Thursday, January 19, 2006

cirque du soleil

Clown (definition): A person who runs from the drama of his own life.

Now this is a tricky definition, wide as the infinite river of life. Oh, please, stop with that bullshit.
Clowns are happy people and they don't suffer from any modern problems like denial, neurosis. And as long as they're funny, everybody absolutely loves them.

The clowns in the Cirque du Soleil however were a bit disappointing, as the whole show in fact. But it was disappointing because I built up great expectations about it and I worked myself up for months. And then it all disappears in smoke, paper flakes, 2 hours and 46 pounds.

But otherwise the show was good, it's just by constrast with my expectations that it failed. I would recommend it to everyone and don't think they would be disappointed.

Allegria is an old show, put together in '94 ... a lot changed since then eh? It took nature millions of years to change fashion, it takes us couple of years and a dotcom crash to be different.
The story that was hidden behind the show, because there was one, was as elusive as my entry in the blog today. What's this all about anyway? Clowns, meditation on the passage of time, stress? Well, who knows? I'm only here to ask questions, not give answers... hmm ... like philosophy, hmm, like Allegria, hmm ... like life itself. Pff... what a holywoodian ending! Ta-Da!

Monday, January 16, 2006

this weekend

We went to see Stomp on friday evening in a new theatre which I didn't know it existed. It's called Vaudeville Theatre, it's on the Strand, close to Enbankment tube station. I must say the show was very very entertaining, a combination of mute humour with percussion ranging from really soft one to ear-blasting. And trust me, these guys can drum, bang, shake anything, squeezing rhythmic sound from objects that you wouldn't think of. Imagine match boxes, buckets, brooms, kitchen sinks, big barrels and even cigarette lighters being used to create sound, rhythmic sound. It was very entertaining and very well spent 14.50 pounds. It's still on sale an if you want to go. Recommended!

On Saturday we started with Memoirs of a Geisha at the electric cinema. First about the cinema, it's a cinema without the usual chairs, but instead with comfortable leather armchairs with plenty of space (as if you were flying 1st class - not that I ever did!!) and feet stools. You can buy drinks inside. It's beautiful! And of course slightly more expensive than you're average cinema experience. Who was there? Marco, Maryam, Lilian, Roberto, Christina and moi. A happy bunch.The film ... hmm, I don't know, I thought it was a bit too slow flirting with boredom at points. It was hyped up a lot and maybe I had great expectations. And great expectations are easily disappointed. But the photography of the film was very good I thought. I was a bit annoyed with the poor diction of the actors in the film, at points not being able to understand what they were saying. Very annoying. I think I need to read the book.

In the evening we went to the MUIL event in Legion, Old Street. A lot of people were there and it was fun in the end, even managed to dance a bit. Not a lot. But got the chance to talk to many people whom I haven't seen in a long time. And also kicked off the idea of starting to organise football matches again in the weekends.

A quiet sunday at home, watching Kill Bill 1, revisiting 21 grams and Tai Won Mein for a chinese dinner and here I am again, monday and hating it. But hey, life moves on, right? Friday is just around the corner. Not to mention Cirque du Soleil which is tomorrow :-)

Monday, January 09, 2006

faces of asia

Tuesday, January 03, 2006

For more about the trip to Thailand, have a peek at Carmen's version of events. Just follow the link on the right hand side, the one that says "Carmen's blog". Enjoy her pics too!

Thailand - chapter IV - last one

We left Koh Samui to head to the other coast, to the Andaman sea, our destination being Krabi, Ao Nang beach to be precise. It was to be our last destination in Thailand where we were to spend about a week, including Christmas. We were desperate for some sun as we had depressing clouds and rain above us most of the time. We were off to a flying start when we caught 2 hours of burning sun on the ferry from Samui to the mainland. We roasted in the sun with indulgence.
The coach to Krabi was awfully late and we reached Krabi town quite late in the evening. We negotiated with a van to take us to Ao Nang and off we went.

The accommodation in Ao Nang was already sorted by Carmen and Ake and boy we were glad to see we were staying in some very nice apartments, right in the heart of the commercial street and literally metres from the beach. We were paying 10 pounds a night per person, but it was money well spent.

From Ao Nang as our headquarters we went on couple of adventures. One was kayaking to Railey beach and then off to Poda island. We were kayaking for one hour and ten minutes on an moderately agitated sea. We had 3 kayaks, Carmen and Lucia paddling in one, Roberto and Ake sharing another one and me, myself and I paddling on my own. It was a tiring experience and at some points a bit scary as you were praying for the wind not to pick up. My one person kayak was even more difficult to control than the 2 persons one and it was an easier prey to the waves for sure. On the way back we were paddling against the current and it took us more than 2 hours. It was a very nice experience though.

One other day we took an organised tour and we went to Phi Phi. We went by speed boat, bouncing off the waves with Carmen shrieking OHH OHH for each wave :-) She worked out a system to, allegedly, put less pressure on the joints and back when the boat was bouncing. Needless to say she was the only one complaining of back pains the second day! We did some very nice snorkelling that day, we also saw the Maya Bay, the bay where they filmed The Beach. Lovely place Phi Phi islands. I wish we had more time to investigate and explore it properly. We also visited Bamboo island where we did some snorkelling and took some nice pics. The island looked like it wasn't uninhabited, the only visitors being dropped off by speed boats for 40 minutes before flying off to the next destination on the list. Yeap, that was the feel of the trip, rushing from one destination to another, always knowing that someone on the boat was counting down the time you still have to enjoy. Anyway, it was nice.

Then of course we lay on the beach, at Railey, Poda, Ao Nang, the beaches were lovely and the water so warm and nice, in stark contrast with London. Bygone!

The place was full of scandinavians, all of them happy happy to escape the nordic cold no doubt.

We also embarked on a culinary trip of discovery trying a new place every evening, from the fancy places to the improvised food stalls by the side of the street. Places that I would have been probably afraid to try if I hadn't been with locals! :-)

Unfortunately in the last days I caught a really nasty cold and I even had fever, so I wasn't enjoying it that much. Trust me, being in the sun, on the beach, with fever, it's no fun at all.
In the last days we took another kayaking trip, in the opposite direction from the first one, this time going along the coast. It's amazing how empty the coast gets once you leave the tourists territory. You can find really nice gems, desolated spots which you don't have to share with anyone. The only drawback being you can't take them with you either.

These were sunny days, the days when you love Thailand and the inspiration that took you there. Cloudy days and rain you can forgive in a place like London, but in Thailand it's really blasphemy. Thailand really glitters in the sun and it's a total different world when the sun shines.

We left Thailand on such a sunny day, regretting and wondering when and if we're going to see it ever again. The flu I was carrying and the stubborn coughing made my journey less fabulous. Nevertheless, I can't complain about Gulf Air, it was a pleasant experience and I would fly with them in the future. The cold that awaited me in London didn't make the things any easier. Getting back in the London pace and thinking about work and going to work every day still proves very problematic for my psyche that's still wearing sandals and shorts. No worries, it's all a matter of getting used to!

Today all the newspapers scream Murder on the front page. The latest victim, a British backpacker and the reason I mention it here is that she's been raped and killed on the New Year Eve, in Koh Samui, an island in Thailand that we visited 2 weeks ago. She was last seen on Lamai beach, the beach where we were staying.
Lamai is a rather quiet beach, not very much happening there, especially at night, not many lights on the beach at night. We were walking there at night many times! So sad :-(

Monday, January 02, 2006

Temples and royal palaces

Sunday, January 01, 2006

Happy new year 2006!

A happy new year to all the readers! Let it be a better year with more ticked resolutions than the last one! You do have resolutions for 2006, right?!