Wow! What a week it has been!
After many pathetic pidgin Portuguese conversations with various Cape Verde airports I finally got to speak to the UK representative Ron Hughes about my lost suitcase and would you believe it he is Welsh. He clearly explains to me that Cape Verde personnel hardly ever read emails or pick up the phone. But after 48 hours with Ron on the case ( pun intended) I have an email to say that they have found Mrs Evans’s suitcase which they assure me they will returning back to Cardiff airport with immediate effect. Mrs. Evans?? They must have opened the suitcase. How dare they interfere with my bits.
True to form the suitcase did not appear. Enter stage right Cardiff airport lost property. Steph and Steve were very helpful but explained that nothing had arrived on the expected flight from Cape Verde to Cardiff Airport bearing the name of Mr or Mrs Evans.
In the meantime I am invited by some very generous fans/friends to join them at an Alfie Boe concert. Would this be hell or pleasure? This was not the Christmas present I was expecting. Could I handle an evening with Alfie Boe????? I hadn’t seen him since our year together at the National Opera Studio where we had performed some of the greatest operas like La boheme. In those days we both only sang opera, how times have changed.
My first visit to the O2 and what a buzz , re-meeting so many wonderful people who have come to my concerts over the years. The warm up act Sol3 Mio, three family members from New Zealand, all trained at Wales International Academy of Voice under the guidance of Dennis O’Neill could really sing but what a start to a fabulous evening.
Alfie took to the stage with renditions from his new album supported by an impressive 25 piece band. Every opportunity I have had to sing with a full orchestra, I have grabbed and loved, so Alifie must have had a ball. It’s amazing to see how our journey and life careers take us, as both of us believed all those years ago that we would both be ‘just’ opera singers. I thank my blessings that so many opportunities have come along to enable me to think outside the box and be creative in so many different areas.
After the O2 experience, a late night drive back to Cardiff and finally getting to my bed at 4am. a long but worthwhile day. Saturday morning, a phone call from Cardiff Airport. My suitcase at long last has arrived. It will be clean frillies after all. Perfect timing as Sunday night was a charity concert at City Hall, Cardiff to raise money for the Welsh Hearts charity whose dream as charity is to have a defibrillator at every fire hydrant throughout Wales. I will be joined by Burry Port boy and West End star John Owen-Jones amongst other young talent. A packed house and a standing ovation. Another week done and dusted. What am I doing on Monday?
This article was originally published in the Carmarthen Journal in Mark’s weekly column for the paper.