Musings on two recently enjoyed, but rather different, books.
By Vilani And Dusinberre.
A Non-Mathematician At The Maths Jam Weekend
Extracted to A Non Mathematician At Maths Jam
Extracted to its own page.
The Story of Bolero
February 14, 2009
Extracted to The Story Of Bolero
A Salutary Reminder
September 9, 2008
We listen to so much chamber music now that I am inclined to
forget - even though I played in many orchestras when I was a
student - just what a difference the conductor makes. We had
the final of BBC's Maestro on this evening, and it was worth
sitting through all of it, even the intermediary waffles of
the presenter, just to see Maxim Vengerov and Roger Norrington
bring the BBC Concert Orchestra to life.
That said, we were very impressed with the three finalists. Conducting
is even more difficult than you may have gathered if you have been
watching the series!
Every now and again something happens that sparks a thought, or
someone does something that deserves brownie points. We had a great
time exploring Hadrian's Wall in August, and several people and places
contributed to that.
The B&B where we stayed. We do a lot of travelling, and once upon a
time I worked in a hotel. We are, therefore, the Guests From Hell:
we know how things should be, and I know how easy they should be.
Grindon was wonderful. Friendly, comfortable, and efficient - a
combination which is really very tricky to pull off.
We visited the Lakeland Bird Of Prey Centre on an impulse on the
drive home. These impulses sometimes lead to disappointment, but
not on this occasion. I've been to "wildlife displays" which were
slicker, but none where the person giving the presentation displayed
such a casual and easy mastery of their material. We just had to be
careful not to be caught out by his very dry sense of humour!
Well, one expects major attractions like Housesteads and Vindolanda
to "get it right" (whatever that may mean). Still, the talks that we
attended at both places were much better than the average: they provided
a sense of place and an idea of the current state of knowledge, and
they were both perfectly pitched for the interested but knowledgeable
- Vindolanda and Housesteads
Alnwick Gardens were fantastic, and Cragside and its builder, the
Victorian entrepreneur and inventor William Armstrong, should be
- Colins Blog describes other places that caught our imaginations.
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