Wednesday, August 20, 2008


The past two evenings, we have watched two films, one at home one at the cinema.
At home on Monday night we got round to watching The Last King of Scotland. Excellently done, very engrossing and very distressing (though perhaps not really as distressing as Hotel Rwanda because it was much more focussed on the effect on one man, not on the country as a whole). I didn't watch about ten minutes of it - I looked away briefly and Husbink decided to hide my eyes for a long time which was pretty alarming. I don't tend to look away from gruesome things in films (perhaps just not look too closely) but I do trust Husbink if he concludes I'd much rather not see.
Anyway, at the end of the film it took us a good forty minutes or so to calm down enough to go to bed and well, it wasn't the best sleep I've ever had.
Then last night we went to see The Dark Knight. I must confess I was not in the mood - for a film or the cinema at all and certainly not for this film. I vaguely suggested we went to see the third Mummy film instead but knew Husbink had been waiting for ages to see this film so...
It was good - in the sense that it was a well made, well done, good film. Heath Ledger was very impressive (though mainly I have to say when you compare various of his roles - this is the same person who played the near silent cowboy of Brokeback Mountain and the same person who played such an "easy" character in A Knight's Tale...that is what makes this such a good performance for me). Christian Bale was good. Michal Caine was good. Morgan Freeman was good. They were all good. But I found it disturbing and disgusting. Not disturbing and disgusting in that what I saw disturbed and disgusted me but I wonder why someone thought they'd make that film? It is dark, dark, dark.
Various people I know read a lot of Iain M Banks and Iain Banks books. I enjoy several of his lighter hearted books but some are just too dark. One in particular I remember finishing and thinking "why did he do that? why did he have to turn out all the lights?" because you are left with absolutely no hope. I said to my brother "why didn't he just let this one thing be different?" and he responded, "because then you could have hope".
The Dark Knight didn't wipe out hope, in fact Batman seems to really believe in hope like I do. The overall message of this film is not the dark despair that a lack of hope brings, that is not the problem here. I simply found it overwhelming that someone thought that this was ok as entertainment - the implied grossness being the least of the problems in many ways.
I dunno. As I say, I didn't want to go. I wasn't in a good mood. I'd already been hounded by The Last King of Scotland the night before. It is a good film. Husbink enjoyed it. Chances are, I'll watch it again sometime. I certainly wouldn't advise you against seeing it. But why would you make it?

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

The Dangers of the Telly...

When we moved into our house, we couldn't get much reception on our telly. Not with the roof aerial, not with the little set top aerial. We couldn't get anything on the digi box.
And this was fine. Not a problem. We could watch DVDs, we could play with the Wii, it really wasn't a problem.
Then at the weekend, my parents came to stay. My dad fiddled and fiddled and tweeked and now we have all five channels. Which means we have the Olympics. And that we had the Olympics in time for the British "gold rush" over the weekend.
So now what happens? We come down in the morning, we switch the TV on and it stays on. All day. Pretty much. We do other things (Husbink goes to work sometimes!) but the TV just stays clicking away, telling us all kinds of things that we really need to know. Really.
I know that the all-day element will stop with the end of the Olympics but, well, hmm, what a time waster!

Thursday, August 14, 2008

I Miss You

One of the least fun things about all this moving is all the people you have to keep leaving.
One of the very best things about this move is that we are now in fairly easy reach of lots of lovely people - doctor/woman, snoo, associated husbands (hmm, I think Husbink should start a sports team or a quiz team or a support group or anything really called "associated husbands") and several more besides. But they are still a drive away or a train away or something other than a very quick pop.
It has helped spectacularly with the settling in to see doctor/woman and mr me on Saturday (they got to watch me do some un-flat-packing, lucky them) and to have an evening with Snoo and the Hub on Monday (despite the failure of the Wii to provide entertainment!). Not to mention that the ever wonderful Mr and Mrs SD came to help us move in (and brought us a spare fridge, as you do). But I want to see them more! I want to share car journeys to and from work with Mrs SD like we used to. I want to bump into the Hub on the crescent as we go to work in the mornings or come home in the evenings. I want to know that d/w is just down the road (even if, actually, I've probably spoken to her more in the past few months than we ever used to manage then!). No one lives where they used to anymore (if that makes any sense), that era has finished but...
I don't mean to be a big whinger. I've already been round to someone's house in this new city, a very kind and friendly older couple who took care of me on Sunday when I explored a strange new church (it was very different for me, I'm unlikely to settle there but it was a very refreshing change) and I know that I will find more people here. I know I'll meet them and they will be fabulous...I just don't want to have to leave any more people!
All the people in the Hutt that we've left behind, the people we've now left in Carlisle (admittedly with a couple of them it is just the case that we got in first, another few months and they'd've left us), all the people scattered across the UK...would you all like to come and live down the round from me again please? Thank you very much

Wednesday, August 06, 2008

Entirely Impossible...

...but we did it!
We found out on Friday that we could move into our new house on Tuesday. We had to be out of our old house on Saturday morning so had a brief spell back at the in-laws (which included MiL's birthday, good timing! And good time). Then Tuesday morning we set off with a full van, a fairly full car and here we are in another new city. In a house full of boxes (thank goodness there is a sofa to sit on...there isn't anything else to sit on!) Husbink had to start work this morning (at 7.15am...which isn't too rude in the grand scheme of things but seems very rude for a first day). I'm not sure it is going well which is a little concerning but I think it is only not going well in an induction-days-are-soul-destroyers kind of way.
I have shifted boxes as much as possible. Washed up a lot of newsprint covered items. Pondered how we are going to fit all our kitchen stuff (and food) into the kitchen. It is a very good kitchen for surface space but not so much for cupboards...hmm.
Then I went to Asda. Turns out that Asda here is in a HUGE shopping complex which was really scary and confusing when the whole place is still scary and confusing. And then of course I had the whole "there's nothing to make you homesick like a supermarket" moment though I don't really know where I'm homesick for. Still, I managed to not actually cry...
And just now, I'm taking a little break and so in the sunshine. The most incredible rain is falling. I've actually had to check a couple of times to make sure it isn't properly flooding the yard, cos it is almost a pond already...