It was raining in Galway. Imagine that. The light rain of morning welcome, caffeine from the clouds. Monday coming fast. Car in Tonery’s car park since Friday evening. Was on the way back from some party in some house, some couch, some estate somewhere. The plan was to go back to Ballinrobe and it was sketchy after that. I’d need to get the car but I’d have to pay to get it out of the car park. Worse still, there was no petrol in it. Sailed her up on fumes and save the money for drink. Great plan at the time.
Now I had €1.80 and a dead phone and no way home. Walked over the Salmon Weir bridge towards town. Some fella asked me for money and I gave him a euro and kept going. Probably thumb down the Headford Road til something happened. Walk out through Woodquay and hitch from Tirellan. Might get lucky. Someone going straight down. Howya, Micky, late one? All that.
Came around the corner and spotted the Town Hall. Wheels turned, cogs spun. Play in my hard drive, been working on it lately, had it up to scratch. Had sent it somewhere, to someone, been waiting months for word back, word back from who, couldn’t even remember. Dublin maybe, or Belfast, or Cork? Was it London? Didn’t matter because I knew in my heart and soul it wasn’t being read. It was a coffee coaster somewhere, another door jamb, another bitter intern’s early lunch on an unread slushpile. And how are ya passing the time waiting, Micky? Talking to the rain?
Walked up the steps of the Town Hall, pulled back the door. Enquired about putting on a production. Just so happens, man that can help is here today, maybe have a chat, see if there’s some dates.
Got there, he asked: Got any experience? Yeah, worked with some companies, big companies, small companies, courses done, and Masters too. Just cut ties with a fiction agent. Hmmm….there’s a date here. Studio Space. Upstairs. About eight weeks from now. We’ll give ya five nights and a decent split. It goes well, maybe we can do more. What’s the name of the Play?
Sunday Morning Coming Down.
What’s the name of the company?
Thought fast, said: Truman Town. Truman Town Theatre.
Got a cast?
Yeah, you need a cast.
Yeah, Cast. No problem. I can find a cast.
Ok. Go find a cast and get back to me.
Back outside, the sky showed mercy. Small mercy, ready to rain again, Needed to find a cast, small cast, six person cast, then maybe a set and try learn some directing. Eight weeks, I’ll have a show on stage. Like that – no more waiting, no more rejection letters, just a date in the future and the will to actualize. Fuck me, I’m going to light to place.
Buy Mick Donnellan’s novels in Paperback now! – “El Niño” and “Fisherman’s Blues” available here.