Monday, May 9, 2011

Social Whirl

I lead a fairly quiet life here in Kettwig, I have two regular diary dates per month (book group and expats) but this weekend I swear my feet didn't touch the ground.

It started with Friday's book group, shouldn't be late, I told Simon, as we were only going to be six people (because that's all that said could/would come) I did make it home before pumpkin time, but I think only just...Somehow we ended up being ten (it drives me nuts when people don't respond either way as to whether they can come or not...maybe next month I'll say in the email we'll change the venue then they'll have to repsond to find out where to go...) It was a good evening despite the lack of several of my favourite members (Rebecca with a seriously bad back, Kamesh en route back from Africa & Marianne busy with an Aussie visitor) and despite a certain person 'entertaining' us with a story about how she and her sister score points off their mother who is 'so stupid' she doesn't realise they're making fun of her...the perfect tale to be telling in a group where possibly half are mothers and with mother's day only 24 hours away. Tact and diplomacy, not traits the Americans are renowned for I guess.

Saturday was the 'Music for Japan' benefit concert at Lulu's and I'd volunteered to help set up and then to help out - I was there from 10.30 until we managed to get someone else to take over the cocktail stand at 5pm. It was good fun, I learnt how to make a Cairpirinha cocktail although not a Margarita because although we offered both (as well as an Aperol Spritz - which takes no learning as it is only Aperol & Prosecco & ice) the Germans seem to be overly fond of the Cairpirinha, I guess because it tastes so refreshing. We had strict instructions about the quantities for each cocktail, so many cl's of each spirit and how much lime/orange etc, but one customer quite early on ordered two Cairpirinha, quailed at the price (2 euro of which went straight to the charity) and then returned after a couple of minutes asking for more sugar and lime and then more of the spirit...they ended up paying for 2 drinks but getting 4, we weren't amused, it's all for charity for goodness sake, and then just to rub margarita salt in the wound they managed to make those drinks last ALL afternoon.

Sunday I had a date at the theatre. It's the Arts Festival in Reckinghausen again and again we had tickets to see John Malkovich. This year's offering was the 'Giacomo Variations'. It was all about Casanova and his writing of his autobiography...I think...what I know for sure is that John Malkovich played the elderly Casanova, the music was beautiful, the operatic bits in Italian were helped by their German subtitling (although are they still subtitles if they appear at the top of the stage?) the costuming was sublime and the play was bonkers in every sense of the word, although this shouldn't really have come as a surprise seeing as a play about a world famous lover that doesn't contain any sex would surely be lacking an essential characteristic of the man and although John Malkovich does tend to play 'off the wall' characters I hadn't expected this piece to be quite so....bonkers.
The people next to us didn't come back after the interval and to be honest I don't think we'd have missed anything if we'd done the same. Towards the end both Muna and I were willing Casanova to just die, we thought we were in luck and then he got up and sang again, damn the man. On our way out I suggested that maybe next year we should avoid any John Malkovich offering at the festival but Muna believes that with theatre that takes itself so seriously we're getting our full creative fix for the whole year in one swift shot. Just have to try not to gag while swigging it back!

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