"Hold this thread, please," says Katy Schutte, our host for the ceremony, as we step into the Pit.
I held the thread up by my head and Katy unwinds the spool down to the ground so that we now have a length of cotton that matches my height.
This is my last trip to the Vaults. Well, that's not quite true. I have one more Vault Festival venue to go. But it's not in the Vaults tunnels, so perhaps it doesn't quite count.
Now, I can see that look on your face. It's a look that says - Max, you lied to us. You said that Talented Mr Ripley was your last Vaults show. And now you're saying that not only was it lot your last performance at the festival, it wasn't even the last one to be taking place in the Vaults.
To which I say... well done. You got me. But if you recall a little further back, I managed to turn up to the Pit for this sho a whole month early. So really, if you think about it... this post is just an extension of that one. A four-week-long immersive experience, if you will.
And, following on from that train of logic, perhaps that is how it was meant to be. I was called to the Pit by forces unknown and unseen, for reasons that have yet to be revealed to me. Perhaps they wanted to make a measure of me too. In preparation for my return.
"You can take a seat to the south," she added, standing back up, helpfully pointing to a bench just in case I didn't know where south was (I didn't).
The Pit is the smallest of the Vaults venues, with just enough room for a narrow stage and three concentric circles of bench seats. The same benches I had found in the Cavern for Carnival of Crows. I think these must be the Vault Festival 'alternative' chairs. Their vintage/witchy/spiritual option, for vintage/witchy/spiritual artists. They're bloody uncomfortable.
"I have a task for you," said Katy, once we're all almost sat down. "In the centre of the circle, you'll find paper and pens. I want you to write a message to a man who did you wrong."
The ladies to my left burst out of their seats and scramble to get started. They have words that need to be said.
It's then I realise that we're nearly all women. I look around. Only four men, in a room of women.Read More