Thursday, 30 December 2010


Tomorrow - last day of 2010 - and a Friday too. Friday's are my self portrait days. So will 2010 go out with a bang or a whimper I wonder…. I have a couple of ideas in mind but I'll have to wait to see how they work out. I also have ideas for more photo projects in the new year though the way my mind is working I shall need more days in my weeks if I am going to get them all up and running. We shall see!

Here's lookin at you...

Wednesday, 29 December 2010

Heading for...

Who knows what we are heading for - some things we shall undoubtedly deserve, some maybe not. Some we can dodge and some will hit us full in the face. There is no way to be prepared - no Boy Scout ethos will assist us. So, let's hope that 2011 will be kind and benign to us all. We can but hope.

Spring seems so far away…...

Monday, 27 December 2010

Over or not

So there it's been and gone in a flash. All the chaos and panic and spending must have been worthwhile because you all did it last year and doubtless will do just the same next! Not that I'm criticising  anyone, given the chance I'd be in there up to my neck in tinsel and wrapping paper, wondering if I'd prepared enough sprouts (probably too many!)  But it's not to be so I must console myself with………….. the SALES.
Now this I can do and shall…right now…..

Friday, 24 December 2010

The Festive Season

Oh how I approach this time of year with a whole bunch of mixed feelings. Being an only child is a bit of a double edged sword, you get spoiled (if you're lucky/unlucky!) and there tend to be precious few parties and celebrations. I get slightly miffed by people who have large families and who proceed to reject the gatherings, parties and general family togetherness. The natural order of life dictates that family groups change, births and deaths, separations and divorce mean that they are ever regrouping. So when you think about "Auntie Flo" and what a fun sense of humour she has for an old bird just remember to spend some time with her…..while you have the chance.
It's very cold and I woke to ice on the inside of the windows…hmmm another jumper and a second pair of socks methinks!

Nearing home


Tuesday, 21 December 2010

Last trip of the year

Four days in France have flown by and now it's time to close up the house until the New Year. It will be well into February before another visit will be possible due both to other commitments and the fact that the most convenient ferry doesn't start to run again until then. This trip has been marred by my illness which, true to form, is getting better now it's time to leave. How annoying. A walk in the snow and a trip to Josselin is about all that has been managed, though the rest of the time has been relaxing to a certain extent. At least there were no jobs to be done.
So now for the trip to Roscoff and then home. Friends have warned of the state of the roads so it could be an interesting drive. Time will tell. As usual my feelings are mixed, the level of relaxation I get here is far and above that I have at "home" with it's many and varied pressures. But then it is home and here in France is "holiday". Best not to blur the edges I feel.

My nod towards Christmas

Saturday, 18 December 2010

Ferry travel

The trip to France was on MV Pont Aven, the big one, with shops. I only mention the shops in passing as this trip I only made one very small purchase - am I sickening for something?! The journey to Plymouth hadn't been as bad as was expected but the 25 minute wait to drive through the Customs Shed was a bit much especially as they didn't appear to stop anyone - too cold maybe!  So once on board it was straight for the restaurant and dinner. No wine allowed as I have new pain relief tablets, that's going to be annoying in the extreme. The crossing was smooth and arrival prompt as always. The journey on from Roscoff to No.2 home should take about an hour and forty minutes but  the snow got deeper and as the roads were not gritted it took nearer to three hours.
There is always a lovely sense of anticipation as the house comes into view. It's a place to relax without the burden of worrisome housework/gardening/maintenance etc. It's the perfect house really, no garden, no carpets and therefore little dust and very little clutter. The fire is lit and the place is beginning to feel warm,while I'm feeling the heat from the laptop!  Now for a quiet few days before the trek home.

Friday, 17 December 2010


First one out this morning.

Woke up to snow today, in common with the rest of the country I guess. I had hoped it might not materialise, though I had been warned several times that it was on it's way. So packing for the trip to France will have to be a bit different. Wellies, a shovel, a couple of blankets have been added to the ever growing pile. There was I yesterday extolling the virtues of packing light....ha! But then those of you who know me knew it wouldn't last, I like my creature comforts when it comes to clothes/makeup/shoes etc.Anyway the ferry booking has been changed and the 4 x 4 will be in use. The very first time I drove it over I was directed to the very lowest level of the ferry where I was surrounded and well and truly dwarfed on all sides by lorries. I don't know what I did to deserve that and it was a bit scary but we  survived.

 Well the sun is out and the sky is blue so I'm off to take some more photos. You never know it might all be melted by tomorrow!

Thursday, 16 December 2010


I really must get into the habit…..that said I spend an age reading other blogs and wishing I could produce something similar. Perhaps I'm one of life's readers not writers.  My Mum always did say I had my nose in a book far too much for it to be good for me! Goodness knows what she'd have thought of the internet. One blog I turn to regularly for a good, thought provoking and often humorous read is:

I have recovered from my trip to Cambridge - the walking was ok when I was doing it and popping pills, it was just when I stopped that the problems started. At least I didn't have to rush and better still didn't have several bags to carry - thanks to the nagging of a certain friend ! I actually got a change of clothes into my camera bag (had to leave a lens behind) Never known the like before…..only one pair of shoes, one change of frillies and a T shirt.  I should be keeping this quiet really as I normally travel with a couple of large bags - to cover all eventualities you understand. Ah well memories are short…I hope!

Cambridge was wonderful, the company was, as ever, superb and the photography sublime.

Friday, 3 December 2010


Light is essential for a photographer and they go on at great length about having to have the "right" quality of light though I am training myself to follow one famous photographer who says  "light…any f*****ing light", or words to that effect :)  Cameras today are very sophisticated and can cope with a myriad of situations though, of course you do have to know just a bit about the settings to use.  I didn't have much light yesterday, it was changing very quickly so it was a bit of a waiting game.  Worth the wait though.


Thursday, 2 December 2010

Suddenly halfway through applying my eyeshadow I burst into tears - now as every woman knows that's a bad time to cry, only slightly better than whilst applying mascara. A mascara wand in the eye is really very sore!  Back to the tears - the reason for them was a sudden and very vivid image of my Mum, out of the blue so to speak, no prior thoughts just Mum.  Strange how the brain works. It's been over 4 years now since she died and that I find hard to believe….where do our lives go?  They flit by for the most part and we don't notice. Thanks Mum for making me notice.

Tuesday, 30 November 2010

The Silly Season!

I've been busy all last week and over the weekend and though I've thought about sitting down to write something I haven't got round to it - must try harder!  The spur today has been something I picked up via twitter. The famous toy store in London, Hamleys has decided to use live Reindeer and Penguins as part of a Christmas display. Amazing what unadulterated greed will do isn't it? How can they possibly think this is a right thing to do? If I wasn't in deepest Devon I'd be picketing the store - I do hope some people picket/complain/write angry letters/blog/tweet - anything to get this stopped. The Silly Season indeed, though I think that's a bit of a kind description for this sort of lunacy.

Fenced in.

Monday, 22 November 2010

The Weekend

The annual trip to Cornwall for the "Golfing Weekend" is over. As usual the food was superb, impeccably served with precision timing - how DO they do that?  The golf was good, so I'm told, and my trip to some gardens with 4 other golf widows was hilarious - I was a first timer among this group and wasn't ready for the level of humour and ever so slightly outrageous behaviour - nothing too raunchy you understand but the guy who gave us directions to the Park & Float looked a bit cautious as he approached the car!

When we arrived at said gardens all 4 of them instantly disappeared into the shop. Not for them wandering around admiring the budding Camelias and stunning autumn foliage - it was straight into the Christmas gift section waving purses and credit cards - I followed. Not only followed I bought, several things though I was well outclassed by my companions, me who always thought she could shop for her country!  I'd better get into practise for next year!

Sunday, 21 November 2010

Saturday, 20 November 2010

Early hours

Lying awake in the early hours of the morning isn't usually the best time to do any thinking. It's the time when the darkest thoughts and gremlins, previously shunning the light, flood into your thoughts. The circles you go round, and round. And as I did this last night the one word that came in to my mind was "boring"  I think that that is what I must have become..........either that or it's how I am now perceived............

Paddle your own.....

Friday, 19 November 2010


I think I'd like to be a snail, you know, carry my worldly belongings around with me, go where I please, retreat when threatened, to the safety of my shell. All I have to do then is avoid being stepped on or eaten - wonderful - just like any other life really.

Thursday, 18 November 2010


I've had packing to do today, for a weekend in Cornwall.  It's a regular trip to a very lovely Golf and Country House Hotel with a superb restaurant, beauty salon and swimming pool. I've never ventured into the latter but the beauty salon is very good indeed. While the gents and one or two ladies play golf on Saturday the rest of us either head for Truro for some retail therapy or indulge themselves with a facial or massage.  I have yet to decide which I will do but I expect a walk round the grounds and down to the shore with my camera will feature.

St. James, Okehampton.

Wednesday, 17 November 2010


Winter is definitely here - two mornings of really heavy frosts followed by a night of torrential rain - what next? The frost was good for photography but not for my car as the drivers door froze solid. It was great fun getting in the passenger side and climbing about. Fortunately I'm a bit more nimble than I thought!
As the Shogun is in the garage for some investigation I am driving around in the loan car - well really it's a roller skate, but a bit of fun. No good for photography as I can't see over the hedges.  I hope mine is back with me soon.

Warming the tyres.

Monday, 15 November 2010


What's the word I'm looking for? You know, when nobody knows you're there….. Oh yes……, invisible. Rotten feeling.

Morning view down the lane.

Saturday, 13 November 2010


Through the hedge across the road.'d be good to get some…..several uninterrupted hours of it would be good. It's getting two or three hours then waking up for a couple then maybe sleeping till it's past time to get up that is the current problem.  :(  Doubtless it will regularise itself eventually without recourse to pills and potions. Weather has been awful but the reward this evening was a beautiful sunset.  Silver linings and all that……….

Wednesday, 10 November 2010


Yesterday I woke with a really bad back, this morning I was up and about as if there was nothing wrong! I can't help but wish for some consistency but then I might end up with the pain full time so I'll stick with what I have. So today I should be back to normal - whatever that is. No more trips out……but then I might find something interesting to do today, you never know what will come your way… you :))

Tuesday, 9 November 2010

Home again

I have had a wonderful weekend in Oxford, meeting up with friends who, like me, have a passion for photography. We walked miles, stopped frequently in coffee shops, climbed to the top of a Church Tower and wandered round the very beautiful Botanic Gardens. Fun and laughs were had and no one fell into the river or the fountain! As some people had commitments for part of the weekend Saturday night was the only time that we were all together. We had pre booked a table at Strada and had  a very tasty meal. There wasn't the usual scratching of heads and doing "sums" when the bill arrived as we had all had dishes from the set menu - at past dinners I can remember calculations being done on serviettes and much discussion about who had what etc etc !!
All too soon it was time for goodbyes and we went our separate ways, with all the usual promises to see each other again soon. The good thing is that we are in touch with each other almost on a daily basis through our photography. Already photographs are on various websites for us all to see. So we get to relive the happiness of time spent in the company of good friends.

In Oxford Botanic Garden.

Late afternoon late with the promise of rain to come!

Autumn colour  against the mellow stone.