Much of a muchness

Things that make you go 'hmm'…

A Fleeting Glimpse of Dorset

I went up to London yesterday. I won’t bore you with the tedium of the journey there and back but suffice it to say it was a sorry catalogue of delays, misinformation and outright porkie pies.

Example, on journey home:

Announcement 1: ‘delay is due to operational misunderstandings at Waterloo Station’.

Announcement 2: ‘delay was due to an electrical storm in the Wimbledon area’

Announcement 3: ‘delay due to major signalling problems just outside the station’

Drives me mad especially as on the way there, the train was 30 minutes late because there was a problem with the train doors which meant they decided not to stop at all between Southampton and London. ‘Hurrah!’ the passengers cried, ‘A faster journey!’ -until the train ground to a complete halt and just sat there for 30 minutes.

Anyway, I had a nice time in London. Falkiners is even more yummy than usual as they seem to have had a bit of a re-organisation and all the lovely papers are now catalogued beautifully so that you can see everything they have in stock and not just the relatively small number of papers on display. Result? I spent probably twice as much as I would have otherwise – genius!

I then walked to Paperchase on Tottenham Court Road and bought some more paper and then walked to Liberty to buy a birthday gift for a friend and yes-you’ve guessed it yet more paper! Surprisingly, Liberty had a really good range of Japanese Chiyogami papers and some pretty gift wrap. So it was a very successful shopping expedition.

I’m sorry I’ve been AWOL this last couple of days and especially sorry I haven’t been responding to your comments but yesterday, I met up with some girlie mates at a friend’s house and we had a very pleasant time making books. I showed them how to make ribbon books a month or so ago and they have caught the bug! It was really interesting to see their different approaches to materials and their ideas for extending what you can do with the books. It might even galvanize me into trying something new!

Last night I went for a long walk with a friend. We drove to a village called Langton Herring which is a mile or so inland from the Fleet and Chesil Beach. I’ve mentioned Chesil Beach before. It is a shingle beach which is 18 miles long and runs from Portland to West Bay. The stones on the beach are much larger at the Portland end and gradually decrease in size towards West Bay. It used to be said that sailors who were washed up on the beach could tell where they were by the size of the shingle. For 8 miles of it’s length, the beach encloses a lagoon called the Fleet. It’s famous because it is where Barnes Wallis tested the bouncing bombs which were used in the famous Dam busters raid during World War 2.

This is a photograph of the Fleet and Chesil Beach I took last year.

The walk from Langton Herring on a cool sunny evening was quite spectacular. It was silent apart from the sounds of skylarks singing and seagulls calling. The lambs in the fields were playing and leaping about, some of the field were bright yellow with oilseed rape. And when we arrived at the Fleet, the water was flat calm and the sun was setting, it was so peaceful and beautiful. here are some of the photographs I took. You can click on each thumbnail to see a larger version.

The other good news is that Abbotsbury Swannery which is also on the Fleet and had to close earlier in the year because of bird flu, has now re-opened and has just had the first cygnets hatch! Apparently, this has happened much earlier than usual and as the arrival of the first baby swan is said to herald the first day of summer, this is good news indeed!

This gorgeous image is by Geoffrey Franklin of Christchurch, Dorset and was taken from a slide show of his swannery images on the BBC website.

14 responses to “A Fleeting Glimpse of Dorset

  1. strugglingwriter May 3, 2008 at 6:52 pm

    Lovely book! Also, it sounds like a good shopping trip, picking up all that paper!

    The baby cygnets are so cute. I’m going to show my daughter that photo.

    We just finished up watching Episode 2 of Doctor Who (the Pompei episode). It was pretty good, although there was no Rose or Martha :) Next week is The Ood!


  2. Creechman May 4, 2008 at 11:50 am

    Why is it every time I read your blog I want to plug in “Pride and Prejudice” on the DVD?

    Lovely pics. I could hang out in Langton Herring for a spell or three.

  3. lindsay May 4, 2008 at 12:49 pm

    I found you through Kim’s place. She recommended you to me. Your books are lovely! Very creatively bound. I’m just beginning to make books.

    Great photos too!

  4. Daddy Papersurfer May 4, 2008 at 2:42 pm

    “I went up to London yesterday. I won’t bore you with the tedium of the journey there and back but suffice it to say it was a sorry catalogue of delays, misinformation and outright porkie pies.”

    and then ………….. tee hee. Still, obviously therapy was needed……

    Lovely piccies – looking forward to our little bit of coastline ………. tough wood

  5. shinade May 4, 2008 at 4:31 pm

    Oh my so much to comment on.

    First I think this album is among one of my favorites. I love the Asian look.

    Sorry to hear about your travel problems. But, you are not alone. It is quite impossible over here also to get anywhere anymore without some kind of delay or other various mishaps.

    And, my oh my thanks for the beautiful pictures. I am heartbroken this year as I have lost all of my geese except one to predators. so no babies for us this year. and we are having a terrible time finding anyone who has any geese for sale. Well, maybe next spring we can have babies.
    Happy Sunday:-)

  6. Lady Banana May 4, 2008 at 11:20 pm

    Beautiful photos! I’d much rather be in your part of the world than here in London, I’m sure it’s nice to visit up here but oh so nice to be back down by the coast!

    I have visited, some years ago, Chesil beach and been to Portland when the kids were young. They went up into the Portland Bill lighthouse but me, being afraid of heights couldn’t do

  7. Daddy Papersurfer May 5, 2008 at 7:50 am

    “tough wood”!!?!!!! – I’m catching 70’s disease – “touch wood”

    I’m going to have a lie down now …………..

  8. 70steen May 5, 2008 at 10:16 am

    tsk DP you are dissing me here too lol

    Dorset does indeed look gorgeous.

  9. Diane May 5, 2008 at 8:41 pm

    SW – It was a very enjoyable shopping trip – exhausting but enjoyable!
    I’m going to go to the Swannery soon so I will take lots of cute cygnet pics for your daughter! The Ood episode is very good – you will enjoy it!

    Creechman – because you get bored reading my blog? :-)
    Langton Herring is fab. More pics next week when I go for a walk along the Fleet…..if you can bear it :-)

    Lindsay – glad you enjoyed my books. I really enjoyed reading your blog. Good luck with making your books, I look forward to seeing them :-)

    DP – I know, I know! When I read it through I saw I had just contradicted myself but I decided I needed to get it off my chest anyway! I hope your house move goes smoothly – it is SO stressful :-)

    Shinade – so glad you like the book – it is a pretty paper. As for travelling, I have decided to save up and get a chauffeur. (If only!)
    So sorry to hear about your geese – it’s all very sad isn’t it? I hope you find some new geese….

    Lady B – I feel the same. Love visiting London but I am always glad to get back. I am originally a city girl but am a true convert to country living since I moved to Dorset I must admit! A friend of mine was the last lighthouse keeper at Portland Bill (it’s all automated now) I’m not sure I could deal with the heights either!

    DP – fat finger syndrome…..enjoy your nap :-)

    70s – he is cheeky isn’t he? Even spotted the contradiction in my post…..but we like him really…..

  10. Daddy Papersurfer May 5, 2008 at 9:22 pm

    I was hoping 70’s wouldn’t see that ……… humph

  11. nursemyra May 5, 2008 at 11:16 pm

    lovely pics of chesil beach. have you read the Ian McEwan book?

    I saw a roll of amazing old wallpaper at a market on sunday and thought about buying it but didn’t. do you ever use flocked paper from the 1950s on your book covers? if you do and I see some again I’d be happy to send it to you

  12. laketrees May 5, 2008 at 11:21 pm

    lovely book Diane …very asian and the dark bows are a nice contrast to the white,,,
    you certainly have some picturesque walks over there…
    that’s good to here that the swans are back…beautiful photo :)

  13. Teresa May 6, 2008 at 4:17 am

    We forgive your going AWOL since you have given us a lovely new book to admire and some gorgeous photos too. :)

    Glad you had an over all lovely time the past few days despite train problems in London.

    While my sister is in town, I’ll not be online as much, so keep having your fun days off for a couple of weeks, OK? ;>

  14. Diane May 7, 2008 at 12:25 am

    DP – beware your sins will find you out – or something…..

    Nurse Myra – I LOVED the Ian McEwan book, so sad and understated. :-(
    That paper sounds amazing!As a self confessed paper addict, I’m always up for new ideas and paper :-)

    Kim – glad you approve of the book. You always do like the Asian influenced ones! Dorset is gorgeous! I hope I don’t become a bore raving about it so much….

    Teresa – thank you. Have fun with your sister, I’m sure you will have a great time. I’m envious of the feasts I suspect you will have….. :-)

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