Posts Tagged ‘Spanish’

Going to Pedro Almodóvar. Julieta

November 29, 2016

Pedro Almodóvar’s movies are always as good as taking a holiday. It revives the spirit. One leaves the cinema elated. What Hitchcock was for thrillers, Pedro is for passion and guilt. Julieta is again a film where familiar territory is sought by Pedro Almodóvar. The story is mainly filmed in glorious Madrid. A city for which the movie camera seemed to have been invented. It is not for nothing that even the New York City’s Woody Allen has filmed in Spain if not France as well. The lack of hoardings and ugly signage a bonus on its own.

From the very opening till the last I was taken. With padding the years on, I did not think I still had it ‘to be taken’ Cynicism seeks friendships in the old, and it can creep in. But, there you go. It is never too late. The poetry of images in this film doesn’t let up. The story of relationships, family and children and its insane pain and unavoidable losses along life’s wanderings is searing up front. But,it is the way the envelope of this film slowly opens its contents, that makes this film a work of art. Of course, the architecture of Madrid and all things Spanish, gives it the background. Without this it would just not work the same way.

The story involves a daughter deciding not to contact her mother again for many years. Grief stricken, the ageing mother comes to grips with this terrible loss. She seeks answers and as they begin to reveal themselves, she starts to understand the subtleties of where and how children grow up, move away. It is when the daughter too experiences a terrible loss, she seeks and understands the cruelty. Even loving people are capable of causing so much pain on each other. Why is that so?

A great movie.

A normal day.

November 19, 2015

After all the sardine excitement of a few days ago topped by the glorious rack of lamb yesterday, it was time to calm down, take a breather and try have a normal day. One ought to be on the guard of excessiveness, even if it involves sardines.  As I got up this morning I was so resolute. Before even the first coffee, I went to the front of our compound and picked up both garbage cans. Earlier on I had heard them getting emptied. I have seen those modern garbage trucks in action.

They are fitted with extendable hydraulic forks that clamp the garbage can, hoist them up while also tipping them upside- down. They disgorge their contents inside a covered truck.  All this is done flawlessly in one swoop by just a single person who also drives the truck. The empty can gets gently put back on the nature strip.

With a bit of squinting and fogging ones glasses one could just imagine it being a kind of ballet where the prima donna gets picked up, turned over and then gently put back on the stage. A kind of  modern Pyotr Tchaikovsky’s ballet of The Sleeping Beauty. Other aficionados of watching garbage trucks in action might well prefer and dwell over his version of the Nut-Cracker suite.

In the old days, the garbage cans were made of zinc and it took a whole army of men to deal with them. I remember a kind of large heavy gate at the end of the truck compressing the garbage. It was the norm to leave a crate of brown ‘long necks’ for the garbos at Christmas time. This was a particular difficult period for garbage- men. Especially afterwards when all the remnants of the festivities would rank darkly inside those cans. The hot sun relentlessly cooking the prawn-shells and heaven knows what else that had putrefied. A  tough period. A cold beer was very welcome. That has now all gone. No more gifts for the garbo.

After I picked up the plastic lidded garbage cans, I dressed and made coffee. The plan was to tackle the snails in the garden for which we had to shop. We also had run out of garlic. Lately we have made the decision not to economise on garlic and get the Spanish variety. The Chinese garlic, with all respect for Mao, doesn’t cut the mustard. We make up to the Chinese by getting their Bok-Choy. There is just nothing like blanched fresh Bok-Choy glazed with some sesame oil. It really is the most delicious vegetable and at 99cents a bunch at Harris Farm Market, is a top buy. Go and get it.

I do hope farmers make good money. They deserve it. I can’t believe when dieticians complain that the poor get fat because they can’t afford good food. How cheap are vegetables, including carrots, potatoes,  beans. A packet of rice or pasta? Tinned sardines or tuna. Even fresh Australian salmon,  four fillets for $12.90? It is far more the intrusion of the Macdonald’s and their rotten food quarter pounder outlets, KFC is another one. Why are they still given development application approvals when Australia has one of the world’s highest numbers of those Fast food and take-outs Per Capita? It is Capitalism murder on a grand scale now. It is! How long before action is taken? It kills more than Isis. Far more.

Take it easy now, Gerard. remember a ‘normal’ day.