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Funnily enough, windmills were the one thing that we didn’t see on our little sojourn to Amsterdam. In fact there were three predominant themes – bicycles, flowers and canals – and plenty of all of those to be going on with. Oh yes and there was also cheese.

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It is the most chilled of cities and easy to get around. TG tried to persuade me to cycle but I was too much of a wuss what with it being on the wrong side of the road and fearing for my life under a tram. But bicycles there were a plenty.

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There was an amazing array of bulbs and flowers and we brought lots of tulip bulbs home in every imaginable weird colour which have all been potted up ready for the spring.

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How can they only €8 for 50????

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We did some of the tourist stuff – a canal cruise, the Van Gogh Museum and the Stedelijk but we mostly wandered, had some lovely food (try an Indonesian rice table if you go there – 18 dishes on a small table for two is no mean feat!) and drank quite a bit of the old vino collapse.

SONY DSC We both said that we’d like to go back again. It’s the ideal place for a short break or long weekend. It’s got a bit of everything and we even had good weather! Een uitstekende bezoek!

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Sometimes Dear Reader we have to do what is expected of us. And so it came to pass that TG and I found ourselves spending a couple of days in Ireland – where I had not been for 5 years (as my Mother has reminded me at length). We travelled a couple of hours south from my old home for a day out to Dunmore East where we spent holidays as children and to where I had not been for over 30 years!

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It’s a pretty little spot and very Irish

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And brought back many memories of holidays which consisted of beach, hotel pool and chips. It was a nice reminisce and we even had sunshine which was one thing that I didn’t remember!  We also visited a rather lovely Wicklow public garden which made for a peaceful meander.

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It was just the thing before we had part two of our holiday in Amsterdam (more of that another time)

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Sublime and ridiculous came to mind! It was a nice short break which included in no particular order, Guinness, tree felling and wood chopping (not unlike being at home) before we sallied forth to Holland which was a different kettle of fish altogether…..

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Well Dear Reader it’s all been a bit much. They say that charity begins at home and indeed it did this weekend where for the princely donation of £40 to the IOW Youth Trust we found ourselves once more at the Bestival. This year’s theme was desert island disco and there was the world’s largest glitter ball which was duly inserted into the Guinness Book of Records.

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With obligatory silly folk…

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And The Child who came as a flamingo. Obviously.

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There were outfits

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The Cuban Brothers of course

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Yes he is pretty much naked in the middle – that’s the way they roll…

There were flags and sunsets a plenty

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And then there was Nile and Chic. if you want disco, then these are your disco folks. With more funky guitar that you could shake a funky guitar at they shimmied and shook and the party came to a grand glittering close.

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And that was that for another year. The glitter ball was hoisted aloft and we were done

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Some great music. Some sights. Some drinkies. Much dancing AND I managed to walk 20 miles across three evenings. Most excellent!

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Beginning of term

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I always feel a bit beginning of termish about the first of September. It’s as though we’ve had our summer fun and it’s now time to knuckle down to the autumn tasks of tidying up and getting ready for the winter months ahead. There is kindling and wood to be chopped and stacked, chutney and jams to be made and the garden to put to bed for another year.

The summer has whizzed by and was stupidly busy at times. It was also a trying time for TG and I with new challenges, deadlines, house changeovers every weekend and for a time a cuckoo in the nest and we just about made it out the other side. Just.

But new term it is and there is our holiday to look forward to in a couple of week’s time, theatricals and some much needed downtime to reassess and relax. I have new music to listen to, new books to read and a few creative projects in mind. Busy yes, but in a different way.

So wherever you may be Dear Reader – happy beginning of term. And just think, it’s only 114 days until Christmas…

Cake!

Take one small child. Add cake. Job done!

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Daisy Daisy

I have of course Dear Reader a very lovely Daisy in my life of whom there are many photos.

These are of another sort of daisy. Just because!

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I experimented with the hose – which isn’t easy whilst trying to take the picture with the other hand!!  Marvellous.

Well now Dear Reader, it has been the week  to end all weeks. During daylight hours there were small people and there was work and during the hours of darkness there was variously Cowes Week, a play, the hosting of book club and some rather wet fireworks…

By the time Saturday hove into view, the week, which had been stuffed like a badly packed suitcase, threatened to make a bid for freedom. The other brother and his family came for a visit and we had a great afternoon of cremated food (TG not me) and some garden fun and games.

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It’s amazing how much pleasure (and arguments) a £15 swing can create!

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The tiddly toddler managed to just about catch the older ones up just in time for them all to run off in the opposite direction and so she wandered off to do her own thing

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The boy child was the proud demonstrator of just how much bigger the sunflowers he had planted yonks ago were in comparison to him

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He is such a handsome boy isn’t he?

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It was such a lovely afternoon.

Fast forward a few short hours and there came the arrival of Bertha. Biblical rain, unbelievable gusts of wind and it seemed perhaps the end of the world. By lunchtime the rain had stopped so TG and I took ourselves off for a drive and a little walk and found ourselves on the cliff path above Compton Bay. The photos do not do justice to the boiling sea and the howling winds but suffice to say that the cobwebs were most definitely blown away!

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SONY DSCDon’t be fooled by the blue sky! The rain reappeared just as we got back to the car…

And so that was the weekend that was. I will leave you with one other image which is of the latest theatricals – Inspector Drake and the Time Machine (at Shanklin Theatre every Tuesday in August). To say that it is silly would be a gross understatement. See?

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Don’t say you weren’t warned!!

This week thankfully is much calmer so there will be time to catch up, to write some copy and an article for a new venture and just generally have a spot of breathing space which is much needed. The sun is shining (at the moment) and all is well on the sunny Isle. Enjoy your week Dear Reader.

 

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