Archive: February, 2009

cryptic nights – james houston

cryptic nights

Excellent talk by the very interesting and annoyingly talented and disarming James Houston at the CCA, part of a new series called Cryptic Nights which looks set to host some interesting evenings. Make sure you watch his facinating Radiohead remix Big Ideas (Don’t get any).

pinup nights – indie glaswegians' finest

pinup nights

I was reminded of why Glasgow is such a great city for live music tonight, as we caught a couple of random bands after work, both of whom were incredibly polished – especially for all of our five pounds.

Both bands screamed Glasgow School of Art, down to their cardigans and converse shoes but that didn’t stop them putting on an entertaining evening.

First up we caught the second half of Belle & Sebastian-esque miabeane & the asthmatic scene, with beautiful multi-instrumental band members and a lush pop-folk lilt,
Hidden Masters followed with a tight melodic rock set, they were missing their keyboard player which may have added another dimension to their sound however they have definitely perfected their stadium rock moves for when they break the big time.

morocco by train

IMG_0541.JPG

This post has been a long time coming as we have been in and out of our flat with plastering and heating issues, and I have a little crazy at work. A quick summary of our Christmas trip below – but the flickr set is probably more interesting.

Having enjoyed our train rides to France last summer so much, and with support from the man in seat 61 Chhay & I decided to test the limits of the system and catch the train to Africa!

Unfortunately there isn’t a direct service from Glasgow Central to Marrakesh, so we pieced our route together traveling down to London, onto the Eurostar to Paris, overnight (in first class spleandour) to Madrid, where we paused for a day to take a breath, before crossing Andalucia to Algeciras in the shadow of Gibralta (by now getting quite weary), crossed the straights by ferry to Tanger for our first taste of Africa before (just to push things that little bit further) we got the sleeper to Marrakesh.
The journey was quite remarkable covering some fantastic terrain, interspersed with 3 course meals int he dining car, and lots of card games – cuarenta developing as a particular favourite much to the amusement of our fellow passengers I suspect.

Hotel Continental

No boring details but we had a day of contemporary architecture in Madrid, enjoyed an intense (though quite middle eastern feeling) introduction to Africa in Tanger before we spent five very relaxing days over christmas in the charming walled coastal town of Essaouira. It is incredible picturesque with narrow streets, a bustling fishing harbour, with fresh seafood cooked in front of you on teh harbour front as well as a pristine beach. We spent most of our time in our quirky rooftop apartment, shopped in the local markets, ate pastries from the French bakeries, or sat in front of the open fire. Occasionally we would venture out into the souks and alleys, explore local restaurants or go for a wander along the ramparts but generally we kept activity to a bare minimum. The energy levels increased once we returned to Marrakesh on our last day with it’s heaving souks and bazaars.
A mini visit to Barcelona for New Years eve on the way back looked like it may have been a step to far as we struggled to find places suitable to our eclectic (and often mutually exclusive) standards but the city worked its charms, and we also manged to catch up with some old friends and see their new baby before we jumped back on the train home via Paris and London.