the rest of me as....different.

Call me a hippy. Fine. I couldn’t possibly share what else they've said. Far too off center. Far too weird. I wouldn't be invited anywhere ever again. And nobody would read my crazy rantings here ever again. So you two don't run away now, y' hear?

‘Fess up cowboys and gals, you sayin’ you ain’t got voices in yer heads, y’all?



donna baker said...

Oh Janelle, don't know how I ever made it this far. It's good to be a loner or an outsider. That's what I tell myself now. I told my kids I feel like one of The Outcasts Of Poker Flats. See no one unless I visit the city. Guess it's what we make of our lives.

timothymarcjones said...

One of your finest, my dear. Keep the ink flowing, and may the voices be kind. x

elizabeth said...

The trouble with foreign parts is the epic feuds...often about nothing at all
and sometimes about REAL STUFF
but horrid to be left out - ever.
As to voices in heads
one voice tells me I am extra wonderful and the other tells me I am
embarrassing abd stupid.

I think both are absolutely correct
sending lots of love from NYC

Amanda Summer said...

I used to worry about not being invited to parties and not belonging. Now I realize not belonging is an OK place to be. Goddam.

Janelle said...

thanks for leaving encouraging comments, my bestest blogging babies! donna, tim, elizabeth and amanda...they DO make a difference. always. and i'm glad you also have voices, elizabeth. phew! x janelle