Brussels, the Early Bird Edition

The great thing about being an hour away from Frankfurt, with its central location, is that most European centers are only a couple of hours away via high-speed trains. The annoying thing about being an hour away from Frankfurt is you don't always get to make it to the best weekend schedules because of the additional sixty minutes of travel. Which is why, even with my fifteen-day Eurail pass, I found myself aboard the overnight bus to Brussels - I couldn't catch the first train trip from Frankfurt and the next one would get there by noon.

I'm not very fond of traveling by bus on this part of the world, having taken it to Prague and back. Whereas trains are huge and spacious with very comfortable seats that fully recline, buses are the exact opposite - cramped and stuffy and you can only adjust the backrest by a couple of millimeters. And I'm complaining, and I'm Asian-sized.

All aboard

Echoserang Prague

I'm picking up where I left off with my European misadventures, and I thought I'd start off with one of my favorite cities: Prague.

Two Four Six Oh One

Two things I wished for when I found out a Les Miserables movie is happening:
  • that I get to watch it with friends
  • that I get to watch it in a movie theater with a fab audience, and by that I mean people who laugh at the appropriate time and without the need to explain the joke to their seatmate, people who don't wonder aloud why they have to sing all the time in the movie, and most important of all, people who do NOT sing along
Four things that had me completely distracted:
  • The way I can see every moving part of Wolverine's mouth - including his tonsils - when he sings
  • Russel Crowe's hat has a dick-shaped ribbon
  • Eponine's impossibly small waist. 
  • This dude looks like Marcelo H. Del Pilar

Six random comments:
  • I expected Russel Crowe to disappoint, but I actually quite liked his potrayal of Javert. I've always thought of him as stone-cold and distant and stern - and that was how he came across in the movie. I didn't really like Stars as much as the other songs in the musical, but in the movie it's one of my favorite parts. He could've used a bit (okay, a lot) more vocal power near the end, but I still found that scene breathtaking (I had Stars on repeat for two whole days after watching the movie).
  • Anne Hathaway. You already.
  • Sacha Baron Cohen and Helena Bonham Carter as the Thenardiers = perfection. (P.S. Does Helena Bonham Carter ever play sane characters?)
  • I was, unfortunately, a bit disappointed with "Do You Hear the People Sing?". It is a song that never fails to give me goosebumps, but in this movie it fell a bit flat. 
  • I am well aware that this is a musical,  but in the graveyard scene where Jean Valjean whispers to the graveyard guy to help him and then suddenly starts singing at full volume had me shaking my head. "We need sanctuary this child and I. We need to disappear. WE GIVE THANKS FOR WHAT IS GRANTEEEEEED..." What the hell dude. Even the dead were startled by your spontaneous singing. 
  • If the students were really that hot there's absolutely no question that the revolution would succeed. Hell, I'd be the first to man the barricade. 

Zero - the number of cast members who heard the spontaneous bursts of applause from the moviegoers (yes, they clapped, and more than once)

One thing that the Miz will always remind me off: high school.

Me: Bakit di ko maalala na ganito kalungkot yung Les Miz?
Anj: Eh kasi pokpok ka nung high school!
Me: Why don't I remember Les Miz being this sad?
Anj: Because you were a whore in high school! )

Read the book, watched the musical, and attempted to stage one of our own as our last batch project. And yes, I played a whore, because that's only as far as my vocal prowess can go (I was also in any other scene that required extra people) :p

Anyway, awesome awesome movie. If you haven't seen it yet, I wish you a pleasant, non-singing movie audience. Bring tissues.

When the beating of your heart echoes the beating of the drums
There is a life about to start when tomorrow comes

Hello 2013

I thought I'd start off the year with a dose of pretty :)

Schlepping Bag

I knew I wanted a YSL Muse in blue; I just didn't have any plans of actually owning one. But when it calls out to you from the Galleries Lafayette display window, and the sales assistant approaches you and whispers "it's on sale", the universe must be telling you something ;)