My daughter Goebbels

arturoI went to see a production of  The Resistible Rise of Arturo Ui this week. It’s by Brecht; yes one of the biggies! The cast was brilliant especially Givola who was played by a certain Hannah Jane Kenna (my daughter; time for my bursting with pride scene!).

The play is a satirical allegory of Adolf Hitler in Nazi Germany, whose rise Brecht represents as that of Ui. All the characters have counterparts in real life, with Ui representing Hitler, Emanuele Giri representing Hermann Göring and Giuseppe Givola representing Joseph Goebbels. I hadn’t realised until I saw the play that my daughter was actually playing Goebbels!

Goebbels was Reich Minister of Propaganda in Nazi Germany and one of Adolf Hitler’s closest associates and most devout followers. He rose to power in 1933 along with Hitler and the Nazi Party and one of his first acts was the burning of books. He exerted totalitarian control over the media, arts and information in Germany. Goebbels organized attacks on German Jews including a one-day boycott of Jewish businessmen, doctors and lawyers, and the Night of Broken Glass in which scores of synagogues were burned and hundreds of Jews were assaulted and murdered. He also produced a series of anti-Semitic films. He remained with Hitler in Berlin to the end. After Hitler’s suicide, Goebbels succeeded him as Chancellor. He along with his wife Magda killed their six young children, and then committed suicide. The couple’s bodies were burned in a shell crater, but owing to the lack of petrol, the burning was only partly effective.








DSCN0637I always feel like I can’t quite capture in pictures how amazing things look in real life. The more impressive the subject is (you can’t get any more impressive than a lion!) the more inadequate my shots seem. Anyway, these are what I got.

Lions live for 10–14 years in the wild but in captivity they can live longer than 20 years. In the wild, males rarely live longer than 10 years as injuries from continual fighting with rival males greatly reduce their life expectancy. They’re unusually social compared to other cats. Lions don’t typically hunt humans but some have been known to do so. When someone in our party opened the door for a couple of seconds, the rangers went crazy! The lions didn’t attack but they did lick their lips.



Saw this bad boy in the garden!

pheasant1The sheer size of it doesn’t really show up on the photo but this big fella made an appearance in the back garden this week. It was just sitting there on the fence looking in through the kitchen window. It was about four times as big as any other birds I’ve ever seen round here! I didn’t know what it was when I saw it but later looked it up on the net and turns out it was a pheasant! It was absolutely beautiful. After sitting looking in through the window for about five minutes it just walked off down the garden like Royalty.