Six weeks since last I blogged. How fast time passes.
It’s been a busy month and a half.
I’ve spent time in Poland at a wedding, which was wonderful. During that trip I also visited Auschwitz (just outside Krakow) which was profoundly moving and something I will blog about at a later date.
I’ve been out and about. Three proms so far this season (Film Prom; Hooray for Hollywood; and the Philadelphia Orchestra prom). Going to the proms is always enjoyable and I go to several concerts each year. The high point for me this year was the Film Prom (which was shown on TV). It was spectacular. Hearing the key themes from the likes of Star Wars and James Bond belted out by the wonderful 100+ piece BBC concert orchestra is a singular delight. And my tip for where to sit? The choir (which is just behind the orchestra, i.e. facing onto the main audience). £20 tickets and these are the best seats in the house in my book. You are a stone’s throw from the orchestra, you can see the conductor’s face (his back is of course to the main audience) and it’s fascinating to watch the guys on percussion on whom you look down.
In terms of theatre I saw A Woman Killed with Kindness at The National which was rather different. Written in 1603, it’s a more esoteric production than I had realised. I quite liked it though didn’t always know what was going on. I also saw the 1920s WW1 play Journey’s End, at the Duke of Yorks theatre on St Martin’s Lane. Powerful and claustrophobic (it’s set in a bunker) and the sheer awfulness and horror of war are very much at the fore.
I went to the Watercolour Exhibition at Tate Britain which is up the road from me, featuring 800 years of watercolour. I enjoyed it more than I thought (I was pressed to go with family).
In terms of reading, I finished The World According to Garp but didn’t rate it in the same league as A Prayer for Owen Meany (both by John Irving). I am now about 750 pages into Game of Thrones which I’ve become completely addicted to, having also watched the 10-part HBO adaptation which is top drawer! Far and away the best TV series I have seen in the past 5 or so years. Really, really good. I recommend it very highly – and if you’re worried it might be like Lord of the Rings – it’s not at all. Very adult themes, very Sopranos.
Work has been consistent. Consistently not good. It’s a tricky subject. I have a great job, I love the people, but I’m flat-lining in my role. I have a new boss (who has just been promoted) and the vast majority of people in the company either don’t particularly rate her or think that she was only promoted because of the nepotism that exists within the company (she is unnaturally close to the male CEO…). And my overseas ambitions seem dead in the water for now. Oh what a u-turn they’ve made. So we’ll see. I’ve got the ball rolling to see what else is out there. The market is strong. Time will tell.
What else? Well, I’ve been dating quite a lot, one guy in particular I’ve seen a fair few times now. I like him. But really not sure we have a future together. What’s he like? Society would doubtless label him a gruff northerner but perhaps that was part of his appeal. 6 ft tall, shaved head, tattoo, smoker, lots of stubble, is down from Leeds. Behind the slightly rough-around-the-edges exterior he is warm and sensual and funny and chatty and I’m drawn to him. Perhaps we did move rather fast. Who knows. It’s true – I like the gunpowder taste of his kiss and the feeling of his stubble brushing across my neck. I like his strong hands and his earnest, honest passion. But – though they say opposites attract – I’m worried we don’t have enough in common. He talks about Corrie and football – I talk about foreign travel and Proms. I just feel… I don’t know. He’s so down to earth he makes me feel awkward and rarefied in what I talk about and that makes me feel uncomfortable for some reason. People talk about the difficulties of inter-cultural, inter-racial and inter-denominational relationships. When were inter-class relationships last discussed? That last great taboo in this country. Most other things can be easily discussed. Not that. I miss him. But. I don’t see this being long-term, sadly. I just can’t find enough common ground yet. It’s a strong physical attraction but that isn’t enough to sustain a lasting relationship.
Looking ahead, I have yet another wedding in a couple of weeks and then I’m off to cruise down the Nile in Egypt for some autumn/winter sun.
Anyway, I hope to be more regular on here henceforth and I do hope my readers (that small band of merry men and women whose company I have grown to covet) are in rude health.