September 8, 2012
Some weeks just go by their own quiet way and rhythm. I do not mean a routine because there seems to be something special in each day. In some weeks though there are events out of the ordinary, people and places you will remember. The week described here was one of those.
Monday is sometimes a day when I try cooking new recipes. Pies or quiches are amongst my favourites. Some of them I find reading blogs such as Tammy’s. Her blog is not only about food but also about community supported agriculture. Well worth reading.
The recipe is about a tomato pie. Since I had a big and beautiful zuchini waiting to be picked in the garden, I added some of it in the pie (grated and grilled a little). This is the only change I made. It tasted really delicious, Thank you very much, Tammy.
On Tuesday I had to go to town and found a quiet lane to walk for a while with Nino-the-beagle. Guess whom we met ? Another beagle looking lonely behind a fence. What do two beagles say to each other when they meet : “Let’s escape together and go hunting !”
Wednesday morning. Brilliant clouds welcomed me as I opened the shutters. “O, beautiful golden clouds, what will you bring us on this day” ? As it happened, the warm morning turned into a stormy day. A rather temperamental weather this Summer but a rain that was well needed too.
A short break after work on Thursday afternoon. As we were sitting on a bench with a friend, a “school-boat” was floating down the canal. A lady was steering the little boat back to its mooring. Not as simple as it looks and she did very well.
On Saturday morning at our friend’s home, we were awaken by a ballet of helicopters. Every third minute or so, a helicopter would fly over the area, fill a big bucket of water (700 liters) and pour it down on the forest which had caught fire during the night. It took the pilots two whole days to stop it. Nobody was injured and the damage could be stopped in time.
Sunday was a happy celebration day ! Family and friends gathered around Alima, our youngest niece. The sun shone brightly for her. There were prayers, songs, dance and lots of African food and music. Another change of scenery in this particular week. Alima was quite comfortable and relaxed dancing in her proud grandmother’s arms.
Guess what I did on Sunday ? After a rest following the previous long day, I sat down on a lovely terrace between sky and earth, took my pen and some nice stationary; I wrote to a dear friend all about my recent week. Internet is not part of her world and we both enjoy exchanging letters every month.
July 16, 2011
Quiet days in the mountains. A vacation that offers plenty of time for reading, quilting, hiking and observing nature. A landscape I have been seeing for year, one I never get tired of looking at.During a reading pause on a terrace between sky and earth, I went again through the June issue of a monthly newsletter : “The Monastic Way” by Joan Chittister, OSB. “Food for thought” is a very good expression to describe what her spiritual writing means for me. Re-reading slowly some of J. Chittister´s words, I felt like sharing the thoughts she proposed for meditation on particular days in June.
“There is a call to nature in all of us”. I went through my photos archives and found some images to illustrate J. Chittister´s thoughts on this inspiring theme.
Sunset in South Texas. I sat with friends at the edge of this wide lake. The day had brought happiness and sadness. We all needed some peace of mind that we found as the waves moved gently towards the shore and the sun shone over the quiet waters. Hardly any sound around us but the lapping of the waves and the occasional bird singing a few notes before night fell. Serenity.
Sitting around a fire, whether alone or with others, is always a special moment for me. Letting one’s mind wander over the flames, imagining the new paths they will follow over the logs and the shapes they create is fascinating. When a spark bursts brightly and loudly reality comes back and with it the deep pleasure of the present moment.
“Earth, the vast expanse of the plains, the colors in a far away meadow, beckons us to explore, to know, to touch, to grow with the environment around us. It makes us its own and teaches us what home is about”.
Vast plains remind me of South Texas and Russia, meadows are spreading over soft hills and in the valleys all around me. High mountain pastures, their unbelievably bright flora and rare wildlife are very much home for me. The varied environment I lived in taught me to explore and respect nature, to know its people and the culture they developed in their surrounding area. Nature taught me a lot about “home”.
“Air, fresh and soft, teaches us how little it takes to live, to go on, to be pure of heart, to begin to live all over again, to believe. “The whole earth”, Mohammad said, “has been made a mosque and pure for me”.
A sudden puff of wind blew a cloud of thistles all over my camera and my face… light touches of a wonderful nature. Thistledown as light as the mountain breeze in a blue sky, tiny seeds ready to be dispersed. So little it may take to go on and live all over again.
Many thanks to Joan Chittister http://www.joanchittister.org/ for letting me reproduce part of her writing in “The Monastic Way” and share it with you.
Wishing you all a very pleasant weekend !
July 27, 2010
After a few days of well needed rain and cooler temperatures, another heat wave is at the door. Time to go to the swimming pool or to the lake for a tour on a small paddle boat or pédalo in French.
This could well be the last time this Summer that we had a barbecue. Because of this long spell of hot days, fires are forbidden in the open; in the forests or in your own garden ! Too dangerous in such a dry Season. No private fireworks either in most places on August 1st, our National Day.
I wonder can you feel the heat in those last two photos ? The wheatfields are ready to be harvested, some have been already. Their golden shade seem to attract the sun and reflect all this Summer heat.
Here is something very interesting for all of you who visit. How about joining in on a photography assignement by Scott Thomas ?
Below is a link for more information. Everyone is invited !