Managed to sleep in a little (I could get used to this) then headed home to wait for the washing machine repair man. It was one of those deals where theyd given me a window of when he might show up, so I feared the worst, but he didnt keep me waiting too long. In the meantime I made myself a home cooked breakfast and generally pottered about the place. Were off to Dublin for a week now, then coming back here, so there was an amount of re-packing as there no point in dragging all my worldly goods over there.
The washing machine man diagnosed the problem ('electronic') but couldnt fix it, so will have to come back with a spare part or two. Arranging this was a bit of a challenge, but I think I can find him another window at the end of next week, between the Cardiff show and Live 8. I guess Ill just have to smell funny until then.
After this I finally managed to get a haircut, which has been another major challenge of late. My regular round-the-corner barber has moved to Finland since the start of the tour and the guy who cut my hair before that has moved to Australia, so Ive been in a bit of a coiffure void. Ive never managed a great deal of stability with barbers. Perhaps it comes with the territory. I did get a great haircut from Kasha in Vancouver during rehearsals, but that doesnt help me now. I had a couple of good barbers in San Francisco, but again it all went horribly wrong in the end. The first, Sean, developed a teensy weensy heroin problem and started giving crap haircuts, whilst the second, Margy, was very together but could only do flat-tops. They were great flat-tops too - the best I ever had - but once Id moved on stylistically it turned out that she didnt really have a second album. Then there was Ernest in Melbourne, but he ended up with a drug problem too, then there were just a lot of hit-and-miss one-time attempts in random hair salons the world over.
Anyhow, a recommendation from a friend took me to Brent in Jermyn Street who did a cracking job, so perhaps this is the dawn of a new era of style for me. Well see. He said "there are three great mens haircuts for short, medium and long; Steve McQueen, Elvis and Peter Fonda in Easyrider. Call me Steve McQueen. On the way back to the hotel I mooched about some of the other stores along Jermyn Street. This is a street long known for its gentlemens tailors grooming establishments. Nowadays its a mixture of old, established quality firms and tacky new blow-ins, so its a bit hit and miss, but there are still some thrilling things along there. I thought Id see if I could pick up a hat - perhaps a panama or fedora number to get me through the Summer, but sadly my cranium proved too expansive for any of the hat shops to accommodate. (From a distance my head looks like a human head, but actually its a small planet resting on my shoulders).
Back to the hotel and opened a nice bottle of chilled rosÈ. Sitting admiring the view of the river Thames on a gorgeous Summers evening as Big Ben chimes, its hard to imagine wanting to be anywhere else.
Dublin tomorrow. Now the fun starts.