"The van roars into Buenos Aires. Its merry cargo sings loudly with the myriad of things strapped high above.
Relieved to have made it over the Andes, its confidence strains at its ties. A stool clings onto a chair, a bottle wedges itself further into a pile of tablecloths, a stack of plates dance from side to side, narrowly missing a pyramid of glasses shuddering to a rhythm of a different tune.
She swayed through the silent city, witnessed only by a laughing cat and the moon, pulling up to the top of a small hill.
Dark red nails yank at the handbrake.
A sharp English shush quietened a deep Greek guffaw, an Austrian belches into the night air and as the door falls open the Chilean barks an instruction.
The handbrake released, a gentle push and she glides down the hill.
Great rusty gates are slowly pulled open.
The van slides in, it pulls to a silent stop in front of a giant banana tree.
Its headlights flick on, illuminating a row of imposing pillars.
The mansion of ruins lies awaiting for love.
By daybreak the shutters swing open, the only clue to it's arrival, a steady cloud of dust rising over Buenos Aires. A giant stage is erected. Tables, chairs tumble from the van.
A great, Greek tragedy is rehearsed, an opera unfolds as A Man To Pet paces the chaos.
Before dusk a restaurant is born, the mansion sparkles into the night sky, its former glory restored, it welcomes its first guests with a sigh, then with a smile she settles back, once more filled with light and laughter, her belly full with the sounds and smells of The Pale Blue Door, El Restorán Vagabundo".
I arrived in Buenos Aires with no contacts at all. I bought a cheap mobile phone and set up a little office in a nearby internet café. A small Facebook posting put me in contact via a friend of a friend in London with a guy called Pablo Rouco. We met in a café, for some reason I remember being a bit tipsy! He managed an artist collective that just happened to have an abandoned mansion next door, it was owned by some rich Americans who planned to redevelop.
We went to see it and I fell in love. It was a crumbling old house, abandoned for 25 years, infested with pigeons.
The deal was surprisingly easy. A few weeks later I returned with the team. We had 7 days to build a set, find all the chairs and tables, plates and crockery. Build a kitchen. It was insane, probably the most stressful thing I've ever done. We opened and it went well, the limos pulled up to these giant gates where the stench of piss greeted them. A local tramp lived there. The guests were led through an abandoned car park and into the magic of the house. The Buenos Aires glitterati soon abandoned us, being rather not used to chairs made of bricks tied together, but we soon found our rhythm and the right people found us and loved us.