And so I find myself yet again living in another home in Chile, this time I’m back in the capital Santiago. The difference this time is who I’m living with and it is massively upping my experience of being here.
Mona and I met about two years ago in a ‘Hula Bajo De La Luna’ (Hula beneath the moon) a meet up in one of the parks in central Santiago. She had just recently discovered hula hooping, I had just recently discovered the tip of the ever growing hooping community iceberg here in Chile.
Conveniently enough she had a room spare, in the house where she lives with her son Facundo, just as I was coming back to Chile. Since living and working with Mona in this short space of a month, my motivation and dedication to training has improved dramatically, I have begun fire hooping and have already performed at a psy-trance festival in a forest. We are collectively working together on some ideas but I am also learning to take a backseat, she is going into artistic production and is already getting her first contracts and I am first on hand as one of the artists and backstage production. We aren’t getting paid yet in cash but we will do soon. And until then, we are being paid in food and tourism. What more better way to nourish this nomadic artist?
This is an important part of creative growth for me. Allowing myself to be taken under the wing of another who has the creative control. Having some of my ideas poo pooed (even though I still think they are better). And letting some of the ones that do pass the test go, and then be swallowed up by the creative dictation of someone else. The idea is no longer mine. It wasn’t stolen, I just gave it without realising what would happen to it.
Creative ownership is strange, and as we are all connected by this big collective bubble ideas pop up at the same time on separate parts of the globe, having come from totally different perspectives but resulting in an almost identical idea.
The thing is, my brain is on creative overdrive all of the time, it pains me sometimes to think that some of these fantastical ideas will stay just that, bubbles of thought that the odd few will be scrawled onto paper and even fewer that will then be worked into something real. So I have come to console myself with the fact that after years of keeping my cards close to my chest creatively, actually it is healthier for me to let some of them smaller ones through the net, let them swim away or give them to others so that I actually have the strength to reel the big ones in.
Working closely with another person brings up all kinds of insecurities that I now realise held me back from working in partners or groups before. And overcoming these and even allowing someone else to take the lead is such an enjoyable and less stressful approach to work. My first duo performance with Mona we constructed in our living room, started on Wednesday, cobbled together the costumes with some bits that she had lying around on Thursday and final practices before Friday we went out and performed a three minute number for an all inclusive fiesta held by one of the universities. Part of the community were deaf, and amongst the mix of visual performances ours was particularity well received.
This is the first time I’ve ever lived in a house with so few people, I come from a large family and always feeling at home in the busyness, always a light on, always someone in, is I think what has made communal living and renting spare rooms with families so appealing to this part of my make-up. Event though we are still a little community, there are periods, hours or a whole night even when I am home alone. When this happened for the first time it took me ages to realise what the sensation was before I realised I was home alone! I got quite overwhelmed and wondered what to do to mark the occasion. I’m practising breathing techniques for actors and singers but have been to shy to really put it into practice properly so I had a go and I really did it!!! The sound really did come out of my belly and vibrated it’s way up and out of my mouth at such intensity that it made my lips go fuzzy!
And beyond all the creating, working and many many hula hoops that is our lives, we get on. We have a right laugh, discussing our love lives and reading our fortunes (the moon was in Pisces apparently but I misspelled it in the title and quite like the new metaphor) and laughing at our misfortunes and blaming it on the stars. Our lovely little house is exactly that, work needing to be done like leaky taps and the like. But we already unblocked the drain and even though her 6 year old son just broke the shower head playing in the bath, there is nothing that can’t be fixed with a bit of gaffer tape. Spring has finally sprung so we’ve got plans for the patio, but first things first, the fridge is very bare so we are off to the street market to do a show for stall holders in exchange for fruit and veg.