Wednesday, February 28, 2007
Conversation is always eclectic, as one topic spawns another two at least: today's included Sappho (quoted in the Greek; I had to ask for a translation), Troy, Joan of Arc, Dorset archaeological sites of interest, the Black Hills of Dakota, and the rule of Ataturk in the 1920s.
My brain hurts. Off to watch something by Joss Whedon I think...
Tuesday, February 27, 2007
Opening it up, I had three thoughts:
- Maggie is a darling!
- How adorable; I've never owned anything by Cath Kidston™.
- I must forward on the parcel immediately to my sister.
That third one just popped in out of nowhere. I pondered over my reaction for a minute. Then I unwrapped the individual items, and yes even opened some so that I wouldn't be able to post them on (they smell of lemon & geranium - yum!). I shall use them for me - for me I tell you. I know my sister adores all things CK™, but it's my present. End of story.
Monday, February 26, 2007
What I don't understand is that if the US government had super-effective mind control devices, wouldn't they just programme the helmet folk not to suspect anything.
Sunday, February 25, 2007
Friday, February 23, 2007
Thursday, February 22, 2007
Wednesday, February 21, 2007
1) Killer from Don't Look Now/ Bread Dog/ Streamer War Runner-up/ Umbrella Lady
2) Grass Man/ Snow White levitating/ Guitar-Playing Condom Man/ Streamer War Winner cutting a deal with pirate
3) Bus Ticket Thing/ VIPs/ Chick in awe of balloons/ Male Bride
4) Hunting Snow White/ Spidey plays nintendo/ Stubborn as a goat/ Beatrice
There were two yes two dramatic executions of Saddam Hussein. When the first killing-float passed it was followed by figures dressed in white sheets, who all knelt and praised Allah, as though that was really funny. Throughout there were placards about abortion (it's been much in the news lately), but none beat the 'Abortion Funeral Cortege' which processed by. Eerily, there was no reaction at all from the crowd; they just watched.
However, then the Volare Man showed up, and with the grace of a swan led us in song...
And in other news, I have a zillion crosaires to stretch my brain sideways...
Tuesday, February 20, 2007
Clowns playing jazz: that's probably my sister's worst nightmare.
Anyhoo, the big finale is this afternoon: it's called the Bungler's Parade, and the official description is "a free for all". Should be good!
Snippets of Saturday's parade here (what costumes - there must be a lot of bald ostriches out there) and here (love their long streamers - SO muppetty).
My favourite picture is of the girls in baby-ballgowns playing in the streamers and confetti:
Monday, February 19, 2007
I have been staying with Orlaith this past week. From the highs of the mountains - up in the cable car to Monte, also to Santana - to the lows of the sea we have fit it all in this week.
After yesterday's epic walk from Funchal out to the hotel district and then up, up, and up more steps on to the city Levada walk, my legs feel pretty tight today.
In honour of my visit it seems, they put on the grand carnival parade in Funchal on Saturday night and that certainly was a sight to behold.
Friday, February 16, 2007
Santana's new theme park was very very quiet, except for the piped music throughout the 17 acres. Here's a little clip:
Thursday, February 15, 2007
Wednesday, February 14, 2007
Tuesday, February 13, 2007
I always like to ask permission before I mention anyone's name on the blog, so now I can reveal that Maggie is here!
We're about to go out for a birthday dinner (to Figos, for those who have visited before - let's hope they still have some stash of the Chocopana wine left! And yes I imagine I shall be indulging in the tiramisu).
Monday, February 12, 2007
Sunday, February 11, 2007
I took off my little ipod headphones, and we muddled through a conversation using bits of Portuguese, French and English. She said she wasn't doing great: her sister died last week. I was shocked, and was offering condolences when I realised that my ipod was blaring There She Goes by The La's.
Friday, February 09, 2007
Mr & Mrs C also talked about life in Madagascar in the 1960s, including one swanky ambassador's reception they got roped into...
So, the Archbishop of Canterbury was visiting, and a formal dinner was duly held by some high-up Malagasy Minister. The US & UK ambassadors were there, with their aides and wives in tow - a big deal all round. Trying to make conversation, Mrs Canterbury asks Mrs Minister how rice is grown.
This is an error.
Growing rice is peasant work. People like Mr Minister keep the nail of their little finger long and talon-like to make the point: they don't do manual labour. Asking someone about rice work is like asking what cleaner they use to scrub the kitchen floor.
So Mrs Minister declares that she has never grown rice in her life. She's obviously peeved, and silence descends as she plots. Then she's ready.
'How many children do you have?'
'Unfortunately I don't have any', says Mrs Canterbury.
Mrs Minister smiles. 'I have eight.'
At least nowadays there's ferrero rocher to take the edge off.
Thursday, February 08, 2007
I don’t know, people wouldn’t make such a big deal about it if he hadn’t been so adamant in the first place. There's a good Jesus Camp clip of Pastor Ted: someone that flippantly self-righteous, you just know it's a recipe for disaster.
So, it turns out it was all in his mind. Which brings me to Nobel prize-winning neuroscientist Santiago Ramón y Cajal, who was quoted here as saying:
As long as our brain is a mystery, the universe, the reflection of the structure of the brain, will also be a mystery.
It’s a fabulous thought. I think I'd take out the ‘as long as’ - it’s a mystery forever, full stop.
Wednesday, February 07, 2007
But what care I! There's music in the air (gregorian folk chanting), the writing is going well (famous last words) and there are glasses to be raised for the day that's in it.
Another year wiser. Just how wise is that?
Tuesday, February 06, 2007
Unless there's a heat wave expected next week, people must drink a powerful amount before donning those costumes and stepping out. (At present the locals typically wear three layers of clothing). Brrr...
In other news, the six-month waiting period to see if my orchids flower is over. (You may recall my sister's kidlets planted the bulbs upside down for a time, so that was one setback. Of several.) I bought one of the here's-one-we-prepared-earlier variety. Purdy :)
Monday, February 05, 2007
Sunday, February 04, 2007
Anyway, I was looking for the symbol for the 54th, but anniversary lists seem to skip from Gold (50th) to Emerald (55th). You would think if you make it that far, every year should be a big deal.
I may need to make something up...
In other news, I put up a short story on the website, here. The Latte Angel is a glimpse of someone who makes a brief appearance in the final part of the trilogy. I was just pleased that I managed to write several pages where absolutely no-one died.
Friday, February 02, 2007
In days of old, this was the day when all the Christmas decorations were burned. Such action is not recommended in these days of plastic tinsel and baubles made of god-knows-what; can you imagine the toxic chemicals released? I guess in the Middle Ages they mostly had greenery with some berries. And a big yule log.
The book I'm working on is mostly set on 2 February; so it makes super-sense for me to spend the day tapping away at that. Off I go...
Thursday, February 01, 2007
You're absolutely right; it is well past beer-in-the-sunshine time. I'll get on to that right now...