Monday, July 11, 2011

The ultimate fantasy

I must confess: I do enjoy Downton Abbey.

Sitting in front of the box on Sunday night has become a small ritual. And I just love every bit of it - the costumes, decor, casting.

My mechanically minded brain is easily stimulated with obvious predictability of each scene and every dialogue. You just know what they are going to say and what happens next.

While most Brits watch it because they are familiar with the vocabulary, I watch it because I'm not. When it comes to Victorian England, I am as clean as a slate (blame my Central European upbringing?) but for some weird reason, I have a feeling, that if transported back to the 1920s, I would not be out of place or time!

Here is my ultimate fantasy:

- Carson, the Longcase clock is not showing the time?
- Yes my Lord, it has stopped last night. I have arranged for Mr. Hacko to repair it.
- Mr. Hacko? That pompous clock swindler?
- Yes my Lord, I am afraid so.
- Carson, surely we can afford here someone who is more familiar with the treatment of fine timepieces?
- ... I know your Lordship would never want him to come, but since Mr. Dent left for London, Mr. Hacko is the last remaining clockmaker in Newbury.
- Good riddance!
-... And there is one more thing, my Lord... Mr. Hacko has not been paid 1 shilling and 2 pence for his last job - a repair of the pocket watch Mr. Pamuk gave to Lady Mary...
- Is that so? Well Carson, it is not quite fair to deprive a man of his livelihood when he has done nothing wrong. There are many worse professions than a clockmaker...

Seriously - the set of Downton Abbey is overflowing with fantastic antique and period pieces. I've spotted at least a dozen long case clocks and there is a fine bracket or ormolu clock in every room in the mansion! A feast for an eye - great scenography.

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