My weekend at the Twin Peaks UK Festival started early on Saturday morning. After getting lucky with buses and trains, I ended up at Camden Road. After a short wait in the queue, my VIP access brought me to a table full of donuts, two of which I dispatched in short order.
The first room I saw was the Roadhouse, which had been decked out in red curtains and with some lovely lamps and touches of decoration, and also a bar serving Black Yukon suckerpunchers
One thing that’s been great about this weekend has been putting faces to some of the names that flash up in the Facebook groups and on Twitter all the time. First up was Laura, one of the writers from the 25YL site. It was nice to meet Cheryl and Carl too.
I then went for a stroll around, picked up my goody bag and climbed into the glass box to get my picture taken. Then I went to explore more of the site, including Glastonbury Grove, which had been set up in Camden Square Gardens. It wasn’t long before I was approached by a local resident asking me if ‘we’ had permission to put all the trees there. I had that moment when you think about trying to explain to a civilian the significance of a puddle in the middle of a circle of trees but then decide to just go with…
“Hmm, it’s water rather than oil.” That was enough to send them packing.
I did a quick haiku video…
and then came annoyingly close to getting a photograph of a dog peeing up against one of the trees. I’m not sure what the lodge inhabitants might have thought of that.
After my brief sojourn outside, I retired to the main hall to watch Part 1 of The Return, which was followed by a very interesting talk from Richard Green and Pieter Dom. They are the creative team behind the upcoming Log Lady documentary, I Know Catherine. I learned all kinds of stuff about Catherine Coulson that I didn’t know before, such as the fact that she was a camera operator on Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan.
I saw Richard outside afterwards and told him I’m looking forward to the film. Grabbed a selfie with him too.
Around the venue were some lovely decorative touches as usual. This is the Ladies’ room. Don’t worry; I didn’t take the picture. I stole this one from someone else’s Facebook post. Check in the mirror to find out who…
There was even a Black Lodge, just like previous years.
After some exploration, it was time to go and get some more signatures in my book. I’ve had this since I was about 15 and it now has 10 cast members’ autographs in it. Too bad I didn’t have it on me the day I met Kyle Maclachlan in Heathrow Terminal 1. His autograph’s on a ratty bit of paper.
I related this story to him but he wasn’t very talkative.
After saying Hi to Jake Wardle, who I met last year, Chrysta Bell was next in line. I can’t get over how lovely she was. She remembered me from my What the Haiku! videos and was very happy to receive the copy that I’d had made for her of hers. Such a beautiful and genuine lady, it was an absolute pleasure to talk with her.
Next up was Kimmy Robertson, who I also gave a poem to. I also asked her to take John Chad’s for him as he couldn’t make it to the Festival due to work commitments.
Last in the line on Saturday was the lovely Dana Ashbrook. I met him with Sheryl Lee at my first ever Twin Peaks Festival in 2014, so I already had a picture with him and an autograph, so I just gave him a copy of his poem. Turns out he used to write haikus himself and I suggested we do one together at some point during the weekend… More on that later on.
After all that excitement, I needed a bit of a sit down, so I took in a little bit of Cabaret from the Double R club, hosted by Benjamin Louche.
So much going on during Saturday; even a bit of still life drawing in the Black Lodge.
I met up with Frank, who’d got more than he bargained for during his encounter with Kimmy Robertson!
Saturday really was a bit of a whirlwind. As the evening drew in, it was time for the costume parade. People put so much effort into this and I really must join in one year. I keep wanting to do Civil War Ben Horne. Maybe next time.
This was followed by two very stunning, very different musical performances from Chrysta Bell and Rebekah Del Rio.
You can watch some footage of the two of them that I shot by clicking this link.
After that, it was time to get back into the glass box (or ‘some kind of sex box’ as the centre staff were describing it on the Sunday night when they came to tidy up) and get some pictures. I caught Judy in a good mood!
Then Frank and I got swept up in the currents of time.
Unfortunately, I tarried too long and missed the start of the quiz. We invaded the Irish Centre’s library instead.
That was enough for me for Saturday so, after some chips, I was looking forward to some quality sack time. I was lucky enough to secure a room very close to the venue and it was very nice indeed.
It even had its own little garden.
First up on Sunday, after a nice lie in, was a chance to meet Rebekah Del Rio and congratulate her on her wonderful performance on stage the night before.
She was a lovely, genuine person, which seems something that everyone associated with Twin Peaks shares.
and I had a haiku for her too.
Then we went to the Black Lodge and had some fun making another haiku including some backwards talking – !mock tod ruteyer nitsod racheer tod oouylubud, ooyulubud, oouylubud
That was lots of fun.
After that, I bumped into Blake Morrow, the talented photo artist behind some of the stunning images below.
If I remember correctly, he had a hand in designing this stunning cover for the new issue of Blue Rose magazine.
Blake’s pictures were all in the Art Gallery area of the Festival. There were lots of other works on display also, like these…
I messed up a little bit so unfortunately my poems, which had been chosen for the gallery, never actually made it onto the display, but here they are for you to see now.
Back in the hall there was another still life class going on, with lots of people having a go at drawing Diane.
One thing I’d never done at the Festival before was enter the Tibetan rock throwing contest. Frank and I managed to win a prize each.
I also got a chance to try out the Twin Peaks VR experience in the train car. This was a 360 degree video experience that takes you all the way through the town of Twin Peaks, with a few shocks along the way.
This is the creator, Gideon Bonaparte, with me.
I also grabbed a picture with Benjamin Louche and Rose Thorne in Glastonbury Grove.
After that, I had a midlife crisis moment and stopped in to see international tattoo artist, L’ain Freefall, who gave me a permanent souvenir to take home with me. I’m very happy I did it as I’ve always kind of wanted one but never been entirely sure what to get.
This is probably my favourite t-shirt from the Festival.
Bands in the Roadhouse were a really great addition to the Festival last year and this year’s lineup didn’t disappoint.
The standard of cosplay was maintained on Sunday too.
Richard Green was around, interviewing people for the Log Lady documentary. Even I got a look in so who knows, there might be two seconds of me in it.
Sunday evening kicked off with the charity auction. Rebekah Del Rio had donated a couple of dresses from her appearances in Lynch projects which raised hundreds of pounds for different good causes. David Lynch donated a signed copy of one of his books which also raised a packet.
Sunday night’s costume parade saw more inventive people get rewarded for their efforts.
and then it was time for the cast members’ Q and A session.
One of my favourite questions was about my favourite Twin Peaks scene…
As a bonus, John Pirruccello joined us via the Interwebs.
Then I had the best result of all. I managed to get Dana Ashbrook to do a What the Haiku! video with me. I say with me, but I was so nervous that I didn’t even let him get a word in, the poor bloke.
After that, it was down to the Roadhouse for Twingo, the fast-paced Twin Peaks bingo game.
followed by a great set from DJ Yoda.
and then it was off back to the glass box for some final photos before I had to leave.
That’s me, bottom right hand corner.
I had such a fantastic weekend, just what I needed after an Ofsted inspection the week before. It was lovely to meet so many other fans and celebrate together. This Festival has become something I look forward to more and more every year. The planning and organisation that goes into it from Lindsey Bowden and her team is first rate. Next year will be the tenth and I can’t wait to see what they have in store for us. I’m sure it will be both wonderful and strange.
Thanks for reading,
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All the best,
Twin Peaks UK Festival 2017 in pictures
Just a Photograph – a haiku sequence
Mike’s Story – a haiku sequence
Are you still seeing this…? Some limericks
Palindrome for Dark Woods – a poem
The Battle of the Bob Bubble – a poem
Cinquains for Lucy, Audrey, Candie and others
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