I guess the topic on most people’s radar until yesterday was the heatwave. People compare it to 1976 but I didn’t really experience hat. It was the year I moved from Jakarta to Hong Kong and I just remember a short break mid-summer when I do recall some pretty good weather.
1 Sport. I’m pretty selective when it comes to supporting sports teams and people these days because I find myself being too emotionally caught up in their performance that I have difficulty in enjoying the event. But the world cup was fine with Wales not showing I was then able simply to enjoy the spectacle and although I lent England my vote on account of the honest professionalism of Gareth Southgate (just think we might have been stuck with Sam Allardyce) when they lost it was not a big emotional let down. However I confess to rooting for Croatia in the final.
This week of course it’s all change and it’s Geraint Thomas from Cardiff who’s going to win le Tour. Incredibly he comes from the same comprehensive school as Gareth Bale and Sam Warburton and in an interview the sports master notes their avoidance of controversy and puts it down to the ethos of the school.
2 Restaurant. We’re really fortunate that we live in Histon, close to but not a part of Cambridge. Our community is well served with a buoyant High Street and six pubs (including one in the joined village of Impington). Early this year one of these was taken on and opened by the White’s Brasserie chain (that’s white as in Raymond Blanc) and it’s just right: not fine dining but a brasserie. Friday lunchtime was very hot but my crusted haddock with saffron sauce was just right.
3 Travel. we went to Yorkshire mid month. I know that everywhere looks good when the sun shines but what we saw this time was excellent and in fine condition. We were north of Knaresborough which I guess is Yorkshire Tour territory and it looks like the roads are maintained to a level to make cycling a pleasure. There’s a few too many hills for my liking but lots of variety to cycle through woodland, solid Yorkshire villages and rolling countryside.
Not only did we enjoy Yorkshire we also stayed in an excellent hotel, the General Tarleton in Ferrenby, and enjoyed a super meal in its restaurant.
4 TV. there’s a bit of a Welsh theme to this post because we’ve just come to the end of Hidden on BBC4 and we’re now well into Faith on BBC2. Both programs are based in Wales, north and mid respectively, and although Faith is more of a good honest whodunit Hidden is deeply noir (maybe it should be du). It’s based around Bangor and although there’s much I don’t recognise there’s a housing estate in the hills which is classic 60s council housing.
5 Book. I’ve just read Depraved Heart by Patricia Cornwell. It’s another ‘Kay Scarpetta thriller’ and I’ve read lots. But whereas the earlier ones were good honest stories of everyday pathology folk with the focus on the crime this one seems to be too much focussed on a core group of characters around whom the ‘crime’ is structured. Only this time it’s not so much a crime but a story of agency (FBI) politics and what’s referred to as ‘data fiction’ which at least is topical given our current worries about ‘fake news’ and the Facebook, Cambridge Analytica and Brexit media manipulation worries.