Armitage forensics: Ronda

Just before Richard Armitage’s birthday on August 22nd, I have a little Armitage treat for you. Best treat of course is to check out the Armitage birthday auction that Guylty has going on right now! But this is a little extra, a little birthday dessert, if you will.

Last week, after I posted my first Andalusian picture spam, Servetus was so kind as to point out in the comments section that I have been visiting the region in which Richard Armitage filmed an episode of Berlin Station. To regular readers here, it won’t be a secret that I never particularly warmed up to Berlin Station. So, while I did watch season 1 and 2 and little bit of season 3, I never bothered to get into the behind the scenes details of the show. I did know that Richard had filmed in Spain, but I only remembered he’d been to Las Palmas. However, episode 2 of season 2 was filmed in the south of Spain, exactly where I am visiting now on my summer holiday. Our ‘home base’ here is about 20 minutes away from the lovely old town of Ronda and Servetus reminded me that one episode had been filmed in and around… Ronda! Of course, I couldn’t resist, and the following scenario ensued between me and Mr. Esther.

Esther: So, sweetie, we need to do another fangirl forensic trip again. Last year we did Gregory Peck on Rhodos, this year it will be Richard Armitage in Ronda. He filmed an episode of Berlin Station here.

Mr Esther: That show you didn’t like? I thought it was set in Berlin?

Esther: Yes, but they did one episode in Spain. Richard has infiltrated a neo nazi group and needs to pretend to do an arms deal…

Mr Esther: Yeah, yeah. And that is set in Spain?

Esther. Yes, in Ronda. So, it’s images of Richard in Ronda! And I’m here in his footsteps!

Mr Esther: Really? The lengths I go through for you… alright, show me the episode…

Esther (at the ready, starting up the episode on my laptop): Here! I have found out the starting point but you are the Google Maps expert, help me with the rest.

Mr Esther (watching the Ronda parts in Berlin Station): Oh, I recognize that, we walked past there the other day!…. Don’t recognize that (consulting Google maps )… oh, but I know where it is and wanted to walk by there anyway… This will be there (zooming in on Google Maps)… I don’t think there’s a souvenir shop there… And see, in the market scene they don’t show the statue on the square… And look, that’s on the corner where we had dinner… Fine, we can do this, it’s partially in the section of town where we were still wanting to walk anyhow.

I’m lucky to have such a fangirl enabler for a husband. He’s so good at remembering locations, the perfect partner in crime to do this with. The kids just look at me with pity but willingly walked the route as well, as long as we never lingered too long in one spot. So, here goes…

The opening shot for the Ronda section in episode 2 of season 2 comes about 17 or 18 minutes into the episode. This is the screenshot:

00 vlcsnap-2019-08-10-10h20m22s793

Obviously, we don’t have flying capabilities in the Esther household, so this how we saw that bridge while we were in town and the brige & town from a distance:

fb_img_15653437661481054930949382899789.jpgfb_img_15653442719004646869575228624664.jpg

All the scenes that were filmed for Berlin Station were filmed in the older part of town, to the right of the bridge in these pictures.

The first spot the actors stop at I was able to identify myself because of the name of the restaurant you see in the screenshot, the street is a side street off the main road right near the bridge:

01 vlcsnap-2019-08-10-10h20m50s368.jpg

Again, I do not own a crane or a drone or whatever took this bird’s eye shot but we really were there ourselves:

01b IMG_2980

Richard and Emilia Schüle (who played Lena Ganz) park their car opposite that restaurant:

02 vlcsnap-2019-08-15-18h23m43s196

And Mr Esther, with eagle eyes, commented: That P-sign is gone but you can see the faint outline of where it used to be! Even the markings on the wall below the P-sign are still visible.

Goes to show how dedicated Mr E is to details and getting them right.

So Richard talks to Emilia just after they get out of the car and walks that little section of street with the group…

To quote Mr E: “You are standing on holy ground, in the exact same spot where Richard stood.” 😉

Richard’s group moves on to another section of town, which is just across the street from the main road. This is where the souvenir shop is located, only in real life there is no souvenir shop there.

05 vlcsnap-2019-08-10-10h23m41s895

In real life the building on the left with flags is a hotel. We walked by there a few days before we undertook the Armitage forensics walk.

We did get a shot of the door in front of which Rhys Ifans stands:

At one point Richard meets up with Emilia again. That location is a little further up the street from where the fake souvenir shop was located.

07 vlcsnap-2019-08-15-18h35m53s225

We walked by that location after dinner so it was dark when Mr E took the picture of me there in Richard’s spot:

07b IMG_3221

Richard then walks to the market place with Emilia, that is just a few steps away from the previous location:

09 vlcsnap-2019-08-17-01h11m22s287

There was no market there when we walked there, just a square…

09b IMG_3426

In this following picture with actor Thomas Kretschmann, you can see the iron gate that faces the valley in the background…

08 vlcsnap-2019-08-17-01h13m34s224

… it’s where my kids stood for this picture before we even went on our forensic tour:

fb_img_15653442928894323232208973783702.jpg

Last but not least, Richard and group leave Ronda again. There’s a speedy car ride at the end…

10 vlcsnap-2019-08-10-10h28m10s034

… which was filmed just down the street from the first location where the car had been parked:

10b IMG_3019

Walking a little further, we came to this point:

11b IMG_3037

We’re overlooking another, older, bridge over that cliff, situated lower in the old town. The cameras filming the car speeding must have stood on this exact spot as well, going by this screenshot:

11 vlcsnap-2019-08-10-10h29m11s222

And so endeth the Armitage in Ronda forensic tour. We didn’t find the interior of that café where they talk or of the souvenir shop. We did walk into other souvenir shops in town, I told my kids to look out for a straw donkey souvenir like the one Richard bought…

Donkey vlcsnap-2019-08-15-18h36m08s538

I had hoped to maybe offer that as a last-minute surprise item in Guylty’s Armitage birthday auction. The kids helped me look but no such item was to be found in the souvenir shops we walked into. In another town (Antequera) my daughter did point out this decorative item in a shop to me…

Donkey IMG_4456 Antequera… but the item was too large and not for sale anyhow.

As for villas, there are lots of villas that dot the Andalusian landscape. This is the one used in Berlin Station:

vlcsnap-2019-08-11-20h16m57s303

And as we drove the other day, not far from Ronda, I spotted this villa…

IMG_4370

For a moment during the drive I thought that could be the one, but on closer inspection it isn’t. Still, it was a nice thought.

So, there you have it: a little Armitage forensics in action in southern Spain! It was a fun little project within our holiday. It’s our last day here, hanging at the apartment and swimming, we fly back home tomorrow. I think it’s time for me to head to the pool right now while I still can. 😎

Advertisements

The good things in life

Let me start with the bad things in life. Specifically Boris Johnson as new prime minister of the UK and a Burqa-ban which has come into effect today in The Netherlands are upsetting me and so, for my own sanity, I keep my news intake to a minimum right now. Instead, I try to focus on the good things in life. For instance: my summer holiday started on Wednesday, the technique of using baking powder to clean my two pairs of  Birkenstock slippers sorta worked (I walk on them all day every day in the summer, I kid you not), today Mr Esther, my daughter and I will go on a day trip to a city near the German border, and tomorrow I am going to meet my ex-coworker’s two week old baby girl! When we exchanged chat messages earlier this week, she said she was very low on bibs for the baby, so I got her these (that 5th item is a shirt and not a bib)…

baby gifts

It’s always good to focus on babies over politics. 🙂

What also makes me happy is the new Picard trailer. I think I have watched it 10 times already. I love Jean-Luc Picard (and Patrick Stewart as well) and I so very much wish for leaders like him in the real world!

I can hardly wait for this in 2020!

Next up: as I love Roman Holiday so very much, I had to watch last weekend’s Hallmark movie Rome in Love, which was about an unknown actress getting ready to film a Roman Holiday remake and she herself falls in love with an American journalist in Rome. Kinda meta, I know. I watched the movie, it was OK, but had nowhere near the charm of Roman Holiday, which I just needed to watch again for the zillionth time. That movie is always the best pick-me-up movie! It got me back to zipping through some Audrey Hepburn movies again and boy was she good and gorgeous! The last movie she did was a small role as an angel in the Steven Spielberg movie Always. I re-watched her scenes in that and was struck by this image of her in the movie at one point…

vlcsnap-2019-07-31-18h55m32s011

The humanity and kindness in her face in that sunset light is just breathtaking.

And there are more goodies to be focused on! On Guylty’s blog the other day she was asking about ‘other gods’ we like besides Richard. In the comments section I mentioned the other (male) gods present in folders on my computer…

I have several side attractions: Colin Firth, Gregory Peck, Hugh Jackman, but I also have some David Bowie, Keanu Reeves, Pierce Brosnan, Simon Baker, James Stewart, Lucas Bryant (yeah, not known), Richard Chamberlain and Viggo Mortensen folders. However those folders are tiny compared to my Richard Armitage folder. Just did a check, I think the largest folder after Richard is Colin Firth with some 400 items. Richard’s folder has 3000 items… 🙂

This triggered me to check out what my more recent actor-crush, Lucas Bryant, has been up to. He’s been pretty quiet of late, not many new roles to speak of, but I did find out that he’s been doing a few M.A.R.V.E.L. Agents of Shield episodes recently. I don’t watch that show but have watched (parts of) the 3 episodes he’s in last night and boy, did he look fine! The camera sure does like him in close-up.

vlcsnap-2019-08-01-00h44m47s212

Last but not least, I watched the newest Suits episode this morning (season 9, episode 3) and in it there was a Louis Litt dream sequence which was so funny! Louis is a judge and a lawyer in that dream and the jury turns out to be made up out of 12 Harveys!

vlcsnap-2019-08-01-09h42m17s874

Gabriel Macht, who plays Harvey on Suits, directed this episode and I wonder if this court scene was the funniest thing he has ever directed and how much fun did he have embodying those 12 Harveys? The eye-scratching middle finger and the one where he holds a cat like that (cats are Louis’s obsession, not Harvey’s!) are the highlights for me. All of Louis’s insecurities, especially with regards to Harvey, are on display here and that just cracks me up. Rick Hoffman as Louis remains a highlight of this show. Oh heck, here’s the whole scene…

I’m so glad there are also so many joys in this world. 🙂

#Darvey 4 evah!

Beware of Suits Season 9 spoilers!!

Last night the first episode of Suits season 9 aired, the final Suits season as the show is coming to a close. Last season ended with, to my great excitement, Harvey and Donna FINALLY finding each other. And season 9 opened not long after that scene ended… with Donna (Sarah Rafferty) and Harvey (Gabriel Macht) still in bed together and Harvey wishing he’d done this sooner…

Darvey bed.gif

I went screencap-happy in my enthusiasm, here in several slideshows. Darvey still in bed and they decide to finally get some sleep in…

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

The next morning the first thing Donna does is call Rachel (not seen on the show since Meghan Markle left) to tell her about Harvey and then Harvey walks in and there’s more loveliness between them…

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

And then there’s a knock on the door and they let Louis in, who turns out to completely not understand what he’s walked in on. A very funny dialogue ensues with lots of double entendre, about ‘banging it out’ (Louis is talking about press releases) and Donna being ‘top notch at releases’.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Later on in the show there’s a very nice little phone call between our lovebirds, sharing some worries …

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

… and Donna even gives Harvey some shit at the office, just like she’s always done, so that luckily doesn’t change…

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

… and then at the end of the episode Harvey has Donna come over to Mike’s & Rachel’s old and empty apartment. He tells her stuff like “once it hit me that we should be together, I felt like we’ve always been together” and that he’s “finally where I’m supposed to be” and that he loves how she gets him…

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

… and then they kiss again…

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Oh, I’m already loving this season 9 #Darvey goodness! I’m so looking forward to more snippets next week…

Back into the swing of things again?

Looking at my inbox I realize I have not been around much on blog and on other blogs for the past month or so! It’s pointless to try and catch up on all the old posts of my fave bloggers that I have missed, it would just take up too much time. So, I’m jumping in on posts from a week or so ago and I’ll take it from there…

Where have I been you ask? Well, right here, but very busy. I am now 2 months into my new job, I am enjoying it very much but it’s also extremely busy! So busy, in fact, that I have been in talks about needing another person there with me to share the load. Luckily my direct managers also see that, so we will be working towards a solution. I’m still so glad I made the choice to leave a toxic situation at my old job and find this new one. So far, no regrets there! I’ve also been busy with family stuff, so by the time I get to down time, all I want is to put my mind to rest and not think too much.

During that down time I have been ‘Hallmarking’ again (i.e. watching Hallmark movies), because those are easy movies to watch that don’t make you think too much. They tend to use certain actors over and over and I am becoming quite knowledgeable, in any case about the actors I tend to like in these movies. I feel a ‘fave Hallmark actors’ post coming, we’ll see if I can find patience to actutally write about it. The ones that have preoccupied me most lately are Paul Greene…

Heart of a Fighter

… and Paul Campbell…

Paul-Campbell

They both have these gentle, warm, friendly ways about them with humour (Campbell’s humor seems a little more dry than Greene’s) and they’re easy on the eyes without being too flashy.

Anyway, that was a little side-track from the sorry-I-was-absent message. I know I always said I would not put any rules or restraints on my blogging. I blog when I can and when I want to and if that means not blogging for a while then that’s fine! Having said that, since starting this blogging thing close to 5 years ago I have rarely been this quiet and inactive and it does feel a bit weird and like I should apologize for being so silent. Let me just tell you: it’s not you, it’s me! And I hope I’ll get back into the swing of things again more, although I hate to promise anything.

Back to daily life: my foot is still really sore (just now hobbled out to the garden to take these pictures)…

… so I’m working from home today. Cancelling two appointments has freed up a little time to write this post. 🙂  For now I think I’m back and I hope to see you around, also on the other blogs I read.

Life’s a rollercoaster…

… which means that blogging and reading other blogs falls by the wayside somewhat. In the past few weeks I’ve been to two funerals, which always takes a lot out of me. I’m an easy crier, that doesn’t help.

The first funeral was of my sister-in-law’s brother. I knew him somewhat from family parties, he died suddenly, way too young, at only 47 years of age. It was difficult seeing my sister-in-law and brother and the parents struggle with the shock loss.

The second funeral was of the father of my new sister-in-law, the one I’d been to the Hugh Jackman show with. That funeral also really took it out of me, even though I never knew him. I went along to accompany my niece and my mother (who had met him a few times) to the funeral so that my sister could be there to support her girlfriend in her loss. The father had many similarities to my own father and so the funeral also held many parallels, from Bach music to the reading of Psalm 121 by his widow, a Psalm my dad used to read to us. I tell you, port wine and some time in front of the fireplace were very necessary to find equilibrium again…

20190525_213440_resized

Also last week Mr Esther had a second operation. Last fall his gall bladder had been taken out, around New Year’s he got sick again and it turned out that not all of the gall bladder had been removed in the first operation. So, he was scheduled for surgery to have the last piece of gall bladder, which also included stones, removed. He was feeling well when he went in for the operation and that has made all the difference. In the fall he had to stay in hospital for 5 days after the operation because he’d been so sick and everything was so heavily infected. This time around he was home again 24 hours after the operation.

20190525_211343_resized

Now, 6 days after the operation, he is still on pain meds for the wounds but he isn’t too uncomfortable and really healing much more quickly than last time around.

Juggling the new job (which is fun but already so much there to do!) and funerals and a sick husband (which also means more chores for me) has been very busy but luckily we’re back on track again. Today is a holiday here in The Netherlands (Ascension Day) and Mr Esther is going to attempt driving again as we visit my mother this afternoon. Tomorrow my daughter, her friend and I will fly to London for a long weekend, which should be fun!

And as I get back into the swing of things again, here’s a promo for Suits season 9, that I saw on my Twitter feed this morning:

There’s already a gif of the lovely Harvey and Donna scene in bed:

I’m so looking forward to this, to seeing #Darvey as a reality!

Anyway, more immediately, I’m looking forward to London this weekend but there’s still so much to do. Need to stop blogging now to do some laundry and get shopping for the weekend done so Mr Esther doesn’t have to carry anything and then visit my mom and then pack my bags. So, I’m off!