Monday, November 14, 2011

Exit Stage Left....

White Heron visiting yesterday afternoon

Exit Stage Left

Noun:  An orderly and uneventful departure,
timed so as not to detract or distract.

Verb:  To exit or disappear in a quiet, non-dramatic fashion,
making way for more interesting events.

Etymology:  From the direction in theatrical scripts:
"Exit stage left", thus marking the
disappearance of a character from the stage
in the normal manner.

I've enjoyed my three years of blogging but times change, people change and I'm enjoying reading and studying more than the time-consuming creative process (I'll still have to keep my hand in with my husband's website, though!).  Following Michael's recent health scare and surgery, we'll be making the effort to spend more time outdoors and exercising; we spend too much time sitting at our computers!

Thank you to those who have stayed along the way; I've made some wonderful blog friends, will still be reading your lovely posts and, if you ever want a chat, I'd be so happy to hear from you via email.  Wishing you all much happiness.


Friday, November 11, 2011

My Morning...

Inspired by Delwyn's "Silence"
and Wanda's "Deep Into Fall"
yesterday morning, I wandered around my garden
in my 'jammies' capturing nature at the best part of the day.

And, as sun broke through the mist,
revealing the perfect azure sky,
Kookaburra wasn't fazed by my presence

and Charlie, our favourite Cockatoo
was keeping a beady eye on me,
following my every move!

Remembrance Day 11.11.11

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

I've got a touch of Stendhal syndrome!

View of Florence at sunset

What is it with me that whenever I watch a documentary of Italy, I weep?  We have visited twice and have been to a handful of the large cities, including Florence above, and, when there, I'm almost always on the verge of tears!

I read about "Stendhal syndrome" a few years back, an illness given this name back in 1979 and named after French author Henri-Marie Beyle.  Stendhal was one of his many pseudonyms.  

 Bridges over the Arno River, Florence

The following from Wikipedia:

"Stendhal syndrome, Stendhal's syndrome, hyperkulturemia, or Florence syndrome is a psychosomatic illness that causes rapid heartbeat, dizziness, fainting, confusion and  even hallucinations when an individual is exposed to art, usually when the art is particularly beautiful or a large amount of art is in a single place.  The term can also be used to describe a similar reaction to a surfeit of choice in other circumstances, e.g. when confronted with immense beauty in the natural world.

The illness is named after the famous 19th-century French author Stendhal, (pseudonym of Henri-Marie Beyle), who described his experience with the phenomenon during his 1817 visit to Florence in his book Naples and Florence: A Journey from Milan to Reggio.

Although there are many descriptions of people becoming dizzy and fainting while taking in Florentine art, especially at the Uffizi, dating from the early 19th century on, the syndrome was only named in 1979, when it was described by Italian psychiatrist Graziella Magherini, who observed and described more than 100 similar cases among tourists and visitors in Florence."

Head of a Capri Girl
John Singer Sargent, 1878

Italian Summer

The rose stood out
Red against the golden wall
The sun comes up through the silken drapes
The room begins to glow
All in cream-colored ivories and soft yellows
You say hello
Put down that guitar and handed me a rose

At the end of the Italian Summer
It rains fast and it rains hard
The wind blows through you
It tears you apart
Ooh it's so romantic
Hey it's so soulful
The rain falls down
And the thunder rolls

The sun fades out
And the mountains grow tall
The mists rush in and they take it all
From the islands you see Li Galli and Capri
I remember it all
Love was everywhere
You just had to fall

Stevie Nicks

View of Capri, 1845
Ivan Konstantinovich Aivazovsky

Li Galli - The Roosters

Li Galli is an archipelago of islands off the Amalfi Coast, 
the three main ones being Gallo Lungo, La Castellucia and La Rotonda.

In the late 1960s Rudolph Nureyev bought Gallo Lungo for 3 billion Italian lira and resided in the villa built in the 1930s by Russian choreographer and dancer Leonide Massine.  Nureyev lived there for 26 years until his death.  

We love Italy and are planning another trip in 2012, ending with a train trip to Paris, where I'll probably experience Paris syndrome, apparently the French equivalent of Stendhal syndrome!

"Something happens in Italy:
people cross into
new emotional fields."

Lisa St Aubin de Téran

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

The Partner?

Partner or Chic?
Long, white neck and black feathers

The white-faced grey
taking off when I spooked it

Saturday, November 5, 2011

A New Visitor...

White-faced Heron - Egretta novaehollandiae

We heard a constant knocking and found this huge bird on the windowsill but spooked it before we could grab the camera.  Over the last few days it's got gamer, coming closer and closer, until this morning it came right up to the back door and knocked!  Then it jumped up onto the table, had a walk around and propped!

We think it likes this place and has probably built a nest with its partner.  It's said that when breeding the birds have long feathers (nuptial plumes) on the head, neck and back, which this one has.

More information: Birds in Backyards

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Melbourne Cup Fashions...

The Melbourne Cup (thoroughbred horse race) has been a major event in Victoria since 1861.  The winner of yesterday's main race for the Cup was Dunaden, a French horse.

Fashions on the Field has been an event open to anybody since 1962 and has been sponsored by one of our large department stores, Myer, for many years.

The Judges

Darling Audrey; style, class personified!

Love this hat; beautiful girl, really sells it!


And the winner was
a girl from Geelong in Victoria,
currently living in Paris - 
she certainly brought
some French chic
to the contest.

What's with that hemline, though?