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The Contemplations, Rants & Reminiscences of DavidB327

Something Sensational To Read On The Train

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Well the bank holiday weekend typically proved to be cold, dark, windy and wet.  Nevertheless that did not stop Christie and me from having an excellent weekend.  On Saturday we went out for dinner to Tentazione, an Italian restaurant in Shad Thames I could not recommend too highly.  Their pasta (fresh pasta not dried) is always amazingly scrumptious, with beautiful sauces.  So I had penne pasta for primo, and for secondo grilled vegetables with couscous.   Christie had the same for primo and a risotto for secondo.  Although it was a bit on the quiet side (not surprising since a lot of people had gone off to their favourite caravan park for a few days) there was a relaxed atmosphere, without the mad exodus at 11.30pm that happens in other restaurants.


On Monday we went to the Opera House at Covent Garden to see the ballet Romeo and Juliet.  Although I’ve seen lots of modern dance on stage, it’s only in recent years that I’ve been to see classical ballet.  A pity really, because classical ballet is so amazingly spectacular.


We were in the second row of the stalls, so I managed to see what was going on reasonably well.  Of course being Romeo and Juliet you know it’s all going to end in tears (literally insofar as some of the audience was concerned), but knowing how it ends certainly does not detract from the drama.  The scene set at the ball was performed so beautifully, supported by the rousing Prokofiev score (I wish the BBC wouldn’t use it on The Apprentice though, it’s really annoying).  I was completely enthralled by the sword fighting scenes, and being so close to the stage the clash of metal on metal was loud and clear, which intensified the dramatic effect.  I was not surprised to hear the announcement during the interval that Mercutio had been injured and would have to be replaced by another dancer.  Oddly enough that didn’t happen, but I guess ‘the show must go on’ as the old adage goes – well at least until the end of the 2nd act for him. 


I was also impressed by the quality of the dancing (and so was the rest of the audience), but most of all by Juliet.  In particular when Romeo picks up her ‘lifeless’ body, and she is being dragged around the stage.  It must take a lot of dedication to carry on pretending to be lifeless when that happens.  I can’t wait to go back there!


After the show we went for a meal to La Ballerina.  We’d never been there before, and given some of our restaurant experiences we were hopeful of having something decent to eat, but wary that it might not be too good.  Well we need not have worried.  La Ballerina is advertised as a family run restaurant, and that’s how it comes across.  What you get is good, basic Italian food in pleasant surroundings, with friendly service.  It was a good end to the holiday.




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