Sunday, 24 July 2016

My little rant about Europe and the way the world seems to be going!!

Well I shouted loud enough in my circle but it seems that I have to go with the small majority of quite ill  informed and in some case zenophobic Brexiteers. I feel that the huge gap that has opened up in recent years between the haves and have nots and  has also upset many people making them feel disenfranchised.  The gains we have had from our membership have not reached them. Now I fear they will suffer more at the hands of the present government. The press have been so inflamitory and irresponsible that at times I have nearly torn out my hair. Rabble rousers like Farage have been so cynically manipulating peoples fear that I would have thought some of his pranks could have had him in court but it seems he is for some reason immune. Poor Mr Corbyn has been hounded for far less!
Anyway it seems it is done and I am horrified by the swing to the right wing  fascists  in Europe and in other countries all over the world .It is  scary that intolerance and  lack of decency  seems to be 

 thought ok. 
It is however great to know that I am in good company in wishing we had stayed united and upholding the Human Right Act etc.

Anyway here are a few things I can peronally thank Europe for,things that have enriched my life and filled my dreams along with the inspiration I have had from my own country.

Life without the Sunflowers and the Starry night would be less wonderful.

Discovering the roads of France and the  first smell and taste of garlic when I was a kid on holiday with my lovely Mum, Dad and Brother.

Almeria Spain and the man who saved me from the depths of despair after divorce.

The life and works and original thoughts of french writer George Sand who seemed like my friend and still does.

The sensual and inspiring Colette,reading Sido changed my life.
Spending time in Corfu and reading Laurence and Gerald Durrel's work. Gazing onto Homers wine dark sea!
Ha Ha! and finding the civilized bathroom bidets in French houses.!

I could go on and on,Cazanne,Monet,Matisse,Vuillard and Lorca, Yes I love what Europe has given me personally and of course I realize that not everything in the garden was rosy but it was great to feel part of the European heritage and to share all the great things we have  here to offer others. Meaness and lack of hospitality are not attractive traits.
Some flowers from Gauguin to finish but what have I done, what about all that lovely food from Europe ,another post for that I suppose.
I have not posted on Bright Star for a while but I am hoping to be more prolific from now on.

Monday, 21 September 2015


We have had some time off and travelled about a bit but we are home now and we decided to go wooding  together. We are so lucky to have spectacular woods only a short drive from us,actually driving is not necessary if you are feeling energetic you could just walk out of Truro and feel you are in the wildwood with no trouble. Ratty , Moley and Mr Badger could be round the next corner.

The trees are just starting to turn from green to the flaming colours of Autumn and there  is a calmness in the air that is soothing. I love each season with all the wonderful changes but I think I favour Autumn the most.

We found various fungi but this little crop were glorious !
As we strolled along the path through the woods the constant sound of trickling water accompanied us. The water was clear and fast running with the occasional darting of very small fish if you looked closely.
I always think that the roots of venerable old trees are the homes of elves and fairies or Brambly hedge like mice. OK I don't really believe it but the enchantment is delightful.
I was feeling very low this summer ,thinking about the demise of our country in the hands of the Tories,their mindless cruelty to the poor and needy and the way they are dismantling many of the things I hold dear, The NHS, the Library Service etc but I feel a tide may be turning. ! This walk has started a reconnection with nature which is always the way to counteract depression.
I picked up various pieces to take home and make an Autumn Solstice table decoration,some pine cones,bits of fallen pine leaves,beach leaves and Old Man's Beard!
When we came home I added some poppy seed heads and fennel and it looked good on the table in candle light when we ate our supper which was a new recipe. It was ,Puy lentils,sorrell and venison sausages with onions a little garlic, herbs and seasonings. It had a slug of Armenac added which finished it off very well . I will do that dish again !!I also made an apple and pear with spices pie which was gingery and great with yogurt.
We filled a bag and a rucksack with bits of broken small wood ,very good when dry on our wood burner.
We thought  needed to walk more ,we are getting tubby! Got to burn off the pies and sausages !! Thanks to Steve for the pictures! 
The way home.!

Sunday, 30 August 2015

Perhaps it is time for Bright Star to Twinkle again!

I have not had the inclination to update Bright Star for probably over a year. The reason may have been that that the re-election of a cruel and ruthless Conservative Government  made me so angry with my fellow humans that I wanted to hide away!The selfishness,ignorance and just plain vileness of the Murdoch press with its hate filled headlines and lowest common denominator reactions depressed me greatly.
The Tories calling fellow human beings benefit scroungers and further torturing the sick and disabled with ATOS.Then idiots labelling desperate people economic migrants when most are refugees and dubbing them "cockroaches" as they drown, these are men ,women children and babies ! To keep us from thinking about anything important there are TV series about  the most banal of subjects which seem to promote greed and ignorance and  do not inspire at all. However along comes Jeremy Corbyn and says quite a lot of practical,fair and decent political alternatives to this incessant fear,envy and targeted austerity.  Perhaps I feel better that people have been flocking to hear his words.The human race cannot survive without co operation and  empathy.Thanks Jeremy for cheering me up!

Image result for jeremy corbyn
So  now for something completely different as the Pythons would say!

Summer flowers are an endless joy and many artists have depicted them gloriously on their canvasses as though they want to save them for posterity.
 We need not worry because every year another outburst of colour and delicacy starts in spring and follows through until the last days of autumn.
 During the winter months however we can gaze at the paintings and remember warmer days!
Here are some that I would like to share with you.

This is by Gauguin,his colour is unique.

This one is another by a favourite of mine,Redon.

This is glorious and by Degas!

Cezanne capturing the glow of Chrysanthemums. We were lucky enough to visit his evocative studio in Aix last year.It was as though he would just come along anytime and start to paint! His coat was hanging on a hook,his jugs and fruit for still life were laid out and his easel was ready.

Spring flowers by Monet ,so beautiful and full of hope!

Pansies are such a favourite,they just keep flowering and have vibrant colours. They are like velvet!. This is by a Russian painter called Peske. When my Mum was staying recently Emma my step daughter said that her eyes were like pansies and she is right Mum has very beautiful eyes.

Here we have Matisse.

If I could paint I would love to paint flowers like Klimt!

I love the intimacy of the painting by Bonnard !

The vibrancy of this work by Suzanne Valadon is great.

Another wonderful Gauguin.

This is a lovely piece of work done by a Korean master,it is so delicate and effective.

I love the dream quality of Chagall's work and have just started to read his biography.

What can I say the fabulous Georgia O keefe,one of my heroines!

This is another Valadon but it is much gentler than the other on this post.

Well that is feast for the eyes and the soul!
 I hope you will enjoy looking at these paintings.  I send a bouquet, a big bunch of sunflowers to Jeremy Corbyn for 
 helping to bring me a bit of faith back in human nature and getting Bright Star up and running again.

Sunday, 2 November 2014

Autumn Idylls

Today it would have been  my Dad's birthday so I wanted to get out into the country and remember him doing what he so enjoyed which was walking here in Cornwall with my Mum when they came to stay.I would direct him around some of the routes of the mobile library that I was working on at the time,winding through the lanes to small villages and hamlets that were off the beaten track of the usual tourist.This is the village church of St Michael in Penkivel.

Beyond these gates lies Tregothnan
the residence of the Boscawen family. I can remember having to get out of the library van and open the gate and then shut it again after we had served the house.The cook would give us coffee in the kitchen and homemade biscuits!

Then it was on through the magical Lamorran Wood with its hairpin bends ,mossy walls and carpets of autumn leaves.In winter it was sometimes deep in snow which added to its mystical enchantment. 

Coming out of the woods we came to the tidal river at Ruan where the water  was high and the trees dipped their  mossy branches into its grey green depths.

A cave of Autumn trees!
Not a sound but the cries of birds and the rippling tide as it surged up river.
I remembered seeing the blue flash of a kingfisher here when we stopped for a break one morning,library vans make good hides and I saw so much wild life .

We drove on to Porthcurnick beach where the sun shone on the sea,the white surf a contrast to the deep blue of the waters. The aroma of salt and seaweed on the wind always comes as a new thrill for the senses.A long look at the horizon brings thoughts of sea going adventure and discovery.

Gulls were diving into the surf looking for for sand eels.
The sea as old as time.

I think this dog would like to get among the gulls. He was certainly having a lovely time playing in the waves.

The layers of colour were stunning!
On the way back to the car and the comfort of our coffee and sandwhiches we did a little botanizing!

 A bedraggled campion still flowering in the lane leading down to the beach.

Hawthorn berries,rich pickings for the birds.

Swan Lake?

As we drove home we saw a double rainbow. Wordsworth said that his heart leapt whenever he saw a rainbow and so does mine. These  were so vivid I felt sure that they must be a good omen.