As it turns out, the father of psychoanalysis lived right here in Hampstead! For a year, anyway. For about £6 you can wander around Sigmund Freud’s former home, reading various plaques about the weird and wonderful dreams some of his patients had. The shop was full of books about some of Freud’s most famous cases as well as a few comedy trinkets such as ‘Freudian Slippers’ (why anyone would want a pair of beady eyes in glasses staring up at them from their feet I don’t know). On reading the back of one of the books I discovered that Freud was a big fan of cocaine, and he used to recommend the stuff to his patients. Needless to say, I think at least one of them died from an overdose. As we were on our way out, our eyes were drawn to a little fox in the garden that seemed totally non-plussed by our presence. He just sat there, basking in the sunshine like it was a completely normal thing for foxes to do. If I was in any way spiritual I might suggest that the fox was Freud re-incarnated.
Seeing how we were halfway to the Heath, we thought we may as well walk there and enjoy the last of the sunshine. It annoys me when people who have never been to London assume that it’s just this roaring, polluted city. There are LOADS of green bits in London if you know where to look. Go to Hampstead Heath and you’ll be surrounded by trees and wild grass on all sides. Go to Mudchute Farm and you can chill with some sheep. Go to Richmond Park and you can catch a glimpse of wild deer. You can’t get much more ‘anti-city’ than that.
When evening came it was time to get our gladrags on and go to the BFI showing of a new Richard Linklater film called Bernie. I’m not sure if it’s going to get released later this year, so I won’t spoil it for you. Basically, the film is about a really nice guy (Jack Black) who makes a big impression on a small town in Texas for all the right (and a few wrong) reasons. It’s funny, it’s moving and it makes you question your thoughts on morality. It’s also a true story! Which always makes things more interesting, in my opinion.
So this weekend I didn’t get to tick anything off my ‘must-see’ list. I did, however, spot Simon Amstell in a coffee shop and Helena Boham Carter with her kids in tow as I was walking the dog. I also managed to lug myself out of bed at 7:30am on a Saturday to go for a 35 minute run with my Dad. For these reasons, I have had what you might call a ‘win’ of a weekend. It was relaxed, it was lazy and it was unplanned, but despite the sore calves and achy ribcage (apparantly I run like a cartoon character whose creator hasn’t quite got the hang of drawing realistic human running), I loved it. Now it’s time to get some Arkham City on the go and get rid of all the good work I did yesterday by eating far too much badly baked gingerbread. Hooray for weekends!