I lasted 11 days on the paleo diet. I had a couple of mishaps...I ordered a hotdog at Costco without thinking, and then I had a little mishap at Union Station involving a Cinnabon, but I've realised that I'm just not cut out to give up cheese. Not to mention the paltry 2 pounds that I lost during that time, eating very healthily. So last night I had a little party with some Mrs. Fields cookies and Ferrero Rocher thingy's that came in some get-well baskets for Zouheir. And that I'd been staring at for the entire 11 days. This morning, I had cream in my coffee, three pieces of raisin toast with butter and some cheese. Maybe I'd just rather be....curvaceous.
Speaking of curvaceous, Zou and I went to see the Arabesque Dance Company at the Four Season's Centre yesterday, during their free lunchtime presentations in the Richard Bradshaw Amphitheater. There were both female and male dancers, and the women were are all extraordinarily thin for belly-dancers. Zouheir leaned over to me and whispered "you can see why middle eastern men like their women full!" as skinny belly-dancers just don't really yield the full effect. So you can see that cheese will also help me maintain my marriage.
We attended a screening of The Passion of Joan of Arc at the Bell Lightbox on Wednesday. A silent film by Carl Theodor Dreyer, it was astounding, even taken on it's own. But the two screenings were accompanied by Richard Einhorn's oratorio Voices of Light, performed by the Toronto Consort and Choir 21. Einhorn wanted to compose something based around Joan of Arc, and around that time a print of the film was discovered in a janitor's closet in a mental institution in Norway. He decided to write music to accompany the film, and this is what was presented at the screenings.
It was incredible. The beauty and emotional weight of the film was masterfully underscored by the oratorio. The vocal part was in Latin and Old French, and not meant to really be understood by contemporary audiences, although I recognized a lot of the Latin. Zouheir and I talked about it well into the night, and more the next day. Apparently Dreyer was one of the early filmmakers to use a lot of closeups, as well as kind of kooky shooting angles. David Fallis, the conductor for the screenings, held a Q&A afterwards and talked about the film and the process of coordinating the music with the visuals. A very enjoyable evening, our first Lightbox screening post-TIFF.
Michael heads up to the Hannaford Youth Band camp this weekend for lots of playing and a clinic with Glen Gould School tubist Sasha Johnson. He's fighting a cold and I kept him home from school today to rest before the weekend. As it turns out, his school music teacher's daughter (trumpter, out of high school for three years) is also in the band and we'll be giving her a lift to and from camp this weekend.
This weekend is the opening of the Toronto Palestine Film Festival and we've got a bunch of tickets for events. Films:
The Time That Remains (2009; Elia Suleiman) - trailer
9 Aab (short film) and As the Poet Said - trailer (two films about poet Mahmoud Darwish)
Targeted Citizen (short) and Zindeeq
Nine to Five (short) and Jaffa, The Orange's Clockwork - film website
Budrus (2009; Julia Bacha) - film website
We also have tickets for Sahtain! A Traditional Palestinian Brunch on Sunday, followed by films and discussion with directors, but I will probably have to skip that to pick up Michael from band camp.
This Saturday is Nuit Blanche in Toronto. I attended it in the past, but this year we'll be on Bloor Street and the opening night of TPFF, so my plan is to wander around the Avenue Road/Bloor area and drop into some of the installations in that area. I've downloaded a free app for my iPhone which will make finding events easy.
Zou goes back to work on Monday. His surgery and recovery has been better than we could have anticipated and he's feeling great. He's sleeping well, and keeps marvelling at how the lack of pain/discomfort has rippled through so much of his life. He is anxious to start exercising, which his surgeon told him not to do for six weeks. He may start swimming to at least get himself moving, now that his incision is completely healed. The only issue is that he's been having some headaches, but he attributes that to lack of exercise, or possibly a slightly higher blood pressure than is normal for him. But otherwise, all systems are go!
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