‘Mary’ is apparently the name of the sat nav I used to navigate from Liverpool to Edge Hill University on Tuesday when Patricia Farrell and I set up the Ship of Fools exhibition for the Robert Sheppard Symposium.
Mary took us on a fairly protracted journey from Liverpool. As we got closer to Ormskirk (tantalisingly, we could see the water tower on the main road) Mary directed us along ever increasing farm rack type ‘roads’ at one point telling me to turn right into a track that only led to a farm! I shall take Mary and her directions with a large pinch of salt from now on.
In my pre-sat nav days, I once made a journey, with my sister and her then boyfriend, to a nightclub in Peckham to watch a Cadiacs gig. I’d never been to London before then, and someone had smashed the small side window of my car the night before, but we just taped it up and set off with the name of the nightclub, but no maps. We just followed road signs, stopping a few times to re-tape the polythene sheet across the missing window space (I remember it raining in a lot on the motorway). Minus any version of Mary, we got to Peckham with no hitches and did the old-fashioned thing of asking for directions. At that point we were told we were just around the corner!
With quite a time to wait, we had tea in a cafe and then sat in my car which the three of us had painted - variously and unfinished! My sister had painted a Cardiacs ‘sunflower’ on the bonnet of the car and her boyfriend put the Cardiacs ‘man and house’ on it. As we sat waiting to go in to the gig, the Cardiacs singer Tim Smith walked past, saw the logo and smiled - my sister’s boyfriend was ecstatic!!
I haven’t listened to the Cardiacs for a while but in honour of the ship theme here’s a link to a taster 'Big Ship'! Below is a video of theirs that I hadn't seen at the time of going to that gig.
The Ship of Fools Exhibition in the Arts Centre at Edge Hill University runs through March and has wonderful artwork and poetry by Robert Sheppard and Particia Farrell to explore. There’s lots of treasures (and some adult content) to get lost in - which I'd say is preferable to getting lost navigating the icy farm tracks of Ormskirk with Mary!