So what did you watch on television over Christmas?
We struggled through Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix. The effects are undeniably brilliant but Pam and I have to confess that we find the stories hard to follow. Maybe it is because we have watched the films out of sequence.
Last night we saw Wallace and Gromit in A Matter Of Loaf and Death dubbed into Spanish. Not quite the same without Peter Sallis' voice but very clever all the same. With Nick Park's films it is the little touches that you have to look out for. The subtle touches of humour are all too easily missed.
We also watched a National Geographic film "Queens of the Artic" which supposedly tracks the lives of both a polar bear cub and a a walrus cub from birth to motherhood. Like all National Geographic projects the filming was superb and the scenery breathtaking.
Of course the underlying message was that global warming and the reduction of the polar ice cap is putting the existence of wildlife in the region in jeopardy.
On Boxing Day Canal + showed the Spanish duo Amaral in concert in Madrid. Amaral are:- Eva Amaral (vocalist) and Juan Aguirre (guitarist) accompanied by session musicians.
It was only later that we discovered that Amaral have been producing their blend of music dubbed pop rock since 1998. They've four albums and one DVD to their names and were extremely popular with the madrileno audience.
It struck us that, whilst British pop music has a strong presence here in Spain, Spanish pop music is rarely heard in Britain. That is a pity because Amaral, along with many others are well worth listening to.
What we didn't get on Canal + were the tedious Christmas specials that we remembered from the years of watching BBC and ITV. Neither did we get the angst and misery that seems to have become a tradition on British soaps.
I have to confess that we did have an hour or so of nostalgia with Bing Crosby and Fred Astaire's "Holiday Inn" which Pam bought in the UK for £2.40. Pure escapism and American kitsch!
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