Monday, November 24, 2008
Wednesday, September 3, 2008
Sunday, July 27, 2008
Friday, June 20, 2008
Tuesday, June 3, 2008
Now it's time for gardening and quilting! It's still cool, but even at the cottage the plants are getting ready to bloom. Lupins in both places are looking terrific this year. After seeing all the lupins in New Brunswick several years ago and taking copious pictures, I think that there must be a quilt in there somewhere!
Friday, April 25, 2008
Sunday, April 13, 2008
So here are mine for the year so far:
Barn with yellow roof
Taiwan is a great place to visit. The people are friendly, and we never once worried about pickpockets, getting mugged - nothing. It's clean, has the best subway system we've ever seen, great scenery and public parks. And lots of great places to eat. Here is some scenery along the east coast - it beats the Pacific Hwy in California by a long shot.
Friday, April 4, 2008
Thursday, April 3, 2008
We did a small tour on the Love River and then toured the night market which was teeming with people and food stands. We couldn't quite agree on which outdoor food we wanted to eat so opted at the end for the hotel. A little boring, but we have been eating "local" almost the whole trip!
If you look carefully
We wandered through a local market - it's amazing how many food stands are there, and interspersed with clothing stores. On our way back to the hotel we looked at the old North Gate of the city which is now situated within feet of an elevated highway.
A quick lunch at the Main Station again (the second level has just opened with about 50 restaurants so we haven't eaten at the same place twice) and then we went to the Natural History Museum. It's a lovely building beside the Botanical gardens and on each floor there is a sitting area (some serving tea and food) overlooking the lotus pond. We had a hotpot dinner in Rebecca's neighbourhood and her friends joined us. I ordered a tray of seafood and was surprised to see the live shrimp that I now had to cook! All delicious though.
We sure had a hectic day with Rebecca yesterday. We went to the Sun Yat Sen memorial and watched the changing of the guard, saw the latern festival, went up Taipei 101 and saw the sights and the damper. And on display in the 4 corners was a textile/quilting exhibit with old and new work that was put on by the Taipei Mothers Art Association. So we were all happy!
We also went to the Jade market but it was so overwhelming that I didn't have a clue what to buy. Ended up buying a string of lapis lazuli beads which I'll get gussied up at home.
We've eaten at R's favourite dumpling restaurant, had Korean BBQ in the food court of 101 and I will have to walk more, faster, if I keep eating at this rate! I think we're almost the only non-Asians at the Cosmos hotel, and except for eggs and white bread for toast the whole rest of the buffet is Chinese or Japanese food. But the place is clean and friendly and well located for travelling around the city.
Tuesday, March 25, 2008
Wednesday, March 12, 2008
We had lunch at the Mandarin restaurant (opposite the Imperial Hotel). The owner is a photographer and sells his lovely photographs - you choose the size and they are printed up while you eat.
Dinner was an interesting feast. We all dressed up as mandarins or concubines, with one couple as emperor and emperess. And as hokey as it may sound, it was a delicious and different dinner with local musicians to entertain.
The next day we toured the Citadel with it's now bombed out Forbidden City. The frangipani trees were not yet in bloom but they are all around and this is how the Perfume river nearby got it's name. We had a boat tour up the river to the Ming Mang tomb.
Part of our journey to the hotel consisted of a cyclo - another way to enjoy the chaos of the streets.
Tuesday, March 11, 2008
Friday, February 29, 2008
Tuesday, February 19, 2008
The main old buildings have been nicely fixed up - the opera house, the post office and the cathedral. We've arrived just after Tet, the Vietnamese New Year and the streets are covered in lights, red banners and pots of yellow chrysanthemums which are on either side of most doorways to keep out evil spirits while the spirits of the ancestors are being welcomed in.
Our tour guide took us to her favourite pho place. This is a local noodle soup which contains meat or seafood, and then you add your own fresh bean sprouts, Vietnamese basil, mint, and hot sauce. Delicious.
Saturday, February 9, 2008
The temples are amazing works considering that most of them were built in the 10th Century or so. Some have been fixed up a bit, with stones put back in place, and the jungle cleared away, but today we went to one that was still a tumble of rocks, with trees growing through and around. It was awesome in it's destruction - made one feel like an early adventure coming at it for the first time. Then, of course there is Angkor Wat which is the largest and most popular. We saw the sun rise over it, and it is just beautiful.
Each temple had it's own style and character with a variety of carvings and buildings. It's going to be a challenge to remember it all when I finally have the chance to download the pictures.
Our guide has been very keen to introduce us to local things. This morning he took us to his aunt's restaurant stall in a market to have breakfast. One dish consisted of porridgy type rice in chicken stock, with vegetables and bits of offal. The other, my favourite, was a bowl of rice noodles with veggies and peanuts and sesame oil. We've also watched how it was made, and eaten sticky rice and red beans cooked in coconut milk in bamboo sticks. This is a snack that is portable, and very good. We've eaten milk fruit, dragon fruit and rambutan. And palm sugar (similar to maple sugar candy).
We've also been to local restaurants, one of which included a BBQ - food cooked on a "volcano" over a brazier.
The hotel (the Victoria Angkor Wat) is lovely. They have the best pastries - a hangover I think from their French colonial times.
Rebecca arrived here just before us so we've had a lovely reunion and it's been great traveling with her.
Tomorrow is off to Ho Chi Minh City
Tuesday, February 5, 2008
Last night we saw a humerous version of the Mikado and tonight will see the Lord of the Rings. And as always in London, lots of walking and riding the Tube. And the weather has been kind - somewhat overcast and only a hint of rain.
Thursday, January 31, 2008
Friday, January 25, 2008
The plan is to get some quilting finished - a bargello vest that was started last weekend, and to set something up to take on the upcoming trip.