Tag Archives: Rike

Welcome, spring!

002 (2)Since this has been the darkest winter in Central Europe for many, many years, I can’t wait till spring starts. It’s not the low temperatures or the regular sleet that bother me, it’s the lack of light. So you can imagine my delight when I discovered the first harbingers of spring next to my terrace today! Aren’t they pretty?

– Rike Horstmann

Watching the oldies: Hush … Hush, Sweet Charlotte (1964)

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gluDUR-_qKU[/youtube]Last weekend, for the first time ever I watched Hush … Hush, Sweet Charlotte (German title, incidentally: Lullaby for a Corpse). It’s a Southern Gothic story with quite a few horror elements, starring a fantastic Bette Davis and Olivia de Havilland. There’s Joseph Cotton in it, too, but sorry, completely overshadowed by the ladies. Continue reading

Earworm of the day: Chile lindo by Omara Portuondo

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fnCGJyeSYWo[/youtube]I love Omara Portuondo’s CD Dos Gardenias, from which this version of Chile lindo is taken. My favorite song on it is actually Gracias a la vida, but as I was unable to find a decent-sounding version on YouTube, and Chile lindo comes a close second, here it is!

I understand very little Spanish, so I don’t understand the text. But I love the music, the voice and the rendering of the song.

What songs in the Spanish language do you like especially?

– Rike Horstmann

New Year’s resolutions

In Germany, many people delight in making New Year’s resolutions and (at least) try to stick to them. Stopping to smoke, losing weight, or spending less are favorites. Do you do the same in your country? What are typical resolutions there?

I mostly tend to scoff at “big” New Year’s resolutions, but I like small ones. Here are mine for 2013:

  • Read more.
  • Spend just a little less time online (related to the one above).
  • Try out some new recipes for bread and winter vegetables (not at the same time – these just happen to be the fields I am interested in right now in the kitchen).
  • Deal with the huge heap of mending that has been assembling over the last months (possibly years).

What are your resolutions?

– Rike Horstmann

Christmas Tree Ornaments

006My mother collects Christmas tree ornaments. She puts about five ornaments on each single twig of the tree (I kid you not), and the overall effect is slightly overwhelming but very beautiful and festive. Over the years, I have been given a few ornaments for Christmas, so that my own tree looks quite nice, too. I don’t receive the very best ornaments, but sometimes she finds more than one of a sort at some flea market or Christmas fair, and then she passes it to me. Or I have liked one so very much that she found it in her heart to part with it. (She is a true collector, and doesn’t part with her treasures easily.) Here are some of my ornaments that I really like: Continue reading

Earworm of the day: Calling on Mary by Aimee Mann

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KMYOUeknzMw[/youtube]Once December comes round, I take my Christmas CDs down from the shelves and delve in. One More Drifter in the Snow by Aimee Mann is a firm favorite, and I can listen to it for hours (preferably while baking cookies, but doing some other works is just fine as well). Calling on Mary is the last song on the CD, but there are many others on it that I really like.

What do you listen to just before Christmas?

– Rike Horstmann

Struck mute

Each winter, I suffer from a cold or two, and just occasionally this results in me losing my voice for a week or so. It’s that time again, and here I am struck mute. I am still able to, but really should not, whisper, so I limit my verbal communication to a minimum. And even though I am used to this situation by now (having experienced it several times during the last 15 or so years), I still feel weird. Continue reading