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text 2017-11-07 13:25
This week's office view...

...is pretty cool, BUT it is an office view that I get to spend an awful lot of time looking at, which is why I haven't shared any exciting book, food, or wildlife pictures with you all, yet.

 

 

Thankfully, there is an end in sight as we are nearing Wednesday. And so, I can do more plotting of adventures for the weekend and few days that I have off after this current project. 

 

So, more of this...

 

 

Btw, BOH tea is grown in Malaysia. I visited last time I was here. There is something lovely about drinking tea where it grows. It has a quite delicate flavour, so I'm enjoying this one without milk, but with a little sugar. 

 

These are from the last trip, and were taken at the tea plantation: 

 

 

Imagine plucking these by hand!

 

 

*** EDIT ***

 

So, I hadn't noticed before posting the pictures, but picture # 2 also works for the St. Martin's Day Task of the 16 Festive Tasks.

 

" –OR– Take a picture of the book you’re currently reading, next to a glass of wine, or the drink of your choice, with or without a fire in the background."

 

I'll count it towards that. ***

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text 2017-10-29 19:34
The Sunday Post: Halloween Fun

With Halloween happening on a weekday night this year, my friends and I had a bit of seasonal fun this weekend at this lovely place: Glamis Castle.

 

 

Glamis is my favourite castle hands down (and I have visited ... many). It's not just the Macbeth connection, or the connection with Queen Mother, or anything like that, it is because they (still privately owned by the Strathmores) really care about the place and about making visitors feel welcome. There is always something special about what they put on. And it is a community thing - the castle is staffed by locals who have been there for a long time, the guides have been there forever, the old castle kitchens (now the restaurant) uses local produce from the estate, etc. I seriously love visiting this place and try to do so at least once every year. 

 
This year, the castle put on a Halloween event - A Halloween themed tour of the castle and they also made up a Macbeth inspired walk around the grounds that was fitted with sculptures and a light and sound installation.
 
 
One of my friends has problems with her eyesight at the moment and can't really manage well in the dark. So, we decided to get there in the afternoon and walk around the castle gardens and woods first, while there was still daylight.
It was so much fun. The other friend who came was a bit sceptical at first because, well, how much fun can trees with lights really be, right? However, we spent nearly the whole walk laughing and being shocked by the sounds. At one point my sceptical friend found a big, bright red button in from of the witches sculpture - of course she pressed it! The thunder, lightning, and smoke that ensued set us jumping. One of us even lost her shoe! Seriously, we had so much fun.
 
 
After the woods, we joined the castle tour that we had booked. It was fab! They had dimmed the lights so the parts of the castle were completely dark, others just lit by candles. They decorated everything with gargoyles, skeletons, cob webs ... and live actors dressed as ghosts, zombies, knights, witches...all turning up at random times to make you feel really, erm, uneasy. 
 
(This photo was one I found on the Glamis Castle Facebook page.)
 
The tour told only of the castle's ghosts and gory stories, and a little history. Not much history, tho, because this was a Halloween tour and there were kids present (who might have been bored). And still, we all learned something new. 
 
At the end of the tour, I ended up as a tribute to the resident witches but managed to escape just in time to follow my friends to the old castle kitchens for homemade roast pumpkin soup and a well deserved and absolutely huge pot of tea. 
 
 
So much fun.
 
On top of that, I picked up from the tour that there seems to be a connection between Glamis and Bonnie Dundee (Graham Claverhouse or Bloody Dundee) - who was the subject of Josephine Tey's only (as far as I know) work of non-fiction (which is on my TBR). And because of how rabbit holes work, I now need to know what the connection is. (There is a portrait of Claverhouse in the portrait gallery at Glamis...) 
 
 
Happy Sunday!
 
 
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text 2017-10-28 13:25
I have a pointy hat ...

... and I am not afraid to use it.

 

 

I'm off to have some seasonal fun with friends this afternoon.

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text 2017-10-23 00:16
Sunday Post (which also has some soup in it...and a shelfie)

Happy Sunday! 

 

Yes, it may be late in the day but it is still Sunday from where I'm typing. 

 

I am woefully behind in writing reviews but, having tried for several times today, it appears I may be in a reviewing slump at the moment. So, I'll just go with the flow. Reviews may or may not follow this week. 

 

Anyway, while I procrastinated over writing up some of those long overdue reviews today, I had a good look at my living room shelves and ... *shock* ... it hit me that I need to do a read&cull&sort sometime soon.

 

 

See, my plan this year was to not stress about my physical TBR and just read what I want. As a result, my main shelves are now double-stacked...and this does not even take into account the shelves and stacks in the spare room, bedroom, and, yes, there are some books in the hall, too.

 

So, I got to thinking that for 2018 I will try and focus on my physical TBR. 

The mere thought was intimidating. 

 

Intimidating enough to need some comfort food ... Here is where the soup comes in.

 

 

Apart from the ongoing buddy reads for science non-fiction, Sherlock Holmes, and my Dame Agatha project, there is one other theme that I am looking to explore more next year - the Suffragettes. But more on that one in a separate post nearer to January. 

 

Is anyone else also thinking abut 2018 projects already?

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text 2017-10-16 21:26
Sunday Soup (?) ... but on a Monday

... because I forgot to post this yesterday. The benefit of posting the Sunday Soup post today, of course, is that I came home to find that I had received some books that I had ordered. Yay.

 

Anyway, we were supposed to get the remnants of hurricane Ophelia today. While it was very wet and incredibly dark all day (it was pitch black at around 2:30pm!), there was no wind. Thank goodness! I mean, it was unlikely that the predicted winds would hit this part any harder than the regular stiff breeze we get, but still... Unfortunately, it appears Ireland has seen some storm damage.

 

This whole topic of tropical storms and all gave me an appetite for chili yesterday. That is, veggie chili in my case, which for some reason I wanted to have in soft tortilla shells, and which made enough to have left over chili tonight (because it tastes even better on the second day).

 

 

In case you were wondering about the lack of cheese, there is some mozzarella at the bottom. 

 

The Muriel Spark book, which you can't really see, is Spark's Satire, which contains three novellas: RobinsonThe Abbess of Crewe, and Aiding and Abetting

 

Hope your Monday was not too bad either. ;D

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