Tuesday, 31 August 2010

all quiet...

Zoe and family left this morning - here they are last night at Will
and Marvi's at Rennes-les-Bains - totally rubbish snap but all I have
and cute of Kitty Moon.
Marvi is preggers and was looking thoughtfully at the children-
too late to change your mind now, girl!!

Had a delightful lunch with Adrian and Maggie at that place
at Campagne-sur-Aude that is painted lilac - can never
remember its name. Their young guests left this week too
and there was an atmosphere of mature hilarity.

Captain leaves tomorrow. Hélas.

Saturday, 28 August 2010

dream on

I dreamed I found a camera at a party - you were all there - it
had screens that unfolded cleverly to dictate the length of the
picture. Panoramic views of you all occurred. It was great.

That aside, Gracie and Qadir have moved on but will be back.
Zoe is here with Chris and the kids, an excuse to sit down and
watch DVD's.

There is a good show on at the Maison des Memoires in
Carcassonne (53 Rue de Verdun) - de Bellon à Belluc.
The Belluc installation is a joy.

Erm, thats all.

Tuesday, 24 August 2010


Nick and Juliette,
Gracie and Qadir
helped with the
running buffet

Nick and Juliette
leave tomorrow

and the terribly tall
Qadir and beautiful
Gracie move in
mysterious ways
so I dont know how
long they are staying.

Long long time
I hope.

Poo and Liz - who would only let me photograph the back of
her enigmatic head - leave tomorrow after a fun-filled week.

Saturday, 21 August 2010

attention Trebha

Cant find an easy way to facebook these so here they are instead...
one image for its similarity to the Rennes les Chateau carving but with the bizarre addition at the end; is one man pissing on another or is it, as the Narbonne Marie claims, a rosary correcting a heretic?

The other image is a Magdalen, I think - nice innit-

Culture elsewhere

Letter from our Iain:

Good sunny afternoon,
Yes that's the truth it is lovely and sunny here in Edinburgh and has been
for a while which is great for the hundreds of thousands of visitors happily
clogging our streets. The city is looking and feeling great and the festival
this year is brilliant, Again.
Was at a recital this morning by Christina Stotijn singing Richard Strauss
in the first half which was beautiful and Schoenberg "The book of the
hanging garden", which was ok, in the second. I'm not sure I'm culturally
sophisticated enough for Schoenberg but it was much less atonal than
most of his stuff. Went to a concert performance of Mozart's Idomeneo
last night with Steve Hall. I neglected to tell him beforehand that it is
3 3/4 hours long It was spectacular and we both enjoyed it even if bums
were numb by the end. Going to the ballet tonight, Groupo Corpo from
Brazil which looks to be spectacular. Tomorrow night is Joyce Di Donato
an American soprano singing Pergolesi, Leoncavallo and others. Sounds
great. Steve and I go to Puccini's Girl of the Golden West on Monday
and I'm going to Purcell's The Indian Queen on Tuesday ( Purcell is a
lways good for a counter tenor and I suspect it would be Annie's sort of
thing). Then there's Pina Bausch, Paco Pena and much more. That is
all the official festival and we've also been to some stuff on the fringe.
My ticket for the recital this morning was £3.50 and Idomeneo last night
was a fiver. I just love being over 60.
The point of telling you all of this is that you should come over next year
and enjoy a frantic week or so. I know you have been to the festival
before but it just gets both bigger and better. See www.eif.co.uk.
The Edinburgh Book Festival still has nine days to run
www.edbookfest.co.uk but ticket for who I want to see are sold out.
I'll book earlier next year.
Finally I have FSA approval for my business so all I have to do now is
find the clients. I start advertising next week and hope to build contracts
with local letting agents over the next few weeks. If I'm honest I'm feeling
a little nervous about it all but I expect I'll be fine after I've completed a
couple of contracts. It's good getting up and going to work though.
I really was getting bored witless. Steve of course is working like an
indentured labourer. The festival is the busiest time for him. Most days
he leaves mid morning and arrives home early the next morning.
I suspect he is getting a bit old for these hours although he does not
look it.
I was going to holiday in October but hopefully now I'll be too busy and
if I'm not I'll have no bloody money so holidays are out until next April.
I hope. Bilo looks and sounds so happy on Facebook. Very heart warming.
Jeremy actually looks younger. By the way your new look is quite startling.
Your social life seems to be as lively as ever.
Molly was supposed to be going to a lot of concerts with me but she has
shingles poor thing and is really not at all well and in considerable pain.
I'll need to go to my concert tomorrow night and look at an empty seat.
I don't think I know any other friend who would like to go
. I'm hoping she
is feeling better for the last week as we are going to the Final concert
and fireworks in Princes Street Gardens. Mind you if the past is any guide
it will piss with rain anyway.
I hope you are all well and enjoying the endless sunshine. See Ya.

Turning Over and Over

Here is Biz's pic of the folk
festival launch at Quillan, marvelously expressing summertime

Not altogether clear about what the pix below expresses but the
installation was spectacular. Its on at the Chapel of the Blue
Penitents in Narbonne and worth the trip.

By Laurette Atrux-Tallau, its part of this years
Lauguedoc-Roussillon contemporary art show, called Casanover

It might spoil the effect to say what its all made of so I won't.
What you see are many sizes of giant spiky balls climbing all
over the chapel.

Also went to the Horreum, a Roman warehouse still being
excavated under Narbonne. This is a damaged funereal
portrait. The outline is eloquent despite the vandals.

We are back from Gruisson where we did no culture and in my
case read Dennis Wheatley; lay about and ate well in Gruisson
Village, charming place.

Got home to Poo and Liz- hurrah! - who arrived while we were
away at Tony and Helens in Lastours. Here I am getting used
to quantities of Rosé , shortly before falling over.

(thank you Helen for the nice pic and for a wonderful
time at your extraordinary eyrie)

Missed saying goodbye to Bieke, who is now back in Ghent.

Got back just in time to do a last dinner for Nel who is back in
Amsterdam and Pete and Clare who have hoofed it to London.

Last nights dinner was to say goodbye to Mel and au rev to
Kat, who has gone off to Wales.

Today is too hot to do anything but be still in the shade and
catch up with facebook and email and blogging.
Surprised I can remember anything and STILL don't have a
working camera...

Saturday, 14 August 2010

Secret showers

Last chance for a reliable meteor shower and again it is cloudy.
Missed it all again this year; the aliens are perhaps hiding
The day was spent gallery sitting in Rennes les Bains at l'Espace
d'Art so naturally I'm sensitive to these possibilities.

Passed the evening at Richard and Vanessa's place where the
views are perfect for star gazing.
Forgot, if I was ever told, that this was a 60's/70's party.
Since Bob and I have been wearing the same clothes since
college no-one noticed we weren't dressed up.

Friday, 13 August 2010

Gig at Fa

gentle jazz at Fa, where the camera was weird.
Nice evening with Leo, Pete (above) and Clare plus
other regulars - and here is Mel with Bieke from last night, for
purposes of identification.

Thursday, 12 August 2010

random shots from a dying camera

Last night at l'Espace d'Art had some more than usually curious
components... a cat here inspects the Patrick Caufield - it was
rather disinterested in the other exhibits -

Catherine bought her new friend that has been clinging to her
neck for three weeks -

Here am I with my big friend the sunflower and here is Toby,
emptying the bottles after her party to the recycling, by
cycling there. Not sure if this is very dutch or very Toby.

Most of the Dutch have gone now, except for our Leo -
Bobs family have all gone - like the summer, all too soon ended.

Tuesday, 10 August 2010

gossip monger on hols 2

- dont forget Marcus has a venisage on Thursday at Espace d'Art,
Rennes les Bains. 6 - 8 pm.
Zoe and kids are in Rue des Jardins tonight, til tomorrow, back
John and Pauline are home in Blighty, Pauline in hospital after
her fall in Rennes -- three fractures round the eye - apparently
all will be well for her holiday on Sunday. Kisses to her.
Anyone know what happened at Chantals, after the crie de
coeur? Roy visited the gallery on Sunday - nothing.

Monday, 9 August 2010

Gossip Monger on hols

Lack of camera now irrelevant as I'm missing all the local events,
due to fun with the visiting family.
No reports then from Scottish Daves party though the local gossip
is that it was terrific, nor from Dermots birthday party, ditto.
If anyone has pix to post, please send.

Friday, 6 August 2010

all quiet in a noisy way...

Quiet in that August has family and friends visiting, herewith
the Captains brother John and nephew William
at T- rex, (listening to Micheal play- )and Lynn, Hannah and
Charlie at Rennes Les Bains baths; and noisy because
we all talk non stop.

The only other news is that Leo and Toby are trimming their
This is not code. They are, in fact, trimming their eucalyptus.

Monday, 2 August 2010

edinburgh news

Letter from Iain; nice to hear his dulcets and feel envy for this cultural

"Good afternoon from a cloudy but warm Edinburgh. ..
.. life is very pleasant as has been the weather and I am
looking forward to the festival. I'm going to about twenty concerts
and dance performances assuming there are tickets left.
I've not booked yet as from the 4th August old buggers like myself
can get half price tickets. An irresistible offer. There are loads of great
chamber recitals and I can usually find single tickets for those. Most of
my friends do not like these concerts so I go on my own which actually
makes things much easier. The only other person interested is Molly
and we are going to to few together. I had dinner with her at David
and Margarets on friday night which was a great laugh.
The big exhibition this year is called Impressionist Gardens which I
imagine is self explanatory but I will not visit that until after the festival
has ended and some of the hordes have left. The festival Fringe starts
next week with some 35,000 performances so there is bound to be lots
of fun to be had there. There's also the Book Festival, the Television
Festival and the Jazz Festival, tents are being erected in every spare piece
of park or waste ground. Makes finding a seat at a roadside cafe or bar
more problematic and the gardens are full but it's all really great fun.
Sadly my car failed its MOT so I'm busy looking for another.
It looks like I'll have to travel to find one as they all seem to be much
more expensive up here. Expensive, of course is all relevant as I've no
intention of spending more than £800. That seems expensive enough to
me I only paid £500 for the last one and it lasted me 20 months. For
£800 I expect a lifetime. If it were not for starting the business I would
not bother with a car. Steve has still got the same car we had in France
and it goes in for it's MOT next week but I expect it will pass. I think it
has done less than 2000 m since its last one.
I hope you are all well and still enjoying your garden. Have fun and stay
Iain xxx"

Weekend in Tilling

This camera will get a decent burial soon; it still has to be poked by a bit of wire to make anything happen which of course gives it a degree of autonomy, in that it is unbiddable.

It lost the pictures of Jill and Tonys party on Saturday night. Lovely evening in the cool of their garden...
by Sunday night the storm had broken and Leo and Tobys party was mostly in their palace. The camera
snapped many of our friends in random ways. Here they are. Don't blame me.