Monthly Archives: March 2011

Good Gates don’t make Good Neighbours


The word gate’ is loaded with meaning, on all levels. Think ‘gateway’, for instance and it’s become less about the physical. It’s no wonder gates cause so much trouble!

The gate in this picture has become picturesque – in true Romantic (art-historical) fashion, as it’s rusting away around the chains and padlock that keep it permanently shut. It’s long-neglected, forgotten and a crowd of forest growth is in the process of overwhelming it.

Knowing a bit about the history of this forest, the last time this gate was privately owned was around about 1783. It then passed into the public domain. A guillotine may or may not have been instrumental in the transaction.

It’s ironic that this gate, wrenched from the hands of the privileged few by bloody revolution, opened up for the use of the common man, is once more locked. Continue reading

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Book Review: ’30 Minute Vegetarian’


I’ve recently had one of those bursts of cooking enthusiasm and tried out a recipe from a new recipe book. It’s one of the titles on the virtual shelves of my ‘Save The Planet’ Amazon aStore (not yet online). I bought it because it’s an opportunity to improve both cooking and writing skills – I could try out some recipes and then write a review of the book both for my website and for Amazon.

The book’s title and subtitle were the hooks that snagged me: 30 Minute Vegetarian and Tasty vegetarian meals in a flash. The claim on the back cover reeled me in. The recipes “ … can be prepared and cooked in 30 minutes or less”.
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Khadi Spirit (Taking a Walk with Gandhi)


I touched on the subject of khadi in my ever-so-slightly-tongue-in-cheek blog: How to Make paper from your own dung. I used khadi paper in the mixed-media artwork on the left Leaf & Blood.

Leaf & Blood is also the name of the second novel in my mystery & suspense series The Laurel Grove Mysteries. Both are as yet, works in progress, though book one, Flint & Feather, is in agonising revison. Writing novels depends, I have found, not on the Nanowrimo mindset, but mostly on the ‘khadi spirit’: Continue reading

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The Case of the Missing Wood


Isn’t there the risk, if the boundaries of a wood become blurred, whether by renaming it, merging it, concealing its entrances, or just neglecting it, that it will lose its physical and historical uniqueness? Is the greater risk that a nebulous wood is much easier to transform into an ex-wood, e.g. a housing estate?

Wouldn’t it be easy to privatise a public wood that’s been made to vanish from the map? The privatisation of UK public woodland was a recent real threat. Massive public protest forced the Government to back down, but it will be looking for more than one way to cook the goose (wood), as the saying goes.

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How to make paper from your own dung


Why not recycle our own ‘dung’ into paper? There is no reason, outside of social mores and squeamishness. Continue reading

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Just One Look


“Do exactly what you would do if you felt most secure”. Meister Eckhart
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What Planet are You On?


Hoarding has its positive side. While digital photography has made it almost impossible to fail, there’s always a percentage of shots which no matter how much you tweak the light and colour, they’re just boring. When I came across this very easy technique for transforming an uninteresting photo, I was glad I’d kept my bad pictures.
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How to Take a Walk in the Countryside


 To make it simpler, the second image (below) is an example of how NOT to take a walk in the countryside. So, major point on how to take a walk in the countryside: TAKE YOUR LITTER HOME That way, everybody … Continue reading

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