• Upcoming trips

    September 7 to 15 Tony and Jo will visit us from the UK

    13-23 January, 2018 Cruise out of New York around the Caribbean on the Norwegian Gem

    October 31st - 11 November Caribbean cruise to break up the winter.
  • theatre and Concerrts

    August 2  I lined up on the geriatrics bench to get tickets for Christine and me at the Delacorte Theatre in Central Park last week. I set out early and reached the bench  before 9.30 in the morning thinking that I would be among the first–I did not want a repeat of the great disappointment of the previous week when the last ticket to be given out at noon went to the man immediately in front of Susan and myself! But I was wrong again; the bench was already two thirds full of aggressive oldies and I was once again on tenterhooks until the noon distribution. I was joined by Christine’s friend, Barbara, who , with her husband, were to make a foursome for the event. Both couples brought a bottle of wine to enhance the evening.

    And what an evening it was! Shakespeare’s “A Midsummer Nights Dream” has never been done better in my view. Absolutely suited to the outdoor theatre. The set included a fairy forest with changing colored lights which added mystery to the actors who passed in and out of it. The cast included a nightclub singer. The costumes, not confined to one era, included a modern suit and gown.

    The mechanicals were a child’s delight. Part fairy tale, part pantomime the action was played at a spanking pace and was continuously amusing. What is more, Shakespeare’s words came across wonderfully well.

             

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Earlston – Border town of hidden contrasts

Earlston is a border town about 35 miles south of Edinburgh.  The Border towns are steeped in the Lowland history and myth of Scotland going back to Roman times and earlier. While visiting, for Kim and Tom’s wedding, we stayed at ‘The Harbour’ guest house run by Gwen and George Hardie. Two more gracious hosts you will never find anywhere.

Apart from the serene countryside setting, the thing that struck me most  about the  area around Earlston was the state-of-the-art decor, plumbing and electronic equipment that was hidden behind the unassuming exteriors! My image of tough Scotsmen striding over the snow-covered hills with their kilts and weather beaten knees faded–It seems that they have opted for extreme comfort like we city dwellers.

Main Street

Side Street

We spent a very convivial evening in this old pub

Charming side of the town square

The edge of the town

The town pond. The abandoned venue for the wedding ceremony

Earlston Kirk

A local artist carved this work from a tree trunk. The theme is the 13th century myth of  Thomas of Ercildoune who is said to have spent some time with the Queen of  the Fairies. Tom is leaning on it and clearly showing his disgust that someone had painted over the carved wood.

Chisel strokes lost under the paint

Gwen, our hostess extraordinaire, is also a talented poet. Here is a picture of the lady herself and one of her poems expressing her love of Earlston. She writes with a flavour of Robbie Burns.

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