On the road
Boy on a Bike
Lets first address the elephant in the room, Im not particularly a cyclist……
I just wanted to get that out there, so don’t be expecting a great deal of cycling gear reviews or tales of the spectacular rides I’ve undertaken. Don’t get me wrong I do own a couple of bikes and very much can see the appeal but I have never yet devoted the time or effort to getting fully onboard so to speak. I am also still slightly traumatized by my experience of trying to negotiate my way back down a category 1 climb in Encamp Andorra after watching a stage 11 of the 2015 Vuelta, having only been on a road bike a couple of times before, but thats a story for another day.
So ill tell you about what I have signed up for in the near future to test my fitness.
The road to the isles 1/2 marathon on May 12th. Starting just outside Arisaig, on the beautiful West coast, the run negotiates its way through a undulating but particularly picturesque route around the famous Camusdarach beach, through the village of Morar before finishing in Mallaig. Having missed out by a matter of seconds on my goal of getting round under 1 hour 45 minutes Ill be going again to try and make it this time. Although its a relatively small field around 400 it a perfectly formed and well worth a trip (still spaces available)
To enter Road to the Isles CLICK HERE
At the Movies
The Shape of Water
First trip to the pictures in a while proved to be a wholly worthwhile experience, this is not always the case when Mrs picks a movie (I give you The Hostel to name one frankly the worst movie Ive ever seen, 90 mins ill never get back).
The shape of water is a genre mixing, surreal, visually engaging cinematic experience from Guillermo del Toro. Set in the early sixties its part B movie, part cold war thriller but mostly a love story that touches on the cultural politics of the time. The love story is based around Elisa a mute cleaner working in a Government research facility and a mysterious aquatic creature dubbed the ‘Asset’ . The asset horrifies Colonel Strickland the agent tasked with its security and the relationship between the three forms the crux of the story. The performances are superb, styling great and the cinematography wonderful and the whole package was captivating from start to end I can’t recommend it enough.
On the couch
Along with not really being a cyclist another thing that I must admit to is that Im a little bit country, so when I came across a documentary on sky arts the other night I was most pleased. Heartworn Highways revisited is a look at “new country talent in Nashville. Wayne Price’s documentary goes back to the country-music capital, finding a fresh crop of singer-songwriters existing outside the industry mainstream” . Luckily I was aware of some of the artists featured such as Robert Ellis and John McCauley of Deertick as there is not a great degree of backstory nor context in the documentary but the music and performances are great and its well worth a watch even without the detail. After a bit of research I found it was a sequel of sorts to Heartworn Highways which was a 1976 documentary of the same ilk featuring Townes Van Sant, Guy Clark and Steve Earle but as yet I have not watched it but it is ready and waiting on the Sky box.
Both are still available through on demand on Sky Arts
Through the Speakers
The album that has been on heavy rotation this month has been St Vincent’s latest release Masseduction. Its a bit of a pop, indie, rock electronic, masterclass from Annie Clark particular favourite being track 5 Los Ageless. Not much else to say but give it a listen
LISTEN NOW CLICK HERE
To try AMAZON MUSIC CLICK HERE
Video for Los Angeles
On the Bookshelf
This week I have been mostly reading Simon Seabag Montefiore’s (yes it is a tremendous name) Titans of History. Basically it runs through some of the biggest hitters of world history giving you an introduction to their lives over only 4 or 5 pages each.
Titans of History “presents the lives of the giants who have made our world. The cast varies from conquerors, poets, kings, empresses and whores to psychopaths and prophets, composers and explorers”
It takes you from Confucius to Plato to Alexander the Great and on to Picasso. Obviously it doesn’t go into great detail but it does give you enough info for an overview the subjects life. Good reading indeed and it has given me a few ideas of some folks I want to get some more reading on.
CLICK HERE to buy
Next one up, which Ive been looking forward to for a while, is Willy Vlautin’s (of Richmond Fontaine fame) latest novel ‘Don’t skip out on me’.
CLICK HERE to buy
At the Bar
Not wine for me this week but Rum, Pussers Blue label original to be exact. A dark , smooth molasses Rum thats stellar with some ice and coke but for my particular choice it has to be a slice of lime squeezed with some ice and Old Jamaica ginger beer good in a long glass even better in a pint glass.
Click HERE to BUY
Out and About
Just a quick recommendation on the restaurant front, had a great meal out at Fishers of Leith last weekend. A truly tremendous seafood restaurant great food, wine, service and not too heavy on the pocket well worth a trip.
Rolling with 1 Click here Rolling with 2 Click here Rolling with 3 Click here Rolling with 4 Click here Rolling with 5 Click here