Sunday, September 25, 2016

Sunbathing Pigeons




Usually on a fine day, there will be people sitting on these stairs leading down to the river… But on this occasion, a sunny Saturday morning in late September, the pigeons had the place to themselves!

Linking to Shadowshot Sunday & Weekend Reflections

Saturday, September 24, 2016

Postcards for the Weekend – Autumn Colours

As I haven’t got my cards sorted according to seasons (or colour), I just randomly flickered through one of my postcard albums to see if anything caught my eye… 

RU-2004202 (2013)

Home of Leo Tolstoy
RU-2602689 (2014)

Both these cards are from the estate Yasnaya Polyana in Russia, about 200 km south of Moscow, where the Russian author Leo Tolstoy was born (in 1828). It was also here that he wrote his famous novels War and Peace and Anna Karenina. (Yes, I have read them both!) Tolstoy called the place his “literary stronghold”. His grave is also nearby (he died in 1910). The estate is now a museum – including his library of 22,000 volumes. (He can’t have read them all, can he??)

(The name Yasnaya Polyana means “Bright Glade”.)

Weekend Linky Party:

Thursday, September 22, 2016

Booking Through Thursday – ‘Location’

btt button

In real estate, it’s all about location, location, location. But how about books? Does where a book is set affect your reading choices? Are you more or less likely to read books set in places you know or love?
Question from
Deb on September 22, 2016

I would say yes on both points. Where (and also when!) a book is set does affect my choice whether to read it; probably more often than I’m conscious of. 

For example, I usually do feel a lot more “at home” reading British books compared to American. (I’ve never been to the US, but travelled nearly all over Britain on family holidays back in my teens.) And, thinking about it, with Swedish books too I suspect I’m probably often drawn to the kind of settings (landscapes) that I feel I can easily visualize in my head. (On the other hand I sometimes feel that too detailed descriptions, depending too much on the exact location of real streets and buildings in big cities, can be rather tiresome, whether I’ve been there or not.)

But of course, sometimes it’s the other way round too, and I get interested in reading a book set in a foreign country precisely because I realize I know very little about it, and hope to learn more.

A memory pops up while I’m thinking about all this - from a holiday to Germany back in the 1980’s, while I was studying German at the university. It was my first trip to Germany at all, and it was in late August or even beginning of September, which means I missed the first week or so of the term (but I had asked permission). To somewhat make up for that absence, I had brought one of the study course novels with me: Goethe’s Die Leiden des jungen Werthers / The Sorrows of Young Werther. I remember it as a rather special experience to sit outdoors and read this particular book, and look up and find myself overlooking the very landscape where it was set - the valley of the river Lahn, which was where I happened to be staying. (Not the exact spot where Goethe sat, perhaps… But close enough!)

Sunday, September 18, 2016

Some Anniversary

Bildresultat för some anniversary
(The very first image that came up when I typed “some anniversary” in the Google image search box”"!!!)

Too much of my time lately seems to be taken up by technology trouble. If not one thing, it’s another.

Have you been hit by the Windows 10 Anniversary Update yet? Until this morning, I had not even heard about it… However, when I started my computer today (intending to reply to a few blog comments before lunch) this happened:

Okay… I guess I’ll have my lunch while that goes on then…?

1 hour later: 32% done.

2 hours: Just a wheel of dots spinning on black screen...
(…on and on and on, and nothing else happening…)

3 hours: Still spinning. No idea what's going on.
Phoned my brother for moral support before taking the bold decision to turn the computer off and on again.
Looked promising at first; but soon back to what I later learned also goes by the ominous name of SWOD (spinning wheel of death)… I took my chances though and just left it spinning while I went out for a walk.

4½ hours (or so): Back home. Cup of tea. Wheel still spinning, no change. New decision: Turn off. Let computer rest and cool off for a while. Do the same myself… Read up on things in manual.

5½ hours: Deep breath, pressing the start button again. Missed hitting F8 at the right moment (as the manual advised) – darn… Okay, let’s see what happens… oh? Smart computer… It understood my intention anyway…


Another half hour or so, and bingo:


So it seems I’m now back to the version of Windows 10 that I had before the attempt at “anniversary” update. (If I’ve lost anything else in the process I’ve not discovered that yet.)

The question remains: What happens next time I have to turn the computer off  and on again? – as no doubt at some point I shall have to.

For tonight I’m contemplating the alternative to perhaps just try and put it to “sleep” rather than turn it off properly, though… We’ll see how that goes!

Bildresultat för zzz

Friday, September 16, 2016

Flower Fairies from Around the World

160323 BE-434112 
A Flower Fairy of the Spring (1923)
Sent from Belgium, March 2016

The Rose Hip Fairy
(Flower Fairies of the Autumn, 1926)
Sent from Taiwan, April 2015

Flower Fairies of the Wayside
Agrimony Fairies
(Flower Fairies of the Wayside, 1948)

Sent from Canada, August 2015

Sent from Japan, September 2014

140409-1 UK John
~This one printed on wood!~
Sent from England, April 2014

Cicely Mary Barker (1895 – 1973) was an English illustrator best known for a series of fantasy illustrations depicting fairies and flowers. Her first book, Flower Fairies of the Spring, was published in 1923. Similar books were published in the following decades. And postcards of her illustrations are now very popular in Postcrossing – all over the world!

Linking to:
Postcards for the Weekend – Flowers

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