Once Works Well was pure technology. Now it seeks merely to divert.
Pansy subjects - Verse! Opera! Domestic trivia! - are now commonplace.
The 300-word limit for posts is retained. The ego is enlarged

Thursday, 9 September 2010

Text, with added value

Unlike Rick who came to Casablanca for the waters (Police Chief: But there are no waters here. Rick: I was misinformed.) the BBs came to Prague to hear/see opera and were not misinformed. Good music at half London prices. The initial target of four had to be cut down to Figaro (fine ensemble in small Estates Theatre with limited onstage resources) and Magic Flute (State Opera House; directorial flaws; first-rate Papageno and Pamina). A marionette version of Don Giovanni was avoided, possibly due to prejudice.

In the daytime we were guided electro-magnetically by Julia who enhanced her Prague Polymath status. Discouraged by Sunday crowds at the Castle we accepted her default and stared tranquilly at the handwritten conductor’s score of Beethoven Five in nearby Lobkowski Palace. The following day, as a further antidote to excess humanity, a text (Julia texts as naturally as breathing, but much more quickly) directed us to an all-embracing cliff-top view of the Vltava and an adjacent cemetery containing Dvorak, Smetana, Capek and Neruda.

Tomorrow again, as we stood bemused by a string of cubist Picassos at the National Gallery another text arrived at midday suggesting we lunch at the Bohemian Bagel “just across the road”.

Text-Julia is witty, sympathetic and ever on tap. Real-life, three-dimensional Julia offers fiercely fast conversation driven by enthusiasm over a Wikipedia range. Unsurprisingly polymathic, of course, but she listens with equal intensity and that’s unbeatable. And her husband answered my bedevilled question about Henry James in a couple of gentle and concise sentences. The best holidays are not architecture but people over dinner.