Tuesday, 30 November 2010

The end is nigh

Headline on this mornings l'Independant;

Bugarach attend la 'fin du monde'

Charming article about the mayors worries about

the influx of the deeply weird on his mountain.

Us informed residents have long expected the arrival of giant

green lizards there, either from inside the mountain where they

are hatching or from their space ships.

The mayor has noticed that there is funny stuff going on and that

the houses in his little commune are being let out to strangers,

french and foreign.

Will there be enough water for this crowd, he sensibly asks.

Dunno if lizards need water.

And on this day in 1953 Francis Picabia, French artist

died aged 74.

The Alice B. Toklas Cookbook (Gertrude Stein;Michael Joseph 1954);

Eggs Picabia

The only painter who ever gave me a recipe was Francis

Picabia and though it is only a dish of eggs it merits the

name of its creator.

Break 8 eggs into a bowl and mix them well with a fork,

add salt but no pepper. Pour them into a saucepan, no,

not a frying pan. Put the saucepan over a very, very low

flame, keep turning them with a fork while very slowly

adding in very small quantities ½ lb. butter – not a speck

less, rather more if you can bring yourself to it. It should

take ½ hour to prepare this dish. The eggs of course are

not scrambled but with the butter, no substitute admitted,

produce a suave consistency that perhaps only gourmets

will appreciate.

[many thanks to Robert for this info -]and apologies for strange layout, all out of control for unknown reasons

Sunday, 28 November 2010

sunday lunch

John and Margaret took pity on me, wandering forlornly about
missing Bob; they invited me, Mike, Hilary and their mate Ian
to lunch. They hadn't planned on it, hadn't spent days cooking
and it was magnificent. Much laughter lifted the rafters!

art and nourishment

Weather is bright and clear

and very cold. Above are ice in a bucket and a sky space,
snapped in the garden.

Last night at the Artothequè was great fun -
a select group of artists and well-wishers and some excellent
red wine.
The English artists remembered the stuff that used to be served
in London galleries - eugh!!!

Here is Phillipe, newly retired from working
at the local casino where he used to exhibit
us artists. Nevermind the art - the food and
drink at the private views were amazing!

Bit worrying, when artists evaluate expos on
the strength of the refreshments.

I enjoyed the refreshments so much last night
that poor Bob had to cook dinner while I collapsed in an armchair
giggling. Then he found that his flight had been switched to the
early one so it was up and off at dawn and no market for him.
He'll be here for two weeks over crimbo though.

Friday, 26 November 2010


Nel and Pete made lunch for
me, Joel and Monique -
here is the tarte au pommes
hollandais and it was as delicious
as it looks -then the Captain
arrived and took me to T-Rex for

My cup runneth over...

Art in Warsaw Castle


You may remember Trade Mark who shared his
honeymoon with Chrissie here a while back-
They are artists in residence in Warsaw
Castle at the moment -this you tube video is
about it.

You have to copy and paste because
I am incompetent.

Having seen that you might like to check
our Stan, doing Hendrix on his cello -

Thursday, 25 November 2010

saturday nights date -

Le samedi 27 novembre:

Soirée porte ouverte à l'artothèque de Rennes les Bains,
rue de l'église, avec un apéritif à 18h.

C'est la fin de la saison, alors venez nombreux!

DONT FORGET!!!!!!!!!!

Tuesday, 23 November 2010

weather report

Ian sent this picture from his place
looking over to Mont Marot - says it all -

Delighted to announce that Margaret and John are in town for two weeks. Together with Mike and Hilary T- Rex exercised its magnetic pull on us all last night.

Perhaps its something they put in the water?

Mixed news

Theres good news and bad and sometimes bad news can look
pretty good really.
Like, Kat and I were taking our morning coffee in the square
when one of the habituées limped in having taken a tumble.

His jeans were ripped down the legs, his head and ear were
bleeding and he was clearly shocked. The fall happened in his
home. So he put on his coat and went to the café, certain that
Alain would sort him out.
Alain called the pompiers and they arrived with all their life
saving kit, tidied him up and trotted him off to the ambulance.

See what I mean? Yes, bad that he fell but how lovely to have
help on hand.

On a similar theme, I hear that OlleB was stopped for speeding
and asked for his driving license. He had none and said so; it
had gone up in the fire with all his papers. When he told the police
that it was burnt, they said Oh are you the chap with the fire?
You can go; you have had enough misery.

Further: he and Aileen have found a strimmer for Jenny, missing
some bits on account of the fire but its a start for her - so, anyone
got a chain saw?

The terrifically bad news with precious little redeeming features
is that Annie and Peter have returned to Scotland, unlikely to be
back here until March.

I'm not dwelling on that.

Dates; Saturday night at Art-o-teque, Rennes-les-Bains, close
of season party, 6.00, be there. Head for the church, take the
steps down the side towards the library, follow the signs.

And here is a vernissage on Dec 3rd (click on pic to make bigger)
Worth going to; Victoria and mates always put on a good show.

Sunday, 21 November 2010

Thieves in Rouvenac

Got enraged at the market this morning. Still am.

Jenny-the-gardener from Rouvenac, loved by all who know her,
has had a shed break-in and the thief took her chain saw and
her strimmer.
Of course she is not insured for contents.
And these are the tools of her trade, her livelihood.

I'm still spîtting venom at the low life that would do this to her
but as the mist is clearing I'm wracking my brains to think how
to get new ones. Do people upgrade tools? Do you have old
ones anywhere that you would donate?

If you are offered second hand tools please find out where the
vendor got them before handing over dosh.

Saturday, 20 November 2010

the week flies past....

Don't understand how Tilling can be quietly basking one minute

and b*******g freezing the next.

But there are lots of things I don't understand.

Why, for example, after a lovely evening at Kats on Monday, did
I photograph her road and not her or her coming-together-nicely

Not that its not a nice road, of course...

Then I forgot to snap dinner at Le Cantou and dinner at Le
Creperie (different nights featuring variously Jim, Tony and

Was on the ball last night though - here at Hilary and Mikes are
Andrée, Annie and Pete

Guess what was for dinner!!!

Wednesday, 17 November 2010

RCA Secret


I'm featured!!!!! - But you'll never spot me

Saturday, 13 November 2010

epitome of culinary disaster

This is what happens to a steamed beef pudding if you stand
over it all day carefully topping up the water levels and then
the minute your guests appear, forget all about it.

It boils dry and blows up.

We ate it anyway and just spat out the bits of bowl.

Here is Kelly flanked by two Petes;
- surely there is a joke about two Petes in a pod? -

Andy and Louise, Graham, Annie and Le Captain also braved
the cooking.

Sweet Louise made this mug warmer, sooooo clever! It works,
tested this on the mornings coffee. Thanks darling.
The baby is due in a couple of weeks and its obviously a girl.

Friday, 12 November 2010

Ferren's report

Ferren wrote of the conflagration at OllaBendicks gaff:

"I was there. In fact, I was the first to notice that
something was burning....

We were lucky, in one sense. The pompiers pointed out that \
if the acetylene tank had blown, it would have taken out
the house and spectators. (Molf * and I would have survived:
he was trying to escape, and I was trying to keep him off
the road, talking to him and explaining his new
responsibilities toward OB, and we were both below the brow
of the hill and could not actually see the activity.)
The fire got as far as melting the plastic bits of the
acetylene pressure regulator, so it was a credible threat.

I left some spare hand tools on their kitchen table this

afternoon (cordless drill and a box of drill & screwdriver
bits); Alan-from-Bugarach has said OB can use his workshop
to build door and window for the upstairs room. What would
help most of all is for someone to discover a set of good
images of the Toledo book lurking in a computer somewhere,
but this doesn't seem very likely.

* A dog; one of six or so

Bob, Ian and Pete are taking a drawing board and an easel up
to the ruin tomorrow morning. All will be well>>>> and in the
meantime big kisses to Ollebendick and Aileen

Thursday, 11 November 2010

Horror - but no-one hurt-

With shock and distress, I have to say that the news
is terrible.
Last night, UllaBendicks studio burnt down,destroying
it totally. With his equipment and a large tranche of
his lifes work.

BUT no-one was physically hurt. Annie and Pete were
there - and who would you rather have with you in such
a crisis? - and the house was saved.

Aileen has been mysteriously pulled off facebook for
some form of subversion, so email or snailmail or
visit in person to offer whatever comfort and support
you have to spare.

Sunday, 7 November 2010

Spanish Bug

Post Madrid, had a lovely girly night with Kat, followed the next
night at T Rex with John M. Had planned to keep this hedonistic
whirl going by giving dinner on Saturday night to a handful of
nearest and dearest, but an emerging cold got the upper hand.

It has now emerged totally and is blossoming fruitfully. Suggest
you stay well away from me, its horrid. Don't think its a Madrid
bug though, Mike has it already and so does Jim so its not my

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y05Jiz6rS6k for one of my brother
Mark Beers songs, inexplicably set to an ancient traffic jam
outside the Mother of Parliaments.
for an interesting overview of his work.
You can tell you have a cold when you start googling the family.
Will probably feature another sibling tomorrow. There are eight
of us - this cold can run and run -

Wednesday, 3 November 2010

Madrid art tour

In Madrid there was Goya...

there was Velasquez...
and there was Banksy

and a headless horseman

Loads of nice snaps of a very beautiful town but after what feels
like days on a coach not being able to talk Spanish or Portuguese
I'm fit for nothing.

Monday, 1 November 2010

Tilling del Sol

Greetings from Madrid, where I have a computer in my bedroom
but no way of downloading photos.

There is a great deal of art in Madrid.
The paintings are all by dead men, except for two by dead women
(Georgia O´Keefe and Berthe Morrisot) (*Almost forgot, Dora
Maar took the photos of Guernica in development but not sure if
that counts as an original artwork.)

The live art is all people dressed up as statues mostly
representing paintings by dead men.

There is a great deal of live music: I have just been woken up by
a very good trumpeter. I have a 14 hour bus trip home today so
can will catch up on the sleep then.