I used to be indecisive…

…but now I'm not so sure


Carry on camping


In preparation for a camping trip with friends next weekend, we decided to pitch our borrowed tent in the garden, to make sure we knew what to do and didn’t turn up in a wet and windy field with no idea of where to start!  The instructions with the tent were not exactly comprehensive, or indeed helpful, and after a few failed attempts we resorted to YouTube where we found just what we needed – simple, visual assistance where we could watch someone pitch the tent from start to finish.  YouTube is a wonderful thing!


I hope you have a good Saturday, whatever you may be doing.


Friday letters – the mid July edition

Dear Ireland,  You certainly know how to put on a fantastic wedding celebration.  That’s the first time I have been to a wedding that lasted for four days!

Dear County Kerry,  What a beautiful part of the world you are.

Dear readers,  Sadly I am still very behind in my reading and commenting.  I am blaming the lovely trip to Ireland for that but now that we are home again I am hoping to do some catching up.

Dear pigeons,  Well, that’s it, there will be no more of you falling down our chimney after next week – we are getting a cover put on it.  Will you never learn?  Another one of you fell down yesterday, but this time I am a bit concerned that there is not going to be a happy ending because we haven’t heard any noises for about 18 hours now and nothing has appeared in the fireplace.

Dear Japanese anemones,  You are one of my all time favourite flowers and I am so happy to see that this year’s blooms are starting to appear.

Japanese anemone

Happy Friday everyone!


July: the edible garden

A tunnel arbour covered in grape vines.

tunnel arbour with grape vines

Queen Eleanor's garden

Queen Eleanor’s Garden at The Great Hall, Winchester, is a re-creation of an enclosed medieval garden and is named after Queen Eleanor of Provence (c 1223 – 1291) and her daughter-in-law Queen Eleanor of Castile (1241 – 1290), who would have walked there and used it as their private retreat.  In medieval times gardens offered pleasure, repose and refreshment to the senses as well as food and medicine. Queen Eleanor’s Garden is an accurate example of such a garden and features turf seats, bay hedges, a fountain, tunnel arbour and many beautiful herbs and flowers of the time.

This post is linking up with The Earth Laughs in Flowers .


Weekly photo challenge: look up in the Pantheon

The challenge this week is to look up.  It would be very difficult to visit the Pantheon in Rome without doing that as the natural light that floods into the rotunda is provided by the oculus at the top of the dome and your eyes are drawn to it.


The dome of the Pantheon is the world’s largest unreinforced concrete dome, and if it were to be flipped upside down it would fit exactly inside the rotunda.  It is an engineering marvel, supported on a series of intersecting arches,  and the details of how it was constructed are extraordinary, with heavier materials and thicker walls used at the base of the dome gradually getting lighter and thinner all the way to the 27 ft diameter oculus at the top.

The oculus is open to the elements and when it rains the water falls onto the slightly curved floor and drains through the discreet drain holes and into the still functioning ancient Roman drainpipes beneath.

The Pantheon was built nearly 2000 years ago originally as a temple to all the pagan gods of Rome, which is how it got its name –  Pan meaning everything, or all, and theion meaning divine or holy.  In AD 606 it was given by the Emperor to Pope Boniface IV and has been used as a church ever since, in fact the building has been in constant use since it was constructed.

Approaching the building from the back, it doesn’t look particularly exciting at all, and doesn’t give any hint as to the wonders of the inside, but you can see the arches built into the design to give it strength.


At the front there is a grand pillared entrance.


Unfortunately I forgot to take a photo of the whole building but I found this great aerial view.

aerial view pantheon

Photo credit: Jeffrey Yip

Weekly Photo Challenge


Friday letters – the tennis edition

Dear last seven days,  I am sure you have flown by much faster than usual. 

Dear ants,  You are tricky little things, aren’t you?  Just when I thought I had dealt with those of you who appeared in my kitchen earlier in the week, another army turned up.  You lulled me into a false sense of security by hiding for a day before coming out in force again.  I suppose the plus side of your visit is that my kitchen cupboards, drawers and worktops are now sparkling clean.

Dear readers,  I’m sorry that I’ve not been keeping up at all with reading your blogs, never mind commenting on them but, as ever, I am hoping to have more time soon.

Dear Wimbledon,  Wednesday afternoon was particularly tense with two men’s matches which could have gone the wrong way (from my point of view).  First of all Federer looked as though he might be beaten, and then the same with Murray.  My heart was in my mouth.  I had to leave the room at one point it was so tense.  Today is the men’s semi finals and I am hoping for good matches, with Murray getting through to the final of course.  I hope you can arrange that for me.

snoopy tennis

Happy Friday everyone!


Friday letters – the first of July edition

Dear squirrels,  If I were to put some food out specially for you, with a sign with your names on it, would you leave the bird feeders alone so that the birds can have a chance? 

Dear laptop,  Your days may be numbered.  That is all I am going to say on the matter.

Dear raincoatAt this rate you are going to be worn out by the end of the summer!

Dear London Palladium,  You really need to get yourselves more organised and think about the fact that, if hundreds of complimentary tickets have been given out for a show and have to be collected from the Box Office on the evening of the performance, then there are going to be lots of people arriving at the same time to collect them! Having to delay the start of a show by 30 minutes because the queues were so long is not really acceptable.  It’s astonishing to think that it hadn’t occurred to someone that this might happen!

Dear London Palladium (again),  You were a magnificent venue for the world premier concert performance of a brand new musical, Eugenius.  I hope the potential investors who were there on Wednesday night see that this would be a show worth backing.  The music is brand new, the style is 80s and the jokes come thick and fast.  It was a great evening, with a magnificent cast, and we came home with the songs ringing in our ears.

Eugenius the Musical

Happy Friday everyone!


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