Thursday, 18 February 2010

Sun gets in your eyes

It was only 1:30 (yesterday - see original post Up on the Downs) but the sun was already low enough to come in above my glasses. It's a bit like water, it gets everywhere, you can't keep it out.

However, thanks to seriously reactive lenses, and a cap pulled down at a jaunty angle, I managed to keep going. It helped that for the home stretch I was pointing north.

Skolvan Scottische

Download now or listen on posterous
Skolvan Scottische.m4a (3401 KB)
Jeudi Matin at practise - on a Wednesday morning, of course.

Up on the Downs

Yesterday - a glorious sunny day, the first one of the year, too good to miss. Just me and the sheep. How very different from today :-( .

Tuesday, 9 February 2010

That's why they call them snowdrops

Mon 8 Feb

But it had all melted in a couple of hours.

Chest fiddling

Mon 8 Feb
Trevor Arms, Glynde

Most fiddlers use their left shoulder, but Bob and Ian seem to prefer resting it on their chest. So does Dave, with his back to us - you can just about make out his bow, chest-high.

Why? Does it resonate more? Is it easier to hold? If so, why don't the other 57 million fiddlers in the world (totally unsubstantiated guess!) do it? Is it so they can see where they're putting their fingers? If that's it, why has Ian always got his eyes shut?

I think we should be told.

Transatlantic Sessions 2010

Sat 6 Feb
Royal Festival Hall

John Martyn sings 'May You Never'. We didn't see him of course - John died last year - but I came across this classic from the first TV series (1995/6) on a Google search, and just had to find an excuse to put it here.

Some of the same crew that started it all off are still going strong - Aly Bain, Jerry Douglas, Danny Thompson (who doesn't he play with?), and we also saw Mike McGoldrick and Bruce Molsky - the line-up's a movable feast, but it was more or less as in this clip from the recent BBC Radio 2 Folk Awards show. Cracking music, although personally I would have preferred a smaller group, and to have heard more from Bain, Molsky and McGoldrick.

The TV series are superb - sort of 'chamber folk' - but unfortunately the BBC doesn't let you see any of the shows online, they're still making a mint from the DVDs. So here's a link to a YouTube playlist that should keep you happy for a while.

South Bank at night

Sat 6 Feb

The Thames by night - fantastic! We'd just been to see a Transatlantic Session, along with a couple of thousand other old folkies, and this one of Hungerford Bridge is from the Level 5 balcony at the Royal Festival Hall - a perspective I'd never seen before.

The others are from ground level, and include the Embankment, the Houses of Parliament, the London Eye, Waterloo Bridge - all London icons, glowing in the dark. See the slideshow.

Beebee Peenting

Sat 6 Feb

Beebee peenting, mostly peenk and pourpoo, whilst Grandad struggles with the depth of field (see the slideshow).

She also does blding, with big Lego, for which she always seems to need more brx. She hums a nice 'Twinkle twinkle', and does a hilarious crouching dance - the latter unfortunately after Grandad had put his camera away. Bornali said she'd try to get it on video.

It's fascinating listening to the sentences beginning to form, or at least some of the basic grammatical relationships: more brx, no cheese, fix it. Magic!

Monday, 8 February 2010

Call this a diary?

Wot, no entries?

None since 30 October? And the one before that was 6 September? What are you playing at?

Well, it's true, I haven't been posting here. And come to that, Jerusalem in the rain doesn't really belong here anyway, as I was trying to post it elsewhere, but got mixed up on my mobile and posted it here by mistake.

The trouble is, I've retired, so I haven't got as much time as I used to for this sort of thing :-) . Instead of sitting here at my computer, blogging away, I've grabbed the opportunity to travel at times I have never been able to in the past. Ireland in September, Spain in October, Israel in November, France in January. I've taken loads of photos, of course, although as yet only the Israel ones are online.

Apart from editing and posting the photos, my online time since we got back from the Israel trip has been largely taken up with setting up the blog we are writing: Merkavah 09. It's been a massive task and there's still a long way to go - we've set up 60-odd posts, though not all of them are written yet, and there's loads more to come, plus a number of videos to be edited and posted.

There'll be more to come here from Ireland and France, and going back to last summer, from our French trip, and music festivals at Gennetines (July) and Towersey (August). The photos and videos from all these are still to be sorted and posted, too.

I'm also currently trying to keep abreast of this year's EVO sessions on Multiliteracies, and Teaching Languages in a Virtual World. There's loads of reading, discussions, synchronous online sessions, and links and ideas to follow up. I'm putting occasional postings on The Daily Post.

And I'll try to keep up with things here, too.