Thursday, November 03, 2005
What a weekend! For personal and other reasons it was a hectic rollercoaster of kinds. Good and bad things mixed as they do. Article to finish, trouble in paradise, trip to Amsterdam. I needed that like I needed a kick in the had. But my little sis was in Amsterdam and I promised her to join her and her boyfriend of the year. That was fun. It is always good to be with her. For a change her boyfriend is a decent and truly intelligent person and not a pompous prick. I liked him the very first moment she introduced us but I still keep an eye. They also seam to go along just fine and that is also unheard of.
I worked hard on the train putting order into a stack of ideas and going through a caseload of articles and publications of various progressive persuasions. It was a good distraction from personal dramas and worries and concentration felt good. It also let me finish - today early, very early in the morning - a piece on European reform.
Amsterdam was as fun as it gets. Great weather, sun shining, little wind, sparkling sky. We had a good walk checking out bookstores, windows and galleries. Visited the ladies, as a courtesy and as discovery trip for my little sis. As expected she was terribly disappointed. I believe she was expecting something straight out of Dante. Munching the must have Hummus Falafels at Moaz (I never leave Amsterdam without having had a few) we passed a lovely afternoon between the falling leafs over the channels and a local beauty browsing through photography books with Afghan dog in tow !!? How good is that.
One of the brief, totally relaxed moments came late Sunday night at a smoke filled, crammed little place called Alto. It is a jazz bar and a classical one with friends of the house, Sunday night crowd, and a bit of an international audience more expats then tourists. Hanging to my wine I listened to the young bands tribulations taking in the view of and then the conversation with what I thought is the piano man's girl and proved to be his sister. I enjoyed the parallel and so did she. We left early since my own sister was beat. The whole night had such a different dynamic then the previous Jazzy night in Brussels with the excellent Funky jazz concert of Maceo Parker. I have to do this more often. What? Jazz. conversation, trips, reading. The works.
This is a good image of the jazzy feeling at the recent Maceo Parker concert at Anciene Belgique. As with all Audi Jazz festival concerts this year it was quite a show. Good old Funk that we rarely get to witness live. People just jam packed the floor. I admit I prefer Jazz in small cosy, smoky places like the one in Amsterdam just last weekend. Somehow I always feel the need for a drink and chair to swing on the bit.