Sep. 26th, 2006 05:22 pm
lectrix_lecti: (Retro travel)
So. Berlin.

The hotel was bliss. Lovely big room, light and airy, tea and sherry in the lobby each afternoon, good breakfast, very nice staff. I got particularly fond of the barmaid, Mme Somethingfrenchsounding, who was far from professional but very charming. A shoehorn in the complementary basket was a new one, to me at least.

Also, the hotel was conveniently located right near buses and S-Bahn and Ku'damm.

We went all-out tourists for the occasion, including a 3-hour boat trip on Landwehrkanal and the Spree (which involved among other things a dinner served in the most sickly yellow light you can imagine. My Würstsalat looked like zombie puke). We also went to The Story of Berlin (not really worth the money), Brandenburger Tor (mostly by accident), the Zoo (wheeeeee), Bahnhof Zoo (where the husband got to loiter and pretend he was Christiane F.), Altes Museum (mummies!), the Pergamon Museum (amazing) and the museum in the former Stasi headquarters (which was absolutely brilliant).

And we saw Cirque de Soleil's show Dralion. Holy hell. That was incredible. It even cured me of much of my hatred for circus clowns.

A few highlights, with photos )

I suppose I should mention the food, if only to satisfy my food-obsessed spouse. Near our hotel was the most brilliant restaurant on the planet, a South American one with the best veal I've ever tasted and a banana panna cotta which was to die for.

For our wedding dinner, we went to Ana e Bruno, where the food was, well, delicious. Which was to be expected. At least two of the wines tasted like poorly filtered piss and then turned to nectar when matched with their food courses, which was a bit of an eye-opener to a wine philistine such as myself. They did, however, quite overdo the gourmet restaurant thang. I don't really appreciate being led practically by my hand to the toilet or having my glass of water topped off by one of the three hovering waiters every time I take a sip. Still, it was very memorable and great fun. Bruno's big thing is apparently to hold a speech on the menu for each guest, but we missed that. I gather this was because he only speaks Italian and German, and our German isn't good enough for this treat.

The Berlin fastfood, the Currywürst, tasted just as good as Bruno's creations to me, though. But I'm a food barbarian.

Oh, and we tied the knot at the embassy, complete with Sekt and forgetting the camera in the taxi (but retrieving it moments later, thank dog).

Have I forgotten something? Probably lots.
lectrix_lecti: (Coming through)
Going out for drinks with A Good Friend is faintly ridiculous the day before the hen party I so reluctantly agreed to let Another Good Friend arrange. I did however manage to go home before I got drunk, which was quite impressive, considering that tonight turned out to be one of my biannual "beer tastes good for once" happenings.

I hope they're not planning on giving me beer tomorrow. Hard liquor, please.

Got a (cheap) garment bag today, and a tripod. Purchasing the latter means that maybe I can get the damn macro/supermacro down. The days of the shaky hands fucking up the focus are over.

I also went and had a long and interesting talk with my boss, got overly excited because of what I'm supposed to do this autumn and have basically acted as hyper as I'm able to all day. Highly unusual beaming and bouncing has occurred. White chocolate mocca might temporarily have had something to do with that.

On a not so happy note, my oldest friend's father has had a brain haemorrhage today, which means that she can't come tomorrow. Bugger. And yes, I'm completely selfish about this and only think it's a pity because he can't babysit her son. Truth be told, I've never liked her father.

Bed. Wake up early tomorrow and kick boyfriend out to buy a suit (does this sound familiar, [ profile] she_dragon?). Play with camera and tripod. Play with friends. Yeah.

Oh, and there's this.


May. 12th, 2006 08:34 pm
lectrix_lecti: (Percy Wells 4 (figure bright background))
Hyperlux - for those who like photography.
lectrix_lecti: (Default)
Inexplicably, I'm annoyed and grumpy. I actually had a nice day (despite a little run-in with The Body Shop, where the company policy obviously is to log everything I buy and then make absolutely certain my preferred products will never be made again and the recipes will be destroyed). I even managed, along with bf, to spend some time at lovely Bare Jazz (for the Norwegian-challenged: 'bare' means 'only'), which is undoubtedly my favourite café. And a record shop. I don't buy many jazz records, but I think it's the perfect café background music - not insipid or irritating, it's smooth and generous and rich and every now and then I will fall silent and just listen.

Bare Jazz is a great place, I can feel my mood lifting just thinking about it.

Photobucket, however, annoys me a bit. Well, to be honest, more than a bit. Which is why I just now opened an account at Flickr. I'm also searching the Interweb for a good scanner/printer thingy, because most of my photos have been and will be taken with my good old RealFilm camera (and possibly a new good old RealFilm camera as soon as I find the one I want at a reasonable price).

How come nobody told me about Flickr before? Photobucket and Imageshack, ha. My mood is lifting even more browsing Flickr's features.

And now to something completely different; I'm developing a serious addiction to haiku. Perhaps not so odd, as I'm utterly fascinated by all things Japanese and wrote my major thesis on a hypertext short story called Lasting Image by Carolyn Guyer and Michael Joyce. This story, aside from being a technologically lovely piece of hypertext literature, has a Japanese theme. Go read it. It's wonderfully intricate and it's beautiful.

But I was going on about haiku, wasn't I?
Haiku is actually a quite young form of poetry, developed in the late 19th century. There are strict rules for Japanese haiku, but haiku in other languages are less strict, even to the length of the syllables. In Japanese, a haiku poem must consist of 5+7+5 syllables, in other languages with varying syllable patterns this rule doesn't always apply. The poem shall consist of to parts, divided by a colon, a dash or an ellipse, and both parts are meant to enrich the understanding of the other. Finally, the poem must contain a kigo, a word that indicates what season the poem is set in, but this can be less than obvious.

There's something wonderfully appealing about the strict form of the haiku, even the looser form of non-Japanese poems. Yes, I like sonnets too... It's my belief that modern poetry, free of formal demands, tends to make life all too easy for so-called poets. Everybody and their great-aunt can scrawl a few incoherent lines and call it "art", but very few are sufficiently gifted to be able to work within the strict boundaries of the sonnet or the haiku and come up with something good. I'm certainly not among them.

A haiku poem about summer, by Dhugal Lindsay:

they've gone...
where the beach umbrella was
the sand not quite so hot

July 2009

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