Saturday, 29 August 2015

Familiar territory

Many of you will recognise this typical Cornish stile and the view beyond...

It is several years since we have been to Cornwall and we have missed some familiar views..

This visit coincides with some very high tides - 7.6m tonight rising to 8.00 in two days time.  I am not sure that I have ever seen the harbour and estuary looking this 'full'.

This is our cottage, I will take some better photos tomorrow..

It is part of a development created from the old primary school up on the hill - in Padstow, of course - you knew that!

Friday, 28 August 2015

Changing skyline

Yesterday I visited the University to attend the leaving 'do' of a friend and colleague who has just completed 39 years of work  there - quite an achievement.

I walked back to my car past this very familiar view across the lake to the Parade.  I liked the way that the clouds were reflected in the surface of the lake.

Currently there is a beautiful patch of water lilies in flower on one side of the lake.

Raise your eyes above the surface of the water and there are large cranes and new buildings growing up.

The cranes were also reflected in the lake  - silent witness to a changing and developing skyline as the University grows..

Thursday, 27 August 2015


This morning we tried a jumper on Theo which I had knitted and Mum had very kindly sewn together and knitted the neckband - which was beyond my skill level.

It was a good fit, if somewhat warm for today.

The hat was less well received..

Wednesday, 26 August 2015

A little rusty..

They say that a little knowledge is a bad thing.  In France at the weekend I found that you can have quite a lot of knowledge but if it is not up to date then it won't serve you so well.

One such instance was at the mainline train station in Toulouse.  At the main doors of the station and access to the platforms were these yellow machines.  

A quick glance and the word 'compostage' is a new one to me.  I immediately leapt to the wrong conclusion and thought how 'green' the French railways had become, providing a means of usefully recycling your tickets.

It was only later and after we had got onto the train, that we discovered that it is a requirement to validate your ticket before travel... and the French word for this type of validation...compostage.

Back to school for me!

Tuesday, 25 August 2015

Twelve weeks!

While I was away at the weekend, Theo reached his twelve week milestone and seems pretty pleased about it!

Monday, 24 August 2015

The Capitole, Toulouse

Although I travelled back to Bath today, I wanted to share some photos of the Capitole building in Toulouse which is the equivalent of the Hotel de Ville or Mairie in other French cities - where the Council meets, the Mayor has his/her offices and civil marriages are conducted.

The 18th century exterior of the building, both facing onto the Place du Capitole and the inner courtyard is impressive.

Inside it is even more impressive as many of the rooms are decorated with original paintings - mostly from the 19th century..

Sunday, 23 August 2015


Determined to see as much as possible this weekend (as well as keep French rail, tram and metro in business) we headed off this morning for the city of Carcassonne, in particular to visit the medieval walled city and castle which stands high above the town.

We started our visit with a guided tour which explained the 2,500 years of history on this site, beginning with a Roman fort and covered the Middle Ages - the time of the Cathars and the Crusades against them by the Catholic church - then the period when the city was abandoned while a new town was built below using stone salvaged from the walls and castle and the reconstruction in the 19th Century which - according to your viewpoint - either restored it to its former glory or turned it into a Medieval Disneyland.

After our guided tour we set off to walk the ramparts - just as challenging as on our visit with Mum and Dad, Maggie and Andrew in 1976, but much busier.  This may be because since 1997 it has been a World Heritage Site and is the fifth most visited site in France.

We visited the church - originally built in the 10th and 14th centuries..

It was a good visit but a shame to hear and see how the city has changed - only 50 people (from 700 prior to 1997) now call the old city home and there are now more restaurants than residents!