The Theatre and Trafalgar Square

On Thursday evening a large group of us went to see “Madame Melville”, a contemporary play about a love affair between a young American school boy in France and his teacher, a french woman. The play starred Macaulay Culkin as one of its lead roles, and he was surprisingly good. He was quite comfortable on stage, and put on a great performance. The play itself was very mild: one which would probably fall flat on its face were it not for the masterful performances, directing, set design, lighting, and setting. It is a play that I believe only works in London – although it would probably take another viewing to catch everything that was interwoven into the script.

I had a rather persistent cough throughout which troubled me greatly. I did not wish to disturb people (especially in the quiet parts), but as you all well know, such things are not to be put off. The more one thinks about it, the more it makes itself known. Of course the cough always sounds louder at the source; but it was not pleasant, all the same.

I still have yet to find a piano that I can play, which is beginning to frustrate me quite a lot. I never realized how much of my spare time is dedicated to either the computer or the piano (both of which are quite limited here, the latter being totally restricted as I cannot find one). Forced to deal with free time, I was struck with the realization that I am often a pretty boring person. I don’t particularly like going out partying, nor do I really care to go to a dance hall or club. Give me a good dinner, good company, and a good piano and I’m set :)

I suppose 2 out of 3 isn’t all that bad.

Trafalgar Square is brilliant at night. The lighting of all the buildings and statues made for a wonderful display of architecture, art, and human ingenuity. I took several pictures without a flash hoping to reproduce some of the images I viewed there that evening. I do hope they turn out well.

Friday we took the “tourist’s” tour of London: seeing all of the notorious sites from our “coach” (bus). We saw Big Ben, The Changing of the Guard (first hand, not from the coach), the Tower of London (which wasn’t really a tower at all, but I suppose in its time it was), Tower Bridge, Parliament (and Parliament Square, with its statues of Winston Churchill, and Abraham Lincoln, along with several others I forget about now), and Buckingham Palace.

There is a strong sense of history here; a sense that things are very old and established mixed with the buzz of the new and developing. A seven hundred year old church between two ten-year-old business buildings. A two hundred year old house between two twenty year old 100 story apartment buildings. There is a lovely blend of time periods which gives one the sense that history is something dynamic and living – frozen once every second and preserved for a retrospective look into what once was the present, what once was the moment of retrospection, what once was a moment of life for someone standing where you are standing now. Fascinating. Engaging. Wonderful.