Saturday, March 27, 2010

I am "blog - tied" and birdwitted

Yes, I have posts inside of me yet to be written, singing poetic karioke to some odd little memory tunes... but they shall not happen until I can resolve my current bafflement with Blogger and what I think is my completely used up free photo space.  So no pictures from my point of view until I come up with an alternate plan  - which never fear, is doable, just not as quickly as I'd hoped. (There are many free hosting sites for pictures, I know.  I'm just working on getting something more permanent up and running.  Well it's up and running, I just can't access it yet.)   


Until I resolve this little problem my posts will sadly remain mostly verbal- well with the odd non-commercial use generic picture from the picture library files supplied by Google.  This will limit somewhat what I want to write about as there won't be pictures "live" from Corfu which is of course what this blog is about.  That and my rambling.


I had been planning to write on the return - or should I say averted return of our spring swifts.  (or as we refer to them, "those idiot noisy birds".)

I actually started writing this post on the 19th of March.  (time does pass on little winged feet...)  Life, friends over for dinner, the weekend, followed by an entire week's worth of miserable cold virus of the head and chest sort, conspired to postpone the entry til today.  I still have a stuffy head and my voice is a bit deep, occasionally interrupted by a messy sounding cough, but I am no longer in that sickroom  nether world between feeling sorry for myself and actually feeling miserable.]

So, as I started to say, today I heard the real harbinger of spring screeching a welcome note!  The swifts have returned! 

There was a mud nest in the corner of the portico and a couple of birds came and started "fixing it up"; we thought, when we first moved here that - romantically- they were swallows returning to their little mud nest shell in the entryway.   We didn't realise when we first saw that first mud nest in the portico that every surviving baby ever born in that nest would decide to roost in the front entryway- at the same time.  They were surprisingly legion!

no. body. move.From two birds suddenly the flock arrived and the front porch became a daily Waterloo of screeching birds and flying clumps of sticky mud and bird leavings everywhere, on the walls floor and screens.

The first couple of years one nest became two, with much fighting, and two became four with more fighting and noisy constant misunderstandings.  These birds do not find each other good neighbors.

Then expansion of territory became the general flock idea and the whole house was inundated by diving screaming birds. 

Obviously some lost.  They did not resign from the battlefield.  There were still spots to find on other parts of the house!  Every day it felt like an episode from an imaginary Alfred Hitchcock sit-com,  The Trouble with Psycho-Birds

The small nest in the corner of the entryway, became two nests and that year there were over 8 babies- most who fell out of the nests.

The next year the same thing happened again only all the babies from the previous year -that had survived- now insisted that they had a right to build a nest here as well as the previous tenants!  So we had a few more nests and several failed attempt nests, that were simply large muddy spotches on the wall.  The mud was rock-hard and impossible to remove.

Fast forward to several years later.

civic center innOur romance with the birds had long since faded.  When they arrive we begin our tactical maneuvers! The whole length of the front terrace is strung up with aluminum foil in key places... otherwise they drop mud and bird poo all over ourselves and any of our guests who try and sit in the shade on the terrace!  The mud does NOT come out of the cushion covers.  (we have recovered the porch furniture TWICE.)  Not romantic. Not charming.

A few of you will say, "Ah but there must be a way to live and let live," and I say to you- "WE have tried, but THEY take no prisoners!"

Last year we had a war of birds over the primary spot in the entry!  Swooping and screeching from dawn til dusk.

We could not open the front door from April til September.  We couldn't even open the window on the door for some air circulation without being deafened by bird shrieks.

The cats were nervous wrecks.  Both the dog and the cats were afraid to go out the front door, and no guests could come in that way as they were assaulted by diving birds! 

We covered the entry with a bamboo curtain and a sign to lead guests around the house to the back kitchen door. The birds again expanded. They tried to colonize the back covered terrace (which would have made it impossible to come in or out of the house at all!)

We discovered a secret weapon.

We learned from nature, as last year we had a viper climb the wall and try and clean out the nests. The snake was out of luck and only managed to terrify me, as the baby birds were all trying out their wings and bumbling all over the yard.  Still after the snake came, the birds refused to return to the porch and instead we had a babies outside our bedroom screaming at first light to the mother (who was approximately the same size as they were) to feed them!   (the only reason I have these pics are because I posted them last year to my mini blog on Tumblr...back on July 17!)

Anyway, that experience set our minds working .  We strung some leftover hose up on the rafters and magically the birds avoided the area completely!  They thought it was a snake!

So now I have a rubber snake (no photo attached re: see above photo site problem) dangling in a key place and though the birds arrive they shriek and carry on for a few minutes, to this point they still fly off.  T has strung up the yellow hose as well.

It may not work.  As we all know there are NO guarantees in this life.   T washed off four big mud splats from the wall this morning.  Still we live in hope!

Lesser Swallow-tailed SwiftAs for the Swifts?  Do not feel sad for our little feathered friends.

Since we first bought the house here, and were the only house for miles, there are now -between our house and the main road (a distance of approximately 2 kilometers) - well over 15 new houses with lovely overhangs and terraces.

I love all my new neighbors.  Many of them are avid bird and certainly animal lovers and I am sure will welcome the little 'banes' of our existence' with open hearts.

I wish both birds and neighbors well.

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Thursday, March 18, 2010

So, what is it about Social Networking?

Interspersed between mud rains, wild women celebrations, Chinese restaurants, Irish Mothers Day (and now also St Patricks Day!!),  I had been planning to write a post about Facebook,  and what strange demon possessed me to sign up for it. 

What with one thing and another (Farmville, Word Drop, Scrabble, Word Twist, Scramble) I've been meaning to get around to posting, but for some reason it just didn't happen!

I joined Facebook about 5 years ago, I think, when an acquaintance in the US suggested I follow her son's "posts" for the summer as he went to far flung South American places. (He never did post too much... I think he was too far flung!)  But I was in the US (with my laptop and lots of free wi-fi) to spend some time with my mother, and so I figured I'd give it a try.

For the most part, at the time, regarding Facebook, I was underwhelmed and over-paranoid.  The whole social networking phenomenon seemed to belong to a different generation.  Nor was l that keen on reconnecting with my past, which was, happily, enshrouded in the mists of time and false memories!  

The thought of "friending" my granddaughter and grandson  was appealing.  Of course the grandkids father was also on the kids "friend" list (and yes, OK, he's my oldest son, so I friended him as well.)  And then a wandering world traveling friend whom I hadn't seen for ages sent me a message asking if it was really me, in that blurry photo on facebook.  Suddenly I was friends with six people and I had barely gotten started! 

At the time, as we only had a dial up modem connection, here on Corfu, I became a bit frustrated with connecting and so I pretty much ignored it and rarely if ever opened it up for the next four years. 

We finally got DSL up here in the wilds of Vassilika, and I got wireless connection box. Fantastic.  But I'd forgotten my Facebook password and besides, my interests had moved on. 

I originally started this blog last summer, so my son and the family could sort of keep track of my (now) 15 year old grandson who came to visit us for a couple of months last June. I dabbled with Twitter and Facebook a bit after I started the blog, but it was only after my grandson went back home, I REALLY discovered twitter and started twittering back.  That was really fun, and I played with that for a while.  

For some reason, around September, everything seemed to merge- my blog, facebook, twitter...and I found myself sucked in to the social network vortex.  T went to the States to visit the family, and I found myself spending A LOT of time online.

It was so gradual, I can almost say with my Facebook involvement, that I didn't see it coming.  But suddenly I went from 10 friends to 20, and from 20 to 40.  I've almost doubled that again and  I am trying to keep it down to a managable level because It's not any fun if you have too many people to keep track of and I do like to see what people are doing.

Some friends use Facebook a lot.  Some just check in once in a while to see if there are any new messages I suppose.  For me, suddenly, I have become a facebook - how shall  we say - addict?   (I did cut way back on twitter.  I started to feel like a lurking stalker following my favorite people, and besides Facebook was taking up a lot more time!)

Go figure??

Lately, since I discovered many of my village friends and neighbors were on facebook my world has changed dramatically!  I HAVE to check facebook every morning to touch base.  I must see what's going on with all my "games": to whit-  Scrabble, Scramble, WordTwist...   I am currently playing at least 6 games with people from my village as well as several other word games with friends from other parts of the world.  I NEVER thought I'd find myself so enamored with GAMES - but I am.

I seem to have come a long way from the person who couldn't remember her facebook password.

And, Oh yes, I discovered Farmville. An old friend introduced me and then before she neighbored me back, (yes! those who know shake their heads) she stopped playing and disappeared!!  (Fine. OK-ay.  So you have a life....)  

So now, it's sad to see. I'm lost in my little virtual world wherein I plant things, they grow, I sell them.  I take care of my farm animals.  I harvest truffles and oranges and starfruit, collect eggs, milk goats and cows, shear sheep.  I collect feathers, bugs and butterflies.   I give bouquets of flowers away to strangers.  I rescue lost farm animals.  I pet cats.  I get excited when I have enough neigbors to buy a dairy barn.  It all sounds so boring.   I can't even explain to T my bizarre fascination with it.  Still there it is.

Currently I am expanding my horizons and getting new "neighbors", all friends of friends on Corfu, in nearby villages! 

See?  There IS a link to why I'm writing about Farmville and Facebook in a blog about Corfu!!!  One third of all my "friends" on Facebook are from Corfu making the whole facebook experience sort of like one big "party line" telephone! 

[small footnote to people (and particularly frustrated friends who may be reading this!) who are on Facebook and DETEST Farmville and all the idiot messages that come through over the course of a day from your febrile friends who play... Click "Home" (at the top of the page) then go to the offensive Farmville post.  Hover the curser on the right side and a box with the word "Hide" will come up.  The box will say Hide name of idiot friend, Hide Farmville, or Cancel.  Click the box "Hide Farmville", and poof- the Farmville alerts from that friend will no longer appear, but the ones where that same friend asks if you want to go out for coffee, or mentions they are leaving you priceless art  or piles of money in their will, WILL appear.  See? TSimple.]

As the days become longer and summer creeps closer, I am sure I will step back from all this technology, and back into swimming and being outdoors for long periods of time- well, at least until it gets REALLY hot outside...


Now and again I wonder at the marvelous potential inherent in social networking  for making our world peaceful and happy.  I followed the Iranian elections on twitter, and empathised with the young people hoping for a happier existence.  The pathos in some tweets was moving and documented a moment in history.  For some it was a call to action by many.

More personally, I read on Facebook, the empatheic comments from friends to other friends when someone feels low, or is down from health issues. They are honest responses in real time to a person who could use the feedback!  (ie. I feel your pain: right now!)

We humans have the potential to so much positive good, even on a small scale! (a phenomenal response on twitter and Facebook both over the earthquake in Haiti)   And yet, we so often squander it away on bad or thoughtless choices. 

As another friend said on her blog, in a post about facebook, terrible slander can also be spread via facebook.  Damaging things that can destroy a person's good name or livelihood are bandied about with no thought of veracity or long term implications.

(I find the "fan groups" on Facebook, fascinating and sometimes bizarre and once in a while slightly repulsive, for instance, a group against selling the Greek Monuments and Islands.  ???  The idea was ludicrous enough to begin with!! But a fan group to petition Europe to pay for all that Greek culture had given to the world??   Strange.)

Another virtual friend of mine has found herself stalked by her ex in a very unhappy situation of well meaning Facebook friends, making it impossible for her to keep her connection to her other friends and family because of it. (She had to cancel her Facebook account.)

I suppose we can't shoot the messenger which in this case is Facebook, on the other hand I guess I will say that when you are online, it's wise to take care of your privacy and choose your friends wisely. 


Long since have I been "unfriended" by the acquaintance who got me into Facebook.  (an odd feeling that- not that there were any deep personal ties, at all. The nature of the word "unfriend" feels a bit like a virtual social divorce!)   But in spite of many pros and cons, I am glad I got involved in Facebook. 

To me, it's better to go forwards rather than backwards with technology.  New things can be fun, test your ingenuity, and used for good things.   And it can be excellent for keeping the brain cells active and functional.

At least that's my story and I'm sticking to it.


Wednesday, March 17, 2010

A Happy and Blessed Saint Patrick's Day, to all...

This has been a whirlwind of holidays for the Irish, in the past ten days!  International Women's Day, Mother's Day and now it's one of my favorite holidays... St. Patrick's Day!   Woo-hoo!

And on top of it all  "Ta an aimsir go halainn inniu!" (trans. Gaelic: the weather is gorgeous nice, today!)  and life is good. (no I don't speak Gaelic, though I wish I did. I lifted it from a lovely website...)

This won't be a long post (I don't think... I just started writing it and I don't plan to write a long time, but then sometimes I surprise myself!)

First the holiday (bless Wikipedia):

Saint Patrick's Day (Irish: Lá Fhéile Pádraig) is a yearly holiday celebrated on 17 March. It is named after Saint Patrick (circa AD 387–461), the most commonly recognized of the patron saints of Ireland. It began as a purely Christian holiday and became an official feast day in the early 1600s. However, it has gradually become more of a secular celebration of Ireland's culture.
It is a public holiday on the island of Ireland; including Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland, as well as in Newfoundland and Labrador and in Montserrat. It is also widely celebrated by the Irish diaspora, especially in places such as Great Britain, Canada, the United States, Argentina, Australia, New Zealand, and Montserrat, among others.

Of course, before we came to Greece we celebrated in the United States. (Actually we also celebrated in Turkey, Denmark and France, when we lived in those places, just because we like to celebrate!)

Tonight we celebrate as well here in Greece, at the home of the Honorary Irish Consul, Mr. Spiros Lemis and his lovely wife Mary, here on Corfu.  It will be a delightful evening and we both look forward to it!

One of the most startling shows of "Irishness" is in Chicago, though, where for one day of the year, the Chicago river, that runs through the heart of downtown, is turned GREEN.  To celebrate almost all the bars sell green beer as well.  (Can we say, in the nicest possible way, "over the top"??)

They use Fluorescein.  It supposedly doesn't harm the fish or the river ecosystem.

I do think of Ireland on this day though, and how lovely our visit was.

We left just two days before Saint Patrick's Day (not a room to be found!) but I remember going to St. Patrick's Cathedral in Dublin and standing at the site near where Patrick probably baptized converts to Christianity. (I was quite surprised to read that Patrick was never canonized to Sainthood by a pope!)

 Anyway, I thought I'd share my picture with you all.  It made me feel quite peaceful standing there.

And on that happy note, I'll be done writing and say to all,

"Beannachtai na Feile Padraig -Siochan leat"

[Happy Saint Patrick's Day - Peace be with you.]

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Happy Mother's Day!!

Sometimes it's really great having two nationalities!

Today is Mother's Day in the Republic of Ireland - Happy Day to all my Irish friends! (as well as in Gibraltar, the United Kingdom, and Nigeria).  Special person that I am, I will get to celebrate another Mother's Day the second Sunday in May- the 9th- when I plan to be in the US moving my mother to Chicago.

"[Historically, the] day [may have] emerged from a custom of mother worship in ancient Greece, which kept a festival to Cybele, a great mother of Greek gods. This festival was held around the Vernal Equinox around Asia Minor and eventually in Rome itself from the Ides of March (15 March) to 18 March.

The ancient Romans also had another holiday, Matronalia, that was dedicated to Juno, though mothers were usually given gifts on this day.

In Europe and the UK there were several long standing traditions where a specific Sunday was set aside to honor motherhood and mothers such as Mothering Sunday. Mothering Sunday celebrations are part of the liturgical calendar in several Christian denominations, including Anglicans, and in the Catholic calendar is marked as Laetare Sunday, the fourth Sunday in Lent to honour the Virgin Mary and your "mother" church (the main church of the area). Historians think that children who served in houses were given a day off at that date so they could visit their family. The children would pick wild flowers along the way to place them on the church or to gift them to their mothers.


As the US holiday was adopted by other countries and cultures, the date was changed to fit already existing celebrations honouring motherhood, like Mothering Sunday in the UK or the Orthodox celebration of Jesus in the temple in Greece. In some countries it was changed to dates that were significant to the majoritary religion, like the Virgin Mary day in Catholic countries, or the birthday of the daughter of prophet Muhammad in Islamic countries. Other countries changed it to historical dates, like Bolivia using the date of a certain battle where women participated."  Wikipedia

My garden has gone and gifted me with some lovely flowers. The freesias and little white hyacinths have started to bloom with all their loveliness and fragrance.

In the "secret garden" (so named because it's in a little spot all shielded from view- it's also where the satellite dish lives...) the bluebells and dark red hyacinths are also blooming.

I was going to write a post about something entirely different until I went outside and became intoxicated with the clean new smell of spring.  Just so you know, the air is fresh and mild and the sun is shining and it's just lovely here today.  It makes one feel all poetic and distracted with life's little problems, at least for the moment!

All in all there must be something in the spring air - some combination of chemical fragrances - that trigger a response in our psyches that spring is here and everything is renewed.

That or maybe it's just the bluebells...

Happy Mother's Day to all my U.K. friends as well.  Bless you all for being such great mothers!

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Saturday, March 13, 2010

Still searching

For a great Chinese restaurant in the off-season...

Last night we went to the Szechuan in Gouvia.  This is the sister restaurant of one that we'd originally gone to quite often, years ago when we first moved here. It's still located on the "Disco Strip" on the drive out of town..  It was (at the time) the only Chinese we could find on the island. 

It was always an uneven experience, in that, it was either very good or "meh...".  Still it WAS a Chinese restaurant and this IS Corfu...

The Gouvia restaurant is very lovely and has been made a "year round" place with the addition of big glass windows with elegant curtains. (In the summer it's an open patio.)

 We went a couple of times in the summertime and it was pretty good though a bit pricey.  We meant to go back but somehow didn't, and we thought we'd save it for that point in the wintertime where we really craved some Chinese food.

Now it's deep non-season, and it was time.

We split an order of fairly bland egg rolls (the sauces were good and gave them some flavor...)

And we got to enjoy a lovely fresh flower on the table!

Then our main dish arrived.  I had hot chili chicken (spicy) and T had Szechuan Chicken.

My chicken was pretty good. When you ask for spicy they add more hot chili pepper pod seeds. (It totally passed the leftover test though, as we brought a small amount back - T left 2 Tablespoonfuls!- and I am eating it cold as I write...)  Thankfully, the portions were more generous than they'd been the last time we at there!

T's Szechuan chicken was sadly inedible.  The sauce wasn't bad but the chicken pieces (which I suppose were meant to be deep fried then tossed with the sauce) were soggy and with the sauce on top, sort of turned to an inedible mush. 

This was rather surprising as I would guess it might be considered their "signature" dish!

The waiter was really very charming and when I called him to the table, he took the dish back, offering T another meal, (ANY meal)  but T had tasted my dish and just decided to eat the rest of my spicy chicken instead, which was fine with me.  (The only thing I thought was perhaps we'd come too early -we were there at 8 pm- and perhaps the oil wasn't hot enough...?)

The highlight for me was the egg fried rice, which was very flavorful (and I am not usually crazy about rice!)

There were quite a lot of take-outs coming and going over the course of our meal, but it was only as we were leaving that another table filled with customers.

So all in all, yes, we had Chinese food last evening, but no sadly it was NOT outstanding.

Still it'll do in a pinch, and for a closer--- the fortune cookies that came with the bill (adjusted to mirror our failed meal),  sent us along with good fortunes and the little farewell "fruit cordial" was interesting but not the best ending to the meal.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

In celebration of International Womens Day..

International Womens DayImage by JIGGS IMAGES via Flickr
Delphie (Cardesifire) (IWD) is marked on the 8th of March every year. It is a major day of global celebration of women. In different regions the focus of the celebrations ranges from general celebration of respect, appreciation and love towards women to a celebration for women's economic, political and social achievements.

Started as a Socialist political event, the holiday blended in the culture of many countries, primarily Eastern Europe, Russia, and the former Soviet bloc. In many regions, the day lost its political flavour, and became simply an occasion for men to express their love for women in a way somewhat similar to a mixture of Mother's Day and St Valentine's Day. In other regions, however, the original political and human rights theme designated by the United Nations runs strong, and political and social awareness of the struggles of women worldwide are brought out and examined in a hopeful manner.

It is celebrated all over Greece.

So, last night, to kick up my heels and be united with women world wide, I went into town with five wild, crazy, charming and (yes, sadly for all my guests- no pictures) anonymous women friends to a delightful and VERY reasonable little restaurant- in fact it's name is Godero ( Γοδέρω) which means delight or enjoy.

It is a Mezedopoleio (μεζεδοπωλείο) or restaurant that provides exceptional Meze's or starters. It was a wonderful evening, and tho I don't have pictures of the food either - (it was so good and we all helped ourselves - making it very difficult to get pictures with all the passing of plates and clinking of forks!)

There were many women out celebrating together.

What always surprises me is that people didn't really arrive until around 10 pm. (we arrived around 9:15 and were the first table seated!) The restaurant is normally a hangout of students, which at first made me worried a bit, but when we got there I found it perfect.

I will describe a bit of what we had: first a delicious salad, then feta cheese in the oven, roasted hot peppers, a dish of melt in your mouth pork, mussels, homemade french fries, bites of tender beef in sofrito sauce, deep fried tomato "meatballs" (and I am CERTAIN at least two or three other things I can't I was drinking tsipouro*)

The wine and tsipouro (Τσίπουρο) flowed freely, and we all enjoyed ourselves, except for our "driving" friend. As she has a young baby at home, she volunteered to stay sober for the police traps.

For dessert we ordered a little "selection" of chocolate souffles, Bailey's Irish cheesecake, and cherry cheesecake (with a side dollop of whipped cream) They were all the size of large cupcakes, and they were delivered to the table on a lovely platter- with five spoons! So again, sorry, no photos.

I am, however, including a few photos of the lovely interior. There was a large garden in the back that I am certain will be delightful in the summertime. I look forward to going back to this great place again!

*: Tsipouro is one of the oldest spirits in the world. It is first mentioned in Mount Athos, in Greece of course, in the 14th century A.D.

(also forgive the quality of the pictures: the photographer much enjoyed the tsipouro AND it was pouring down rain besides!)
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Monday, March 8, 2010

λασποβροχή or Yes we had a Mud Rain last night...

So there's a geographic phenomenon that we have here in Corfu usually between April and July, but it came early this year...

Mud Rain: Rain containing particles of sand or dust. These particles may originate in very distant regions. Source: European Union.

This has been documented since ancient times.  

African Sahara dust storms whip up clouds of sand and they go to high altitudes.  Then when the clouds mix up and make friends with the other clouds (particularly the wet ones) the wind moves it all over the Mediterranean, and splat- we get mud rain. (OK. I didn't major in Geography in school.) 

Every year we experience it and every year we are totally surprised at how much mud actually comes down! 

Ironically, we've always felt that rain was something that rinsed mud OFF the car... this rain really took a perfectly clean car and made a mess of it!

As it came early this year I won't worry about washing the windows quite yet. There's still another couple of months of rain to speculate over.


Saturday, March 6, 2010

This week has just flown by!

I can't believe how time whizzes past lately! Suddenly a week has gone by- and poof! It's the weekend! (this seems to happen with the weeks zipping past as well...suddenly a month! Pfft!)

It's not like I WANT it to go by fast like when I was a kid... I want it to slow down so I can wring every little ort of joy that I can find in each day.

But of course we have no control of time. Speaking of which I will devote a little time to another award that my virtual friend WildernessChic passed along...

I love her site Life the universe and all that's in it - and her house, her fashion - pretty much her life... Thank you, Ruth.

The Sunshine Blog Award!

Of course there ARE rules with this award (no such thing as a free lunch! on the other hand, this IS the internet and so things can be a bit flexible...)

Rules are as follows:
Forward it on ........ Nominate 12 bloggers (OK... I only did 11.)
Put logo onto your sidebar or within a post
Link the nominees within your post
Let the nominees know they have received this award by commenting on their blog
Share the love and link the sidebar logo to the person from whom you received this award

I have chosen the following 11 blogs (the 12th being the one I received the award from!) that I always visit and enjoy. Some are old favorites and some blogs are reasonably new to me. Here are my choices:

Soyez la Bienvenue Chez Moi
thank you for the amazing tiramisu recipe! (I made it last night for a dinner party!)

Maple Spice
It doesn't LOOK vegetarian...

Ballet News
my fantasy culture life...

Raquel Crusoé - Arte e Cultura
a truly amazing musician from Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Muza-chan`s Gate to Japan
Japan through a photographers eye

fashions most wanted
now comes with a warning label! still filled with beautiful things by beautiful people.

What were you thinking
one of my most favorite blogs, by a very funny unsung hero!! (teachers ARE hero's, to me.)

Life in the expat lane
life through the eyes of a REALLY intrepid expat (and also successful romance writer!!)

French Leave
"the good, the bad and the ugly" a blog about France

Turkish Delight
a really sweet read, by a lovely lady

Rice, beans & pastichio.........
beautiful photographs and a blog of everyday charms of life in Greece


And so that wraps up today's post. So many more things to catch up on - or else just continue in an existential way with the present... who knows what (or when!) will be in the next post!!??

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Too much to write about

I have too much to write about. THAT must be why I have been feeling so ambivalent about the blog.

It's always about the first sentence and how impossible it is to narrow the field of life to a simple opening line.


We had a lovely anniversary day. We went to the beach at Glyfada for a long beach walk and watched the waves roll in. We took the dog and she was delighted to play with the friendly strays on the beach.

I took lots of pictures hoping for that 'perfect wave' shot.

Of course that means that I have seventy-five shots of either the split second before or just exactly after the 'perfect wave'. There were a LOT of waves yesterday.

T and the dog laughed at me and kept walking.

It still gave me a lot of pleasure TRYING....

We came back to the house after or lovely slog, and decided that a most excellent close to the day would be a small pitcher of margaritas and a soak in the hot tub. (Yes, as I've said before, "SOMEbody has to do it...")

As T has spent the bulk of the last 10 years here in Corfu honing his skills at making the perfect margarita, it was important for scientific reasons to continue to experiment.

Yesterday, I became convinced that he had attained his goal!

(Of course, in order for things to be scientific, that should mean there's a need for comparison and lots more tasting testing! Right?)

And so, not wanting to tempt the recent (and fairly successful)local police breathalyzer trap, we had a quiet evening at home. I fixed a batch of Shredded BBQ beef and we ladled it over some mashed potatoes. T fixed a salad and a fine "comfort food" meal was had by all.

This morning I woke up in time to catch the moon set. Sun and moon were just in synch- as the moon disappeared the sun rose. Lovely sky colors in both the east AND the west.

[I might mention, no hangover was involved in the taking of these pictures...]

Today I dabbled in baking. I put together a really good "first try" for an excellent cornbread with chili and whole kernel corn. Sometimes I just have a yen for a certain taste, but of course no access to the ingredients! So I make due and this time the flavors seemed to work. I will post the recipe, and pics after I do a little more fine tuning.

I also made my first ever Ciabatta or Italian "slipper bread". As it's cooling on the counter, I have no idea what it tastes like, so perhaps tomorrow I'll post the recipe... unless it tastes really awful. Then I won't.


Monday, March 1, 2010

Love to faults is always blind...

"... Always is to joy inclin'd,
Lawless, wing'd and unconfin'd
And breaks all chains from every mind."

William Blake
Poems from Blakes Notebook (1791-1792) 'Love to Faults'

March 1, 1969...

I was 19 and T was 21.

The world was ours in all our ignorance and youth. Now it's ours with all our wisdom and age. (see? some things never change!)

Happy 41 years, dear one....


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