My hike along a section of the North Cornwall Coast Path between Zennor and St. Ives
Bishopstone railway station in Sussex looks like Arnos Grove tube station in London but its main building includes a pair of military pillboxes: these are observation posts or blockhouses from which light weapons could be fired. The architects added these in 1940 but made them integral to the design. Although the site commands the beach, the arcs of fire from the pillboxes only point landwards.
The rest of the station is not in a good state, only one platform remains in use. The Coastway railway links Seaford with regular train services across the salt marshes with Newhaven. The railway line blends with the landscape, trains having been running since 1864.
Colourful, exuberant and loud: I’ve been the afternoon performance of this one of the most popular of all of this year’s Prom concerts, there are two performances of the same programme; not many programmes get a second airing. The broad audience for musical theatre queued in their droves, this a clearly a bargain for the many tourists who come to London for the musicals. and I am told that the queue for day tickets was already long at 9am. A predominantly girlie audience amongst the promenaders down at the front of the arena. And the concert performance was great fun with lots of exuberant energy. Orchestra and singers with amplification, which is required for the style of musical theatre but does reduce the subtlety of the sound.
Four dawns this August in Marseille. All from the same balcony and nearly consecutive mornings.
That Shadow of a Shadow at The Old Brompton Gallery
The artists’ collective Male Intensive Enquiry Unit (Male IEU) present work drawn from life for their inaugural exhibition.
I enjoyed this exhibition, the freshness of the artists’ various views was striking, the media modern and the diversity of scale of work exercised the eye, from Ali Zaidi’s intimate miniatures “Receive”, “Consent” and “Give”, to Graeme Messer’s life-size work “I’m here” which dominated the gallery space and in front of which he gave a live performance in matching grey hoodie and trackies. In some way the easiest work to approach - making the connection between Leonardo da Vinci’s “L’Uomo Vitruviano” (c. 1490) and a crucifixion - his performance emphasised (paradoxically) the humility of the artist in front of his own portrait, ie the shadow of the shadow.
We’ve been enjoying a variety of Rosso wines whilst touring Tuscany. This style of Italian red wine is capable of the finest, most smooth and most complex experience. Rosso is always 100% Sangiovese grape varietal. Variously cherry red or slightly tawny in the glass, Rosso wine ages relatively swiftly so the differences between a 2016 and 2013 are quite noticeable: the older wines being more rounded and less tannic with more complexity; left too long then the colour and aromas pale. Rosso wines also change rapidly, almost alarmingly, after being uncorked in the heat of a Tuscan evening; we have several times had the impression that the fantastic wine is deteriorating in front of us whilst the rural Italian kitchen struggles to supply its clientele.
Just now, May 2018, we found that Rosso 2016 is ready to drink, an “ordinary” 2015 is likely to be at its height whilst older bottles should be treated with suspicion except from a trusted cellar, in which case the bottle may be exceptionally fine, well in to the stratospheric class.