h05:30 — Agriturismo Fattoria Giada
Yesterday was new faces, meetings and speeches, the moon rising white above Baselice and the sun squashing flat and red towards San Marco Dei Cavoti. The land as a fleeting glimpse framed through car windows or as panorama surveyed from a castle roof or over the wall beneath the tower. Towns and villages and the table full of people and food, food that shows the land in another way, the “gift that gives”. Returning to our farmhouse and walking into the night: fireflies, owls from the treeline, distant dogs, cows settling, shimmer of crickets where the magpies chased the fox.
Today I woke with: What bed? Whose house? Which town? Coming to consciousness in the grey of early morning, insistent pulses from small birds that never fall on quite the same beat and a cockerel – naturally – plays strangled reveille from some corner. Today it is work. Work, first, of scavenging through the old plans we discarded when we stood on the actual stones and earth, heard real voices. Second, of looking again at yesterday’s hastily drawn schedule of scribbled words and occult diagrams, places, times. And third, to listen and see, to record and to film.
h16:00 — Agriturismo Fattoria Giada
Out early to the wind farms high on the hills. Approaching a solitary turbine on foot these are monumental, blades sending down an audible wash of air, occasionally accompanied by a mechanical grinding from within the structure. I struggle to capture the complex rhythms that are clear and present to my ears, swapping one microphone for another, changing cables, windshields and settings. I am back in the world of field recording. Chiara fares much better with her camera, scaling the propellers against the land, tracking their shadows against the wheat and clover like the giant passage workings of a clock.
Above the surface of the little lake is laughter and music distorting through portable speakers, the dry, apologetic croaks of frogs (sheltering in the reeds furthest from the picnickers), ducks, stones thrown by children. The very faintest of ripples but otherwise the water is still. With little hope, I cast the two hydrophones, one after the other, out from the bank. Adjusting my headphones – and recasting one hydrophone after I hear the textured scrape of a hidden boulder – something of the submarine world emerges: fizzing and clicking gas bubbles, the odd higher-pitched report that may be an aquatic animal.