Monday, August 15, 2005

Stratford (pictures forthcoming)

Went to Stratford-on-Avon today, aka Touristtrapborrough.

Stratford is a town who's sole fame lies on the fact that Shakespeare lived there, which, it seems to be assumed, infected the entire town with a terminal case of coolness.

Not so, my dear friends, not so.

Stratford is a tourist trap. But it has its good points.

Popped by Arbor Antique Arms & Armor. Nice shop specializing in antique weaponry, both melee, firearm, and heavy. Pity I couldn't afford one single object in the bunch. There was some VERY nice shit. Had an interesting conversation with the proprieter regarding the fact that all the pieces are unique, and the fact that many collectors are apparently quite anal about getting to be the ONLY people who can tell the story of their collectables, and thus no photographs could be taken. Was a very interesting conversation, which also included the finer points of sword canes, Italian rapiers vs. English rapiers (the difference being about a foot and a half...bloody cheating Florentines [but of course I knew that one already]), and the transplanting of Damascan steel blades onto English hilts for military use.

After that went to the antique market where, to make a long story short, I ended up shelling out $100 for an antique, 1922 silver and horn cane. Beautiful piece. Just fucking beautiful. What's great is that I managed to haggle about 10 quid off the price. I hate haggling, I suck at it, but...meh. Saved me $22, I tell you what.

Saw a magician in the park. Funny guy, did a humorous routine involving straight jackets, pies, whips, and small children (not nessecarily in that order). It was his banter that got me to pay up to him, though. He was a nicely sarcastic, acerbic bastard. Strangely like another Englishman I chanced to meet back in March.

Had dinner at a very nice Italian restaraunt. Some sort of lemon cream sauce with fennel and celery. Beautiful tiramisu for dessert.

Indulged my love of Edgar Rice Burroughs by purchasing a trio of John Carter of Mars novels that I didn't own. I think I now have 7 out of the 11 novels published. Still kicking myself for not picking up a nice condition first printing of John Carter of Mars for $4. Stupid fucking me.

Finally, went to see a WONDERFUL performance of Shakespeare's As You Like It. Now, for those that don't know the last time I was in Stratford was 5 years ago, and my father and I went to see a fantastic performance of Romeo & Juliet, which we unfortunatly fell asleep halfway through when jetlag finally caught up to us.

Not so with this performance. I sat with one of the girls in the class, Stephanie (who is, sadly, already involved with someone else...I know how to pick em), and we gave our own little quiet commentary in single sentence comments back and forth to each other over the course of the play. Just the way that Shakespeare wrote it.

This was a fun performance, including slightly alternate costumes, Orlando dressed as Riley Finn's pattented "Cowboy Guy" (not quite, but it was the first thing to pop to mind), an appearence by a trailer trash character (don't ask), and some guy who might have either been Dionysus, Hyman, or possibly Jesus.

Was quite good.

Now back at university. Tomorrow I think I go to the interesting bangers and mash place I saw the other day.

Photos, with humorous titles, are forthcoming.


Post a Comment

<< Home