I’m sorry I haven’t been around much and I can’t see things improving over the next few weeks. #2 son is now home from university (he did very well – graduated with a 2.1 so we are well pleased with him!) This means increased laundry (he has SO many clothes, just washed 29 t-shirts) and as for food shopping – no matter how much I buy, we are constantly running out of supplies, he could eat for England. He is very keen on cooking and loves experimenting with new recipes – all good but he is not so good at the clearing up afterwards :-)
And the sun is shining and the garden is growing and it’s Wimbledon fortnight and next weekend it’s Glastonbury (cue the rain)…..OK, lame excuses I know but I’m doing my best – honest!
So, here you have edited highlights of my week.
The sun is shining and it’s Wimbledon – how bizarre! Roger Federer played Dominic Hrbaty yesterday, an easy match for Roger with some very funny moments.
and a miracle shot from Dominic Hrbaty…
I’m going to Wimbledon on Friday so I hope the weather holds up and we get to see some good tennis. I have Centre Court tickets (although they are about as far back as you can get without actually sitting outside the court) but never mind. I shall see tennis, drink champagne and eat strawberries whatever.
Went for a walk on Sunday. The weather was fabulous and I passed through a field that had been seeded with wild flowers. It was very special, my photographs don’t really do it justice (you can enlarge it by clicking on it). Sort of makes up for the poppy disaster….
I took this one on my way home. I was driving along the coast road with the roof down, Coldplay blasting out on the radio and this view. Absolute bliss.
The Arum lilies in my garden are blooming and are quite stunning. I think I am starting to grow green fingers at last.
I have just finished reading the funniest book I have ever read. I cannot recommend this highly enough. This is it.
It’s a run through the last 2000 years of British history but it is is written in a wonderfully funny style. I was reading it on the train a week or so ago and I kept bursting out laughing. I caught the guy next to craning his neck trying to see what I was reading as I was giggling so much. I tell you, I learned more history reading this than I did in years of history lessons at school. I’ve been buying it for all my friends as I want everyone to read it. I bought three in a ‘3 for 2’ offer last week as gifts and the sales assistant said hesitantly ‘ You do know you have bought the same book three times – you don’t have to you know, you can buy 3 different books’. Der!
I’m off to Glastonbury on Saturday morning. I don’t know, Wimbledon on Friday, Glastonbury on Saturday and Sunday. No-one can accuse me of having a boring life. Of course, as the weather is very nice at the moment, I’m sure it will have changed by the weekend, this is an English summer after all, but hopefully it won’t be as bad as the first time I went!
This last photograph always amuses me. If you look closely, you can see the stall selling …… Glastonbury Spring Water. Erm, no thanks!
Apologies if I haven’t dropped round your blog for a while, I intend to try and have a catch up night tonight….see you later.
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….
I managed to get a little ahead of myself this last few days. By having a PJ day yesterday (I stayed in my pyjamas all day), there were no distractions (such as shopping) and I have a new book to show even though I have been out all day today.
I went with a large group of friends for a long walk, ending up at a pub for a Sunday roast as an incentive at the end. There must have been about 25 of us (notice the odd number? Guess who that was….) We all met at Osmington Mills a local beach with a pub close by called the Smugglers. The weather was very dark and over cast with a really strong, blustery wind blowing. We set off to do the circular walk at about 11am.
The first half of the walk goes inland and wasn’t too bad, a few hills but nothing too extreme, I managed lots of nice chats with various friends and after a while we turned towards the coast again to walk back. The wind by now, as we were walking along the cliffs was ridiculously strong and gusty – luckily it was blowing from the south-east and so was blowing us onto the cliff and not off it! We were now walking along a narrow path and it was incredibly muddy underfoot which didn’t help at all as the path was very up and down and steep in places.
Of course, the inevitable happened and just as I reached a muddy, uphill exposed bit, I slipped and a huge gust of wind blew me off my feet and I landed on my derrière in the mud – marvellous. My walking boots were so caked in mud, they lost all their grip, so the rest of the walk was even more difficult. It was actually hilarious, we were all sliding and skating in the mud, even the serious hikers who had come very prepared with wet weather gear, hiking poles and either wellies or meatier walking boots than I had worn – not to mention a change of clothes, were struggling.
Luckily, my mate Amanda had a spare pair of track suit bottoms in her car and I was able to change in the back of a car before going to the pub for lunch. I had to leave my mud encrusted boots at the door but luckily my walking boots had kept my feet dry so I could pad about in my socks. After roast beef and Yorkshire pudding, I felt much restored! It was very good fun and we are going to meet regularly in the future. These are some of the photographs I took. At this point the group had split into two halves, I was in the middle because I kept stopping to take photographs. Well, that’s my excuse…
These two photographs are of the same view, the first taken today and the second was taken in the Spring last year to show the difference.
This book is smaller than my usual square books, only 5″square, so it is actually very cute. I might make more this size as they are almost handbag sized. Well, they are if you have a big handbag!
I am posting this from a rather swanky hotel room in Nice, France. I made this book before I went and saved it up for today. I flew out of England yesterday at 8.30 am, after a really early start in the foulest weather you can imagine. I left my house at 4.30am as I have a 2 hour drive to Bristol airport. It was raining incredibly hard and there were gale force winds – really nasty. At around 5am I was caught by a speed camera which I hadn’t noticed as I was concentrating on the dark, empty road (and I don’t like driving at night). I was so busy watching for huge puddles, as a lot of the roads were flooded, I didn’t notice the camera so being caught on an empty road, doing 40 in a 30 zone is very annoying.
I arrived in Nice and the sun was shining in a clear blue sky. And it was warm – such a treat. I’m only here for a couple of days but as it about 6 years since I was last here, it is nice to be back. I took some photographs but haven’t brought the cable to get the photos off the camera, so they will have to wait until I get back on Friday. Here’s a photo I found on Google images.
When I was last in Nice, this wonderful Art Deco facade was all that was left of the original building which was a casino on the Promenade des Anglais. For years behind this facade, there was just a huge hole but recently they have re-built the casino and added a lovely hotel. On the third floor, there is a sun terrace and a swimming pool (on the level above the arches).
It is really very nice here in Nice and it’s a shame that my winter break in the sun is over on Friday, then it’s back to the rain…
If you thought yesterday’s book was girlie, this one is even more so… it’s very pretty. I love the cover paper it’s so fresh. My next one will have to be a lot different to the last couple – don’t want to get into a rut.
The good news is I have finally found a plan chest which should be delivered in a week or so. This means I can get all the paper stored safely at last. It has been lying all over the bed in the spare room ever since I reclaimed the kitchen table so it will be good to be organised.
It has been raining heavily overnight and all day today. I am watching the river which runs through my garden very anxiously! This photograph was taken in the summer and shows the river as it normally is – flowing very gently down to the sea.
This is the river today – a couple of feet higher and flowing really strongly. Another couple of feet and it’s in my garden. I just saw a couple of ducks shoot past at high speed. They must love it!
I like living by the river and I’m glad to say it hasn’t flooded my garden so far (touch wood!) but it is a bit nerve-racking when it is very wet…