Oh dearie me! I am sorry! I had no idea that there were so many naked pages on this blog. I’ve spent a while this afternoon sorting out the content and the look. It’s annoying but I’m across it now. Do feel free to take a look, won’t you?

I guess I must have lost all that information when I translated my theme first from Linen to Diary/Journal and thence here to Minnow. I’ve been flitting around like Goldilocks recently thanks to my accursed low boredom threshold but I’m happy with this theme. For the time being. I haven’t finished it finished yet but there are actually Vimeos on the Home Movies page and Playlists on the Lists page now.

You’ll also be able to see my Reviews page, on which I intend to put my honest opinions about stuff I’ve purchased or sampled. I’m using a Portfolio plugin for the first time but I’m such a self-taught novice that I don’t think I have a handle on it yet. My page looks nothing like those gorgeous sample pages that people have but I’m getting there.

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No work on our building project today. They’ve stopped for the bank holiday weekend. I’m pleased about this: it gives us a break from the Kango hammer and it means our neighbours aren’t disturbed over their long weekend. I only wish some of them had been as considerate in recent years. If I recall correctly, we had to call out the Noise Pollution Inspectors of the Council’s Environmental Health department out last Easter Sunday because of the noise nuisance being caused by building work a couple of doors away.

Do you like the site office with the hard hats and high vis (which should be an Oasis single) and the first aid kit all lined up neatly in our leaky carport? I think it’s quite sweet.

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The OH has been getting up and leaving for work phenomenally early and returning late because he’s been preparing to give a training seminar in Paris. It was well received and he was really pleased to have done it. But look! He’s monitored his weight loss and heart rate as usual and found something interesting today:

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This, I think is evidence of a stress reaction. See how there is an inverse correlation between his weight and his heart rate. Thin as a pin, he is one of those people who, irritatingly, loses weight at stressful times. I must say I have always had the opposite reaction to stress: I eat and gain weight.

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I’m supposed to be looking around for an alternative Richard Strauss song and something in French to sing for my diploma recital. I do love singing, and speaking, in French. I fell in love with sound of the language early in my teens and I’ve always said that if I had my time again I would have done a French degree. I’m sure it would have been more use than my  Chinese degree.

Anyway, the French songs on the diploma list include La Grenouillère by Poulenc:

The title is familiar as it refers to a little resort on the Seine at Bougival, close to where we lived for a couple of years. I took up running when we were there to get some exercise and try to burn off the extra calories from fresh croissants at the weekend and Grands Crèmes and chouquettes with some of the other trailing mums. There were no trailing dads.

On the towpath, I used to run past a sign that marked the spot where La Grenouillère existed and was painted by both Monet and Renoir. I don’t think I’m allowed to include the picture on this blog but follow the links to see them. The sign on the Bougival riverbank depicts the Renoir painting but those tall trees (poplars?) in the Monet picture: it still looks like that now. I used to love that run. The Seine never looked the same from day to day.

So Poulenc set the words of the poet Guillaume Apollinaire to music to make this song. I’ve tried but I can’t seem to find any connection between Apollinaire and Monet or Renoir, even though he was in Paris at the turn of the 20th Century. What a pity. It would be so convenient if they had been friends. I feel I should learn the song as there’s such a personal connection now.

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It’s Good Friday. When I was a child it was a solemn, quiet day and the shops didn’t open at all. Now it’s a shopping day like every other day except there are more people about because most, not all, people are off work. I think it’s strange that people wish each other Happy Good Friday, when it’s the day that Jesus was crucified. I don’t believe in God at all or any religion but I never fail to be moved by the story of the crucifixion. Happy Easter if you celebrate it and I hope you’re having a relaxing time if you don’t.