Saturday 30 May 2015

Costa Brava cliff top walk ... and the hermit crab derby ...

This afternoon Emi and I headed off with the Wonder Dog for a last walk along our favourite cliff top path. I've written about it before, but it's such a joy I could wander happily along it every day of my life and never get bored. The sea changes every day, and the cliff tops are home to a rich array of plants and animals. Every time we venture up there we find something new.

This is where we started, up above the port just behind our home.

Friday 29 May 2015

The stone witch of Girona ...

Yesterday morning Emi and I set off on a mission ... to find the famous petrified witch of Girona who'd been really, really bad back in the day when the powers that be took a really, really dim view of that kind of behaviour.

Girona's stone witch, high on the cathedral tower

Monday 25 May 2015

The ancient cork forests of Sant Feliu de Guíxols ...

Yesterday morning we set off for a walk through the cork forest that clings to the dry barren hills on the other side of town. 

It's an ancient place where development is prohibited and the wildlife flourishes. 

For many centuries the cork industry was one of the stable sources of income that fed generations of people here in our little village. They peeled great sheets of bark from the trees on this dusty hillside and dragged them back into town to fashion into a multitude of things: floats for the fishing nets, life vests, elaborate decorative and devotional objects, and of course cork stoppers for wine bottles and oil amphorae. 

Sunday 24 May 2015

Chartres blue ...

We arrived in Chartres in the early hours of yesterday morning, exhausted by our mad dash out of London. Emi's exams over, we were hungry for the open road and the warmth of the Mediterranean sun. Spain was calling us home, but, en route, we decided to stop off to sample a bit of Chartres blue; a blue that was created in the 12th century using a secret formula, known only to a trusted few, and lost forever on the completion of the great cathedral. Truly, there is no other blue quite like Chartres blue ...

Friday 15 May 2015

Happy Friday!

Gosh it's good to see you, Friday. It feels like an age since last we met ... .

It's been a l-o-n-g week over here at Talk-a-Lot Towers. I've been busy with work assignments and Emi has been revising for exams, which are due to take place next week. He's been a great little soldier, throwing his shoulder to the wheel and just getting on with it, but it feels tough on a chap who's only 9 to be stuck indoors grappling with revision, especially on those wonderful afternoons when the sun's been shining and the great outdoors has been beckoning.

And all the while I've been watching my new rose to see its first bloom. It's a much anticipated event - a bit like that kettle that you keep watching, which never seems to boil.

I fell in love with this rose back in the dark days of late November, and bought it on impulse when I stumbled upon it in the garden centre. It's called Munstead Wood in honour of Gertrude Jekyll's garden. And I've got high hopes for it as a pot pourri rose. This is what they promised me it would like: