22 August 2010

Blog Neglect

    Parry the Parrot here has been a better correspondent than I these past 5 weeks! I have been on the run the whole time and when I sit down at the Milway's PC I grow quickly frustrated. I'm heading home on Tuesday and I will shortly purchase a new Apple computer, at which time I will write a proper synopsis of this year's adventures in Britain. It has been wonderful and exhausting and anyone who thinks I come here to sit in the hammock and eat plums is just plain crazy.
    I am extraordinarily fortunate to have such a rich community here, and I am always a bit torn between my two homes back in Virginia and here in the Cotswolds. I often say that I am the richest person I know...and I mean it. See you on the other side of the Atlantic!

13 August 2010


We had a lovely day in the capitol city of Scotland. Edinburgh is located on the Firth of Forth (I love saying that!) and has been a political and cultural center since Roman times and has, like everywhere you travel in Brtiain, a long and sometimes bloody history. It is home to Edinburgh Castle and the Palace of Holyrood (the Queens official residence in Scotland.). It is sometimes known as the Athens of the north because of it's concentration of intellectuals, writers and inventers. Robert Burns, Robert Louis Stevenson and William McGonagall ("The only truly memorable bad poet in our language"!) all spent time here. One of my favorite contemporary  fictional characters is Inspector Rebus, who prowls the city solving crimes and nipping into the Oxford Bar for a pint of Deuchers. Good writing continues to be an important feature of the city, with a fantastic Literature festival. Just now 'The Fringe Festival' is in full swing, with music, theatre and comedy performances in every nook and cranny of the city. The Edinburgh Tattoo is a huge assembly of bagpipers who perform each day during the festival. I'd love to hear/feel those pipes in all their glory one day! The tall tower is called the 'Gothic Rocket'. The pub called 'Finnegan's Wake' was irresistible, so are Jan, Pippa and Phoebe, enjoying a drink with the ghost of Rebus. Thanks for the great company, ladies!
Next: west to Dumfries and the studio/home of a world famous blogger...

10 August 2010

Bloggus Interruptus

Almost three weeks of travelling (and over 1,000 miles) and enjoying myself means that I have been  moving too fast to keep you up to date, gentle reader. I couldn't possibly fill you in on all the fun I've been having, but I'll begin in Scotland.
    I flew into Edinburgh and was met by Jan Farquhar, one of my oldest friends here in the UK. We took the scenic route to her family's home in Blairgowrie which took us along the coastal edge of county Fife through St. Andrew's, where the British Open had just finished. It made me wish that I was a golfer! The golf museum had this crazy group of bronzes, capturing the 'grips' of a bunch of famous golfers. The disembodied hands are very odd. We crossed the Firth of Tay through Dundee on the way to her home. 
    Jan and Derek and their two gorgeous daughters ( well done on those exam results, Pippa!) live in a beautiful manse overlooking the town and they treated me with great generosity, excellent home cooking and numerous cups of tea. I'm looking forward to a return visit. Soon! I can't forget to mention Finn, their excellent canine companion!  
    Blairgowrie used to be a serious mill town, producing linen from flax. Now it is known for what the British call 'soft fruits' - raspberries etc. That's what all those white tunnels are about with the wind farm in the background. We  took  a beautiful drive around Tummel Loch past towns whose names are poetry themselves..no wonder Scotland produced such fine poets. There is music in the language when the Scots speak.
    Toff and Georgie left for Orkney yesterday and I'm now in charge for a couple of weeks. Plenty of time to write about more of my travels and make some new birds in the studio.Tomorrow...Edinburgh.