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spring? not quite but almost

The warmest February 3 on record in Toronto – 16 degrees. Heavenly. A friend wrote that he was going for a run in shorts and t-shirt. But back to reality – zero – tomorrow. It sure was nice.

I’m meeting my friend Ken to see a film tomorrow – 45 years – and as I checked the times at the Varsity Cinema, I realized I’d seen nearly all the films and that they were all fabulous. Great great movies these days. (Except The Revenant, which I wouldn’t see if you paid me. “Suffering porn,” one review called it, and it sure sounds horrible. Who needs that?) Forgot to tell you that on the weekend, I went to see Brooklyn. I hadn’t rushed to see it – it looked nice but not that compelling, an immigrant story – but in fact, it’s stunning, beautifully written, shot and acted. The lead Saoirse (however that’s pronounced) Ronan is glorious, and Julie Walters is in full flight. My only complaint was that almost everyone in the film is so nice, so sweet – if only people and life were really that way. But  as another friend said, I’d gladly spend time with almost every character. Me too, especially the Italian boyfriend then husband, played by young Emory Cohen which does not sound like an Italian name to me. Mmmm, adorable.

The film made me think of Mum, sailing from England to NYC at the age of 24 to see if the wartime romance with her Yank would work out. She brought a big brown suitcase on the boat, just like the character in the film. I have that suitcase in my bedroom now – Cabin Class, the sticker says. I’ve been thinking of Mum too because the Australian Open was on last week. I do not watch tennis, but Mum did and Auntie Do still does, obsessively. I followed the matches through the Star, was thrilled when Milos Raonic did so well and was reviewed in the Guardian as “the mighty Canadian.” He’s tough and he does not give up. Go, Milos! I’m sorry Andy Murray lost to the human tank Djokovic, but it didn’t matter once Federer was out of the scene. How I miss my mother sometimes. She would have mourned the early defeat of her beloved Fed and celebrated Milos with a little glass of sauvignon blanc. And she would have sobbed all the way through Brooklyn.

Speaking of cabin class – I’m going to Vancouver in March, returning via Calgary, so found what seemed a good price with Air Canada and booked on-line. As I completed the booking, the site asked me to choose a seat for a choice of prices – $25 for a regular seat and $65 for a special seat. So you now book a fare – but a seat is extra! I guess you can always stand in the aisle, or be strapped to the wing. Absurd and dishonest, it seems to me.

I’m trying something as I struggle with my winter insomnia – turning off the computer at 9 p.m. I tried it last night and did sleep better. It’s damn hard, though. I kept coming into the kitchen and glancing at the little silver box, but it was asleep. I’ve so much reading to do, writing, tons of stuff, but this bright little machine keeps me tethered. So now – OFF!



4 Responses to “spring? not quite but almost”

  1. alandmillen says:

    This comment has been removed by the author.

  2. alandmillen says:

    Sorry, I messed up the first version. I just wanted to confirm that 45 Years and Brooklyn are both movies of great merit. The Swiss element in 45 Years had me gripped right from the start. What a couple of performances by both veteran actors. Charlotte Rampling's anguish goes right to the bone. As for Broooklyn, I was engaged on various levels. Having emigrated to Canada from the UK in 1957 with my parents, the film brought to mind memories of my mother's homesickness. Later in life I sometimes felt that my parents had never fully "left" the old country. And then when I left the west coast of Canada for a life in landlocked Switzerland in 1987 I struggled with homesickness on and off for years. So I closely identified with the character played by Saiorse (pronounced "seer-sha"). The scene where the old Irish guy sings at the soup-kitchen meal had me doing some serious blinking! Signing off with a late-night listen to Paul McCartney live at Amoeba Records in Hollywood in 2007. The CD was a freebie with the Daily Mail a few years ago.

  3. alandmillen says:

    And sorry about the ghastly syntax of the sentence that suggests that "the movie emigrated in 1957". Guilty of a classic schoolboy error. At my age!

  4. beth says:

    Alan, I'm about to post about 45 Years – I too found it tremendously moving, haunting – just a gorgeous piece of filmmaking. I have to say it also made me glad I'm single! Heartbreaking. And I agree about the soup-kitchen song, I too nearly wept. I just listened to "Another Day" on FB; so many beautiful songs he has tossed off through the years.

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About Beth

I began keeping a journal at the age of nine. Nearly fifty years later, I started this online journal, sharing reflections, reviews, updates, and the occasional secret.

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