The work continues to come in. Yesterday must have been something like the seventh or eighth day in a row for adding something to the diary, either a RetroChic gig or a wedding or a RetroChic gig at a wedding, or something else entirely. For a couple of seconds there in the afternoon it was as if the past two years had never happened.

Of course, I had avenues to pursue before, several if I am honest, but it is good that things I need and want to do are at last once again being augmented by things other people would like me to do. They were there before lockdown, but this is the start of my post-sabbatical life, the calmer me I wanted to have, and it looks as though it might work.

Better still, this is really only the first week back, so matters look as though they might be healthy for some time yet, even if the past two years have given me some thought about how confident I should really be. This time, though, it does feel right, and it is even all contriving to fit within the hours I have put aside for grown-up work, partially by accident but mainly, if I am honest, by design.

The cantata ticks on, and the ideas continue to develop as I go along. I think that there are some strong statements to be made, and as each day goes past I feel more optimistic that it will come together in a solid and satisfying way, even if there is still a very long way to go.

There was also mention of a new piece for 2022, very tentative at this stage, but I am happy to take tentative as opposed to the aching void of 2020 and 2021. Are we getting back to normal at last? It feels like it, even if I keep looking nervously over my shoulder.