Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Walk to Dunscombe

Another good walk which is very close to the edge of the cliffs in places is the walk to Dunscombe, just up the road from Salcombe. Most of this walk is nice and flat and the large hills can be avoided mostly, if you don't enjoy walking up large hills.

It is quite busy up here as again it is part of the South West Coast path and I meet many people along the route. There are a lot of rare butterflies and it is good to see the butterfly hunters armed with expensive cameras these days instead of the nets of old. I also saw a very bright bird with a yellow head and a red body, not a goldfinch although we had three of those in our garden for twenty five minutes the other day, eating seeds from the plants, a rare sight here.

There is some fine ancient earthworking on the edge of Dunscombe cliffs, not even marked on the maps, but some beautiful serpentine shapes covered in lovely long grass. I always dislike the fact that when you visit an old site in the UK they are always titivated and tidied to take all the romance out of the place and turn them into a site for cream teas and giftshops. The English seem obsessed with cutting grass and turning the country into a manicured lawn. I will go back and photograph some of these workings for you at a later date.

It is intensely hot here at the moment which is odd for the middle of summer, as usually it is raining and chilly about this time of year, we almost don't know what to do with it but we enjoy it as much as possible as we know that it is all too brief.

A large storm is coming across from the west and I think it wise to head for home. I hear the sound of approaching thunder from where I am in the woods and make it home just as the first raindrops start to fall, good timing for once.

Tragic though Michael Jacksons death surely is, on the plus side it has pushed Iran out of the news here as much as is possible and so hopefully buys them a bit of time. People here don't give a shit about Iran and the election but we are having it shoved down our throats in the news everyday, Iran is evil blah blah, doesn't it remind anybody of anything? People have really short memories here, they do however care about Michael Jackson, so good on you Michael.


john said...

I don't think that the timing of any strike on Iran would change because of MJ, but it has knocked Iran out of the news somewhat. I have been wondering of late about the much hyped 'Summer of Rage' It's only just July though so plenty of time yet I suppose.

john said...

All the crazy white flowered tree's are Elders, in case anyone was wondering.

nobody said...

Thanks John, I was wondering actually. I assume that it's the fellow upon which elderberries grow and blah, blah, blah, elderberry wine, yes?

Terrific photos. What occurred to me was that apart from one errant transport vessel, everything you captured in the viewfinder would barely have changed for hundreds of years. I got a spooky time travel zap just thinking about it.

As for Mr Jackson, I'm in the middle of another mind-control book and I find the idea of him, and all those other people oft-named as mind-control slaves, to be less and less unlikely. I don't know about you, but lately Aangirfan has been doing my head in.

john said...

Yes those are the tree's for elderberries and elderflower wine. I know someone out here who has been out picking flowers to sell for making wine with.

That vessel in the photo's is a platform for the cranes to remove the last of the Napoli. They have had a good run on its removal and seem to be coming back and staying for as long as possible, making a bit of a meal of it really.

Yes the aangirfan MJ MC stuff is very interesting, lots of good links and to the excellent RigInt site which has a remarkable body of work as I expect you know. It's a pity its not updated anymore but the forum is always good.

john said...

Funnily I was thinking of time travel the other day when I was out. I have just finished fixing my bike up and have been out exploring a few new places and I got the distinct impression that the further I cycled the further back in time I was going and said so when I got back. Spooky.

the Silverfish said...

Nice pics but when do we get to see Crop circles?

Penny said...

I only have one word, to describe all those pictures, ok two.

Absolutely lovely.

and silv: crop circles???

john said...

Hi Silverfish
We've not seen any cropcircles around here, most seem to be in Wiltshire and near to the old monuments. All the best ariel pictures and updates are here
cropcircle connector

the latest one is the same as the humming bird at Nazca, though they haven't noticed this yet. Maybe I should nip over and tell them.

john said...

Thanks Penny

We don't know who makes the cropcircles though I remember talking to a circus friend of mine and saying to him that it would be very difficult to make the shapes so accurately at night over the course of one night(about 5 hours of darkness this time of year) and he reckoned that it was just the sort of challenge he and his friends would like to take on. Who knows eh?

john said...

I hate doing those blue linky things, for some reason it always takes about ten attempts to get it to work.

john said...

Congratulations to the fellow in Istanbul who managed to find my blog with a google search for 'Johann hairjob'

the Silverfish said...

John there is one glaring feature in every last crop circle that no one seems to notice or at least make mention of. Could you tell me what it is?

john said...

Do you mean the tramlines Silverfish?

Skye said...

I too was thinking those fields in the one pic would make for a good place to put in a crop circle or three :)

Lovely pics John, I'm glad to hear you made it home before the rain hit though!

john said...

Cheers Skye

I don't mind getting wet most of the time but it was nice timing to get right the way down off the hills before the storm came through.

It would be good to see some crop circles in grass for a change. Some of the crop circle designs I think are quite beautiful, others not so. I personally think that they are manmade though it must be tricky making them at night. I reckon that they are nice but not that important, I don't know what other people think about them.

Has anybody heard from Susana lately? I wondered how she was getting on.

cheers for now.

nobody said...

Funny you should mention it. I was just now wondering how she was doing. I wasn't sure if I should pop a note on her blog or leave it for a bit. She did say she was travelling you know.

john said...

Cheers Nobody. Yes she seemed to have a lot to do though there has been no word from her for some time now. I expect that she is still busy but I was wondering if anyone knew if all was ok. All the best to you susana and family anyway, we're hoping you are getting on ok.

On a completely different note we watched kung fu hustle tonight and thought it was very good. I would have liked to watch it again with the commentaries but I can't understand any of it unfortunately.

I was interested to see The Shout used as weapon, it reminded me of the old film 'The Shout' with Alan Bates,I think. That was based on a story by Robert Graves who knew a lot about history and mythology. From what I remember ABs character learnt The Shout from Australian Aboriginals. Do you know if such a story or legend exists in Australia Nobody?

Also do you know the name of the instrument that looked like a koto in KFH? Oh dear questions questions!

nobody said...

Hee Hee, one of my absolute top ten. I think the triumph of that flick is all the people he lets scene-steal it. The Landlady! Good God!

Is it not a koto? That's what I had it pegged as. The 'shout' (aka 'lion's roar') was good wasn't it? I haven't heard of that flick you mention, nor of any connection to any aboriginal legend. Could it be connected to the concept of the 'Coo-ee'? There isn't an Australian who hasn't heard of this - it's part of the vernacular. And it works. If you were in the bush you'd be mad to do anything else. Might it be that?

Whilst Kungfu Hustle is Stephen Chow's triumph, all of his films are possessed of a similar humanitarian vein. The early stuff are mostly genre pieces albeit slightly bent ones what with Chao being Chao. Perhaps the closest thing to KFH is Shaolin Soccer, which is bloody marvellous. Have you seen that?

And following KFH he made CJ7, which ordinarily would be considered a disappointment (there's no kungfu), but isn't, this on account of it being such a perfect heartbreaker. Hmm... might go and watch it again tonight.

john said...

Cheers nobody
I haven't seen any of his other films but I will look out for them. I recently found a shop selling second hand dvds at really low prices because people want blue ray discs now and are ditching dvds so I have been catching up on some films then off they will go to the charity shops to sell again, unless I really like them. I really liked KFH and will enjoy watching it again.

I thought the instrument was a koto but then thought that there might be a chinese version/equivalent.

I don't think The Shout was a coo-ee as it was designed to kill rather than find or be found. I remember The Shout not being a very good film but a better short story, though I haven't seen it for a long time. It was shot in north devon coincidently.

I think Susana was, amongst other things, going to a friend who was dying so I expect she has quite a lot to be doing at the moment and is busy, I just wondered if anyone had heard anything.

A news story that made me laugh quite a lot tonight was the story of the queens first garden party of the year being washed out by two terrific thunderstorms including giant hail. There are some lovely pictures at our wonderful Daily Mail site. Yay! there is a God. Whoops, sorry Your Maj.

Cheers for now.

john said...

It seems that I may have underestimated the quality of the film version of The Shout.

I have been looking across the internet and it has got some good reviews. Bearing in mind that I haven't seen the film for over twenty years.

I have had no luck finding any origins for the story yet though.

john said...

from an interview with Alan Bates:

"YOU KNOW when you read a script whether you respond to it and whether or not it relates to your own ideas of truth. There is credibility in "The Shout," however mysterious, however removed from the everyday.

Crossley's story is within the realms of possibility, but it touches on the unknown. People are mystified by it and, most of all, they are forced to question."

This is Alan Bates talking about the man he plays in his new movie, a man named Charles Crossley who is the central character in the film (based on a Robert Graves short story) an asylum inmate who believes -- and forces others to believe -- that he possesses an ancient magic and an ancient power. Crossley claims he can kill with a shout. He says he can produce a vocal sound so mind-shattering that no living creature can hear it at close range and survive. Clearly the concept and the story fascinate Mr Bates.

"I don't know what I think about Crossley, I just accept him. I have never considered why or where he is within society...there are so many different levels of mental conditions and power.

"With Crossley the death shout is something mystical -- it is magic. We all know examples of the power of sound...'opera singers can shatter crystal,' as it says in the script, but with Crossley it's much more than that. He believes that his power is a divine gift -- only it has been given to him by a magician, a witch-doctor, not by a god.

"But what is a nightmare? What is belief in God? What is religion? there is an unknown area in all of us. Do you believe in ghosts?"
As Bates sagely points out, "Many people don't believe in ghosts until they see one, or think they have seen one." It is very much the same with Crossley and his strange, macabre story.

Alan Bates gives Charles Crossley flesh and blood; he gives him imagination and sensitivity; and he gives him what Crossley craves most, power. When Bates performs the death-shout, seeing really is believing.

The actual 'shout' sequences were filmed amidst Saunton Burrows, which stretch back some 2,000 acres from North Devon's Atlantic coastline. The 'burrows' are, in fact, remote sand-dunes.

Said Alan, "I think my final summing up of Crossley is this: There are some people who put you on guard because they frighten you. They have some power -- it could be murder, it could be possession of the soul -- that instantly alarms. There aren't many people like that, but there are some, people simply who are dangerous to know. That's what Crossley is, he is dangerous to know."

The director of "The Shout"is Jerzy Skolimowski, the brilliant Polish director responsible for "Deep End." This was the first time that he and Bates had worked together.

"Jerzy is terrific to work with. He is remarkable in the evenness and certainty of what he wants to do and is constantly and consistently open to new ideas -- right up to the last moment before the camera turns. He's quite brave, really. And, unlike some film directors, he never uses actors as something to be shoved around like puppets."

Alan was also delighted with the other members of the cast, Susannah York, John Hurt, Robert Stephens and Tim Curry. "I've known Robert since my early days at the Royal Court in the late fifties. We are good friends.
"A cast is a chemical balance -- a balance of elements which you never know until you get there. This is a cast which can play brilliantly off each other."

Looking back over his career, he says "Many of my roles have been quite tough subjects, requiring time, trouble and a lot of thought. Some of them were quite hard to take because they stretched both the imagination and awareness of the audience. But those are the things I find satisfying and those are the things that last."

All of which explains how and why Alan Bates came to star in "The Shout," in the demanding, complex role of Charles Crossley. "The film has suspense and the structure of a thriller, but it also has a highly disturbing quality," says Alan. "It is a thriller of the mind."

nobody said...

Damn, I'd love to see this. But! I'll bet money it's impossible to find. I'm certain I never saw it in China neither. Oh well, never mind.