Friday, June 09, 2006

Il ritorno di Francesco in Sicilia

Well, I made it out of Malta alive. But man...that place is spooky. I think the lady at the Tourist Information Office put a curse on me and all I did was ask the way to the post office.

Should you visit, stay out of the churches unless you have strong nerves. I've never seen so many works of devotional art with such convincing renderings of blood and gore. The typical Maltese altarpiece looks like a still from The Texas Chainsaw Massacre. A full day of this makes one jumpy.

Oh, and I have to mention that after I sent the last message from the Internet Cafe-cum-Opium Den, to pay my fee I first had to wake up the proprietress, who had fallen asleep on a sofa in the corner with a lit cigarette between her fingers and one shoe falling off.

I used half a bottle of hand sanitizer after touching that keyboard.

Anyhow, now that I'm calmer I feel compelled to clarify that I don't actually mind what my guest writers wrote. Well, I mind a little. I mind that they were often funnier than I am. Also, I mind that they felt compelled to mention the almond-shaped space between my toes, when they know I'm quite sensitive about that.

But now, really...how could you be a regular reader of this blog and think that I'm a big fan of Queen? Cookies, if you've been around this joint longer than a month you know I'm the kind of pretentious git who thinks Die Fledermaus is pop music.

Anyway, we're halfway through this little scoot across the sea and you can see people starting to go a little nuts. The Yanks have stopped trying to be right and proper around the Brits, and the Brits are starting to let their hair down. Tonight a lady from Milton Keynes distinctly said "Shit!" when her evening wrap got caught in the elevator doors.

Last night there was a deck dance, with a live orchestra. It's always an interesting thing to watch folks in their eighties do the jitterbug, but watching them shimmy on a rocking ship near a swimming pool is positively fascinating, especially after cocktails and dinner. It feels sort of nice to be the universal strong shoulder, and I led several worn-out matrons to their cabins (leaving them at the door).

It's time to sleep. I've taken to leaving the door of my balcony open at night so I can drop off to the sound of the water going past. I think I'll miss that more than anything.

But I'm also missing a Certain Person like mad. You get attached to somebody, it feels weird to go two weeks without them. On the other hand...it's nice to have somebody to go home to.

Dolores says hi. Or would, I'm sure, if I could find her. I hope she's not still in Malta.

21 comments:

Isela: Purling Sprite said...

Oooh, have you checked the closet...have you seen Galina anywhere...hehehehe

pacalaga said...

In re: Queen... I just figured you had a "Dolores" side to you as well.
It always fascinates me to see what "joyful worship" means in other countries...

JoVE said...

In general, I find that Brits say 'shit' much more often than North Americans of any sort (also 'fuck' which there was a whole article in The Guardian about once claiming that it wasn't offensive any more).

I once had a holiday in Malta and found a gay bar in the most unlikely place (near a whole bunch of big hotels full of elderly people). Really nice proprieters (lesbian couple), standard scary women by the pool table, and endless fun to be had watching the odd older straight couple come in and have it slowly dawn on them where they were.

cindi said...

An almond-shaped space is better than, say, a cashew-shaped space. Or what if it was the size of a brazil nut??

Cheryl said...

I was just thinking and wondering what Buzz is doing with all of those hats............

Paul said...

"somebody to go home to"...

How sweet is that? I'm sure C feels the same way...

Marq1 said...

So which posts are yours? Are any of them? All of them?

All the Way With Knitting said...

Jove ..the "f" word is all some people use ..it is offensive .I'm typing as my husband cuts my hair..not easy ! Thank God Franklin that you were not you or whatever.I might be a working class lass who never heard classical music growing up ( except at school) but I now have a daughter who listens to radio 3 and goes on about Mozart worryingly.I just stick on a Lila Downs and say "ask Uncle Tony" .

Mel said...

Ricorda bene, Francesco - olive castelvetrano. Io le recommando.

Ginny said...

I'm with JoVE on Brits swearing way more than North Americans. And I reckon 'fuck' can either be offensive - or totally not. All in the context.

Helen said...

I knew it couldn't be you because they spelt 'altar' as 'alter'. Tsk tsk.

Jon said...

"But I'm also missing a Certain Person like mad. You get attached to somebody, it feels weird to go two weeks without them. On the other hand...it's nice to have somebody to go home to."

{sniff}

Debbie said...

Dolores must be somewhere on the ship with you. Haven't heard about her and any incidents on CNN

Liz said...

Yes, we Brits swear a lot more (well, I do personally, and there are people I'll use both of those words with at work, and people I definitely won't). Although not as freely as the French, unfortunately.

But the combination of Milton Keynes, the evening wrap, and the word, makes it art.

Lisa and Robb said...

Nice Monteverdi reference in your chapter title!

Ted said...

You know, I actually a little bit disappointed about that Freddy Mercury / Queen thing. I think that's one cool fantasy to have, and you'd already have the clothes.

Steph said...

Freaking hell, Franklin. You're a comic genius.

FiberQat said...

I figured you'd have the Freddie Mercury/Montserrat Caballe CD. And he had a voice that for which some tenors would have sold their souls.

Well, if anything this shows that you have lovely wicked friends who have as much wit as you.

(I heard a rumor Dolores was taking a side tour of ouzo distilleries after a special night with the ship's captain.)

Aidan said...

And for your information, Freddy Mercury, z"l, was a huge fan of opera. He counted as a dear friend the diva Monserrat Caballe and even recorded with her.

And Freddy, alov hashalom, was certainly more operatic than anyone performing today. Almost Motzartian. I miss him, I do.

Did Dolores know him? Maybe she has a stray cigarette case or one hitter he gave her? Maybe she'd be willing to part with it for a small sum?

David said...

I want to work in a pun about Malta milk, but it's Monday and I'm a little slow.

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