Wednesday, 4 November 2009

‘UP’ in Didcot

Our half-day adventure in Didcot was surprisingly pleasant.

In fact, the day even reminded me of the time when I had considered living in Didcot. However, I’m glad it was only a consideration.

One cannot argue against the economics that dictate the conditions we live under. Moving from the North back to the South of England gave us a terrible fright when I saw rental prices. Didcot was a serious contender.

“Babes, I think living in Oxford is beyond our means – how about Didcot? It has quick access to London and is only one stop by train to Oxford”.

“Great! Mark that as another town to check out”.

As we approached Didcot, the thought of living in a town over shadowed by a bellowing power station killed all preconceptions we held whilst in the North. We didn’t even drive into Didcot.

Sitting in Cibo restaurant with Babes and her colleagues was a lovely experience. I have to admit, it was very tasty food for a franchise.

It also happens to be a lunch organised to promote breast cancer awareness - the pink theme was reflective of everyone’s mood.

Babes was also given a half day off from work for all the long hours she has given in the lab. I’m so very grateful that she works for a company that truly respects and appreciates the time she devotes to her work.

To be honest, we struggled to envisage how we would spend those precious hours in Didcot. Even though we had already bought tickets to Pixar’s “Up” we still had just over an hour to kill and with so little to see in Didcot and lunch ending sooner than expected – the hour looked daunting.

But none-the-less we found our way into a coffee/bistro and talked the time away.

“Up” was what made Didcot memorable. I haven’t felt so moved in a film for a long time. The old man was someone to admire. His life was fulfilled by the love he shared with his wife. Those short scenes - a collection of memories really – were evocative and so well paced that as a viewer I felt a true connection. The relationship encapsulated my definition of what true love really meant. So much was told with such precise detail. Not a single piece of dialogue was needed.

As for watching it with Babes, I couldn’t help but wish we will have the same adventures.

To me, Up was a fantastically told narrative. In my eyes, the best Pixar has ever achieved and a model which I endeavour to accomplish in my own writing. Precise, succinct, well paced narrative. Powerful and lovable. Every character added just the right amount to the story.

If you haven’t seen ‘Up’ I thoroughly recommend it – and if you live near Didcot, why not hit two birds with one stone? If you’ve got a few hours to burn, it’s not such a bad place to visit…once in a blue moon.