Sunday 30 April 2023

Weekend

Happy UK bank holiday weekend folks.  Yesterday we had a lovely sunny day and i rushed up to my allotment to check progress.  I was rewarded with little sprouting potato leaves and lots of daffodils...I left plenty for the bees but couldn't resist a small bunch for home...
I also mowed the footpath to the side if my allotment as its my responsibility to keep it clear, then mowed the  lawns at home 

Nice and tidy.  ..newly planted lavender and a half dead eucalyptus that was pot bound so sold to me at half-price... its soaking its feet in a bucket at the mo.

Apple tree is busy bursting forth blossom and my lemon tree has some lovely juicy fruit.
seedlings are coming along nicely...

today was spent sleeping in the garden followed by trying on stuff for a forthcoming short break to Turkey... its a  city break so crop trousers, loose tops and sensible shoes...
But a few pretty bits too.

then a nice restful afternoon reading library  books
tonight we are having a bbq .  How's your weekend going?

Sunday 23 April 2023

Marari Beach, Kerala

I thought I published thus post... seems not ... More of our India tour - in no particular order!  This was our last stop....We stayed for 9 nights at Marari Beach Resort, close to Alleppey, Kerala.

We stayed here in 2019 and felt it was worth a return visit, the staff remembered us and one of our favourite waiters who had left his job rode his bike over to see us.  The hotel is owned by CGH Earth and is described as an Eco hotel, there is no tv in the rooms, the decor is simple, rustic and some might think basic, they do not allow plastic (water is delivered in glass bottles) .

Our accommodation was a small thatched cottage with bedroom and outside bathroom - I particularly like showering in the open and always try to find accommodation with this option!  


Food in the hotel was excellent, and they were very willing to make requests, the vegetarian menu was adequate and the portions were large so we usually shared.  You could walk along the beach and find food outside, such as this shack that sold coconut milk and would cook fish and bring from her house.  There were no restuarants outside but you could eat a meal cooked in a homestay.

A tuk tuk is easy to find and costs about £4 for about a 2 mile round trip  journey to the market on the beach where fish are brought straight in off the boats and bartered for, it's a noisy, crowded event and doesn't last long before the fish have all been bought, the men jump out in the shallows and run to the shore with the catch in big baskets.




It is chaotic at times when travelling in India, unpredictable, dusty and noisy, internal flights  through  Chennai, Bagdogra, Kolkata can be subject to tedious examination of your paperwork, you can expect a bit of a bun fight to get through airport security as nobody observes queues and many will walk in front of you with a smile! but it's all good natured jostling - the people are incredibly friendly, they all want to take selfies with you and it is perfectly normal to be accompanied wherever you go in the streets by curious people asking all about you, or wanting to help you find your way. 

The pool at our hotel was filled with mineral water, no chlorine so kind to hair and skin and antibacterial.  



Plenty of dogs sunning themselves , they all looked well fed.



 

There is something about India that draws us back, there is still so much to explore. We have made some great friends and I think we will visit again one day .........



Wednesday 12 April 2023

Easter Weekend

Hi fellow blogging buddies - just so you know, I am having trouble leaving comments on some blogs, Blogger asks you to sign in then won't let you .. in particular Julie, Lulu and Dora (Peppy) and Rain, so apologies.  Clearing cache or enabling 3rd party cookies hasn't resolved.  

 I had the whole 4 days of Easter bank holiday off. 

I spent a leisurely hour painting this year's plan for my allotment.  There are two empty areas, I can't decide what to plant yet so will have to come back to it.  




 I had time for early morning cups of tea in the garden enjoying the Spring flowers in my window tubs.   Daffodil, hyacinth and grape hyacinth, so nice to have something to view from indoors too.. 



I did my Tripadvisor review of the last hotel we stayed at on our India trip - I was under pressure as we have kept in touch with some of the staff since 2019 and they were keen to see the review.

I dug the garden borders and laid some woodchip, mowed the lawn and thinned the lavender.  Hubby helped with the mowing and cooked a lovely chicken murgh masala  from this library book.    After being pretty much a lifetime vegetarian I do now occasionally eat a little chicken in a curry as am trying to increases my protien intake, although I don't like the texture.  I think I could replicate this with paneer and cashews though.



I caught up with Gardeners World on tv and was pleased that Adam Frost was planting his potatoes as I had just done mine up on t'allotment.



Saturday was sunny but cold and was spent indoors wading through a big ironing pile then potting cuttings of my tradescantia.  

The evenings was spent binge watching the excellent  Arctic Circle tv police series.   We then started watching Walter Presents Faking Hitler.

Sunday is always swimming day and having had my brown lowlights topped up last week, I was careful to bring my swimming c8ap and hair conditioner to protect it.   After my 30 lengths I had 10 mins in the sauna, shut my eyes and imagined I was back in India!     

I spent the afternoon painting my nails (NX Barbados) and had a snooze in a sun spot.  Oldest son came from his digs in London to stay and brought all his laundry (his machine's broken) and youngest son came back soon after (from his baggage handling shift at the airport, so tired and hungry) and hubby cooked the first bbq of the year!  There was strawberries and cream too.




On Easter Monday I made the men roast turkey dinner with sprouts, yorkshire pudding, roast potatoes and gravy.

The rest of the week has been a blur as I was working but my employers have approved a change from some of my late shifts for earlies from next week so going forward will have more time at the end of the day to enjoy the garden and allotment :)








Sunday 2 April 2023

Travelling Light

We had a 15 kilo luggage allowance on internal flights, yet I took more than enough and could have left half of it behind!  Most of my holiday skirts and tops are from EBay and quite old, vintage even, hand block printed, Indian cotton, ideal for hot places and therefore very light.


Most of the time at the beach was spent without much clothing,  I'm 64 and still wearing my bikinis, those one piece swimsuits for women over a certain age are so uncomfortable, especially when wet - not for me!


Loose tops and silky trousers were comfy in the evenings...


When in Kolkata we wore the same t shirt and shorts for 4 days and rinsed our undies out at night, we were constantly on the go - walking about 8 miles a day, it was very dusty and dirty in the markets and nobody was interested in what we were wearing so we weren't either.   Darjeeling, however, was chilly and I wore my jeans and long sleeve blouses.   I bought a fake Nike gilet in the market for a fiver as I was cold all the time. 



 On the rice boat trainers were eseential.   I wore the same 2 long sleeve blouses with shorts, washing facilities were basic and the crew were only wearing a tea towel around their legs - it would have been rude to dress up!

 It wasn't until we got to the Marari Beach resort that my dresses and beach kaftans came out, it was very hot and humid there.  

I took some scarves that doubled up as sarongs, I also got a lot of use out of my 3 EBay kaftans, flat sandals and flipflops.

 . 

I took lip and eyebrow pencil and the one thing I felt couldn't do without:  Olaplex (sulphate and paraben free, 100% vegan, cruelty free, recycled plastic bottle) shampoo, all the complimentary toothpaste, shower gel, moisturisers in the hotels were acceptable quality.

I didn't paint my nails - it always melts when in contact with mosquito repellant - we brought 2 bottles of Xpel with us.

I will leave you with some fabulous, colourful, outfits that were far more exciting than mine.

Tibetan people at Ghoom hill station
 


Waiter at the Kolkata coffee house with uniform that has remained unchanged in 100 years (with permission, but he was very grumpy).



pretty in pink




flower sellers at Kolkata flower market



Stephanye, our beautiful friend at Marari Resort in her supervisors uniform sari



And finally, hubby - who always knows how to dress for the bar!

 





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