Tuesday, 19 December 2017

Christmas and New Year Greetings!

To wish everyone a very Merry Christmas 
and a Happy New Year 

The photo was taken in the Cristallerie Lehrer in Garrebourg on the Rhine-Marne Canal last May. They make thousands of baubles, all hand-blown - each year for the Christmas market. The barge we were on - with us on it! -  featured in the Timothy West/Prunella Scales programme where they did the same canal in the opposite direction. For a fleeting second you can even see Mr Bufo among the people waving on the foredeck. I was inside knitting!

(I note with horror that I haven't posted anything since last April, and hope to do better next year!)

Thursday, 27 April 2017

Flat Out Rainbows

No, it's not the Christmas card again, but the curtains at my new flat. I suddenly saw them in the mirror, and realised the similarity...

We are loving our little 'weekends away' - though some of them are 'midweek breaks'! - to the flat. It is very comfortable and relaxing, and we have the added bonus of rainbows that appear at certain times of the morning, when the join in the glass of our balcony, or the corner of the balcony upstairs to our right, become prisms. Was it one of the Pollyanna books where an invalid has rainbows in her room from a prism hanging in the window? 

We had an 'out' yesterday, to see one of my favourite places, Cleeve Abbey, and on the way, had a splendid lunch at he Luttrell Arms in Dunster. The Luttrell family, in the person of George Luttrell, played much the same role at Cleeve as EJO gives to Sir Antony Abinger.

Here he is, looking very much a younger version of the man EJO describes as Sir Antony:

And of course, no visit to Dunster would be complete without calling into 'Home Coming' - this is an Aladdin's cave of a shop and we had intended to get Mr Bufo some new slippers there ... this time they had some rather nice Blue Faced Leicester wool, so I indulged.

There are 6 black and 4 speckled tweed balls, so I should get a reasonable jumper out of them.

Thursday, 23 February 2017

A Snowdrop Day!

What might have been a drudge around to take some stuff to an auctioneer and pick up an order from the farm shop became a magical day yesterday. 
We set off soon after 9 and got through Salisbury & Wilton without any trouble - not always a given, so doubly welcome when it does happen! We noted on the A27 on the way to Salisbury that the snowdrops were out in the usual places along the roadside, but it wasn't until we turned off the A30 and were on our way to Teffont that we began to see more and more of them along the verges. Then we turned south at Teffont, and the narrow road there was lined on both sides with a marvellous array, all the way through the village to the church. Several more clumps as we went through to Fovant and rejoined the A30, and then all the way to Shaftesbury we came upon patches; some rather the worse for wear from the muddy spray coming up off the road, others gleaming white.
We had a very pleasant lunch and collected our meat and one or two other things - is it possible to go to the Udder Farm shop and not spend a substantial sum? - and set off towards home again. 
Most of the time it had been impossible to stop and take photos, but we did manage to get these, by the side of a lay-by on the A30 near Swallowcliff, on the way home. 

They are in a rather messy grassy area, and not as spectacular as some we had seen earlier, but it's the best we could do. 
I'm sure we saw several different types, as some seemed larger than others, and it wasn't just that some were more open than others. But I'm not an expert! I have a very small clump in the front garden that are also in full bloom, but they'd be embarrassed to be shown in this company! 

Saturday, 14 January 2017

It's getting closer ...

Just spent a few days here getting things sorted and organised. 
Soon more pictures will be available ...once we have things like curtains, and beds, to make the place look a bit closer to our vision.
Meanwhile, this is the outside...

Tuesday, 20 December 2016

To wish you...

...A Merry Christmas and Happy New Year

Columns in St Andrew's Cathedral, Bordeaux

Hoping you are all able to forget the troubles of the world for at least a short time and to celebrate the holiday with those you love.

Wishing Joy to the World in 2017 - however unlikely that looks from this end of 2016 ...

...and finally, a little tease - some of you know where this picture is, more will be revealed in my first post of next year ...

Wednesday, 5 October 2016

Another trip to France, another shawl...

...another river cruise, in fact, courtesy of Great Rail again. A relaxing week sitting on a riverboat looking at the scenery floating past and eating lovely food. Comfortable trains there and back - what more could one ask for?

Bordeaux from the river
View from the top of the citadel at Blaye

During the week I all but finished the shawl I started a couple of months ago. Did the last few rows on the way home and cast off on Sunday, when we were back. 

Knitting on the boat

The finished 'Silverleaf' shawl
So it's had its soak in Eucalan and is now happily sitting under a towel to dry. This was taken before the top set of towels went on, but the contrast isn't great because I've put a pale grey shawl on top of a white towel.

Thursday, 4 August 2016

Back from Bristol

Time for another post - I really don't know where the months go!

I'm just back from the wonderful Topsy Turvy Bristol Conference on children's literature. Everyone else seems to have taken lots of photos, but I only have one, that was emailed to me - you'll see why in a minute.

My talk was the first - 9.45 on Saturday morning, so it was good to get that out of the way and be able to enjoy the rest of the time ... but that wasn't the real beginning of the weekend, which started as Mr Bufo and I walked round to the station on Friday morning for me to catch the 10.54 Great Malvern train. I'd already got my ticket - an advance one at the ridiculously low price of £9.90 return, so I couldn't use any other than the train shown on the ticket. And I had a reserved seat - or so I thought. 

The train was late - by about 10 minutes when it got to Romsey, but picked up a little bit as it went on. My seat was occupied by a lady who also had a ticket with that seat number on, and as the card in the back of that seat had the details of her journey, I found another - facing the direction of travel, which I prefer anyway, that had no reserved ticket, and so we progressed.

I did a bit of knitting - the scarf I had nearly finished, which did get completed over the weekend, though I only have a photo of it half-done:

During the journey I had texts from Gill and Alison, whom I was due to meet at Temple Meads, on their own progress towards that destination, and when I tried to respond, found I was out of signal for a long stretch between Bradford-on-Avon and Bath, but was finally able to update them that I was almost there. 

Came out from the station to find them on the forecourt, and we progressed to the bus stop. Only a minute or so later hte bus arrived, and we were en route to the River Cottage Canteen.

A group of us from all over had arranged to have a late lunch there, which was great, then our cases took the seats of those who had been cooped up in cars all morning, and more than half a dozen of us walked from the restaurant across Durham Down to Wills Hall, where it was all about to happen.

The weekend was as well-organised and interesting as it always is, and the penultimate speaker was Jen, who is 'JS' on a certain forum. She and I had promised to include Cestina and Elder from that forum in a hug, so, thanks to Emma who took the pic on Jen's phone - here we are, wishing the other two could have been with us as well. Maybe next time? The dates for 2018 are 27-30 July if you want to mark your diaries now!