London – Aarhus – London in a day


I officially passed the 3 months in London border, and to keep it short London is home. I took 2 bags with me when I came here, and all the important and neccesary stuff was in it, carefully selected.

But I am beginning to miss some of the things that didn’t make through the first selection. And in stead of buying them again here and have everything double when my stuff one day gets shipped to the UK, it was cheaper to buy a plainticket to fly over to Aarhus and get it. Sunglasses (London today : 24 degrees and sunny), had-to-leave-behind things like DVD’s, certain books, my WIndows XP installation CD, a decent raincoat (not needed yet, but the day might come) and some other practical things. And I also need to pick up some post at my old address. And I am dying to get my Lawless Heart home.
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Market Boy – The National Theatre, London

[Picture on it’s way]

After 2 days of indoor nose blowing, today was the day to get out again. Back to work, and much better, back to London. I missed being in the city, I missed him and him, and the Southbank, and the feeling of just being here. The weather was making the evening close to perfect, and I gave it the finishing touch by buying another mango blaster and sit down on a bench on the South bank.

One of the reasons why London is such a cool city is this. While reading my book, and writing a bit, thinking about what we might do this evening, I suddenly realised that I was about a 100 meters away from the National Theatre.

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TGITC back on track

The Girl In The CafeI just personally packed a new The Girl In The Cafe DVD, and will send it off to the next person on the list in Holland. I have given up waiting for it, I guess the person having the DVD either loves the film so much that he couldn’t let her go, or has some other reason to spoil the project.
Whatever the reason, the TGITC on tour is restarted, and will hopefully continue without problems. Sorry about the delay.

I had to check if the DVD did play, and just wanted to see a few seconds of the film to be sure everything was OK, before sending her off. I did that at 11.30pm, close to bedtime. Which was a very stupid idea.

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7 months

It took Google exactly 7 months to include thegirlinthecafe.com in the index (today is the day). I really wonder why.
I have a few ideas:

1. Google doesn’t like girls

2. Google hates cafe’s

3. Google got naughty thoughts when considering the name thegirlinthecafe.com and decided to store it in the sandbox for a while to cool off

4. Google is running a Bill posters will be prosecuted policy

5. Google is having some serious resource problems indexing the fast growing web

Whatever the reason, the girl and google are on speaking terms again. But there is a helluva lot of making up to do. Google can start by adding a Todo list to Google calendar, than I might love him again, just a bit.

Wembley

Because Wembley associated with London (in my world that is), a one time only Dutch piece of text. Because it is such an original idea (spreading a book over 206 websites). And because I one day hope to get this far too (having written something decent). Here we go, here’s a chapter of Richard Osinga’s Wembley. (Read more about the Wembley project)

wembley
Dit is fragment nummer 199 van het boek “Wembley” van Richard Osinga.

De sigarenman rookt een pijp. De zoete geur herinnert me aan hete marktdagen met Manu. We slenterden rond langs de kraampjes en bleven hangen bij de suikerrietverkoper. Hij wenkte ons en deed het afval voor ons in een plastic zak. We aten de pulp van de uitgeperste stengels suikerriet. Ze was droog en harig, maar zweemde nog naar het zoete sap.
Alles herinnert me aan mijn stad. Ik kan geen aangereden huisdier zien dat aan de rand van de weg ligt te wachten op de dood, zonder met heimwee te denken aan thuis.
Ik wijs naar de krasloten. Hij scheurt een lot van de rol. Ik leg het geld neer en pak het lot. We wisselen geen woord.
Ik bekijk het gekleurde stuk papier. Ik kan de volgorde kiezen waarin ik de vakjes open kras, maar dat verandert niets aan de uitkomst. Je krast en je krast en je wint niets.

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The Girl In The …


well Cafe would be the only right word for it. Put that together with the dating thing, and you have all the ingredients for another close to embarrasing experience.
(note : it was not in THE cafe. You have to be really something before I invite you over there).

So I was standing in front of the Starbucks, waiting for him. And I was way too early.

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Little Venice and Camden Lock


I never knew London had canals. Not before I moved here at least. They even have a place called Little Venice, which is the place where Grand Union Canal meets the Regents Canal. It is great for walking, because you can walk along the old towpath (from the time they used horses to pull the boats) all the way to Camden Lock. Somehow I always seem to end up in Camden.

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Natural History Museum, London

Dinosaur in the National History Museum

If you like museums, South Kensington is the place. Here you’ll find the Science Museum, the V&A (design) museum and the Natural History Museum very close to each other. And Kensington Gardens, and Royal Albert Hall are just around the corner too.

If you are a National Geographic reader or Discovery Channel fan you would probably love the Natural History Museum. If you are interested in dinosaurs even more, ’cause they have quite a lot of them. Expect a complete zoo of stuffed animals. And on a rainy Sunday (last weekend), expect a whole zoo of people too and get a better understanding of what claustophobic means.

Even though located in a fantastic and beautifully decorated building, it wasn’t really me. I prefer living animals (to watch, mind you) and less people. But this is a world famous museum, and one of London’s topattractions, so go and check it out for yourself, it’s for free.

Free entrance. South Kensington tube station.
(The Big Dinosaur picture is on the photoblog, shaken, not stirred, but in this case I quite like that)

Take me somewhere I can call a home

London Thames
I met up with 2 girls in the Starbucks on Leicester Square, and after some text communication about what we looked like, we found each other. We were going to see Prime. Prime was actually quite fun to watch, a real girls night out film, and if you love films like Love Actually you probably like this one too. Meryl Streep is hilarious, and they luckily chose the not too obvious endning. (a 7.5 for this one)

But this wasn’t the highlight of the evening for me.

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X-Men: The Last Stand (8/10)

X-Men: The Last Stand (2006)

X-Men: The Last Stand

I haven’t seen all X-Men films. I saw the first one when it came out, and wanted to see the last one, because of Ian McKellen. He is cool as the powerful carcrushing Magneto. And I happen to like slightly nerdish high tech films like these. It is not really the depth of the story it is about in X-Men, even though this 3rd one does have some moments of thought. No it’s the special effects, and they are very well done. Pure entertainment, and I haven’t looked at my watch at all during this film.

Tagline: When a cure is found to treat mutations, lines are drawn amongst the X-Men, led by Professor Charles Xavier (Stewart), and the Brotherhood, a band of powerful mutants organized under Xavier’s former ally, Magneto (McKellen).

Directed by Brett Ratner

Cast Hugh Jackman, Halle Berry, Ian McKellen, Patrick Stewart

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Douglas Street

Douglas Street
I have been in London for nearly 3 months now. And I am doing my best to become a real Londoner. This means crossing streets even though the light is red. Say “please” after nearly everything you say. Reading a book in the tube. Be on time for appointments, even when travelling by tube. And being able to recognize all the different coins. And I haven’t been in any mens rooms lately either.

All the things I was doing wrong the first weeks, I have overcome.

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The Da Vinci Code (6/10)

The Da Vinci Code (2006)I read the book before the film, and I was glad I did. Without a little bit of background info, the film would have been even more confusing. I liked the first 75% of the book a lot, after that I felt the book faded out. I liked the last 25% of the film, the first 75% part was just plain boring, and completely lacked the intensity of the book.

There was no chemistry whatsoever between Tom Hanks and Audrey Tautou, which is impressive as I both like them as actors. And I even liked Tom Hanks’ long hair, he looked quite cool with it. But it just wasn’t enough to make it work for me. I found Jean Reno irritating, and Paul Bettany as albino monk, naah come on.

The only real highlight in this film was Ian McKellen. Really fantastic actor, and Brit, but he couldn’t save this film either. The only reason this film gets a 6 is because it has some shots from London. Bonuspoints for that. The Louvre scenes are filmed in the UK too by the way, they rebuilt a part of the museum on the set.

So – should you see it ?
Well if you want to take part in the hype discussion about this film, you might want to. If not, pick another film to spent your money on. Which one ? Well The Squid and the Whale was quite allright actually.

Tagline A murder inside the Louvre and clues in Da Vinci paintings lead to the discovery of a religious mystery protected by a secret society for two thousand years — which could shake the foundations of Christianity.

Directed by Ron Howard

Cast Tom Hanks, Audrey Tautou, Ian McKellen, Jean Reno, Paul Bettany

The Girl gets a life

In the train back home from work I was thinking about what I could do on this course. I didn’t need to think long about that. I think I know a girl who can’t wait to get a life of her own. I have no idea how much we are going to accomplish in just 3 evenings, but it would be cool to have her starring in her own (very) short movieclip. Consider this to be a very rough first sketch attempt (and I am very bad with Flash), but I do have a micro story in my head, which could be fun to make. And I think she’s happy to finally have a beating heart.

(And several messages from Denmark are confirming that the postcards now really are available in cafe’s in Denmark. And the DVD of the project is still lost. I’ll give it until the start of June, if it hasn’t arrived with the next person then, I’ll send a new DVD around. I still hope on a happy ending though …)

G8 – act now

Lawrence (Bill Nighy), at the G8 in the Girl In The Cafe
Lawrence (Bill Nighy), at the G8 in the Girl In The Cafe

The Girl In The Cafe was made in 2005 as a part of the makepovertyhistory.org campaign. The film got broadcasted just before the G8 (Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the United Kingdom, the United States of America, and the Russian Federation. Together, those countries represent 66.5% of the world economy) meeting in Scotland, and a fictional G8 meeting is big part of the film.

This year the G8 meeting is going to be helt in St. Petersburg in July. A lot of promises were made at the previous G8 meeting. And to make sure those powerful people keep their promises, Sir Bob asks you to send President Putin an email. To remind him to keep Africa on the agenda. If they do, 4 million lives a year could be saved by 2010. If they don’t, many millions will die of preventable disease and hunger.

As Sir Bob writes:
It’s not rock n roll. It’s poverty.

It’s not glamour or celebrity. It’s death and disease.

It’s not Bob and Bono. It’s you and it’s them.

It’s us.

Thank you.
Bob Geldof

I’m sure Bill does approve too.

It would be a total joke, having this website – loving the film this much and not asking you to signup.

So : All it takes is filling out your name and email address, and press send. That’s not too much trouble is it ?

Related links:
One – the campaign to make poverty history
(yes Bono is there, but so is Brat, and Liam, and Tom, and Jamie and Antonio, and Orlando, and George, and Mos Def, and well they are all there.)
Live8.com – maybe you should see this clip too