Tuesday, 2 October 2001

The surgeon’s mate and a holiday report

Listening to:

Ella Fitzgerald singing I love Paris, by Cole Porter. My CD traversal is up to P, and this CD is filed under P for Porter, because it’s Ella Fitzgerald singing the Cole Porter songbook. A CD featuring Ella Fitzgerald singing songs by a variety of composers would be filed under F, of course.

Holiday reading:

Patrick O'Brian, The surgeon's mate.

This is the seventh in the O’Brian Aubrey-Maturin series, and is very good. It starts with the heroes in Nova Scotia, having just escaped from the clutches of the nefarious Americans. Eventually they get back to Britain, are assigned to a mission in the Baltic, and things get better from there on in. (I’m being vague to avoid giving the interesting plot away.) I like this novel particularly because it has a great mix of naval action and espionage activities, ranging across a wide variety of settings.

I was away in the south of France last week. I stayed in a gîte near the city of Montpellier. I didn’t actually get to see a lot of the city, but what I did see looked very nice. We were a way out of town, near the village of St. Martin-de-Londres. The landscape in this neck of the woods is really pretty spectacular, featuring the impressive Pic St. Loup and big blue skies. This area is also an up and coming wine region (search for Pic St. Loup on Google and you get a lot more about the wines than the mountain), and I’d be lying if I said we didn’t sample any of the local produce.

I decided not to try to take Ulysses away with me as holiday reading. Instead I took a couple of other books, more suitable for easy consumption. I'll provide reviews of these in the near future.

Finally, a site with a neat premise, free disposable e-mail addresses. Why would you want such a thing? So you can hand out addresses to potentially dodgy web-sites, get a few messages from the site, and then have the rest of the messages get automatically dropped. Check its FAQ.