Monday, 17 October 2011

Mid-day in Paris

Is it me or had Downton Abbey become utter crap? We loved the first series, but second time round it's just not keeping us entertained on a Sunday evening. Too many plots still going on from the last series, too many new ones introduced in this series, and it's all a bit of an Eastenders rollercoaster. We may not last the full series...if only we'd plumped for Spooks instead.

I'm delighted to see that around the globe there has been proper rioting against the greedy bankers....about time too. Interestingly the Metropolitan police decided to 'kettle' the protesters to prevent the protest making an impact. So much for freedom of speech and democratic rights.

Last week was one of those goddam awful weeks that happen from time to time. I'm generally sanguine about them as I know that these things pass on the assumption that things pick up the following week. So it was "a bit of a disappointment" when my phone went off in the middle of the night with a computer message to let me know that the office alarm had been activated. I hauled myself out of bed and jumped on the motorbike, stopping a few hundred yards down the road as it was so cold I thought my fingers were going to fall off. Having put my winter gloves on again I set off and arrived at the office to find absolutely nothing was amiss. Having double checked everything, I returned home, arriving at 6.30 am, just in time to take The Boy to school for an exceptionally early start. When I got back I climbed into bed to give myself a half hour snooze before the day started properly. Not surprisingly, when I did arrive at the office, the computer kept crashing which meant most of the rest of the morning was spent sorting that out. Humph.

It was a good job we had an interesting weekend.

Friday night we saw The Tempest. Actually inspite of having Ralph Fiennes as Prospero it was piss-poor. Poor staging, poor acting and a desperately slow pace. Rank amateur. And this from Trevor Nunn...we can only surmise that he is distracted by his dalliance with Nancy Dell'ollio who is probably sucking his emotional energy out of him like a Dementor.

Sunday we had a day-trip to Cambridge to see a Vermeer exhibition at the Fitzwilliam Museum. This was a special trip for us because we wanted to see this picture:

We'd seen it in Paris just a few weeks ago when we popped over for a few days, so it was just fabulous to be able to see it again so soon. The exhibition is called Vermeer's Women, and having seen it I can now tell you that in the seventeenth century:
1. All Dutch children were pig-ugly
2. The women spent a lot of time buying fish...
3. ...when they weren't peeling vegetables
I can also reveal that the curator had failed to spot one of the women was in a skimpy Santa outfit. Tardy.

Sunday The Cat's Mother and I went to the fleapit to see Woody Allen's latest film. I've never enjoyed anything by Woody Allen so my hopes for this one were not high. Yet surprisingly it entranced me almost from the opening credits. I'd rate it pretty much the perfect Sunday matinee film...light, jolly and whimsical. We spent a lot of time trying to spot the places we'd been in Paris. I'm not sure we managed very well, but Paris was certainly shown at it's doubt giving the President's wife a part helped them secure some great locations. The Americans were shown at their worst. And for the first time I realised that Marion Cotillard is an absolute babe.

Why she is given second billing and her name is virtually hidden on the IMDB entry. Perhaps the Americans are still not quite on board with the French again.