Wednesday 27 February 2013

February Fun

So, yes. February. In principle, I can't stand February. In England, at least, it tends to be the coldest, shittiest month, full of snow, sleet, sneet, and any other kinds of ice-cold precipitation. The other day, actual flakes of ice fell from the sky, crunching underfoot like crisps (ice crispies, if you will). It's a horrible month, and I curse the fates for choosing it to hold my birthday.

Still, as Februaries go, this was a pretty good one, with a good birthday. The weather held off for the most part, so I haven't had my plans scuppered by the usual inability of the rail network to cope with even the lightest covering of snow. At the very beginning of the month I had a week off, and used it well, visiting my very good friend Sekai in London, and my sister Becca and her gentleman Jim in Reading. Much fun was had, only slightly marred by the vicious man-flu that attacked both me and my sister over that weekend. Friday night that week was spent, on my part, shaking in bed with delirium, talking to people who weren't there and sobbing quietly to myself. My brain isn't in tip-top condition at the best of times, and it takes only a relatively mild fever to set it cackling and gibbering to itself.

Nonetheless, fun was had. Chinese food, fine ales, charming coffee shops - just the ticket. From Reading, sister and gentleman and I took to the road and visited the Living Rainforest in the small settlement of Hampstead Norreys. It's a wonderful place, a big shed full of jungle, managed by volunteers as an educational trust. Birds happily saunter around the complex among the visitors, while monkeys, tortoises, enormous monster cockroaches and one very laid back crocodilian live safely in enclosures. It's a very cool place.

Since then, I have enjoyed some other things, beyond stewing at work. On the 20th two fine friends and I went to Fareham to see Interalia Theatre (they of the Doctor Who stageplays) perform Blackadder on Stage. Two hours of classic Adderism, one episode from each series. Sean Ridley made a rather young and handsome Blackadder, but was absolutely spot on in the role, giving a snidely snivelling performance as the original Black Adder and a sardonically charming turn as his three successors. The rest of the cast were also excellent, particularly Nick Scovell channelling the ghost of Stephen Fry as Melchett (yes, I know Stephen Fry is still alive, which just goes to show what an achievement this is), the rather gorgeous Alexandra Maclean who made a perfect Queenie, a smashing Shadow and and a brilliant Bob, and Paul Denney as a boisterous, roisterous Flasheart. But really, they were all terrific - and what's more, following the format they can do five more performances!

And then it was birthday time. I was taken out for two birthday lunches (one on the day itself, one the day after, I'm not an animal), and went to see the excellent 2-Tone/Ska tribute band Mainly Madness and got some skank on. I got clothes and books and films and sweets, and a dinosaur projector torch. I'm so glad they still make those things. I used to have a Ghostbusters one, but the dinosaur version gives it a run for its money.

My greatest contrafibularities to all involved in a fine month. Thank you all.

1 comment: