Things that make you go 'hmm'…
Tag Archives: snow
Well, I have just returned from another trip – this time to Switzerland. Zurich to be precise. Schindellegi to be even more precise. It’s a small town sitting above Lake Zurich. Very pretty but unfortunately shrouded in fog most of the time I was there. I knew the lake was there but didn’t see it from the town until the last evening when the sun came out and the lake appeared miraculously from the mist. My friend and I visited Rapperswill which was a very beautiful old medieval town on the lake with an avenue of wonderfully weird pollarded chestnut trees along the water’s edge. We also went to see the astonishingly beautiful Benedictine Abbey of Einsiedeln which is ornately decorated with frescoes and stucco work inside.
We went to Crans Montana for the weekend. On a map it looks as if it is about an hour away until you realise that there is a huge mountain range in the way and the journey actually takes 3 1/2 hours but as always it is well worth the trip. The sun came out and the views from up the mountain across the Rhone Valley are quite breath taking. Here is a slide show of my favourite Swiss images from my Flickr photographs. You are spared the image of me head first in a bank of snow after parting company with my toboggan, as fortunately, no-one had a camera to hand….
Happy blog birthday to me!
While I was away, my blog celebrated its 3rd birthday. Although it is a shadow of its former self (when I started, I blogged every day and continued to do so for about 18 months or so) it soldiers on and I suppose as long as there are enough of you good people prepared to read it (for which I thank you very much indeed), I will continue. It does provide a wonderful excuse to down tools and think back over my week and decide what is worth remembering, noting down and even cherishing. Looking back over this blog I am reminded of music, films, videos, news, cartoons and illustrations that I would have long forgotten about (what with my memory being as shot away as it seems to be) so it functions as a superior ‘aide-memoir’ if nothing else! I do appreciate those of you who take time out to visit and comment on my posts.
On this note, here are a couple of things that have pleased me this week, one is a great track from Blur that perfectly describes how my life seems to be – whizzing past at a rate of knots, (March already?!) with the great danger that I don’t take time to stop and ‘smell the roses’. (Thanks to ‘Papersurfer’ for reminding me of it)
I watched the movie ‘Vicky Cristina Barcelona’ again this weekend and fell in love with Javier Bardem all over again. The man is a god. (He is also the second most popular search term that people use to find my blog so no harm in mentioning him again, is there?) And the answer is – yes. I would be off to Oviedo like a shot….
While I’m at it, I might as well mention THE most popular search term is……*drum roll* …..Sylvie Guillem. She is quite simply stunning. Enough said, see for yourself. Russel Maliphant is pretty amazing too…
Maybe I should just turn this into a ‘celebrity news’ blog and be done with it. Or shall I just talk about George Clooney over and over again? (Cue gratuitous photograph of the man himself…)
Back in the real world, my gorgeous god-daughter visited this weekend to discuss the wedding album I am going to make for her and her husband. We looked through nearly 900 wedding photographs trying to decide which should go into the album – not an easy task. Then we had to choose materials to match her wedding stationery. I am now on a mission to get the website I am working on finished so I can begin her album. So having had my ‘timeout’ for today, I am going to get back to work after a thoroughly self indulgent post…
I had a quiet intro to the New Year which was nice as the week between Christmas and New Year was quite hectic. Since then, I have been busy doing things I don’t normally do. First I baked a cake for a friend’s birthday. It was his 60th so we decided to have a 60s themed dinner – prawn cocktails to start, coq au vin and then I volunteered to make a black forest gateau for dessert. I haven’t done any baking for YEARS but I was actually quite proud of the finished cake.
I have also been rather obsessed with another hobby I haven’t done for an even longer time – knitting. When I was first married and lived in Cardiff (around 1978), my best friend, Jo, and I became passionate about knitting and after we had knitted ourselves waistcoats and sweaters, we then began knitting our (then) husbands, cardigans and sweaters too. Even more astonishingly though, THEY WORE THEM! And on a trip to Paris! It must have been love. We have all been digging out old photographs from those days recently and we found some pictures of the hideous creations we had knitted, thinking we all looked so cool and trendy. Bless. Anyway, I wanted some wrist warmers, and decided to have a go at knitting my own. I found this wool (Sirdar Crofter) which is patterned so that when you knit it up, it makes a sort of Fair Isle pattern which looks great.I finished the wrist warmers and decided to have a go at some socks and then some fingerless gloves. Here they are…
You may be wondering why the fixation with warm hands and feet? Well, you have read about or are experiencing the arctic conditions here in the UK. It is freezing cold. Most of the country is covered in a deep blanket of snow and has been for weeks. Here in Bridport, we have had the freezing temperatures (-9℃) but NO SNOW! We were forecast to have a huge dump of snow a couple of nights ago. I woke up looked out the window and it was green as usual. There was a flurry of snow for about an hour later that morning but it was like teflon – it didn’t stick and within a short space of time, it had mostly disappeared. I know snow causes massive disruption and bother for a lot of people but it does look so magical and is such fun (for about an hour until the cold sets in) but we seem to be having all the nasty bits – the extreme cold and icy roads and none of the pretty fun bits. Here is a photo NASA took of the UK recently – strangely, you can’t see my green oasis.
A slightly ironic result of all this is that I decided I needed some new boots to wear in the snow (!) I ordered them online but they have not arrived as the shipment has been delayed by…you’ve guessed it, the snow.
I did venture out to see ‘Avatar -3D’ the other night. It was quite astonishing and I absolutely loved it. It’s a visual treat and the world of Pandora as imagined by the CGI artists is extraordinarily beautiful in every tiny detail. The 3D effects are really good and actually seem to be coming out of the screen at times. Go and see it on the biggest screen you can – and make sure you see the 3D version and not the 2D one! Here’s the trailer (which does not do it justice).
I’ll spare you the photo of me doing my best Elvis Costelloe impersonation in my 3D specs….
Well here I am, back in soggy Dorset and it is raining. Thank you all so much for your kind wishes, I did have a wonderful time. Ate and drank far too much but did quite a bit of walking so don’t feel too guilty about it. Having said that, the diet started as soon as I got back….
I traveled to Switzerland with my friend and her son and we were joined a day later by most of the rest of her family and some other friends so there was a chalet full. When we arrived in Geneva there was hardly any snow to be seen. We picked up the car and drove towards Crans Montana which is 2 hours away in the Valais region. It’s a lovely drive and skirts Lake Geneva (otherwise known as Lac Leman) for a good part of the journey, passing through Lausanne and Montreux.
The road follows the River Rhone along the valley to Sierre and then we climb the mountain to Crans Montana which is set on a plateau about 1500m up the mountain. When we arrived at the apartment, the snow was very thin on the ground and we had a couple of days of clear blue skies and sunshine. The day after the rest of the party arrived, we woke up to a blizzard and it snowed relentlessly all day. What a difference a day makes! As you can see from these before and after shots of the view from the chalet balcony.
We ventured into town for a little retail therapy and a very long, delicious lunch but the highlight of the day (as far as everyone else was concerned) was a huge dollop of snow falling off a roof top and landing on my head. Hilarious, I’m sure :-)
Here are a few more shots, taken over the week to give you a flavour of the holiday.
The other notable event happened when my friend and I went to the supermarket to shop before everyone else arrived and we couldn’t find a parking space. Eventually we spotted a man walking towards his car. Excitedly we cheered him and then realised it was Roger Moore, getting into a Volkswagen Golf. Apparently, he now lives in Crans Montana. I think he thought we were grinning and cheering at him because he was Roger Moore but we only wanted his parking space – sorry, Rog, we would have recognised you earlier had you been in a groovier car :-)
We actually watched ‘Live and Let Die’ (my favourite Bond movie) one night when we had eaten too much at lunchtime and didn’t want to go out and eat again. It’s such a long time since I had watched it, I had forgotten what a great theme tune it has and what a fun film it is. But Daniel Craig is still my favourite James Bond. Sorry, Roger….