living out loud. the voices of women.

darlings

we’ve been to INDIA but we’ve not (yet) been to OZ (or NZ, its neighbo(u)r come to that) and just because we know that William has started to sing it, yes, we Have been to the inner world of ourselves:

oh ok, go on, have a quick sing – we’ll wait (hell, we’ll even join in)

Oh I’ve been to Georgia and California
And anywhere I could run
Took the hand of a preacher man
And we made love in the sun
But I ran out of places
And friendly faces
Because I had to be free
I’ve been to paradise
But I’ve never been to me

*slylooktocamera*

oh, that was So much fun.

lovely shoulder-swaying on the Coast and a delicious basso profundo in Whitstable.

now, where we were.

oh yes. INDIA.

we just spent a Very interesting thirty-seven minutes listening to President Sonia Gandhi

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– hopefully you can see this Transmission in your territory – if not, it’s also on the India National Congress website (so Modern and yet so ancient a culture)

isn’t that wonderful?

Inspiring.

we’ve been thinking a lot about the Status of Women and how-far-we-have-come (or not) in this brave new world of 2014.

have you ever heard what it was like to be a Suffragette?

well, the BBC *doffs_cap* has an Entire archive here: 

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and what of the chic and the glorious at the other end of the Globe?binny.jpg.700.0x508.941176471_q100This, ladies, gentlemen and those somewhere on their own gender axis (welcome, *respectful_nod*, great shoes love) is BINNY LUM (and that’s Ming on her lap)!

she is new to us but a firm favo(u)rite of Yours if you grew up down under, surely?

Well the National Sound & Film Archive (of Australia) has just recently’ish released a whole set of Ms. Lum’s interviews from the Fifties onwards and we were Thrilled to find Ginette Spanier among her chosen guests!

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and here’s another deeply fashionable and witty and wise woman interviewed by our new friend Binny: Edith Head!

Edith-Head

so there you have it – there’s something so Powerful about listening to women talk about their work, their vocation, their Path through Life – isn’t there?

we shall return to Ms. Spanier at a future date – and we have already spoken about her back in *farofflooktocamera* 2011 (gosh) – because we’ve learned So much from reading both her books about how to Become An Author (and pre-sell a few copies).

one last picture:

foto207that’s Ginette signing her books.

and yes, smiling for the camera as if Caught Entirely by Pleased Surprise – is Marlene.

talking of Powerful and female.
https://soundcloud.com/tadva/marlene-dietrich-bitte-geh-1

w o w.

so that was our programme for today – and Such a plethora of glorious voices.

goodnight darlings.

sleep well.

words by Rumer Godden, pictures by teamgloria.

darlings

we shall give space for Rumer Godden to speak – and illustrate some of her words with our own vision of the world.

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OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERARichard’s book: 

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OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAThe Old Hall, England. 

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fb0206920c6411e3873022000a1fa909_7it feels as if Rumer Godden has been staying with us for a few weeks while we read the 2nd part of her autobiography –

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when we left this morning at 06:50 hours to meet a friend who lives on the next street it was still misty and the sun had not yet blown away the marine layer – we walked together through the still-quiet streets and talked about his summer on a mystical island and caught up with everything that has happened in both our lives and that wanted to be brought out into the sunlight and examined and mused over and put away in a new place with a sigh of satisfaction and then we stopped and drank coffee and the sun became hot, suddenly, and we walked back, slower than before, in the emerging heat of day.

but when we used the key to get back into the building and walk up the back stairs (past the swimming pool and over the car port) and into the apartment –

r u m e r  g o d d e n had left.

sadly bereft, we feel.

and yet glad she came to stay.

but all is not lost – Rumer is forever present in the midst of the tangles of the electronic impulses that underpin the interweb – can you see this Transmission in your Territory?

what *did* we do until the interweb came along? – writers were left inside their books – but now we can hear them (*shivers*) forever.

the Library has Requested Rumer’s return (we wonder who has asked for her next).

luckily they sent us an email (so Modern, as William would say) and told us they have a Huge Pile of books awaiting us.

isn’t life delicious?

notes from abroad.

darlings

we requested a copy of Martha Gellhorn‘s book “Travels with Myself and Another” from the Library and when it arrived we devoured it in two days – she is glorious (caveat: she was writing about Africa, Russia and China in the 1940s so has many Scary and Slighting opinions of the residents of those Lands that were au fait in Those Days and most certainly are Not today – just saying – read very carefully).

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OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAas is our wont, we took notes and inscribed her words in the current moleskine (no. 148 if you’re curious) and yes, that is the inside-of-a-fortune-cookie from the tiny thai restaurant in hollywood last night (well wouldn’t you keep that one if you got it, love?)


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we adore people who (also) write-to-writers. OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

 

we started to have a tiny Reverie about the Places We Have Been – will you indulge us as we go through the modern equivalent of one of those slide shows that “Bob and Nancy are having in the basement of No. 63 Acacia Lane” circa 1954 when they got back from the Cruise? (Bob and Nancie are fictional and motifs just to be clear).

ah yes, INDIA. OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

 

here are the notes that who-we-are-in-RL made in INDIA:

I went to India last year for the first time.

It was a business trip – not an attempt to find myself or drop out or whatever else one is meant to do on a trip to India.

But it happened all the same. I loved the heat, the Namaste, the frankly curious meeting of minds and spirits. But most of all I loved the afternoon I got to slip away after work had ended and watch the cricket match before walking in the cool gardens of the temple nearby. The sounds of summer. Swishing saris, thwack of the cricket ball and flies buzzing in the thick air.

divine.

and That Heat.

astonishing.

and the curious sadness of an elephant’s eyes.

heart-breaking.

and CHINA. 

what can one say about CHINA?

(pause)

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAwell here’s what we did say while we were there.

as we recall, CHINA was a strange combination of the left-to-decay-of-decadence (a lesson for the future?), an ancient Land of mystery and contemplation and a subway straight out of Bladerunner – here’s our eyewitness account of That experience.

Travels are all very well.

but sometimes the journey is much more, how can we put this, is more of an internal one *wistfulLookToCamera*, in a metaphysical sense.

“travel is compost for the mind”

as Martha Gellhorn said.

as is Staying Put and not running or being busy or distracting oneself.

perhaps (undoubtedly, actually), Proust said it best.

The real voyage of discovery consists not in seeking new landscapes, but in having new eyes.

Indeed.

where have you travel(l) to recently (or a long time ago and still think on it a great deal with affection), and learned a great Deal, darlings?

do. tell.

 

picture albums and reveries

darlings

so we’ve been looking through the collection of Photographs from our travels (because we needed to put together something of a slideshow for someone in our RL-existence) and here it is – on a special page called (rather helpfully, we thought): Photos. (or you can click on the picture and it will take you there (the miracles of The Hyperlink – we still remember the first day we learned how to make an “a” tag, ah heady days.)

so many places.

so many memories.

actually, if you’re curious about how we got into digital (and learned about the a “tag”) the story of our digital beginnings is here (but remember it’s about who we are in RL, not our teamglorianess so it’s all “I” and a bit British-in-tone not wonderfully-We as we are here ;-)

in manhattan, reading maugham…

there are three rules for writing the novel.
unfortunately, no one knows what they are.
W. Somerset Maugham

we found a copy of W Somerset Maugham’s The Skeptical Romancer: selected travel writing in malibu, during our recent trip to the Other Coast.

I prefer to wander in old streets at random without a guidebook, trusting that fortune will bring me across things worth seeing; and if occasionally I miss some monument that is world-famous, more often I discover some little dainty piece of architecture, some scrap of decoration, that repays me for all else I lose.
W. Somerset Maugham

well, not Randomly in Malibu, just lying around on the sandy beach, waiting for someone to pick it up – or perhaps abandoned in despair by a screenwriter on-a-deadline, looking for inspiration and finding only distraction, in a cafe near the Pier, where tousled white-blond youths drag their surfboards at a pause in the stop lights.

no – the copy of Maugham was purchased at diesel books, which used to be on the other side of cross creek (near Marmalade, the brunch place where we once saw Kathleen Kennedy yet more often overheard slightly tense conversations about plaid and decorative features in a newly overhauled, once beautiful, Spanish-style hacienda, now richly covered, probably, in brocade like something out of Balmoral) and is now under the cool white stone walkways on the far north side.

here’s a helpful map so you can picture exactly where diesel books is.

we visited a lot of bookshops during our trip – we always do – but we know malibu is where we bought Maugham because we have the bookmark which came as a perforated extra to tear off from the card we bought there (are you keeping up with all this detail? we’re not sure We are – it just flows, sometimes – need to pop to the kitchen-ette to pour more coffee – don’t go away, darlings.)

pause.

gosh. that was a lovely sip. did you enjoy yours?

where were we?

oh yes.

Malibu.

so the perforated card had a photograph of Shakespeare & Co on the front (yes, in Paris, yes, we’ve been, no we don’t believe George invited us upstairs to the Hotel Tumbleweed but it is possible, our memories from those far-off-radical-student days of wandering paris with half a baguette, some libations and not much money, are Somewhat Hazy). and, on the back, a deliciously poignant quote from Joan Didion (who does poignancy so heart-breakingly-well):

Another thing I need to do,
when I’m near the end of the book,
is sleep in the same room with it
Joan Didion

of course this quote is about Writing a book, not Reading a book (many have imagined the latter which is probably why it makes a Good bookmark).

the source?

oh, forgive.

it’s here: Paris Review, 1978

we Started talking about Maugham and got really off track…….

so we bought Maugham in Malibu and finished reading The Skeptical Romancer in Manhattan (but read most of it at the Hotel Chamberlain, wrapped in a cool towel under the striped shades of the gazebo at the east side of the pool, staying out of the sun when it got too high up in the sky and we feared burning).

in fact the book is quite sun-burned itself – you know how paperbacks get that toasted appearance when enjoyed in the high heat of summer and bits of salted pool water drip onto the pages and cause ripples in the fabric? that’s what our copy is like now. just picking it up makes us remember applying a little more Factor Whatever and sipping some cool, cool glass of water and lying back with a Very satisfied Sigh to read for another hour (the bliss of vacations).

we Hesitate to recommend it because it was written a Long Time Ago when, how can we put this, people (ok, the British) had attitudes towards People of other places that make one squirm and feel Rather upset and pretty angry, actually (especially if one contains the blood of three-waring-nations oneself and is an immigrant to yet another land so feels Part of as opposed to Separate).

so that caveat out of the way (we do mean it – be careful if you attempt to read this book – some of the words and ideas will not be Kind to one’s Modern Sensibility), we wanted to share some of our favourite/favorite/choicest allusions and passages.

shall we read on?

are you snuggled up with a morning coffee or late tea or, if you have the enzyme, a glass of something rather-more-potent?

(clears throat)

(adjusts reading lamp)

to set the mood (quote coming up from Maugham’s sojourn in seville) here is a photograph of a shady entrance hall in Madrid (we are sorry we have nothing from Seville but at least it’s the Right Direction).

P.144 |

I had already published a novel and it had had an unexpected success. I thought my fortune was made, and, abandoning medicine to become a writer, I went to Spain. I was then twenty-three. I was much more ignorant than are, it seems to me, young men of that age at the present day. I settled down in Seville. I grew a moustache, smoked Filipino cigars, learnt the guitar, bought a broad-brimmed hat with a flat crown, in which I staggered down the Sierpes, and hankered for a flowing cape, linen with green and red velvet.

P. 145 |

It was heavenly to live in Seville in the flower of one’s youth. I postponed my education to a more convenient moment. The result is that I have never read the Odyssey but in English and I have never achieved my ambition to read A Thousand Nights and a Night in Arabic.

P. 147 |

Later on I joined the Intelligence Department……the work appealed both to my sense of romance and my sense of the ridiculous. The methods I was instructed to use in order to foil persons who were following me; the secret messages in a mysterious fashion; the reports smuggled over a frontier; it was all doubtless very necessary but so reminiscent of what was then known as the shilling shocker that for me it took most of its reality away from the war and I could not but look upon it as little more than material that might one day be of use to me.

P. 147 – 8 |

I went, looking for beauty and romance and glad to put a great ocean between me and the trouble that harassed me. I found beauty and romance, but I found also something I had never expected. I found a new self.

isn’t that glorious?

would you like one more passage?

let’s see….

(flicking swiftly through turned-down-tops-of-pages with a slight, yet attractive, frown)

ah yes!

INDIA.

(looking over at the photo files, looking for a suitable shot)

P. 193 |

As the sun was setting I wandered into the Mosque. I was quite alone. As I looked from one end along the chambers into which it is divided I had an eerie, mysterious sense of its emptiness and silence. I was a trifle scared. I can only put into words that make no sense: I seemed to hear the noiseless footfall of the infinite.

this is not a post about Our interpretations or experiences of both Spain and INDIA but just to say that both have a distinct and rather curious scent-on-the-wind. We found that Spain had a toasty-dark-coffee-charred-meat (the smell of excellent cafes with windows open through tiny twisty winding streets) and INDIA had extreme-heat-sweat-cinnamon-incense.

small observations – but potent, we feel.

so we leave you in India (metaphorically) as we take the book and carefully place it into the Victorian style (glass-fronted, dark wood) cabinet as a “book to keep” (most of our books are donated after reading – we like to share and let go and have Very Little Clutter as people who know us in RL are often shocked to find – “where is everything?!” said someone who visited us recently. “What sort of Everything?” we asked, innocently. “STUFF?” they said, perplexed. “Oh,” we smiled, “we don’t have stuff.” They left, confused. We took a soft pashmina from the side of the sofa and curled up back with the Maugham once more.)

we wish we could have read this to you Out Loud (we have a lovely speaking voice and if you knew us in RL, you know we like to pounce on people, open the moleskine-of-the-moment and say “oh god, can we read you this?”)

maybe one day we will……..

a teamgloria booktime-at-bedtime?

delicious.

(head slightly cocked sideways and smiling at you via the interweb).

by the way (or “btw” as the Young people say), thanks for all of your emails and notes and comments saying how glad you are that teamgloria is back.

at the risk of being Totally Post-modern: we are too.

we’d missed you.

we’d missed being us.

ok. now That was very confusing.

(potters off to make another pot of half-caf/half-decaf from the French Market in New Orleans.)

cabbages and roses, tea cups, strawberries for breakfast, hand-written notes and a hello from India.

monday started Awfully Well:

there were left-over strawberries for breakfast (from our delightful tea-at-home with mP on sunday at 4pm)

and a new tea cup to admire from yesterday’s post-swim-shopping at tea & sympathy in greenwich village…

a lovely note to re-read and prop up on a candlestick to enjoy later..

we love it when people send us cards with a special “note for gloria” (especially when we’re slipping into the corporate drag for the Day Job)

#vivaClandestineLives – darlings ;)

a new moleskine (as you can see by the top picture, we have Quite Run out of space in the current one)

moleskine #133 (the picture is a repro on card from a vintage photograph – early 60s? Italy? – bought at the Perry St street fair on saturday in greenwich village – love his light tweed and casual-carrying-of-box-brownie and her tailored day dress with binoculars)

and we’re also dreaming of buying some Toile from Cabbages and Roses to ask Jonathan to find us a seamstress to whip them up into divine little throw pillows to guard against the fainting-couch-posing that will inevitably overcome us as the dastardly new york summer approaches.

all this – and a Lunch with some Fashionable People (yes, work, but in Such Glam situations from time-to-time), a field trip to the Metropolitan Museum after hours and then supper with the lovely B tonight.

isn’t life delicious?

what are your plans for today?

do share.

you know – in the comment-y place – yes, just there – do….we love hearing from you.

just today we had a “like” from a doctor – look! FROM INDIA. isn’t that glorious. we love India. Well, we’ve only been to New Delhi, on business, but it was extraordinary.

the view from the top, mordant wit and Think Pink: just another team gloria monday, darlings

one of the Definite perks of the Day Job is our access to delicious views before/after (and, ahem, sometimes during if our attention wanders….) very important Meetings.

like this one, this morning.

yes, that’s the crystal ball that falls on Times Square at the stroke of midnight for New Year’s Eve (no, we won’t be here then. we’ll be watching the sunrise over Ojai, California, with 1904, darlings).

another thing we notice about being in NYC, is the dark and deepest humour/humor/mordant wit. this was seen in the subway (yes, sigh, public transport, No Driver in these economic times, nor yet many of the little yellow cars neither)

ostensibly it was an advertisement for something. but it felt like the herald of times to come on a monday in manhattan.

and just so you don’t think we’re becoming Jaded (mais non! the synthroid effect has lessened today, so far), we took a beautiful shot of sunlight kisses on stone walking down sullivan street.

but the prize for the best email subject line of the day must go to the Sophisticate who is currently Abroad.

good morning from the Ganges.

oh wow. we stopped in our tracks.

and then thought about DV/

 

pink is the navy blue of india.

as the Divine DV said.

and now, in a beautiful moment of globalisation/globalization/cultural_exchange – even Indian newspapers quote her, darlings. 

the world is shrinking. in such a lovely way.

oh the places we’ve been | India

we went to India last year for the first time.

It was a business trip – not an attempt to find oneself or drop out or whatever else one is meant to do on a trip to India.

But it happened all the same. we loved the heat, the Namaste, the frankly curious meeting of minds and spirits. But most of all we loved the afternoon we got to slip away with who-we-are-in-RL after she had finished work and watch the cricket match before walking in the cool gardens of the temple nearby. The sounds of summer. Swishing saris, thwack of the cricket ball and flies buzzing in the thick air.