Lovely peachy clouds as we drew the curtains this morning.
Our walk today, allowed, was into town to collect the bread. It’s the last we’ll do in town for a few months. I spotted a new street art mask today on a tree outside the clock tower.
We have taken down our Christmas tree but we are leaving up all the twinkly lights, the greenery wreath on the front door and a small white tree filled with South African beaded decorations. They were made by the women, the gogos, the Grandmothers, in Mapoch where we did our volunteering in 2007. We helped build a new classroom and worked with the children and the teacher.
Sadly, we cannot see the planetary conjunction of Saturn and Jupiter as we have been beaten by the mizzle as so many full astronomical events are in Cornwall. Nevertheless, I send Solstice Greetings to you all and a picture of the conjunction sent to me by my sister in Hawaii where the volcano, Kilauea, also woke up today. How auspicious!
On this day in 2004 my lovely Dad died after seventeen days in the hospice, very special days that I was able to spend with him. I’ve posted about him before but never about the days before I was on the scene. The following photos are some of those he sent home to my Mum.
They had been on their way to South Africa but because of U-boat activity, were re-routed to Nova Scotia. By January 1942 they had arrived in South Africa.
Makoalis, Basutoland January 1942
The last one is of Dad with one of his beloved Burmese cats, a favourite of mine.
I have had this little model for many, many years. It was made by S, a very talented writer in one of my English classes. He was a restless sixteen year old who needed encouragement, both to believe in his own talent and to sit still! I discovered that, given something to model with, his concentration on the literature we were studying increased hugely. One day, at the end of the lesson, he presented me with this precious little model, made of Blutak. It’s me – curly hair, long skirt, a necklace and a scarf, carrying books and a heavy bag of files and with a huge grin on my face. I was so touched and I have kept this little treasure ever since.
Thank you, S. I hope you have become the writer I thought you could become. Maybe you went on to make models in the style of Wallace and Gromit! Maybe one of my ex-pupils who reads this will tell you of this post!
I first posted this in 2013! I still have my little 5″ model and it still means the world to me. I was reminded of it again yesterday as I was talking teaching techniques with our son, D, and spoke of how I gave fidgety young people something (Blutak) to play with.
Yesterday, our last day with the family here, D gave the children his Senegalese Djembe. They are going to have lessons at school next term and were delighted with this very special gift.
Last Saturday a neighbour and good friend had her birthday party. We couldn’t go but I made her a tear-and-share Camembert party piece to be finally cooked at the party. I am told it went down very well!
We’ve been doing some sorting out and came across this mug given to our son by my parents. The surprise when all the milk had been drunk was a delight to see! D loved playing the trick on visiting friends!
We weren’t the only ones enjoying the view at one of the overlooks into Bryce Canyon.
Overlooking Bryce Canyon
Later in our trip we visited The Devils Garden of the Grand Staircase Escalante in south central Utah where there are the most amazing hoodoos to wander between.
This morning we drove to Phoenix, dropped off the car – we have driven 1,506 miles, through mountains and deserts, through small towns and farmland and have flown to Atlanta, Georgia to spend the next four days with my lovely Brother and Sister-in-law. It will be good to stop moving for a few days!
Thursday 20th September
My Dear SIL planned a treat for us for today – a trip to Atlanta’s beautiful Botanical Gardens and an evening performance of Midsummer Night’s Dream in the Gardens and what a treat that turned out to be! The garden was a story book delight! All the characters are made out of plants and are exquisite.
The Story Book
The front cover
The Dragon (with a Sleeping Princess)
Rip Van Winkle
We didn’t manage to see everything on this visit as we had to have dinner and make our way to the Theatre space which was on the 63ft wide pond! It was still very hot – it had been a very humid 29C earlier and so, along with the ticket, each member of the audience was given a fan, a lovely gesture.
The stage before the play began
I’m a Theatre Fan!
The play was an absolute delight, sparkling from start to finish with just six actors taking all the parts and clearly loving every minute as we did.
Dawn over the Mittens at Monument Valley – what a treat for the last full day of our road trip.
We drove to Flagstaff after breakfast to spend the night with our friends with whom we have spent the last few days having amazing adventures. Their garden in the desert is full of colour – a tribute to the gardeners – and the Hummingbirds love their sugar feeder.
Great excitement today as we arrived at the station in Durango ready for a two and a half hour trip on the historic steam train through to Silverton and back again. Join us on this delightful trip, enjoy the steam engine and the spectacular leaf colours.
Keeping an eye out
Looking down from the open carriage
Spotted by Mr S!
Over the bridge
Watching out of the gondola car
Following the course the river
We had lunch in Silverton, took the train back to Durango where we had an excellent dinner at Ken and Sue’s and ended the evening with live music in the Diamond Belle Saloon.