October 2019 in photographs

red and yellow autumn leaves“I’m so glad I live in a world where there are Octobers.”

Anne of Green Gables by L.M. Montgomery

The colours speak for themselves.


Of travels to Canada and north west New York State. Of nippy mornings, a new coat and leaves. Of old friends and new, spicy apple drinks, apple picking, Quebecois, bad coffee and leaves. Continue reading October 2019 in photographs

Not mushroom picking in Latvia & Sightseeing in Portugal

Concerning truffles – “During the season, from November until March, they can be tracked down by nose, providing you have sensitive enough equipment. The supreme truffle detector is the pig, who is born with a fondness for the taste, and whose sense of smell in this case is superior to the dog’s. But there is a snag: the pig is not content to wag his tail and point when he has discovered a truffle. He wants to eat it. In fact, he is desperate to eat it. And as Ramon said, you cannot reason with a pig on the brink of gastronomic ecstasy.”

A Year in Provence by Peter Mayle

Mushroom pickingHubby: We are going mushroom picking this Autumn.
Me: We don’t have any spare weekends.
Hubby: We are going!
Me: But…
Hubby: Show me our calendar.
Me: The only open weekend left is the end of September and I need to pack for South Africa.
Hubby: That weekend is perfect!

There are no half measures in my husband. Continue reading Not mushroom picking in Latvia & Sightseeing in Portugal

Autumn Equinox, Hot Chilli and a Round-the-World trip through The Baltics

“Monsieur is going to leave ‘ome?” “Yes,” returned Phileas Fogg. “We are going round the world.”

“…why, I’ve just this instant found out… that we might have gone around the world in only seventy-eight days.”

Around the World in Eighty Days by Jules Verne

Google search: London to Tallinn (return)

Walk to Putney Bridge Station
Take District Line to Victoria
Gatwick Express to Gatwick South Terminal
Air Baltic to Riga, Latvia
Taxi to Hotel (overnight in Riga)
Walk to coach station, Riga.
Coach to Tallinn, Estonia (4hr, attend wedding, overnight, wonder round walled city)

Ryanair return flight cancelled

Fly LOT Airline to Stockholm, Sweden
Fly SAS Airline to London (flight delayed in Sweden for 2 hours – hang around)
Piccadilly Line London Heathrow to Hammersmith
Taxi home (too tired to eat, so crawl into bed) Continue reading Autumn Equinox, Hot Chilli and a Round-the-World trip through The Baltics

A Halloween post-mortem from Germany: pumpkins, people, the ‘principle’ & the power of imagination

“Then suddenly a change, the passing of something – I knew not what – and then a stillness that could be felt. Nothing but this gaunt quiet. London about me gazes at me spectrally. The windows in the white houses were like the eye sockets of skulls. About me my imagination found a thousand noiseless enemies moving. Terror seized me, a horror of my temerity.”

The War of the Worlds by H. G. Wells

spicy, hot pumpkin soupDon’t be afraid.

This is not another pointed missal about whether Halloween is right or wrong. At this time of the year spirits are high and opinions are emphatic. Despite not growing up with it, I’m learning to welcome strong debate. Continue reading A Halloween post-mortem from Germany: pumpkins, people, the ‘principle’ & the power of imagination

New Seasons and managing change

(Referring to the perfect little ‘handbag’ dogs in Boca Raton, Florida) “They were petite, sophisticated and of discriminating taste. Marley was big, clunky and a sniffer of genitalia.”

“Marley had earned his place in our family. Like a quirky but beloved uncle, he was what he was. He would never be Lassie or Benji or Old Yeller. We accepted him for the dog he was, and loved him all the more for it. “You old geezer,” I said to him on the side of the road that late-winter day, scrubbing his neck. Our goal, the cemetery, was still a steep climb ahead. But just as in life, I was figuring out, the destination was less important than the journey.”

Marley and Me by John Grogan

Autumn leaves changingThis book, Marley and Me (and the film,) snuck up on me from behind, and got to me when my guard was down. The film is light hearted, ‘feel good’ and predictable, but when I watched some years ago and again recently, I fell for every line – both my heart and my tear ducts annoyingly reacted exactly on cue.

So why did I read the book this last week as well? Continue reading New Seasons and managing change