Singing in what rain?; Planet Thanet;   Leave a comment

There is a shortage of water, hosepipe bans due to be imposed, all due to obviously a lack of rain.  Global warming?  Climate change? 

The climate is changing, no doubt, but as many of you Brits, I can remember as a kid my parents having to fill the bath so we had water due to a severe water shortage then, but it definitely does seem to rain less, especially in the south east of the UK.

What is a bit frightening is that there is no real rain forecast and unless we have torrential April showers, we’re going to be in trouble this year.

There is talk of bringing water in from Scotland, that’s a long way, although in California our water came from a different state, thousands of miles away.

It does seem barmy weather, (great word barmy).  Temperatures high for March, in Nashville today it’s forecast 80F, (25C).  

Blott on the landscape?

Over the weekend we went to the planet that is Thanet.

In particular we went to the Turner Centre in Margate, one of the biggest waste of public funding I’ve experienced.   I love Margate, for exactly what it is.  It’s like Rhyl and of course Barry Island, run down, seaside town, with penny arcades, and now with so many empty shops, it is a ghost town as far as the high street is concerned, all having moved to the nearby out of town shopping mall.

I know one of the people from the local council who was behind the Turner Centre – he has since left.  It has cost millions, and whilst I do agree of course in protecting our culture, what about investing in the future instead, future artists?   I understand the relationship between Turner and Margate, and also the need to revitalise Margate but there are many many empty buildings that could have been utilised at a fraction of the money.  And yes, I do like Turner, he inspired many great painters that came after him.

We had crayfish tails, and cockles and prawns, had an ice cream on the beach at Broadstairs, under the shadow of Dickens’ Bleak House and had a lovely day.  Bailey has discovered photography so was snapping pictures all day – just put David in front of his name!

He did actually take some great shots, especially enhanced with Instagram.  At the moment Jupiter and Venus are both visible, close to the moon, and he took a great photo the other night.

I also enjoyed Cliftonville too.  So many second hand shops and charity shops, like Weston super Mare.  I love thrift stores.  A quick story – we were looking for a second sofa for out home in Mount Juliet.  One Saturday we went to the local small shopping centre and outside the Goodwill store was this four seater sofa, in amazing condition, for ten dollars I think, if that.  However we have a normal car, so no way of getting it back, so CJ noticed a Mexican family about to drive away in their large pickup, went up to them and asked them if we could put it on their truck for a few bucks.  They didn’t speak much English and I think the shock of them being approached by this obviously deranged English woman left them speechless anyhow, so they agreed!  They obviously were in fear of their lives!  So Mom, Dad, granny and the kids were in the pickup, lovely people actually, and followed us back to our home!  Only in America! 


Talking of which starting to gear up for going back.  CJ goes in a few weeks time for three weeks, she’s going to catch Snow Patrol, with Ed Sheeran opening for them, at the Ryman, which promises to be a great show.  Before I go I’ve got audio plays to record, with Tim; finish off the vocals for the Rodeo CD; write the Summer Trilogy book; cast Weekend Break for performances in January; record the poetry CD; and sort out the finance for the film through Kickstarter!  No pressure then!

Going back to the rain, here are two favourite videos; the first is a Florida based band from the 80’s, Nucleaur Valdez, and Summer, without doubt one of the best cruising tracks ever –


and of course had to finish with this, a great video of Gene Kelly (I was going to put the Morecambe and Wise version but thought better of it!) and Usher, who is amazing in this, faithfully recreating Kelly’s dance steps – the best of both worlds – Singing in the Rain –


Posted March 13, 2012 by Jon Johanson in Uncategorized

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