Guilty Pleasures

Ah, the holidays.....Time for travel? Check. Time for shopping, errands, holiday preparations and celebrations? Check. Extra time to read books, visit with family and friends, catch up on dr appointments - check. Time to watch tv ......what ? One of the great pleasures of having extended time off from work for the holiday break is a little extra time to catch up on some of my tv viewing. Normal workweeks are often just too hectic , and I frequently get to spend my evenings grading papers and writing tests. So it is with great enjoyment and no guilt whatsoever that the hubster and I have been deeply ensconced in "Psych", "Monk, and "Burn Notice " marathons . In addition to catching up on all our favorite tv series, we have watched some golden oldies as well. We both stayed up one night till 4 am, singing along with Eliza Doolittle and Henry Higgins as we watched "My Fair Lady". I really counted my blessings that hubster and I both grew up watching great American musicals, and this activity was carried out with no ridicule or embarrassment on either of our parts. Christmas Eve we took a break from kid mania to catch "Casablanca" for the 1000th time. "Here's looking at you, kid." Last night it was "The Sound of Music" which kept us going, and I started thinking about a trip I took once , to the beautiful city of Salzburg, Austria.

Guilty pleasures - I pose in front of the estate where the Von Trapps lived. Salzburg, Aus, 1985
Back in my college days, I spent a summer bumming around Bavaria and Austria, and enjoyed the beautiful scenery and charming locales greatly. One of the hi-lights of this trip was touring Salzburg and taking "The Sound of Music" tour. This was nothing "official", mind you - just some entrepreneur with a bus and a sign, parked out in front of the Mozart museum. Pay yer fee and off ya go! I boarded a bus full of Americans tourists just like me, and the bus drove us around to all the exterior shots used in the movie, in and around the town of Salzburg. While we rode around, the bus driver put a little tape of "The Sound of Music" into the audio system, and all of us on the bus sang along. It was kinda fun - but also about as embarrassing as you can get. I hid under a large floppy hat - from what, I don't know. Why is this movie so beloved by folk ? Is it the good vs evil theme ? Years later, when reading The God of Small Things by Arundhati Roy (winner of the Man Booker Prize for literature), one of the characters says - keep in mind this novel is set in India -that the Sound of Music is her favorite movie of all time. Interesting trivia fact here : this film is immensely popular in India, as well as America. Why is that, I wonder ?

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