Archive for the ‘holidays’ Category


Holiday ponderings

September 1, 2016

Here I am relaxing, or at least I think I am and if I’m not, then I’m trying really hard to do so. The clouds are hiding the sunshine this morning which puts me in two minds: grateful for the break from the intenseness of the past few days but also mourning the disappearance of the sun a little. It’s the last day of the holiday so I’d planned to make the most of these last few hours of summer, to soak up as much as possible, to revel in those last few rays. It’s not to be so.

Instead I’m sitting reflecting. Thinking about life. Wondering. Enjoying the cool relief from the heat. Even out at midnight last night that temperature was high, stifling, taking my breathe away. So today’s respite, although unexpected and perhaps unrequited, is still appreciated.

So I’m  lying in this pleasantness. I’m listening to that insect sound, the sound of their busyness. The sound that reminds me of being overseas. Breathing in those smells, the scents of flowers that at home make me sneeze, but here? Well here they make me smile. Remind me of the beauty of nature. Remind me of the wonders of creation. Appreciative of my surroundings. Grateful.

Grateful for this opportunity to stop, to escape the real world and to just be. This is a blessed life and location but perhaps if this was my everyday life it wouldn’t be quite so special. Perhaps it wouldn’t stir the heart in the same way? So I should enjoy & appreciate & remember. I’ve fallen in love with this haven, its wonders, its people, its sights, sounds and smells. And best of all, this life will always be here when I next need that escape,that breathing space, that idyll and little piece of paradise, where real life seems a distant memory and escapism is my best friend.



February 2, 2011

You may already know that today is Chinese New Year’s Eve and that the year to come is going to be the Year of the Rabbit.  Although I’m a fan of Chinese food I must admit to not being too savvy about Chinese new year and what it involves.  So, I decided that it was time for me to do a little bit of personal research to find out.

First off I talked to a Chinese work colleague for his input – it seemed like the obvious place to start!  I was surprised to learn that the date of New Year changes every year and that it is actually incredibly late this year.  The reason behind this is that every so many years the Chinese year has to have 13 months, to keep it in line with the moon.  Consequentially this year New Year has arrived late.

So going back to the facts: Chinese New Year is often referred to as Lunar New Year because of its link with the moon.  It is the most important of Chinese festivals and even though it occurs during what are the winter months for those of us in the northern hemisphere, it is actually known as a Spring festival in China.  Today, New Year’s Eve, is when Chinese families gather together to celebrate the passing of another year.

Chinese years take the name of an animal and there are twelve of these.  I’ve already mentioned that the year to come will be the Year of the Rabbit, and the year ending was the Year of the Tiger.  I was born in the year of the dog.  Hmm, doesn’t sound too auspicious does it?  But you’d be wrong there.  Apparently people born in the Year of the Dog “possess the best traits of human nature.  They have a deep sense of loyalty, are honest, and inspire other people’s confidence” Now that does sound pretty cool 🙂 but I reckon that if you read about each of the 12 animals you’d probably find a few nice words in all of their descriptions.  I’ve never been quite so convinced on the personality traits of people according to their horoscope sign – although I’m sure there are some truths in there – but segmenting everyone born in an entire year into the same bracket? Hmm, I think that’s even more unreliable to be honest.  But then, what do I know?

There’s lots of information online about this subject and if you’re interested I suggest you start with the Wikipedia page which contains loads of interesting gems.   Me, I think I’ll be planning a Chinese meal out later this week.  Just for research purposes mind, of course 😉


Spring is in the air

April 3, 2009

Yes it seems like Spring has finally sprung 🙂

The days are getting longer, the evenings are getting lighter.  The sun is shining, the breeze is blowing and the birds are singing.  And with all of that comes smiling.  Yep, everyone seems to have that spring in their step today & the world seems to be a better place.

So forget about whatever things are troubling you, dust them aside for a few moments and reflect on the beauty of the world around us and the good things in life.

Sit back & listen to Spring, from Vivaldi’s Four Seasons Overture.


where should I go?

September 4, 2008

I’m planning to go away on holiday in February and am in the process of deciding where to go. I want to go somewhere sunny because let’s face it, summer has been almost non-existant in the UK this year.

So my choices at the moment are Morocco or Tunisia, because I’m told North Africa is a good place to go at that time of year.

Have you been to either? What are they like? Would you recommend them?
Is there anywhere else you think I should be considering?

All comments much appreciated.
Thanks 🙂

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