The new year’s resolutions hit a rock on day two (day one was exempt due to correctly predicted new year’s day hangover). Having begun so well with a full afternoon of letter-writing, I was approaching my thesis when I was suddenly – quite out of nowhere – Struck Down by illness. So, along with the writing and the exercise, my social life and – more importantly for the blog – cultural forays have had to be put on hold indefinitely. What a start for 2013.

But on a positive note it has been an opportunity to enjoy the varied offerings of daytime telly (I ought to have said literature, but frankly fighting against so many bad bacteria is very tiring, while Agatha Christie’s plots are so well explained by David Suchet, and Victorian history so beautifully portrayed by Emily Blunt…) However, I had to turn off Fantastic Mr Fox today. Sacrilege! Mr Fox is not and will never be American. It threatened to spoil my childhood nostalgia (and, as my co-commiserator reflected, do they make cider on the prairie? And if not how is Bean supposed to survive?) Back to the calming and restorative murder mysteries.

I did enjoy Africa on iPlayer though. That David Attenborough can still manage such expeditions is quite impressive… There was a worrying moment when we saw a figure dangling by a harness being lowered into a bottomless abyss with an underground lake and then dive in, but thankfully it wasn’t him. There were a lot of tense moments involving the animals too, the giraffe battle being particularly gripping, and one always worries for the meerkats, yet extraordinarily they never seem to get caught. Baddies of part one were the giant armoured crickets, a futuristic plague which looked as if they had been created for Doctor Who and spurted yellow blood – they even turned out to be cannibalistic, which was something of a relief really: fewer crickets, more safe little baby birds.

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