Sunday, 27 March 2011

last nights vernissage

Thanks for last night, everyone!! It was great...
though heaven knows what Kat is up to in the first photo, eh??

Of and away now, Switzerland and Prague - more on return.
Be good and dont have too much fun while Im away

Saturday, 26 March 2011


Was at Micheal and Simones last night in their palace at Cailla.
The photo above is of their other palace, currently undergoing
construction; here are Annie and Pete being intrepid.

The place is quite astonishing - tiny village in the mountains,
stunning - the architectural skills of Micheal and Simone
remarkable . So is their cooking. Annie chipped in with chocolate
and banana pancakes for pud, perfect after the cod and celeriac,
carrot and finely sliced potato thing which followed the smoked
salmon salad. Oh and we had chateau neuf du papes with the
cheese, so decadent.... and a yummy Riesling with the fish and the
god-given blanquette with elderflower as an apero.

There is a site because they rent out sometimes - see

The captain arrived that day and was knackered, but very
pleased to be there. He has to deal with my vernissage tonight
--see you there!!

Thursday, 24 March 2011

ever at one with the zeitgeist 2

Ever vigilant, Ian spotted this oil slick in the Aude.
He took the photo to the proper authorities and action is
being taken immediately.
Some unecogit changed his oil into the river; of the 4 possible
culprits, only one has new oil.

String 'em high! After they've cleaned up -

Apropos the previous 'at one with the zeitgeist' posting, the mayor
has evacuated the two houses that are close to the landslide, one up
and one down from it.

Whatever next eh?

La Vie en rose

The sun is shinning and living in a tiny french town begins to make
sense, again -
hung my exhibition yesterday and enjoyed it, thanks to the hard
work of Sabrina and her family
at the Auberge du Faby in Rouvenac

The evening was a riot :)) Annie is in town, Margaret's friend:
here she is with Kat at a very merry night at T-Rex

The day before, Kat and I went to Mirepoix and here are some
mountains we saw on the way
and some jeunes hommes in the square

Dont forget my
private view on Saturday - some of the work is
already sold so get in quick!!!!

Tuesday, 22 March 2011


the terrace is bopping with siskin - see above
and black redstarts - see below.

Here is another siskin - they arrive in flocks-

and here a redstart is eyeballing a sparrow.

Easy to see why I aint doing any work

Monday, 21 March 2011

ever at one with the zeitgeist

Tilling expresses its solidarity with the war-torn, earthquake
tossed world, in its own little way.
Ian sent this picture of the road going up Mont Marot east. Its
on the first wiggle of the Butte St Helene. If you are going that
way, walk - better still, climb up the steps just after the earth

Sunday, 20 March 2011

Debs the voice

To the Auberge du Faby last night to listen to Stan, Debs and
Mark - Debs is in amazing voice and has an album coming out
shortly. My photos were crap, though I enjoyed this one of Stan...
Kat and I had the Plat du Jour of Boeuf en Daube (not sanglier,
as in the picture of Stan -) and loved it. People were still
trying to get in after we'd eaten; we gave them the chance and
sloped off for an early night. Got a straight 12 hours, much

This morning there was a tray of crystals next door in the Place
St Saens. Here in Tilling it is usual to leave your crystals out in
the moonlight, (possibly it is the same everywhere) and last nights
moon was indeed magic. Hope you enjoyed it, wherever you are.

Saturday, 19 March 2011

secret of success

This is by no means an original observation but one cannot
labour the point too much - the secret of success is

I did cook one of the dishes for last nights dinner. That is to say,
I heated under the pan where Molly had chopped the vedg., and
Annie mixed it into the couscous. She bought a dahl curry. Aileen
and OlleB bought more couscous. Andrea bought a crunchy salad
and Kat the pears poached in wine. John and Margaret did the
huge cheeseboard and everyone bought booze, fortunately.

All the guests brought their intelligence and humour and general
good naughtinesses, oh and in many cases their dogs - by 2.00am
there were 8 in the house (I think; they milled about)

Sue, Mikeal and Simone are architects; Annie and Pete of course
are oceanographers; Ian and Jon and broadly called teckkies;
artists as ever littered the place up; and erm Ive forgotten why it
seemed a good idea to break down the event into professions.

Just is was all so interesting!!!!

Friday, 18 March 2011


From time to time I have been heard complaining that of my
seven siblings, not one has visited me in the decade I have lived
here in Tilling-sur-aude.
We're in touch and I see them elsewhere, but narry a visit.

Until yesterday! Here is my brother Simon
and below is our old friend Molly with adorable non-barking dog.

Thursday, 17 March 2011

Flooding risk

We are still on Alerte Orange but the mighty Aude is behaving
herself. Trebha says the Salz is very high too -but OK thus far.

Wednesday, 16 March 2011

dinner at the old butchers

Max and Andrea have bought the old butchers opposite chez
charlie and have been coming here on and off for a couple of
years. How they have managed to evade me for most of that
time is a mystery.
Here they are with Chris, who is staying with them but only
till today -come back soon!
It was a fan****ingtastic night. Unforgettably classically brill.
Jake Thackery was invoked. I'm hoarse with laughter today.

Monday, 14 March 2011

Yoga and Lazy Boo

Saveria is back and re-starting the yoga; she writes
Chaque lundi a 9h30 et Mardi soir a 19h30
dur 1h30
Chez moi a Esperaza
tout renseignements par mail ou téléphone
0468 20 62 30


Les Hiboux/Lazy Boo -
(Stan, Debs and Mark) play

Soirée dinermusique/ concert at the Auberge du Faby
Chansons un peu jazzy , dramatique et aussi originales.

Reserver: 0468 743 542

Reservations are most necessary. It will be busy. See you there!

Saturday, 12 March 2011

Ancient Rites

During the rainy season, the men of Tilling run into the river
Aude clasping long sticks. They stand there all day.

The reasons are lost in the mists of time but it can be assumed
that the original basis is a fertility ritual.

Thursday, 10 March 2011


not been writing much cos I'm idle.
But Bieke has been and gone and is missed; she is the queen
of borscht.
Max and Andrea are here and thats brill; Pam has been and
gone and will be back; Margaret is due and so are Annie and
The weather is lovely and the Captain arrives tomorrow so
expect a wet weekend.
He is a raingod which means rain loves and follows him.

Tuesday, 8 March 2011

International Womens Day still

It seems that yesterday
wasn't actually IWD,
its today - Jo knew this
when she called the
inaugural meeting of
LEGABE - Ladies of
Esperaza Gossip and
Book Exchange.

The photo is small and blurred because some ladies didn't
want to be photgraphed: some of them did but didnt want
to be named: some of them didn't mind and some of them
I forgot to ask.

Jo's baking is transcendent.

Such a pleasure to sit and natter with friends old and new.
Helps make one forget that painting is difficult and pointless.

Here is Lily helping to dig the garden last night.

Monday, 7 March 2011

International womens day

Happy International Womens Day!!!

Celebrated here in Tilling by opening a tin of confit de canard
and drinking a large glass of Chilean red - in front of Psycho on
the tele, channel Arte.

I had thought that this was a statement of freedom by a free
woman, but now I'm scared... sisters, beware - take care -

-and continue to ask those economic questions about equal
rights. If they'll let you.

Saturday, 5 March 2011

all well

... and tonight, after a beautiful blue-sky day, the stars were so
clear they flickered like candles and I saw a shooting star -

Tuesday, 1 March 2011

Its a sign!!

Users of Tillings highways and byways will be pleased to see that
Dr Clot has been restored to his historic place.

Whilst on the subject of very local issues, you should perhaps
know that the 8à8 has been extended. Its not unlike Harrods now.
In that everything has been moved and you cant find anything, but
theres lots of it.

And there are siskins in the garden, most exciting....

and snow on the mountain and blossom on the almond trees