Interesting weekend. Ended up at a very jolly party with two magicians, one of whom seemed quite depressed. The depressed one was also a hypnotist and it turned out an amateur ventriloquist. After a few drinks he disappeared suddenly and returned with a large and rather ugly ventriloquist’s dummy called ‘Dave the Dog’. He manoeuvred the dog’s mouth open and shut but no sound came out of either of them.
‘Are they already named when you buy them?’ I asked, not really liking the way the dog was looking at me.
‘Of course,’ said the dejected entertainer looking at me as if I was the mad one.
On the Sunday I was wretchedly tired but agreed to go to a concert with my aunt. We were sat upstairs and far at the back so the orchestra were a pink and gold blur to me. We had arrived, of course, late and, panting and whispering, crashed into our seats just before the music began upsetting some old git who managed to be incredibly rude and then pretend he couldn’t hear me apologise for disturbing him. The consequence of this was I sat through the whole of the Wagner Prelude thinking of ways to kill him. (Possibly appropriate for Wagner.)
Then there were ‘Four Elegiac Portraits for cello and orchestra’ and finally the magnificent, moving and creepy ‘Symphonie Fantastique’ by Berlioz. I am someone who believes that sitting still to listen to certain gorgeous music isn’t fair. It is somehow stifling. One should be allowed to ‘air conduct’ at the very least just as one would ‘air guitar’ at a Van Halen concert. Not being able to move around with the music or even sway or bounce in my seat usually leads to me nodding off at least once during such a marathon set. I discovered that my hair is now long enough to trap between my back and my seat and would keep my head firmly up when I drifted off. Very useful. However the Berlioz smacked me awake again. Bloody brilliant.