The Leopard

Brought up by a certain someone in a post talking about wanting to die under a lemon tree, thinking about his age (again!), being in Sicily, and loving a good story.

He always reels me in with his recommendations.

I used to listen to Radio 4 dramas a lot for a certain period. I still listen to the odd thing. There is a serial-based drama that has just started up again called Love In Recovery, about a group of people at a weekly AA group meeting.

I like the freedom radio dramas give you of being able to conjure up your own images and scenes. You can, quite literally, make your own film…paint your own characters exactly as you would want them (minus any vague descriptions of how a character looks to the novelist). The level of concentration for these is different to reading a book. I find it allows my imagery of things to be much more vivid.

This wasn’t a radio play but an abridged reading of the book. The way in which Alex Jennings read it was wonderful. I can certainly see why he was hired for the job!

Of particular enjoyment through the whole reading was the description of the days in which the newly betrothed Tancredi and Angelica would escape their chaperoned walks through the far flung quarters of Donnafugata. In the mind’s eye, such beautiful sensual images of soft pink skin, rose coloured lips (both male and female), fingertips delicately touching skin, etc, etc, quickened one’s pulse. Eluded to seductively, but all very much left to the imagination. Isn’t that how all the best written sex is? All the parts that you, as the reader, (or in this case, the listener) are left to imagine yourself? And of course in my current circumstance, my imagination ran amok!

I listened to all five parts in one sitting. Only breaking after part two to listen to the latest instalment of The Archers (some habits die hard).

I have never been to Italy, or indeed to Sicily…so my experiences of Palermo, Catania, the towering presence of Mount Etna, the deep azure of that “middling” sea are still somewhat a composite of things I see second hand…so far not experienced with my own naked eyes.

Perhaps that may change sometime soon?

I enjoyed listening to it very much. I may just download all the parts to it and share them here. It’ll only stay on iPlayer (ahem), I mean BBC Sounds for so long. And I’d like to keep it to listen to again and again in future – not have to rely on the Beeb to repeat it. In the meantime, if you click the image above of The Leopard – it will direct you to the BBC page for listening.

I think it may also be wise to invest in the novel, to read it in its entirety, unabridged.

I may also get back to listening to more BBC Radio drama.

Thanks for sharing it, Sir. As for the desire to die under a lemon tree? I’ll leave you with this…

Changing Rooms

The walls (wardrobe doors actually…well, part of the display extends to the wall) may change, but the view won’t.

A move will happen sometime this year. And it is just so damn exciting but also very much an adventure into the unknown. To be looking into buying a property is something I thought would only ever happen due to a lottery win. It’s one of those things in my life that, on the rare occasion, I would let myself dream about but NEVER actually believe would ever be real.

But at some point (with luck!) this year we’ll move house, but not just moving elsewhere but BUYING the house! And not just moving house but moving to a new part of the country…or even into a new country entirely!

There are things to take with me. I don’t want to take a lot. I arrived here with a suitcase. Literally. That was it. A suitcase of clothes, and a few little portable trinkets. The majority of what I want to take with me I have only accumulated over the past few years…including these beautiful things.

As I say…the walls may change but the view won’t.

New Wave: Dare To Be Different On DVD

A great documentary about Long Island radio station WLIR that broadcasted from 1959 until it was forced to close from having its licence revoked in 1987.

A champion of the second British invasion of the early 1980’s due to an overhaul and change in musical output. The station was very popular for those wanting exposure to new music, esp. the stuff that was being shipped and imported from across the Atlantic.

Many artists from the 70s and 80s music scene were interviewed for the documentary, among them Billy Idol, Midge Ure, Thomas Dolby, Howard Jones, Curt Smith, Debbie Harry and Chris Stein, Fred Schneider, Mike Peters, Tom Bailey, Lol Tolhurst, Nick Rhodes and Mike Score – to name a few.

In amongst those interviewed was Jim. There were just two small snippets of him talking and New Gold Dream was used as an opening musical introduction to the backstory and brief history of Long Island and the beginnings of what was then LIR – Long Island Radio.

Here are those snippets for SM fans to enjoy. I do highly recommend viewing the whole documentary if you get the chance. I’ve been waiting months to watch it myself, having to wait for its release onto DVD.

Holy Freaking Hell! Look At These!

Ermageerrrrrrd! I had seen that picture of Charlie before but NEVER these pictures of Jim! Holy freakballs – I WANT THEM! Laurie Evans – I PRAY you sell these as prints! I’ve GOT to have them! How the hell did it take me TWO MONTHS to find these out on the web?!

I suppose I go trawling around every day for ages…never see anything new, then give up for a while…and then LO! PHOTOGRAPHIC VISUAL GOLD!

I NEED THESE IN MY LIFE!