The world redeemed...


or rather, what a wonderful weekend I have had.

On Friday, our little family enjoyed the Indian summer in the square near the school, as they were setting up a sjamanistic festival with sand sculptures, etc. while the children had fun in a teepee and jumped around on the stage.

On Saturday, we dropped by the aforementioned sjamanistic festival, and then headed off to our new canteen: "I Famosi", where Italian food is served the right way. And then we saw the best dance performance that we have seen this century.
I add another clip and a recommendation: if you can catch anything by Akram Khan this year, then do!

The Chinese male dancer was absolutely exceptional. They received a standing ovation and as far as I can judge, they merited every second of it.

On Sunday, the beloved and I roamed the city after we awoke from our "Cointreaupolitan" stupour and had a delicious but healthy breakfast, followed by some cabinet hunting. We did eventually find a 1930s radio cabinet for our living room, with inlaid wood.

On Sunday evening, as I whiled away the time waiting for SO to return home who is watching one of Belgium's oldest and most prestigious banks being carved up, I came across this:

I would like to make it known that I take back everything I said last week about Nigella Lawson. Thank you, Daily Mail, for being the cherry on top of a wonderful three days.

Life can be beautiful. Insert consented sigh.

Everything's beautiful at the ballet...


Ah, it has been such a long time since we have been to the ballet. This year, we have finally taken a subscription again and will be at least catching a few performances here and there.

Saturday's offering:

After the more intimate duets with Sidi Larbi Cherkaoui (zero degrees) and Sylvie Guillem (Sacred Monsters), Akram Khan again joins forces with long-time collaborator and multi award-winning composer Nitin Sawhney, and has brought together a new company of eight dancers. A collaboration with China’s classical ballet flagship company, the National Ballet of China, the dancers come from different cultures, traditions and dance backgrounds: Chinese, Korean, Indian, South-African and Spanish. As such they resemble a present day version of the tale of Babel. Being a community that wants to create together a utopian project but speaking both with their bodies and tongues different languages.

They meet in one of this globalised world’s transit zones and try to communicate, to share ‘the things they carry with them’: their experiences, their memories of their original homes, the dreams and aspirations that made them move. They are carriers. They are bahok.

Here's a clip:

I'll let you know if we liked it .



Excuse me, but what happened? This was supposed to be my event of the year, the climactic apex, the stars and moon in the sky?

I mean, let's face it, thanks to my neurotic Christmas-impaired sister, Yule time is always a bit of a gamble in this family. The food is always indisputably good, the turkey incredible, and I could ramble on. The company less so.

Imagine my excitement, and the hard time I was having containing it, when Her Domestic Goddishness announced that she was pondering a magnum opus on that much cherished winter family fest.

Presently, the ink on the paper dried, and the tome is now ready to be dispatched through Amazon et al from 2 October onwards.

But, hold on, who was involved in the creation of the cover photo? What is this diminished goddess that I behold? Holding potatoes no less, not a turkey in sight, and invested in a colour clash of magnanimous proportions reminiscent of some of the tchotchkes that my Scandinavian relatives send me every year. Nary a cleavage in sight (pouts). Where is the sparkle, the sex, the Christmas tree effect? Where is Nigella, the snow bunny, in Salzburg? (sobs)

I guess I will have to wait for the book itself to feast mine eyes (and lest we should forget what it's all about, my palate). Oh, and this year, I will be having a Christmas potluck on 27 December, for all those people I know who loathe the family aspect of it, but who enjoy good food and good company. You have been warned!

Bittersweet symphony


Pretty much sums up the way I feel at the moment...
SO is in for surgery (yes, again) in October. School issue is still not resolved. Not in the mood to work. Economy is tanking worldwide (Morgan Stanley teetering, how is this possible?) and Belgium is still a strange place to live. Sigh. Can we wrap up 2008 now, please?

I can see Russia from my house!


Tina Fey as Sarah Palin last night on SNL! Courtesy of the kind people at the HuffPo.

Apologies for silence


We are waging a bitter battle against the Alderman for Education of our city, who has changed the rules with regard to registration. All of a sudden, it would seem that we will have to look for another school in two years from now, as we live 1.9 km from door to door, and anyone who lives closer has priority.

I invite you to look at those digits again. Yes: 1.9 km. Not 5, not ten, just two...

Chasing elephants....


Liverpool has its giant spider, Antwerp has its elephant parade, comprising seventy elephants, which have been placed haphazardly around the city. On the daily school run, we encounter ten of them (even witnessed them being set up), and today, we tried to chase down another 22. The munchkin crawled under them, ran around them, and generally had a good time*.

The Elephant Parade is designed to draw attention to the plight of Asian elephants. Artists are asked to create an elephant, which is then auctioned off.

We then stopped for an ice tea and other delights at the Brasserie Populaire, which has always been a favourite, and navigated our way home through the masses, who were taking in the Liberation festivities in Antwerp's Grote Markt. Brassbands and uniforms galore.

Another pitstop at Fisk Boutique, for some Icelandic codcakes and salmon for dinner and the day imperceptibly drew to a peaceful close. Tomorrow, the munchkin and I will be braving the rain and wind on the annual street outing to the middle of nowhere. A 5-mile walk with a 4-year old. Oh, joy...

* Yes, that is me in the background screeching on my phone. Photo courtesy of SO.

In the City...


DDG on the move today and this is what I saw along the way.

"I guess it's just a feeling - in the city..."

An experiment...


All I can think of is of slut-red raspberries in champagne jelly every time I look down at my hands. But it's growing on me.

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