27 October 2014

The White Dove of Peace

When I was in Cornwall this summer I was about to throw away some plaster moulds that I hadn't used for years and that were slowly disintegrating in the garden.

Then I asked in the builders merchants if I could buy white cement and to my surprise they said yes. There were a few years when it wasn't available and at that time I gave up making things in concrete because although I had some lovely limestone sands I could only buy normal grey cement which results in a grey sculpture.

I had several bags of sand in the garage which also had been sitting there for years and they were constantly in danger of me throwing them away in a fit of decluttering.

But instead I did something creative and here is the result

When I opened the mould, to my relief it came away as easily as an egg shell and my new white dove flew free 
Now she is here in Granollers, popping up all over the place and making new friends
I am still sanding away at her to get the really fine smooth finish that feels like marble..... but it takes time and can be done little by little.

6 October 2014

I am still here

I was eating supper this evening at home and suddenly thought,

"here I am sitting around a table with four men, one Catalan, two Basque and one Indian, all speaking Spanish and eating mushroom risotto made by me with fresh chantarelles picked in the mountains yesterday. Isn't life amazing and interesting and surprising and good?"

I sometimes have to pinch myself to check that it is all real. Just over five years ago I was living restlessly alone in Cornwall and dreaming of how to create a new life. And almost exactly 10 years ago I was in Barcelona for the very first time and wondering how I could manage to come back as soon as possible as I had fallen in love with the city.

Here I am, back after a long gap in my writing and yet still travelling along the catalan way. So much to explain and to tell you. So many stories to tell that I didn't know where to begin, until now.

Suddenly tonight I decided to plunge in, right here and now.
Tomorrow Amma starts her three day visit to Granollers. This is the first stage of her European tour and the only place she is visiting in Spain. They say she is here in Barcelona but actually, she is here in Granollers and three of the men we shared supper with are Amma volunteers who have been preparing the sports centre for her and for us.  They are working all day and sleeping in the other part of our house, the abandonned part, the part that I feel is full of ghosts.
They said they are sleeping well and I feel sure that their preesence along with the Amma energy they carry, is helping us heal our strange home.

To be continued...

24 May 2014

Glasgow School of Art

We were exploring a cemetery with family graves up on a hill above Glasgow  near the Gallowgate when we saw the smoke. 
In the town centre.
'I hope its not my house' said my sister

Later we drove into town to do some shopping on Sauchiehall Street and discovered that the Glasgow School of Art was on fire.

It is a stunning building, a centre piece of the work of Charles Rennie Mackintosh and a working building where many people I know did their art degrees. I visited it over 12 years ago and took the tour around the famous library. I always remember seeing students using beautiful Mackintosh chairs to stand on while hanging works on a wall.  I wasnt a museum but somewhere living and vibrant but also a work of art in its own right.

It seems the fire started in the basement and that the building is mostly saved. But the damage inside must be massive. A couple of hours later when we passed again it was still burning and the firemen were still on ladders soaking it from giant hoses.  I don't think the library has survived.

22 May 2014

Delicious Scottish food

When I arrived in Glasgow I got a message from an old friend who spends most of the year in Brazil. She said she would be passing through Glasgow Queen Street station and could we meet?
I was so excited at the idea of seeing her after about 4 years absence that I went down there and waited, and waited,  only after half an hour realising that the ' thu' in her message meant Thursday! 
So I am off there again today!

But I had a good time in the town centre anyway, shopping and looking at all the amazing buildings
Headed straight for Greggs the baker for an empire biscuit - the ones with cherries on top
Watched a handsome highland piper
 Here is the street scene.....as you see the sun does shine in Glasgow and people sit outside drinking in cafes
 There was a chill wind so I had on a borrowed coat from my niece but there were plenty of brave Scottish biddies in tee shirts or vests.

Came home on the wee shoogle..... the Glasgow metro which is small and intimate and cosy
The sky was intense blue and it was quite hard to see in front of me as the light in Scotland is so bright and clear
Later in the evening we went for a wonderful curry in Akbar's, a famous restaurant which started in Bradford
 I have never seen a Naan mountain before. That is my gorgeous niece hiding behind it - hope she doesn't mind appearing here!   Thank you both for such a fabulous dinner. I dream of curry when I am in Catalunya.