The Null Device

Return to Aberystwyth

This weekend, I travelled to Aberystwyth, paying a visit to Jim and Catrin (whom I last saw in 2002). It was good to catch up with them again.

On Saturday night, I went to see the Castaway Theatre Company's performance of Alfred Jarry's Ubu Enchained. It was fittingly anarchic; they had five people each playing Pa Ubu and Ma Ubu, mostly attired in vaguely punky combinations of random clothes, and a lot going on on stage, most of it rather absurd. It reminded me a lot of the Doug Anthony Allstars, in particular DAAS Kapital. The music played in/between various sequences included a lot of guitar punk and several Half Man Half Biscuit songs, which worked rather well. Anyway, there are some photos here.

The journey to/from Aberystwyth involved a stopover in Birmingham, and a bus between there and Telford, due to railway works. On the way back, I spent some time wandering around Birmingham, raiding the local Music & Video Exchange and taking a stroll around the pedestrianised neo-brutalist cityscapes of the Bullring. For some reason, Birmingham reminded me a little of Brisbane.

The London-Birmingham leg of the journey was on a Virgin Trains Pendolino train, which was fairly nifty. For one, they come with laptop power points, even in cattle-class. (Now that's one thing I can't see ever being installed on the Melbourne-Sydney XPT, partly because rurals and bikies generally don't carry laptops.) Also, the way they tilt when they round a corner is pretty nifty.

(Note to self: make more excuses to get out of London; by which I mean far enough out to get out of London's reality distortion field. Living in London, it's too easy to start thinking of everything in terms of Tube lines, N|W|E|[NS][EW]|[EW]C postcodes and relative position to the Thames, and to forget that there is life and activity in Britain that's not in relation to London.)

There are 2 comments on "Return to Aberystwyth":

Posted by: Graham http://grudnuk.com/ Mon Apr 25 04:29:36 2005

Yeah. In fact the XPT has gone way up shit creek since you went on it. Oh, and the main XPT customer base is pensioners, and of course the laptop thing applies there too.

I've turned into a plane junkie, really; I can put up with the discomfort if it means I can get to Sydney 7 hours faster.

Posted by: acb http://dev.null.org Mon Apr 25 10:22:38 2005

Weren't they planning on scrapping the XPT? Is that still on the books?

I personally don't like the idea of short-distance air travel. Sure it's convenient, but it's fucking up the environment hugely. (As those studies they did when the US closed off its airspace after 9/11 showed.)

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