Vicarious interlude – a preamble

After re-reading my last post, I realize I don’t really want to push anyone over the edge right now, as the weather is doing a mighty fine job of that all by itself.

Let’s instead have some moments of calm, with heat and sun, shall we?  Get in the groove by closing your eyes for a moment, and then scroll on…


This was one of the beaches we visited on Isla Mujeres off the coast of Cancun, on Mexico’s east coast.  (Aside:  If you visit, you must spend some time cuddling puppies at Isla Animales.)


It was a beach lounge — you could stay all day if you spent about $50 in food and drinks.  A pleasure, I say.  As did my apparently chubby left foot.  When we were there, there were two ladies with massage tables set up on the far left, out of the picture.  Did I indulge?  You bet.


But if you want spectacular and spectacularly lush landscapes, then the Flower Forest in Barbados is the place to go.  Aren’t the trunks of those palms just pure serenity?


If you would like to lounge away in paradise, then my recommendation is the Grand Case Beach Club on the island of St-Martin.  But don’t count on the free upgrade; ensure you have a great room or you may be disappointed with your view.  *This* is what you want.


Or if it’s the joy of our climate, but in the steamy summer, do you remember these days?


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I know so far this post has been a terrible cheat:  places I’ve been, things I’ve seen…but we need to remember during these dark days the joys that come with summer memories and travel to distant places.

Speaking of which, I will be heading south soon and will let you follow on our travels.  With Skye-dog, of course.

Random thoughts: a wretched winter, ‘holiday’ and faith



It is crazy sometimes how there is so much beauty in such menace.


The papery sheaths of dog-strangling vine seedpods and their delicate twisting stems strike such a beautiful silhouette against the snow.

But, honestly, it is not even mid-January and the crusty, icy and treacherous trails that Skye and I walk are not fit for human or beast.


A youthful dog might prance and pounce through this awful mess of a winter, but it is slow going if you’re 11 1/2.  And a dog, that is.


It is now well past Twelfth Night and we are finally taking down the Christmas tree.  It is funny how Christmas is now a ‘dirty’ word.  When I was in retail, there was little mention of it, only the ‘holidays’.  I remember as a young girl, being sent on my way after a night of baby-sitting at a neighbour’s house.  I said politely upon leaving, “Merry Christmas”, only to hear in reply that they didn’t celebrate Christmas.   Didn’t celebrate Christmas?  How can that be?  Didn’t everyone celebrate Christmas?


Apparently not if you’re a devout Jew is what I learnt.  And I also learnt much later, as I was a well-insulated WASP child, that Christianity and Judaism aren’t the only faiths.

Out recently with an old (Jewish) friend I said, ‘Really, what makes us so different in terms of faith?’ — that is, if I were a true Christian.  She replied with a laugh, ‘Jesus’.

I have always been curious about my inherited, if not embraced, faith in a historical sense, as well as the figures that take centre stage in it.  In my case, Jesus, his followers as well as those who are said to have written the New Testament.   Did they really exist as we think they did?  How true are the ‘Jesus stories’?  What is symbol and what is historical truth?

It is interesting to me how history has unfolded largely within the rigid structure of religion — with the skills needed for learning and self-awareness not shared beyond the monastery wall.   I thought of that when we visited several plantations on our trip through the southern states two years ago.  The haves and the have-nots.

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