At least I was actually watering the garden. Honestly, the frustration of deciding to spend my RDO on wahing and watering and then finding the water off. Nothing quite so unsettling as turning on the tap in the morning and finding nothing coming out. I rang up the water company and got a 'we know, piss off' recorded message. Took 'em all day to put it back on, so no shower, no loo and no cup of tea. Harsh.
And I tell ya, not the day after we'd indulged in Indian takeway. Yikes.
In other news, I did a job interview in my pyjamas. Okay yes, it was a phone interview, but thank goodness they'd not heard of Skype, eh?
In still further news, cheap five year old scotch tastes nothing like the stuff my father used to pour into my bottle as a baby. Only a twelve year old single malt would do. Dear old dad, but you've left me with a taste for the good stuff. No wonder I was 'quiet' as a child. I was completely soused.
Also upset about Christchurch. All those lovely old buildings! And people. Only two checked in as OK so far. Utterly distressing times.
TV? Been catching up on Supernatural, as it's been too hot for that thing you call sleeping. I'm really loving this season. So many cute moments. Okay, the X Files was very silly (but how sweet, to see the old show remembered and who can go past an anal probe joke), was kinda enjoying Sam sans whiny bitchy moral code and I love world wearky sarky Cas ('of course, your problems are more important) and how on earth could they kill off Crowley? He was my fave. Surely he could have yanked the Winchester chain a little longer. Oh well. I'm just really enjoying this. More robust characters, less sledehammery arc, more whimsy, more cute moments. Suddenly, the things I loved about the show are back.
Also saw three non consectutive episodes of Downtown Abbey. It's all very Upstairs, isn't it? Despite it being extraordinarily derivative, it was still a fun watch, but then, I've been accustomed to such things from a very early age.
And I saw a couple episodes of Boardwalk Empire. Turns out the critics haven't been blowing smoke in my ear, it is a damn fine watch.
Went to see the Evolving English exhibition. Oh so worth it, so worth getting in to see it. It was so great. From the 'WHAT!' that first greets you (that'll be Beowolf, check), to the copy of Chaucer with what looks like biro phone doodles in the margin, to, well, everything. The King James Bible, Shakespeare, Alice in Wonderland, Polari slang (which had an elderly couple in fits, oh my) to V, it had it all. Slang, educational books, dictionaries, books and cartoons on proper pronounciation (always subject to fashion and class), dialects (local and international). Better yet, aside from ancient texts and actual author drafts and first editions on display (!!!) they had the A/V going, and not all of it fuddy duddy. With Pygmalion (of course it was there), there was Audrey in My Fair Lady regalling all about her Aunt, and how they done her in. Best of all was the Blackadder episode to accompany Dr Johnson's actual dictionary (bwee!). If one wanted to hear cockney, one could choose to listen to Blur's 'Parklife'. Squee!!! Oh exhibition, I love you! I'd been dying to see it. So glad I did.
Treated them to some old westie slang, none of which I dare repeat here, but that was fun. Especially the gasp behind me. It was so un PC it would have made Gene Hunt blush to hear me, is all I'm sayin'.
Also saw the 150 years of street photography. Alas, crowded, full of plonkers and not a spot on the Battlers exhibtion I saw at the State Library. Oh well.
Then I went to Canterbury. Quite the pilm. as the train was supposed to split and there was no clear consenus as to which four carriages were to be splitting so I ran up and down the train until I gave up and just got off and re-boarded after the split at the infamous Tunbridge Wells, no less.
Canterbury is lovely, really sweet, considering it was bombed to buggery, still all narrow laned and interesting. Most folks were lovely, too, and I found a loo and the tea I was after in quick sucession (a couple of small wins in my usual trail of mishaps, bag lock broken, dudded with old notes, manager of hotel hates me, you know, the usual).
The Roman museum looks very pissweak from street level, but you go down the stairs, past the dummies in historical dress and suddenly you're in a serious and seriously impressive collection of some seriously cool and interesting Roman stuff. Being an important town, the quality and variety is impressive and better than any other collection I've seen (outside the big museums). I loved it. Loved the roof tile with the doggie paw prints - some mutt had walked across the wet clay while drying, a mishap preserved, loved, well, everything. So much stuff, so well preserved. And mosaics, oh my, some in situ. Kinda awful to know that a lot of stuff was discovered when bloody great craters were blown in the main street in the 40s. Ah well.
The Canterbury museum was less impressive but it did have some lovely pieces, some very nice brooches and armour and everything from flints to Romans, Saxons, Normans, Tudors, civil war, WWII and, my fave, a window devoted to the 60s.
Also popped into the hospital, which had some great faded religious wall art, for those that are into that sort of thing.
The cathedral was lovely, the wardens lovely, they not only let me take photos but recommended views and angles. Because it's such a warren there are some lovely views and angles. Wandered all around, oohing and ahhing over old things and History with a capital H.
Wandered up to an ancestral church, which was closed (ah, well) and had lunch in the pub just a skip across the road/goat track, Lovely pub, good lunch. Good day all round.
So sad to hear about the death of the Brig, especially as I'd only just enjoyed the Chislehurst caves, as seen in the Doctor Who story 'The Mutants', you know, the one in the caves, were the local rabble rebel against an exploitative mining operation (de ja news) and then evolve into bugs and then glittery gay disco dollies. Alrighty then. Episodes aside, the caves are brilliant.
You'll be pleased to know there was a pic up from filming DW in the foyer and it was well worth the fiver to get in (even though I was up to my knees in rugrats, one who demanded to know where my child was, just what I needed, you little ape) but we were handed hurricane lanterns, how quaint, how cracker night, how Proustian, and walked through the caves, as seen on tv, with dummies in historical dress, and you know how I love those! It was fun. All very creepy and atmospheric and fun and, best off all, not crawling with Huntsmen spiders like the caves I usually get. They're not strictly caves, but a maze of mines carved out of the chalk since the stone age and, get this, Jimi Hendrix once played there. How cool is that? Oh, that was fun.
William, you bastard
Hastings, alas, not so cool. Oh, the morning was lovely, first train down, castle ruins to myself, breakfast with a view, lovely. But then they came. Hastings, as it turns out, is chav central. Seriously chav central. It's like Telopea by the sea, which affronted me terribly, how could scuzzy people just like my neighbourhood be allowed to live within 50 miles of water glimpses? The trembling kicked in.
Here I was marvelling at how I couldn't go down the local shops without shaking, but could quite happily circumnavigate the globe. Ah, it's not the great outdoors that so terrifies me, but the neighbourhood. Apparently it's just been one vicious assault too many as I innocently attempt to fetch food and magazines. I should move, but, alas, I can't afford to. I, too, am a scuzzy person, even though I don't own a tracksuit or a pitbull. Sigh.
Anyway, it was all too terrible so I fled. Sigh.
But not before I found an old Captain Scarlet annual in a bookshop that looked promisingly unkempt with the unholy offspring of Manny and the comic book guy wheezing behind an unhygenic counter. I couldn't walk for wobbly stacks of books (just like what Himself has done to the house) so I knew there would be actual buried treasure (as in anyone would be too squeamish to look).
You know I once had an offer of marriage on account of my collection of old tv annuals. Little did I know it was the best offer I'd ever be getting. Sigh.
Meanwhile, yes, we have bananas! My formerly wee B1 has squeezed out a bunch.
We now have three banana trees since B1 has split into two seperate trees now. I'm hoping for a fourth, as I hear four bananas make a bunch (and so do many more). Ahem, so giving away my age here.
Gloomy weather prevails.
Off to the Harryhausen exhibition. It was a touch underwhelming but I did get too see some of the orginal models, including medusa and one of the skelton dudes. The rest of it is mostly just a bunch of sad and battered props, not quite what I was expecting. Ah, well. At least I was done before the armies of little apes showed up. Onto the Cuming which was a waste of time and effort and a trip some very dodgy neighbourhoods. I was hoping it'd be like the Manning, and it was, but it wasn't. I do like an eccentric gentleman's collection but there really wasn't enough bang to justify the effort, you know?
Then it was onto the Tate Modern, if only because I name check it in a fic and I felt I ought. At least with modern art museums I can whip around them quickly because only a dozen or so pieces will appeal to me, but oh, what a few they were. There was Whaam!, some Monet, Matisse, you know, the usual suspects. I even liked the Pollock they had up, which is highly unusual as my standard reaction to any Pollock is 'mummy, make the bad man go away!'.
The it was off to the theatre, darlings. Seeing what? Only the hottest ticket in town, that's what. I'd bought a ticket ages ago on spec and I'd have kicked myself if I'd not pressed ahead cause the reviews have been orgiastic. I was still getting riled by Cumberbatch fans, who sadly seem to tend towards the Supernatural scale of things (ie man the barricades) and they've been trolling me daily for the last couple of months now, so it was with some pleasure, when I fronted the counter and this miserable shrew waiting for returns screeched out that the queue started behind her. I didn't turn around and say 'picking up tickets, BITCH', but, oh, how I wanted to. Instead I just did a Neville Chamberlain style unfurling of my printed receipt, which shut her up anyway. SMUG.
Third row, too. SMUG. And, oh yes. It was quite the spectacle. I love London shows, they're so exciting and inventive and whiz bang with the sets. I love a bit of showmanship. And the lads were full on, and, as always in a tale of moral ambiguity, it was always hard to tell who was the monster and who was the man. I must now admit to a long term sympathy with the creature, having long been ugly and rejected by both society and parents. Ah, poor creature.
I was also lucky enoug to score Jonny as the creature and BC as VF. I've read that both versions are good, but this was the one I wanted, and yes, BC was a wonderfully sociopathic Frankenstein (a lot of Holmes there) and, oh my, BC is a damn fine looking man, especially in those boots, floppy shirts and frock coats. This boy needs to do a period drama, stat. Jonny meanwhile, well, there's not a lot of mystery left (shameless grin) but he was a wonderfully shambolic, clumsy, hurt, confused, sweet and ruthless monster, always with far more humanity than his creator.
Oh yes, I'm happy with the version I saw. The sets were brilliant, the acting robust, the script was the weak link, but, oh well, a gal can't have everything.
Too bad I was frightfully ill. I realised the timing was going to be a bit tricky and I'd had a couple of beers and I was fine and loving it all until it really kicked in towards the end, alas when the whole production started to kick it up a notch as the Daddy issues, with which this version abounded, turned very violent and nasty indeed. It was all I could do to sit still and not scream. So I sat, with tears coursing down my cheeks. BC clocked me at one point, during his last big scene with the monster, and must have thought, in his deep Cumberbatch voice, 'dear god, this woman is moved'.
Well, yes, honey, but also expecting my uterus to burst free and skitter across the stage like the critter in Alien at any moment. That too, alas.
And afterwards, well, take that, BC trolls. Such a lovely boy, too. I even managed a bit of a conversation, too, which surprised me because usually I'm as articulate as the creature in such situations.
The next night, oh yes indeedy, it was off to see young Mr Morgan in Private Lives. A somewhat more intimate setting in one of those wee theatres they have in the UK, it still didn't lack for stage magic, production values and quality. It was a happy little story about family dysfunction and abuse, but darkly funny for all that. The press was all about how exotic it was but it was very much like the stuff I get at home (again with the daddy issues) only much funnier, with better design and far, far better acting, and, I tell ya, the shrew of a mother was getting some nods of recognition in the audience.
And Colin. The kiddie tv show really doesn't do him justice, he's a brilliant if exciteable force of nature on stage, rivetting. Don't tell anyone, but I found Colin's turn on the boards far and beyond anyone else. He just had my complete attention from go to woe. And he has such pretty eyes. You never get to see them un-cgi'd on merlin. Pity, they are such bright and darting eyes.
Afterwards he did his stage door duties with the same professional aplomb as BC (and I applaud the boys for this). He spotted the accent straight off, as in 'oh Australia, I love Australia, I've heard so much about Australia, I really want to go to Australia'. Take a breath, kid. He's so cute and exciteable. I really wish I could have taken him home with me.
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