Saturday, 18 October 2014

Bera and Ghanero

We spent a couple of nights 'glamping' on the farm.   A warm welcome especially as on our last visit in Feb/Mar we had the little accident.    The tent already had residents.   A gecko was living under the rim of the loo, however, after a couple of flushes it decided that this was probably not the des res he thought it was.

this is the other occupant in the bathroom

a beautiful cricket about the size of my little finger - mint green and chocolate

On to the gorgeous Lake Sena for an evening stroll/drive.   Change of seasons, this time plenty of water, different crops - corn, cucumbers, marrows and mustard seedlings. Cliff swallows picking up lumps of mud to carry on their beaks to the nest building site.

Oops! we take the wrong track, shall we say off road?

deja vue - last time it was mud
with the help of a boy and two farmers and a passer by
the car gained firm ground

the cows being taken home for the night

Early next day another trip to Lake Sena by a different route, watching birds and keeping an eye open for leopards.    Lunch at the farm.  Rest in the afternoon before setting out leopard sighting again.    A new road, as they say around here.   Through small villages, farms and jungle.   Our guide could see a leopard relaxing on a rock.    It was beautiful.   We sat and watched for ages.    Eventually he strolled up the mountains side to be joined by his mate.

Time to move on from Bera to Ghanerao, about a three hour trip, which can take forever, with various stops.    Chai, the green pigeon tree, camels, buildings, temples all catch the eye.    We reach Granerao early evening, so relax have supper and so to bed.

the flower market

stopping for chai and a snack
katuri(?) pastry enclosing chili and dhal

two farmers enjoying an early morning chillum
of so called strong tobacco whilst the cook looks on

one happy man

We had a couple days in Udaipur to catch up, get the laundry done and try the Internet connection.   Now to publish.  Fingers crossed!  Off again tomorrow, destination Bundi.   

Saturday, 11 October 2014


the City of the Lakes is looking magnificent

after good monsoon the lakes are full to over flowing

Keith and his elephant mate

a dozy cow

we've been chilling out for a couple of days
meeting friends, a little shopping and not much else

it's unseasonably hot!

tomorrow we set off on our first adventure
travelling north to Bera, the land of the leopard

right now the sun is setting, it is time for refreshments on 
our little balcony  in the distance on one side we can hear
beautiful singing coming from the Palace - on the other,
 the temple bells are just starting up   perfect

Tuesday, 7 October 2014

                                                                          cartoon by Nic Rawling

house clean and tidy - probably the first time for months!

packing to do

we're off early tomorrow morning to Rajasthan and Gujarat
for a welcome break after a very busy summer
nothing in particular planned, but, as always, there are
surprises around each corner

Friday, 3 October 2014

still here

Busy days.  Catching up with domestic duties, making a start on putting the garden 'to bed',  enjoying the wonderful 'Indian Summer' .  Walks along the Jurrasic Coast, without a jumper, in September!

there has been a lot of this going on

to top up my empty thread boxes

there is an autumnal feel in the air

it will soon be time to drag out the suitcases and head east

Sunday, 14 September 2014

out of the baskets

A splendid workshop on Saturday, with wonderful enthusiastic students.

the baskets of Banjara work investigated

this one has a collection of dowry and envelope bags

in here a collection of stitched squares and small bags
the shiny piece at the top is a 'hair band' all jingly with
bells, mirrors and paise (old coinage)

I had no idea my collection was so large!

I have been gathering over the years
this piece was bought in Goa
it looks very dirty, but, in fact is is old
I think the threads were dyed with natural dyes and
over the years have faded    the brighter colours might
be from 'fast' dyes or, perhaps chemical dyes

the actual size of the piece is 34 x 24 cm
the stitches are so tiny a magnifying lens is needed
to really study them

amongst the treasures, this little piece

I spend the morning on Baga beach, Goa, stitching with
Anil, Laxmi and Rajeh - lovely memories

so a happy day was spent - after studying the textiles that spilled 
out from the baskets, each student worked on a piece of fabric
measuring 20 x 20c, taking inspiration from the colours,
stitching, and embellishments.

interesting work in the making  I'm looking forward to seeing
some finished pieces when next we meet

a lovely end to the Summer 2014 workshops

Wednesday, 10 September 2014

more blue!

in fact quite a lot of it.     Indigo workshop at home on Saturday, and then the very last one of 2014 with the lovely ladies of Sherborne West Country Embroiderers.

The vat was set up in the lovely grounds, with two very convenient trees for the washing line.

hubble bubble

dipping and dyeing

it was the best summer ever for indigo

autumn colour, a tad early - three weeks apparently
probably brought on by the lack of rain 
everything in the garden is looking a little sad

still, we can enjoy the Indian Summer a while longer
according to the weathermen  and I am not complaining

Monday, 1 September 2014

hello September

Of mist and mellow fruit fullness - we have mist, or rather the remains of smoke from a landfill site about four miles away.   Can't open windows 'cos the smell is awful!

The last two weeks of August were a combination of getting out and about,  enjoying the weather, sitting on very comfortable new sofas and finally giving the kitchen a good tidy, a scrub down and discovering the joy of clean cupboards.    So all spic and span, feeling very virtuous.  Decorating materials put away.

the Kurta quilt is on the wall

The last of Art Festival children's tie dye workshop on Friday.   I was swamped, didn't really have time to totally unpack.      At the end of the day I worked out that over two sessions I sent out into the world eighty seven fabulous t-shirts and with their happy makers.    Hoping I might receive photos of the finished t-shirts eventually.   With no fear. or preconceived ideas, there were fabulous colours combinations.     

print from dyed t-shirt on cardboard - love it!

On Saturday I did absolutely nothing, that is after I cleared all the dye pots and brushes and put all the workshop paraphernalia away.   

On Sunday we spent a very pleasant day at the end of Bournemouth pier, watching the Air Festival.   Posh fish and chips for lunch.  As we were high up and some of the planes were flying low, the pilots were visible as they whizzed by.     Blue skies and 20c, who could ask for more!

looking over towards Shell Bay - Poole Bay was full of boats of every description.

the fabulous Red Arrows

The Lancaster, it's huge!
thoughts of my father-in-law who was a Lancaster pilot, aged 23

Whilst I was dealing with the mini dyers on Friday, Keith took Ben to the
 Air Show.  First stop, the Birds of Prey area.    Here he is asking the Barn 
Owl to look at the camera