Digging in the Garden and Reading More of A PASSAGE TO INDIA

The Bay Area is experiencing a tremendous heat wave.  Fires are burning in Mount Diablo.  It is hotter now, in September, than it was in July.

The Ancient One seems to be coming through it remarkably well.  Aside from drinking copious amounts of water in the afternoon, she rests on the deck, gets up when self enters the garden, and can still sniff out errant figs on the ground.  Of all times to plant moss — !  But, indeed, that is the task self has set for today.  The moss came in large flats, $4.99 @ from Home Depot.

She plucked four more large apples from the apple tree.  The rest are really much too high to reach.  She hopes she can prevail upon son to get the rest, the other day he consented to help her but picked only one apple that he thought was ripe.  To be sure, the apple was enormous.  But — one apple!

Fielding and Aziz are together.  Self can’t be sure they’re in a garden, but “the eye flies became worse than ever and danced up close to their pupils, or crawled into their ears.  Fielding hit about wildly.”

Self loved when Kyi told her that Fielding was Forster’s alter-ego.  It feels right to treat him a such.  He has little of the pretensions of his class.  As Aziz reflects:  “There goes a queer chap . . . ”

“I travel light,” Fielding says.

“Travel light!  You are a most extraordinary race,” said Aziz, turning away as if he were going to sleep, and immediately turning back again.  “Is it your climate, or what?”

“Plenty of Indians travel light too — saddhus and such.  It’s one of the things I admire about your country.  Any man can travel light until he has a wife or children.  That’s part of my case against marriage.  I’m a holy man minus the holiness.  Hand that on to your three spies, and tell them to put that in their pipes.”

Aziz was charmed and interested, and turned the new idea over in his mind.  So this was why Mr. Fielding and a few others were so fearless!  They had nothing to lose.  But he himself was rooted in society and Islam.  He belonged to a tradition which bound him, and he had brought children into the world, the society of the future.  Though he lived so vaguely in this flimsy bungalow, nevertheless he was placed, placed.

And now, back to the garden.

Stay tuned, dear blog readers.  Stay tuned.

Details, Details: An Unusual POV 4

It never stops, self’s impulse to look at other bloggers’ takes on the weekly photo challenge. This Week’s Prompt is:  An Unusual POV.  She had fun looking at tilted subjects by On Random Thoughts and Chris Breebaart’s photo, in all shades of luminous gray, of a building in Paris (La Défense).

And here are a few more from self’s stash:

Sunset from the Balcony of an Apartment in Paris, July 2012

Sunset from the Balcony of an Apartment in Paris, July 2012

The Front Door, Early Spring

The Front Door, Early Spring 2013

Masskara Festival, Bacolod, October 2012

Masskara Festival, Bacolod, October 2012

Stay tuned, dear blog readers.  Stay tuned.

“Riddick” vs. “Star Trek: Into Darkness”

The money piled onto J. J. Abrams’ lap for the sequel to the first “Star Trek” re-boot did us no favors.

What happens when Hollywood plies a talented director with money?  It’s rather hard not to resist piling on the special effects, like a little boy who is suddenly given too much candy.  Result:  less human story.

Which is sad!  “Into Darkness” opened with a pointless chase scene on a planet over-run by natives (When oh when will Hollywood ever get over the need to fetishize alien cultures by portraying them as mud-slathered savages) and had Spock suiting up in a suit that looked like something from a New York Fashion Week catwalk.  Ridiculous!  Spock should always be in uniform, at least the first sight of him should be.  He is the most cerebral character in the world.  No, we do not want to see him in action mode.  We want to see him snuggling up to Bambi!  Er, to Uhura!

On to discussion of “Riddick,” which is the second sequel to “Pitch Black.”

“Pitch Black” was a very inventive movie.  It had a “look.”

The first sequel, “Chronicles of Riddick,” was also gorgeous to look at.  Thandy Newton and Karl Urban had opportunity to wear the most fabulous costumes.  It also had Judi Dench floating around like a cloud, but her costume unfortunately was limited to white, vaguely Biblical attire.

Now to the sequel to the sequel, “Riddick.”

“Riddick” was on a much leaner budget than “Star Trek: Into Darkness” (naturally, since “Chronicles of Riddick” was a dud — in fact, self considers it a miracle of tenacity that “Riddick” was made at all) and the first half is pure theater.  Unfortunately, one cannot have Vin Diesel alone for an entire movie.  He has to engage in human interaction at some point, and self thinks it was extremely witty to have him, first, calling the hunters to him (as one of the mercs later says:  “He called a taxi”) by self-identifying and beaming out to the universe his presence on a planet we know only as “Not Furya.”  Naturally, this bit of chutzpah calls forth every two-bit merc in the vicinity, and we soon have two groups battling each other for the honor of putting Riddick’s head in a box.

And then there’s Katee Sackhoff who appears with the second group of mercs and keeps referring to the leader as “Boss,” which is interesting as she seems very “no-nonsense” and “take-charge” and calling someone “Boss” even though he actually IS a boss seems antithetical to the character.  But anyhoo.

Because of a rather limited budget, what happens is the characters never get off-planet.  This is great!  This is wonderful!

There is much macho posturing.  Also great!

There is an extended bathing scene involving Sackhoff, which reveals that this woman has quite a sultry figure (not apparent in “Battlestar Galactica,” the TV series which brought her recognition), and that her hairdo really sets off her neck and shoulders very nicely.  Super great!

After this bath scene (In the future, every movie and TV show should feature a bath scene, like the pivotal one in “Game of Thrones” Season 3 Episode 5), Riddick can be forgiven for — Heavens! — actually FLIRTING with Dahl.

Flirting is wonderful.  Especially in the middle of a David Twohy film.

All in all, “Riddick” gave self quite a pleasurable two hours.  Also because it was preceded by a preview for Keanu’s new movie, “47 Ronin,” which caused self’s jaw to drop all the way to the floor (The awesomeness of lines like:  “THEIR armies are infinite. And we are . . . 47 ronin!”)

Stay tuned, dear blog readers.  Stay tuned.

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