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Caesar’s cloak is missing.

Not that it’s a real cloak, either – just a large square of thick, dark red fabric. In Shakespeare in Words it does double duty: it is the cloak – the one we all know, the one Caesar first put it one summer evening in his tent – and also stands for the body. And it’s perfectly sized, and doesn’t reflect light, and always falls in good-looking folds… And it is missing.

The trouble is, we have two performances of Shakespeare in Words tomorrow and Saturday, and we need the cloak, and I’ve driven myself crazy looking for it everywhere, and still no cloak…

I’ve reached the stage where you stop looking in the sensible, logical places, and just look everywhere – even the places where the cloak couldn’t possibly fit. It is, after all, a largish thing, when folded – but you know what I mean.

There is also the small fact that I lost track of a piece of my costume – which I can replace easily enough. I wouldn’t obsess about this one, except it’s beginning to be one of many hindrances. Last night I sat in the dark and counted: first we had to replace our musicians; then our director had to undergo not-quite-minor surgery, and we had to replace her too as Joan la Pucelle; then we had to recruit a new Joan and train her at lightening speed;  then there was the half disaster with the lights, and whether that’s under control we’ll only know after tonight’s tech rehearsals; and now we’re missing props and costumes…

Does it sound like hints from Above to you? Something like the Spirit of the Bard warning us about going ahead with it? And I know that one never goes onstage without wishing for one more week, one more day, one more hour of rehearsals and preparations – but I can’t remember another string of troubles like this, except once. And that once we forged ahead, and cheerfully marched to unqualified disaster.

Hence, I’m the tiniest tad nervous, and very much wishing… Oh, I don’t know what I’m wishing for. For it to be Saturday night at eleven, maybe?

And meanwhile, o Cloak, where art thou?

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ETA: the missing piece of costume turned up, after all. In a comparatively sensible place. So perhaps there’s still hope for the cloak as well. Or there would be, but time is running, and off I’m to the draper, to buy another quasi-cloak. Care to wager, though, that the old cloak will magically reappear soon after I’ve bought a new one?

Salva

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