We two in a bed

We’ve been travelling around a lot these last few weeks, which is very unusual for us these days. We tend to be home birds nowadays. You’ll have seen the posting on the trip to Italy but either side of that we had trips to the Mumbles in South Wales and to Wilmslow in Cheshire to share 60th and 65th birthday do’s with some of our very oldest pals from Uni and Arnside. It still feels bloody odd to be invited to parties like this and know that we’re not going to one of our parents’ events but actually are peer guests. Continue reading

sicily

This posting was originally an e-mail to friends in September 2006.

We’ve had lots of visitors this summer and what a blast it’s been. Towards summer’s end we fancied a short break and when we learned our very good friends G and M were having a holiday in Sicily we jumped at the chance to go and spend a weekend with them. It would be great to catch up with them and Sicily was one of the places we’d longed to visit, in my case since I’d first read about the island as a 13 year old in class 3S. The place had a fascinated me for years – the Strait of Messina – the narrow strip of water separating the island from the Calabrian coast of mainland Italy, famous for its treacherous waters and deadly whirlpools. These were immortalised in the Jason and the Argonauts stories from Greek mythology where he had to battle the Scylla monster and the Charybdis whirpool (is that the origin of the expression between a rock and a hard place?). Then there was Mt Etna, a real live and huge volcano dominating the SE corner of the island. Imagine living with that in your backgarden. Then the historical context of an island ruled by the Greeks, the Romans, Vandala, Goths, centuries of Arab rule and the Spanish – all of whom have left their mark before Italian unification. Then the mafia and the scenes from The Godfather I and II, surely the best twin films of all time. Well they are to me. I had to see the place but would we be disappointed or delighted?

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