Michelle Edwards is a personal assistant by trade, and in between, a great writer and artist. One thing I’ve learnt from her is the importance of a creating a beautiful nightscape for yourself. Whether you have it all or not, you can light an oil burner, play some jazz, sip a wine or paint. At the end of the day, beneath our tiredness, we want to feel alive.
While you’ve had many challenges in your life, you manage to turn whatever you have into something quite beautiful. Years ago, I remember a lavish roast dinner you made for us in your little studio. Among hanging plants, an old record playing, and let’s be real, that place was nothing much, but you made a great atmosphere within it. How did this begin, did you grow up in a family that made a beautiful nightscape?
Not at all, and that has been a great motivation. Growing up, my family lived around the television set. We came home and turned it on, we ate our meals in front of it, and we watched it till we went to bed. Then I grew up and it just occurred to me that I could live and die and and have done nothing much except watch other people live. I consciously have not owned a television my whole adult life, and know now that only when I’m not watching it, do I actually live. It’s like ‘buying’ time instead of ‘spending’ it.
And you never get Uber Eats! What do you do for dinner?
It’s true, I’m old school like that. If I’m going to buy a meal, it’s much more beautiful to sit in a restaurant, eat slowly, make it an experience. That’s what I’m buying, rather than the food.
You do have the more ‘normal’ nights, too, though right?
Sure, I definitely have normal nights. Sometimes I’m just in the headspace to be a potato, sometimes I’ve got to do my own life admin.
Between the two spectrums of night - what are the differences in feeling?
Regret. I would definitely regret a day that I do not create anything, or even once feel alive.