Archives for April 2011



Summer salad on its way…

Eiffel Photog

Eiffel Photog

Someone doing the thing I tried not to do very much of while in Paris with Fay.

May early in the garden

April in the garden

Warm April this year, so everything in the garden is early, so this years ‘May in the garden’ comes to you in April. Enjoy.

Past May in the Gardens: 2010 , 2009 , 2008 , 2007 , 2006 , 2005 .

Paris buildings

Paris old and new

Paris lamppost shadow

paris street lamp shadow

Jardin des Tuileries Views

Place de la Concorde

Jardin des Tuileries

Statue in Jardin des Tuileries

Lovely Fay in Paris




Sacré-Coeur dome

Fay @ monmartre

Musee de Montmartre

Fay @ merci



Abbesses garden


Opposite Georges Pompidou centre


…and as the birthday girl at the Hotel Gramont Opera – best small hotel in Paris?

Paris Grub

Salle au 1ct etage

Le Brasserie de l' Isle Saint Louis

Ice Cream

Need… more… exercise…

Emoticon Mini

mini ;-)

How many points for a Silver Mini ;-) no slap-backs?

Paris Bikes




A bike friendly city even if the drivers aren’t (bike friendly).

Paris and Books

Merci Secondhand Book Shop Cafe

Merci’s second-hand book cafe ( )

Sharkespear and Co Books

Upstairs at Shakespeare and Company ( )


Finding our next stop


Shop Window Reflection

Model Paris

Tilt Shift Paris View

After many months work, my scale model of paris-west was completed just in time for us to use it instead of a tourist map when visiting the city.

Sacré-Coeur Views

Eiffel Tower from Sacré-Coeur

Sacré-Coeur view

Sacré-Coeur roof tiles

Views from 283 steps high: from the dome of the Sacré-Coeur in Montmartre, Paris.

Who put that shed in my Basilica?

Someone had a great sense of humour when they installed the potting shed.

Thanks to John Davies and family, who we randomly bumped into, for recommending going up to the top, and to the anonymous Irish man who counted the steps.

J’adore Paris

J'adore dior

Fantastique long weekend in Paris celebrating Fay’s little birthday.

Happy Birthday

Fay in Paris



Krispy Kreme

One of the (very many) things that little-getting-bigger F misses from the USofA has been Krispy Kreme Do nuts which were always a treat on the road trip south to Mt Rainier .

Fortunately, while meeting Tory inbound from SEA, I found that LHR T5 now has a Krispy Kreme stand. What could I do other than getting an assorted dozen?

The box is now empty.

The Barrow

Brightwell Barrow

A moody Brightwell Barrow from Wittenham Clumps.

Apparently the Barrow is bronze aged and was mentioned in the Domesday Book. I don’t speak olde englisch, but for those that do here’s the link .

More Flat Friends

Flat Stanleys

The beans are doing well, especially now flat friends have arrived and can help with the weeding and watering. Not sure this is what they had in mind when they set off on their vacations…

Bike Jump Measuring

Motorbike jump measuring

The boys jumping model motorbikes down the garden with granddad – attempting to beat the 1:20 scale world record.

Pen Y Fan


Breakie for champions (or just Aiddy & Mart) after a restful night (ignoring the herc at 150ft) in the camping field at Cantref Adventure Farm and Bunkhouse .

Road from the campsite

Before setting off down the lane towards the mountains.

Cloud seeding the welsh way

The bright spring morning with clear blue skies had obviously unsettled the locals who, knowing that hikers expect it to rain when in Wales, instantly sprang into action, seeding some low level clouds to make us feel at home during the hike up through the foothills.

Pen Y Fan


We saw some sheep too – another unusual sight for this part of the world.

Pen Y Fan Sign

The path up to Pen Y Fan was clearly marked

On the top

and in next to no time we were up at the top, with next to no one else around. Except that is for the UKs teenage population “doing DofE” and two crazy polish mountain bikers.

Pen Y Fan & Crybin from Craig Cwareli

Not content with just one peek, we bagged Crybin and Fan Y Big (or was it Big Y Fan?)

Where we hiked from

before skirting Craig Cwareli which dropped us right into the lovely village of Llanfrynach…

Pub, or not

…and the pub for a well deserved pint of Brains.

Except the pub was shut.

Next time we’ll ring ahead and check before hiking 14-odd miles and up (and down) 3,800 feet for a drink.

Top hike. Cheers Mart.

Clearing Fog

#ds508 Make a low contrast photograph today.

Looking across the field from the end of the garden this morning – mist clearing over the river.

Fixed Broken Glass Flower

Fixed Broken Glass Flower

Having safely moved 4,800 miles, including the trials of storage and shippers handling, one of the amazing glass flowers from Bassetti’s Garden was tragically attacked and mauled by the washing.
Fortunately, Araldite came to the rescue. Can you spot the join?

Ewok Training

Ewok training

Upping the stakes by training Ewok on a cliff top!

Lost at Sea

The lookouts

Either that, or searching for children.

Some Cousins

The Wallingford cousins

Notice how Ewok is not a cousin…

Some Waelends

Mothers Day Pic

Waelends (& Ewok)

Notice how Ewok worms his way into the group…

Coast Walk Views

#ds498 Make a black and white photograph and go monochrome

#ds503 Make a photograph of a symbol today

The bench


family evening glow

Nana’s Roast Lunch

#ds504 Illustrate symmetry in a photograph today.

Truly Scrumptious

The thin edge


If you should go skating
On the thin ice of modern life
Dragging behind you the silent reproach
Of a million tear-stained eyes
Don't be surprised when a crack in the ice
Appears under your feet.
You slip out of your depth and out of your mind
With your fear flowing out behind you
As you claw the thin ice.

The Thin Ice. Pink Floyd.



They were “just passing” so Fay and H thought it a good idea to nip into the Emirates Shop, shortly before kick-off on a home game day. F was with them; wearing his ManU shirt…

…cue phone call to Dad from traumatised son.

Flat Cole

On the train

Flat Cole is visiting from the USA. So we took him on the train to Olde Londone Towne

litter not trash

Where trash cans are litter bins.

red postbox not blue mailbox

Blue mail boxes are red post boxes.


Football is a game where you kick a ball with your feet

Visiting mcds

And the street where McDonalds first restaurant was opened!

Do you know what it is yet

Oil Seed Rape

Do you know what it is yet? Yes Rolf, we do.

Brassica Napus .
It was the yellow flowers that gave it away.

Ewok Doing The Shake

The Ewok Shake

Down by the river, and another attempt to get Ewok swimming fails. But he succeeded in giving the boys and me a quick shower.