Good bye Doris

Doris Day passed away today at the age of 97.

I first saw her movies in my teens, I loved her spunk and spark and quick wit, she had a great smile and laugh and a beautiful voice. I share a birthday with her – April 3rd – and that always made me feel connected to her in a way. I loved seeing her with Rock Hudson, especially in Pillow Talk.

Doris Day Rock Hudson

In fact, I loved Pillow Talk so much, I have seen it several times (and I can still recommend it, even if it is a little dated). Some 6 or 7 years ago it was showing in a cinema and I organized a movie-night with some colleagues to go and see it on the big screen.

Two nights ago, on Saturday, I was feeling very tired after a busy week. I took some alone time, taking my laptop with me to my bedroom, and on a whim decided to watch Pillow Talk again to cheer me up. I don’t know what made me pick that, I could have picked any of so many other cheer-me-up-movies, but Pillow Talk it was, for the first time since that movie night. It feels like a very odd coincidence to me today.

Doris Day had great chemistry with not only Rock Hudson, I also really  loved her with James Garner, Rod Taylor and David Niven. She was very expressive and I loved that about her too.

I’m not going to go into a whole filmography and obituary of Doris Day, others can do that way better than I can…

But I am going to say thank you, Doris Day, for the smiles and laughs and touching my heart. I’ll leave you with her greatest hit…

Rest in peace, Doris Day. Your memory already is a blessing to me.

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Smiles of the week

New jobs are exhausting! The amount of information and complexity of issues and getting to know the people and trying to get a feel for the place with its (unspoken) rules can be somewhat overwhelming at times. But I can also safely say it’s been good, the people have been very nice to me, they have waited to start certain projects until I’d be around and I feel welcome. A new manager started the same day I did, had a talk with her yesterday, and she feels worlds removed from being a micro-manager, which is excellent news. Two or three clients (internal colleagues) who were frustrated because no one got back to them on certain issues (due to someone else leaving and there being no back up) were made happy by me because I was either able to solve something for them or at least able to listen to them, promising to look into the problem. I worked on Wednesday because they wanted me along for a work field trip, so I changed my day off to today without any micro-manager giving me shit about it. Heck, even the view from the 10th floor where I work is good! This is the view from the elevator hallway…

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Yes, first full week at my new job has been exhausting but good, which makes me smile!

But there were more smiles. Richard had a lovely little Twitter exchange promoting his The Lodge movie…

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… which means that for 3 days now this has been singing around in my head…

I’ve never been a big Grease fan (I know, sacrilege!) but I do like this song, not bad having that in my head and making me smile. 🙂

Another smile this week is the new second-hand car we bought and picked up on Wednesday, late in the afternoon. We had a guzzler for a car that could pull our caravan and, strictly speaking, we didn’t need it anymore, as we don’t have the caravan anymore. So, to make things a little cheaper for us (gas, taxes and insurance) and to be a little more environmentally friendly, we bought a hybrid Toyota Auris. My daughter had been with us when we bought the car 10 days ago but she was in Berlin with school for the week, so it was only our son who was with us when we picked it up.

The car has a ‘panorama roof’ (just glass, you can’t open it, but wonderful for gazing at the sky and daydreaming) which my son fell in love with. Yeah, the rain couldn’t take the smiles away.

Of course, the big smiley news is the news of Baby Sussex being born. Yes, Harry and Meghan have a son named Archie, who was born earlier this week. Pictures of the happy couple with baby were shared, which is worth a smile of its own…

… and Harry was in The Netherlands yesterday for the Invictus Games which are apparently coming to The Hague next year. Het got a little onesie from Prinses Margriet (former queen’s sister, our king’s aunt)…

However, the best part was the jacket he was wearing during a short bike ride, which also said “I am daddy”…

Harry daddy

Yeah, big time smiles for that one as well!

Early this morning my daughter came home from Berlin (they drove through the night)…

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She’s been exahusted, napped through most of the day, and she is out now with Mr Esther, giving the new car a little exercise. 🙂

And finally, Simon Baker. After The Mentalist ended I lost touch a bit with what he’s up to and while he does have Instagram, he doesn’t post that much on it. But he did post this today. My first thought was: “oh my, he’s looking so good”! And that smile, he has one of the best smiles I have ever seen on anyone. Then I looked closer and see that his Mentalist co-star and the person he ends up marrying on the show, Robin Tunney, has reacted to his post…

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… and then a short little exchange follows in the comments…

Now, wouldn’t it be lovely if these two meet up and take cute pictures together? A sort of happily ever after, after The Mentalist? Ah, the memories this brings back!

I’m totally up for a reunion with some pictures for the fans. Here’s living in hope!

Audrey’s 90th!

Today would have been Audrey Hepburn’s 90th birthday! She was born on May 4th, 1929 and died of cancer, way too young, at the age of 63 on January 20th, 1993. I was introduced to her via Roman Holiday in my teens (which to date still is pretty much my favourite movie) and have loved her ever since. Yes, I have Audrey memorabilia in my house, although that link doesn’t show the big Roman Holiday poster in my bedroom (with an apron hanging on it), or the calendar I once bought on a visit to Rome in 2010 and can’t bear to throw out, or Audrey Hepburn on a tin card in Breakfast at Tiffany’s, positioned between pictures of my children when they were little.

I will forever regret not trying to get a glimpse of her at a UNICEF event she attended in The Netherlands not too far from where I lived, a year or two before she died. She was a lovely actress and a warm humanitarian, who has touched my heart in many ways.

To celebrate Audrey Hepburn’s 90th birthday, here’s a Roman Holiday fan video to help convince you to see that movie if you haven’t ever done so already…

… and here are some lovely Audrey Hepburn pictures…

… and this link to the Audrey Hepburn Fund, where her sons continue her legacy of helping the less fortunate children in this world.

I have loved her for most of my life and she will live on in my heart forever, I hope. Happy Birthday, dear Audrey!

A cheer-me-up post

I need some cheering up after another attack took place yesterday, this time in Utrecht which is about half an hour away from where I live. When will this killing end?!?

Anyway… so, this cheered me up yesterday (before I knew about the Utrecht attack) and still cheers me up today: Richard finding his old Guy of Gisborne leathers!

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Look what I just found in an old washing bag 😮

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Yup!!!

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(I for one would be curious to see those episode 1 North & South scribbles!).

Then, last night, to cheer myself up after I switched off the news, I finally finished a video I had started making a long time ago but had never gotten around to finishing yet. It’s a fan video for the not so known but in my eyes absolutely wonderful Danish film starring Pierce Brosnan called Love Is All You Need. The Danish original title is way better: Den Skaldede Frisør (which translates to The Bald-Headed Hairdresser). The film is full of heart without being sappy and you can see a trailer here. I made another video for this film a few years ago which can be found near the bottom of my Pierce Brosnan fan video page, along with a brief description of what the movie is about. I needed to do something with love, after all the hatred of the past few days, and this video is all about that (set to John Denver’s Annie’s Song). When I heard that John Denver song again a few months back somewhere, suddenly images of this movie flashed through my head when I listened to the lyrics. So, the video begged to be made and now I have finally finished it. Beware that, if you haven’t seen the film and you still wish to do so, this video is full of spoilers!

And last but not least today, while I was having lunch on my own for a change, eating a delicious falafel in town close to my office, I happened upon this little gem of a video. It’s a choir flash mob on an airplane, by the choir that also sang at Harry’s and Meghan’s wedding last year. I’ve seen it before but this time it gave me goosebumps.

I guess we can all use a little solidarity and a feeling of people standing by each other.

It’s good to know there is also a lot of good in this world.

Catchin’ up with Rich

I’m way too late to the Richard Armitage Sundance film festival and Red Dragon convention parties but on this very rainy Sunday here in The Netherlands, I just need to share some of my fave images of the past weeks that I have just been reviewing in peace and quiet (instead of feverishly perusing on the go).

This one from the Sundance film festival has already become a fave. The look, the smile, the placing of the hand… all swoon worthy! He is almost inviting the viewer in.

RA Sundance

These were nice too:

And these (especially the second picture):

I liked that Richard reconnected with Mindy Kaling from Ocean’s Eight:

At Sundance I thought he looked most comfortable with Amy Ryan, his co-star in the Love Love Love play he did in the fall of 2017. For some reason, I wouldn’t mind seeing them together as a couple in a movie, they look really good together.

Although he did have some fun with his The Lodge people, the movie he had come to promote at Sundance…

… to me there wasn’t much magic with Riley Keough, his The Lodge co-star, at least not in the pictures I saw. They were nice but a little perfunctory to me…

However, this following one did seem quite sexy to me somehow… I think it’s the leaning in and the darkness surrounding the rest of the image that gives it some intimacy…

Richard+Armitage+Vulture+Spot+Sundance+DAY+GxehbkbbUcvl… and these have a fun, relaxed look…

Of course there were many many more images, but I won’t share them all here, these were just the stand out ones for me. As was this little film he shared of him skiing down a mountain while he was there, I just loved that!

Sundance was the last weekend in January and during the first weekend in February, Richard was in London. I happened to be in London as well that weekend for a last-minute visit to see my brother and niece but had totally not registered that I’d be in London on the same weekend as the Red Dragon convention that was being held near Heathrow airport. I didn’t have time to go there at the last minute, but did follow the goings on a bit on my phone. I got a huge kick out of the whole “Jills Gymkhana” tweets thing, all thanks to Kate who reports on it so beautifully here. In fact, read all four of Kate’s accounts of the weekend over on her blog, I promise it’s worth it. As is all that Armidreamer has reported about her visit to RDC as well, and of course Guylty has lovely reports too, the latest one as I type now is this one. Guylty also took loads of pictures, so be sure to check them out as well, for instance here.

Anyway, I was going to share my fave images that I came across, like this one by Guylty:

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I love the little shadow show that Richard is performing. I liked these images too (don’t know who took them, so if someone claims credit, please let me know)…

In fact, Richard’s outfit looked almost the same as what he had worn in Newcastle at the film festival last year. Same leather jacket and same (kind of) pants as at NIFF…

I also really liked these two images (again, let me know, don’t know who took these)…

… and these, taken by Guylty, with Richard trying to eat his fist…

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… and I love the profile shadows on these…

A fan book had been made for Richard by some fans, which he received and sweetly acknowledged

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… and the con organizers, Starfury, released some really lovely pictures too.

Yep, after seeing all these, and reading all the lovely accounts, I am on a bit of an Armitage-high right now.

I like that Richard showed his Equity card as a support for unions a little later on in February…

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And now it’s all about The Stranger, Richard’s newest project that he has started to film now in Manchester.

RA Stranger filming

It sounds good, the cast sounds great (if you read German, see the excellent cast recap here on Herba’s blog) and this is something new to look forward to after the disaster of Berlin Station season 3 (I quit watching after 2 episodes). With all this Rich-love there is also a little annoyance: I just hope that (preaching aside) he doesn’t use this emoji too much…

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I know someone in real life who uses the begging/praying hands all the time in text messages, most recent example being a text I sent saying “Happy Birthday to your son!” and she answered the message with that emoji (yet again)… a regular smiley or just ‘thank you’ would have sufficed. It always feels overly submissive and even insincere to me, which annoys me to no end.

But let me end on a positive fangirling image. This was shared by Mina Tander on her Instagram recently…

RA from MT's Insta

… and it gives me much joy! Being a Richard Armitage fan has been quite fun these days. 🙂