Saturday, 1 April 2017

Saturday a workshop and a financial drama

I drove to Penarth this morning for a morning's Tai Chi workshop for regular class members in Albert Road church hall. It was a refreshing and stimulating session, and good to meet with several long standing Tai Chi players whom I've got to know over the fifteen years I've been attending Christie's classes. Clare met me afterwards and we walked up to Penarth Head, then down to the pier to have coffee and sandwiches for an al fresco lunch before walking for a while on the beach and then back to where the car was parked. The sun shone and there was cool fresh breeze, a most enjoyable couple of hours after the workshop. I picked up fourteen items of rubbish, mostly from the beach, in the course of the day.

We were surprised at how relatively few people were out walking the promenade or on the beach or the pier given the fine weather. Clare wanted to call at IKEA in Grangetown to buy some curtain material on the way home. When we arrived the IKEA car park was almost completely full, suggesting that the store would be just as full with crowds of weekend shoppers, so we drove out again without stopping and returned for tea. We were out of buns, cakes and biscuits, so I walked to the Coop and bought some hot cross buns. By the time I returned, Clare had made some spicy bun dough and was preparing hot cross buns of her own for next time. Always better than shop bought ones, if you have time to make them.

The last two episodes of 'Follow the Money' were screened on BBC Four in the evening, in which all was satisfactorily resolved and a major financial crisis involving the catastrophic devaluation of the Danish Kroner was averted by our investigative hero doing a secret deal with a powerful British financial 'robber baron'. The baddies got their come-uppance, the selfish and foolishly ambitious were chastened, and survivors returned to family life grateful for a break from all the nastiness. A happy ending, sort of, with just enough key characters making it to the end to make possible a  third series, maybe. 

In one scene, financial crisis was precipitated by speculators betting on a devaluation of the Kroner, which the very powerful had deemed to be over-valued, and used a series of corrupt and illegal initiatives to bring about their aim of profiting from this movement. I found the words "The Kroner is over-valued" chilling, as it mirrored opinions voiced in the media by leading British financiers about the pound in the wake of the brexit vote. It makes me wonder to what extend this kind of strategic financial corruption may have been a driving force in getting euro-skeptics and their media backers to mount an anti-EU campaign riddled with lies and fake news. Anyway, this was well crafted and worth watching throughout, and was good in how it conveyed the human impact of financial crisis on the micro as well as macro level.

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