There and Back Again

In Ireland, “mixed spices” is a fascinating blend of garam masala and pumpkin pie spice. It made delightful cinnamon rolls the other day. But we will not be remaining long-term in Ireland. Tony has accepted a position at a company in Italy, in the same area of Piedmont where we lived before. So in a sense, we feel a little like we’re going home. Of course, we felt like that the first time we moved there, never having set foot in Italy before. Life can be deliciously unpredictable.… Read more

Explorations in Ireland

Ireland is as beautiful as they say. The Royal Canal, dug two hundred years ago, runs through our town, and we enjoy taking nature walks along it. My favourite inhabitants are the many birds, from herons to jackdaws. Axa’s must be the snails and slugs, of which we have found many different varieties, both land and aquatic. She christened dramatically black and yellow striped snails “tiger snails.”

Our friend Rory from Church has also taken us on some fascinating expeditions to ruined buildings in the area. Our first visit was to a lovely old abbey surrounded by breathtaking rural green. It was destroyed by Oliver Cromwell, whom Rory described as “the greatest villain that ever lived.” Next we saw a beautiful ruined country house, built around the same time that Jane Austen was revising Pride and Prejudice for print.… Read more