Monday, April 21, 2014

Seals and sudden standstill

San Francisco Bay in sunshine: Alcatraz... seals basking on Pier 39... I thought this would be a pleasant break from writing and new running routine. I was half right. Our day out ended with me collapsed & feverish for 36 hours, cautiously emerging rather wobbly and very wary. My aim in re-starting running after a 24 year break ~ in 1990 I completed the New Forest Marathon in 4 hours 15 minutes ~ was to enter the Frome Half in July as a kind of birthday celebration but that's unlikely now. Mo and Anja, who arrived to stay in England last autumn to find me in a similar state, stoicly resumed care roles. I'm on the up now but no more 7 mile runs in the near future. In between whimpering and dozing I've managed a jigsaw & 2 movies: Mud, a pleasant Tom Sawyer fantasy with Matthew McConaughey and two sweet little boys, all too box-fresh to be credible dwellers of the Arkansas lake islands. The political thriller Page Eight is a much better movie: as one critic says, "I'd happily watch this cast read the phone book, but fortunately the script by David Hare (who also directed) is intelligent, engaging and generally makes good use of this singular cast's talents." Bill Nighy especially is absolutely brilliant, mercurial and mysteriously sexy.
Meanwhile over the pond, Billy Bragg played outside Raves from the Grave last Saturday, which is annual record store day, causing as you can imagine quite a jam in Cheap Street. I see Billy's also promoting Trussell Trust food banks, which despite a fearless campaign from the Mail on Sunday to prove that if you tell a lot of lies to compassionate people, some of them will believe them. I'm pleased to note the outcome was a surge of donations. 

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