Like most families, mine has holiday traditions, but our ‘season’ tends to run until early February. A couple of January and February birthdays extend the ‘season’ for us. My birthday is the final date in the almost three month celebration. All the cooking, baking, decorating, and shopping take a heavy toll on my energy supply these days. I certainly don’t bounce back the way I used to, so need to kick back occasionally to re-charge the old batteries. And this year surgery for me added to the depletion of what little energy I still had after Christmas.
As the eye surgery (on the 30th) left me unable to do much more than sit quietly, I found myself surfing the television channels for something to keep my mind occupied. I did find a new cooking show, at least it was new to me. Chef Walter Staib does a show called ‘A Taste of History’. He has done a massive amount of research into the early cookery of the United States and he owns the City Tavern in Philadelphia where he cooks amazing things at a hearth using utensils and ingredients as close to 18th century America as he can get. Often he goes to Monticello and Mt. Vernon and gets herbs and vegetables from Thomas Jefferson’s garden and Martha Washington’s kitchen garden. Being something of a history buff, I found his show fascinating.
However, even two of his shows only take an hour, so I began hunting the channels once again, and what to my wondering eye(s) should appear, but the 1995 BBC/A&E Pride and Prejudice. I couldn’t stop watching. In spite of the fact that I own more than one copy and the commercials were annoying, I continued to watch.
I was upset that they edited the opening scene where Lizzy sees Bingley and Darcy looking at Netherfield Park, they cut the end of it where Lizzy skips down the hill, then stops at the window of her father’s library and exchanges knowing looks with him as her mother and younger sisters argue in the background. The sequence establishes part of Elizabeth’s character so well that I really missed seeing it. However, I persevered and, for the most part, was not disappointed. I even made some notes as I watched.
Episode 1: How can one not enjoy Elizabeth and Darcy’s first encounter when he is so rude and she laughs at him. Oh no, they cut the scene after the assembly dance when Lizzy promises her mother that she will never dance with Mr. Darcy.
One of my favorite lines from the book is Miss Bingley saying ‘I am all astonishment,’ after Darcy comments on Elizabeth’s fine eyes. And even after multiple readings of the novel and as many times watching this mini-series, I still love it.
The end of the episode has Elizabeth and Jane in a carriage with Lizzy declaring that she has never been happier to leave a place (Netherfield, of course). It is already evident that Darcy is conflicted in his feelings for her by the look on his face, as her carriage rolls down the drive.
Episode 2: Mr. Collins and Mr. Wickham. The Netherfield Ball. Enough said. Although I will say that I adore Mr. Bennet’s support in Lizzy’s refusal to marry Mr. Collins.
Episode 3:What can I say … it ends with Darcy’s first proposal, which still makes my heart flutter and then makes me as angry as Elizabeth.
Episode 4: After Darcy’s letter, she puts Wickham down and tries, in vain, to stop Lydia from going to Brighton. But then, her Aunt and Uncle Gardner take her to Pemberley. In spite of the numerous times I watched this show, I still wait in anticipation for the lakeside meeting and the very end when Lizzy turns back to smile at Darcy as the carriage drives away. It’s a small smile that says so much.
Episode 6: Two of my favorite scenes happen here and I wait for each in their turn. Lizzy’s refusal to promise not to marry Darcy when Lady Catherine insists on it and a little scene (that I was surprised to see they left in) has Lizzy and Jane in the still room hanging herbs to dry, while discussing the fact that Bingley is returning to Netherfield. It’s a wonderful sister scene and I love it.
The wedding, the kiss. The end. (if you’d like to see how I imagine their wedding night, click here)
A final note for this January post, watch for the Valentine’s Day release of Days of Future Past, my newest novel.
As readers become attached – quite quickly, in fact – to the main characters, they will find themselves drawn into a journey that they will never forget. Not only will mystery lovers be pleased, but the romantic and mystical, even supernatural fans out there, will be over the moon for this one. From the intriguing dialogue to the expansive plot that wraps around a truly unforgettable couple, this book has it all! Feathered Quill