Added to this I have had a great deal of trouble posting comments on blogs. I am not sure what the problem was but at least now things are back to normal.
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The other week my new blogging friend Olympia over at Old Things, chose five people to answer a series of questions: and I was one of them.
I have given the questions some thought and am now ready to post the answers:
Do you garden?
Yes I do garden although I would be telling a lie if I said that I garden a lot - that is AGA's department. Here in Germany we have a small balcony and there is not much you can do - it is frustrating. In Melbourne however we do have a garden and I have enclosed a few photographs of it for you.
I have a few hobbies:
I enjoy reading - a lot.
I like to read history, gardening, poetry, interior design, select biographies, and murder mysteries: not those graphic ultra-violent ones that seem so prevalent today, but the old fashioned type from the 1930s written by such as Dorothy Sayers. Mind you, I also loved reading Ellis Peters' Medieval Murder mysteries and the wonderful Phryne Fisher stories by Kerry Greenwood.
I like collecting antiques, porcelain and china.
I like to write and am attempting a biography of King Henry III.
I like to cook. Cakes and desserts are my main products. Today I made Bara Brith (Welsh tea cake) for the first time but it didn't turn out exactly as planned so I shall make it again next week with modifications. I also like to collect old cook books.
I enjoy taking photographs too, and at present I am enjoying writing a history of our family for my nephews and niece.
This is the harpsichord we have here in Germany.
Your favourite plant?
I have a few. Roses. Bluebells. Bougainvillea. Asters. Soleil d'or Jonquils. But my favourite would have to be yellow daffodils. There is something so regal, and so beautiful about them!
Where have you travelled?
I have travelled to lots of places: All over the UK and many places in Europe, Asia, and Australia. I have not travelled to Central or Southern Americas, and my only visit to North America was to New York for Christmas shopping one year. We enjoyed ourselves a lot despite the freezing cold winds that I thought might kill me!
What was your favourite trip?
This is tricky. I think that it would have to have been my first visit to Pompeii about eight years ago. I had always wanted to go there since I was a boy and so it could have been described as a dream come true:
This photograph was taken at the main entrance to the city. I can't describe how excited I was (beneath the calm exterior shown in this photograph) to think that I was about the enter Pompeii!!
I would like to add however that to be honest with you, every holiday I have ever had with AGA could be classified as a 'favourite trip', whether we have been visiting a city, or striding through a muddy field to visit a ruined abbey or castle in the middle of nowhere:
We always have a wonderful time. I guess it is because he is such a wonderful partner and soul mate.
Taurus. I do not know much about horoscopes. I found out the other day that my Chinese horoscope is a Rabbit.
Your favourite painter?
Another hard question: Simone Martini; Sir Arthur Streeton, Parmigianino, Tiepolo, Giotto, Botticelli, Constable; to name a few.
A particularly favourite painting of mine is Simone Martini's 'Annunciation' which I have had the ultimate pleasure of viewing in person at the Ufizzi Gallery in Florence:
What kind of music do you like?
Mostly music of the Baroque period. Jean Philippe Rameau is my favourite composer, with Handel trotting in a very close second.
(In the 1980s and 1990s I was a big music fan - I loved all those dance tunes, new wave songs and the beginning of 'techno'. I am more sedate these days although we still take our Bananarama CD with us in the car so we can sing our hearts out while travelling from one place to another...)
Your favourite food?
Comfort food - the sort of food you make yourself and which leaves you feeling full, content, and sublimely happy afterwards. I also like Italian, Afghan and Vietnamese.
Do you have pets?
Alas no. I did have a wonderful dog. A true friend named Portmac Wee Hamish of Portland (Hamish for short) but he died 9 years ago. I miss him:
AGA has said that when we return we will have two dogs. I also want a house cow but this is still under negotiation (I think AGA suspects I'll let it sit on the sofa!) - and some miniature sheep. I would like a cat - black with green eyes: a witch's cat!
Well, these are the questions and my answers. I hope you enjoyed reading it. I am supposed to choose five people to answer the same questions however I do not wish to impose upon you so I will say that if you want to take part then feel free to do so!