One photo a day until I meet Jonathan Harris

28th March

(Almost) Meeting Bill Drummond.

I am excited because today marks a great day in history, well this history anyway.

For over 3 months now I have been repeating the same ritual: upon returning home, I hold my breath in anticipation, excitedly turn the key that opens my mailbox, then search inside desperately to see if it has arrived. It being a replica of the telescope Galileo constructed back in 1610, and with which he was able to observe the moons of Jupiter for the first time. Each day I repeat this procedure, I am left with a mild sense of disappointment - searching amongst the bills and restaurant menus yields no evidence of telescopes and I am left hoping that somehow tomorrow will be different.

The pattern repeated itself yesterday. I became mildly excited when I saw a medium sized brown envelope sitting towards the back, but then realised it was too big to be a 'package waiting' message from the post-office, and not nearly big enough to be any part of a telescope. I assumed it was a book that my aunt had sent for my birthday and it got thrown on the table with the restaurant menus and temporarily forgotten about.

Today however, upon seeing envelope again, I began to wonder. It had come from England. The address label was written by hand. I couldn't think of anyone there who might want to send me something, but then it hit me. Before doing anything else I got the camera ready, if my suspicions were correct this might just be history in the making. With the precision of a rather nervous surgeon I sliced open the slightly battered, re-addressed envelope to reveal its contents.

Bill Drummond! You know, the guy who burnt a million pounds. He had written back!*

I was over the moon. The letter was written by hand on beautiful paper and in bold ink. There was another envelope inside that apparently contained a fragment of the $20,000 Richard Long artwork. I didn't open it though. I put everything in my bag alongside the tools I had borrowed to cut the lock of the stolen bike. I rode straight over to P.A.'s house to return the tools and show him what had happened.

Even though I hadn't laid eyes on it yet, riding with that fragment tucked safely by my side I felt like an envoy on a special mission. I have already explained how sending that letter and money to Mr. Drummond was quite a leap of faith. I mean, everyone says that you shouldn't send money in the post right? Someone is bound to slit the envelope open and take it out. Plus, the address I sent it to was just short of a blind guess. Despite all this however, through some miracle of trust, luck and human kindness the message had gotten through. I understood why people hold importance in the remains of say Joan of Arc or Vincent de Paul. Its like holding onto a tiny proof that miracles might not be just the stuff of imagination. Riding through the streets on my stolen bike, I was no longer carrying a mere fragment of some sliced up artwork, I was carrying a true relic.

When I got back from P.A.'s house, this whole story was still running through my head. I was thinking that I would have to tell it to Lisa, the family friend who gave me Bill Drummond's book and started this whole thing in the first place. There was also someone else I would have to tell. I turned on my computer and just happened to receive an email from Claude - a rare event as he typically writes only about once every 3 months. Claude is of course the guy to whom I gave away the book, exactly the person I was thinking of.

The white envelope's contents are still a mystery. I didn't open it at P.A.'s house, the timing just wasn't right. Today seemed so historical that I don't know if there will ever be an occasion that will feel special enough to perform this act.

Maybe it's something that I can do when I meet Jonathan Harris.

*Bill, if you're reading this, "Thanks!", and I hope posting the picture before the book is officially out doesn't get you into any kind of trouble.