Places we have experienced are places that come alive within us………no words necessary. Some of our favorites………the feeling is evoked.
There are so many simple pleasures in revisiting a place and seeing it in a more distilled light, with a refreshing eye, and with a completely different seasonal hue. Try if you are able The Paris Hotel and its scrumptious tasting menu, as well as our old favorite, The Blue Duck, discovered one winter evening on a remote, hidden cobblestone lane, where reservations are a must.
Little did I realize that iced coffees are served with whipped cream and or ice cream until we rested at a bakery/cafe in Budapest, then in Vienna and again in the Austria Lake District. And so I came to expect this afternoon fix in Prague when we settled in a charming outdoor cafe surrounded with potted Japanese Willow trees and low walls dotted with boxes of sweet flowering plants– tall scented Lavender, Salvia, and hot pink Guara buzzing with rays of afternoon sunshine and busy bees.
My Asthma and a sudden case of Pneumonia may have slowed me down but only enhanced my love of the place and the need to breathe fresh air and walk as far as possible, more determined than ever not to miss this outrageously beautiful place and its people.
Taking a closer look at the garden requires stepping up and into a more detailed world of shapes and subtle hues. Gardens should be inviting and not necessarily provide a distant geometry of color and outline– yes, pleasing at a distance……..and whole–but should beckon the eye and the senses to wander.
Pairing the wine and the weather. Who knew? They slip down so easily, without even a noticeable swallow. Sauvangon Blanc and the bright breezy evenings, the Lilac tree half-pruned (next the ladder comes out–where did all this height come from) and potted plants tucked into softly shaded spaces where they mix in with their neighbors–their impact all in their differences.
Green is the color around here, every shade and variety of golden, to the silvers and blues. Softly colored Coral Bells and Cranesbill Geraniums add to the under tones spreading beneath the Rhodis, Azaleas varieties, Andromeda, Hydrangeas of every size and shape and mature perennials. Finally, a garden I can manage to drink in and saturate myself with.
I’m finally getting it about wine, and it’s about time. There’s a wine bar at Logan where we sat to wait for our flight to Amsterdam two weeks ago. Not only were the Chèvre salad and sausage and cheese a perfect meal but the wine was outstanding, and arrived with tiny slips of paper identifying place, year, and grape. I felt like I’d just awakened and been introduced to my tongue.
Fine paintings–this one a series of Klemt prints hung on the walls of our AMAWaterways riverboat sailing the Danube–have the same visceral burst.
Strasbourg is an easy city to get lost in, and lose ourselves we did. It’s easy to understand why. The cathedral alone is intoxicating both inside and out and possesses an amazing magnetic draw. It’s simply hard to walk away from. The canals likewise, lined with stonework and filled with the city’s watery reflections are immensely alluring. All else, including the pedestrian cobblestone shopping streets, the busy plazas and an enormous, age old carousel, seem to pale by comparison.
But what really did it to us was the tiny, hidden gelato shop on a short, lower level canalside walkway leading to a steel bridge. There, we ordered paper cups full of hazelnut/mocha and fell into a heavenly state of oblivion as walked along the waterway.
By the time we realized we had no idea where we were it was too late to find and reach our destination, so despite walking at full tilt we missed our connection and found ourselves in a taxi, reaching the river boat just before the evening meal.
Losing ourselves was only temporary but definitely something we should work at doing more often.
Rereading blog entries–oh my!
Can’t believe how much Tanner fills up my life, and the house. Back to dog hair, nose prints and that fragrant doggy odor! It’s pure bliss! Getting him accustomed to the invisible fence has not been as easy as I’d imagined, and although I know he’s glued to us, I’m still worried sick that he might bolt and get lost in the woods. But in combination with the remote collar and its similar warning signal I think we may be able to teach him to return to us pavlov style regardless of where we are–then so much more freedom for him.
At bedtime last night we put his rawhide back into his goodie bag and he promptly raced down the hall and retrieved my wallet from my handbag and brought that back to bed. It appears he knows what will make excellent chewing!!!! Such amazing energy and…
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Traveling through my favorite moments in Zurich, beginning with a walk along the clear, green river and pedestrian street, in search of an outdoor cafe for lunch. This on our way to the Lake, the stunning stained glass church windows by Chagall and the Old Town cobblestone streets.
The river is gloriously clear and inviting, with swimmers breast- stroking their way along in the most relaxing fashion, just stroking the morning along with a little exercise.
The lake water here is potable and available to everyone in the numerous fountains dotted all around the city. People can be seen filling up their water bottles as they pass by, and the water, by the way, is delicious beyond belief –not polluted, not treated– just free and available to everyone.
Enchanting beyond belief, here’s a tiny wine village in Alsace, where the villagers maintain and preserve the local storks that return every year to add to their nests and to hatch their young. Stork nests have been known to weigh in at a ton–imagine that. Whatever that nesting material consists of, the local people make sure there is plenty of it available, along with their preferred nutrients, enticing them to return year after year.
Extraordinary handmade goods, especially holiday ornaments and wooden carousels, including handsewn items and speciality bakery, cheese and wine products also abound.