Sunday, 15 April 2012

Welcome to Aimetu's

This is my little dip into journalism/magazine blogging - I hope you enjoy my blog as much as I have enjoyed the research, your comments are always appreciated.

Most people know life for me is at times a little tough; but I keep smiling and carry on :) This story is about co-incidence and life links,  not really a story. It has surprised, pleased, amazed me, resulting in Aimetu's.

Les Miserables holds a very special place in my life; the music, the story, the characters and of course the superb actors who bring it all to life. Last year we were very lucky to see the 25th concert live from Leicester cinema and to see Les Mis on their 25th Anniversary tour.
Alfie Boe has captured Jean Valjean superbly. We saw Alfie in June 2012 at Queen's Theatre, London with Matt Lucas as Thenardier and Hadley Fraser as Javert. We have discovered slip seats - the most amazing place to sit for an equally amazing price. I was so close I could touch the actors on stage. Ramin Karimloo has just finished his run of playing Jean Valjean; his performance was brilliant and the chemistry between JVJ and Javert was electric.

Twitter land is used by many of the other cast members and some of the behind the scenes artists. Alexia (Eponine), Lisa-Anne Wood (Cosette), Liam Tarne (Enjolras), Craig Mathers (Marius) are all regular Tweeters as are Frafee, Scott Graham, Zoe Doano, Lily Fraser, Mary Cormack. Les Mis Official have guest Tweeters who reply to inquistive, interested fans - there is much to discover behind the scenes.

Last summer the Les Mis cast were tweeting about Brown Bag Crisps. They are the only crisps cooked in the UK with 100% olive oil. Their 5 flavours are Lightly Salted,  Sea Salt & Malt Vinegar, Oak Smoked Chilli, Sea Salt & Black Pepper, and Mature Cheddar Manchego and Onion. They are availabe in many good delis around the UK. We found some at Otter's in Oakham, a wonderful town in Rutland. It is easily accessible by car, driving through glorious rolling hills, or by train on the Birmingham to Stanstead line.

Otter's is a new Smokehouse and Deli suppling a wide selection of naturally smoked fish, meats and cheeses, oils, anti pasti, cured meats, accompaniments, speciality teas and coffees, rice, pasta and muesli.
I contacted Otter's to say we were visiting by train, to make sure they had some Brown Bag Crisps. Leo (the manager) replied saying yes they had and sorry he wouldn't be there when we visited but hope we had a good day. It was his mum who was there and she guessed who we were. She thought it was funny and couldn't believe we'd come by train for the crisps. Leo was actually in the States on holiday - amazing. Thanks to Twitter and emails we were chatting away in the deli - purchasing crisps, cheese and olives; social networking has it's bonuses.

Social Networking can open up a whole new world and my aim for Aimetu's is to help do just that. Through Twitter last year we discovered a brilliant welcoming vinyard in the Loire Valley, France. Chateau de Petit Thouars is located just west of Chinon. Sebastien du Petit Thouars proudly showed us the chateau and vineyards, after which we enjoyed tasting a variety of red vintages and the wonderful Cremant de Loire. The vineyard is 100% Cabernet Franc which produces a fruity, black berried grape. The wine travelled well back to the UK and has accompanied many meals at our table.
All these events have a connection, mainly through Twitter, and for me are an example of how our worlds are all interlinked. I have been a fan of Joanne Harris for a number of years. Chocolat is my all time favourite book; I've had many holidays in France, drinking red wine, nibbling chocolate whilst reading it again :) I found Joanne on Twitter through the Les Mis Twitters.

The end of my story happened one Sunday morning - Joanne Harris tweeted about needing a name for a cat in her latest book - she offered to 'follow' the person with the name she chose. I suggested Otter (the name of the Oakham deli) or Otto and she picked Otto. Joanne's novel will be released 24th May.
How can: liking Les Mis; following the cast; learning about and craving crisps; taking an hour's train ride to a deli; result in naming a cat in a famous author's latest novel. These things can happen, and when they do I celebrate with a bottle of the lovely wine we bought from my Twitter friendly vineyard.

Aimetu's will be blogging many such stories and tales with many new products, venues and friends mentioned along the way. I'd love to read your comments, about Les Mis, Brown Bag Crisps, Joanne Harris and/or interesting life links.

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I'm so pleased you're enjoying my travel and wine ramblings - I love reading your replies too, thank you for posting a comment