Category Archives: Culture

Dream On

 

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My house is currently on the market.

For Sale. On the crest of the housing market boom. In the bubble.

Hubble bubble toil and trouble.

There’s an offer on the table. HOORAH. It’s a paltry offer. BOO.

Meagre. Scanty. It wouldn’t even buy me the chimney stacks on the Old Parsonage. The pretty, perfect Parsonage with its pilasters and pediment, its Flemish bricks and fossil finials. I want to live here. In a real life Doll’s House, with its sexy symmetry and glamorous garden. Why can’t I live here? Why shouldn’t I aspire to neo-classical neatness and Georgian Gorgeousness?

Because, peeps, because I suffer from the joint diseases of  impecuniosity and proletarianism. I wasn’t born with a silver spoon shoved where the sun don’t shine. All I’ll inherit is a very dubious Ercol dining suite. But one can dream, and one can pretend, which is why we ended up at The Old Parsonage in Arley, Cheshire, last Sunday.

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The National Garden Scheme – Yellow Book –  features gardens in the UK not normally open to the public. Perfect if you are nosey like me.

Or like plants.

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Or flowers.

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Or afternoon tea.

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Or quirkiness.

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Or ponds.

 

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Not so perfect if you are moving house and have ridiculous delusions of grandeur. Sitting on the terrace of a garden bulging with begonias and poppies and peonies and roses and putting off the evil hour when you have to leave through the quaint little gate in the quaint little hedge and return to your not so quaint little house on a not so quaint little street in a positively un-quaint Northern Town.

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Dream on.

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June 4, 2014 · 8:05 pm

Dee-lightful!

Dee-lightful!

The Dee estuary, viewed from Hilbre Island, on the Wirral.

This is a beautiful spot on the North West coast of England.

Also one of the most polluted places in Western Europe.

Well worth a visit. But not on  a Bank Holiday.

Never seen so many Wannabe Wags in One Place.

Fascinating.

 

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May 27, 2014 · 6:51 pm

Cornwall – Week 1 – Minority Status – One Lick is Never Enough

 

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So following on from a very successful trip to North Wales, where – hold the front page – IT DID NOT RAIN ONCE! We decided to chance our arm with another staycation and head for Cornwall.

Which is a VERY VERY VERY long way away. 362 miles, and 6 hours 15 minutes to be precise.

Kernow, (Cornish for Cornwall my lovers) is a Celtic Nation.

The Corns, Kernovians, Cornishers (?) were proudly celebrating, having just been awarded minority status.

This means the UK has promised to protect the rights of minority groups to “enjoy their own culture, to use their own language, to establish their own schools… and practise their own religion”.

I thought I’d share some of this culture, which we certainly enjoyed, oh yes my handsome:

Breakfast, started off healthy, sadly this didn’t last long:

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As the rather delicious smoothies were washed down with:

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Followed by pudding, from this Michelin Starred Ice Cream Van:

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‘One lick is never enough’ – states the flourish on the van door, and it wasn’t, leaving a disappointed dog:

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So, after a quick walk/stroll/amble along the South West Coast Path spotting ship wrecks at Coverack:

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It was time for refreshments – Cornish Afternoon Tea – jam goes on first, then cream in Cornwall:

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Well, that filled a hole, but having arrived back in Falmouth, we decided Fish and Chips might be in order for supper. However, first we bought beautiful bread from this bang – on bakery:

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Before joining the queue here at the Best Chippy I’ve been to since the last one I went to:

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Now, I know in Glasgow, Deep Fried Mars Bars are de riguer, but here in Kernow, the more discerning diner goes for the Deep Fried Creme Egg.

And on that note, I’m signing off and heading for my hand bag where there should still be some Indigestion Tablets lurking.

Kernow + Culture = One Lick is Never Enough!

Week 2  – Minority Status – to follow.

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Filed under Artisan, Community, Cornwall, Culture, Dogwalking, English Countryside, food, Musings, National Trust, sea, travel, Writing

Carlton Ware Money Box Snail for Sale

Carlton Ware Money Box Snail for Sale

Vernon is a snail with excellent manners.

He was the perfect subject to photograph.

Vernon’s pretty nifty with a top speed of 50 yards per hour.

Won’t get far with your cash, although he is quite strong, able to lift 10 times his own body weight.

Vernon was born in 1970, in Stoke on Trent. He’s pretty retro.

In super condition for his age, I thought he might make a rather lovely Christening present.

Preferable to silver plated egg cups and Winnie the Pooh plates?

Discerning purchasers can find Vernon by clicking on his photo. Be quick, he won’t hang around long!

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May 13, 2014 · 7:50 am

Pearls are Perfect Presents

Pearls are Perfect Presents

Here we have a gorgeous pair of signed Napier faux pearl earrings.

They are lush.
With a luxury luminous lustre.

Pearls are the oldest known gems.
They can be traced back to 520BC; a fragment of jewellery was found in the tomb of a Persian Princess.

Known as the Susa necklace, it is now on display in the Louvre:

 

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To the Ancient Persians, pearls symbolised the moon and its magical powers, alluding to purity and perfection.

 

In December 2011 La Peregrina famously sold for a record price of £7 million at Christies, New York. Once owned by Queen Mary I of England, the pearl was bought in 1969 by Richard Burton, as a Valentine’s Day gift for his wife Elizabeth Taylor.

 

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Here she recounts the story of losing the pearl during a stay at Caesar’s Palace, Nevada:

“At one point I reached down to touch La Peregrina and it wasn’t there! I glanced over at Richard and thank God he wasn’t looking at me, and I went into the bedroom and threw myself on the bed, buried my head into the pillow and screamed. Very slowly and very carefully, I retraced all my steps in the bedroom. I took my slippers off, took my socks off, and got down on my hands and knees, looking everywhere for the pearl. Nothing. I thought, It’s got to be in the living room in front of Richard. What am I going to do. He’ll kill me! Because he loved the piece.

After few minutes of mental anguish, Taylor looked at their puppies. One of them was apparently chewing on a bone, but nobody gave bones to the puppies. She continues:

I just casually opened the puppy’s mouth and inside his mouth was the most perfect pearl in the world. It was—thank God—not scratched.”

That story makes me hyperventilate just thinking about it.

Have you ever done that?

LOST A PIECE OF PRECIOUS JEWELLERY?

I have, frequently.

Returned to the sock drawer, or sugar bowl, or mattress cover, and felt that hot tide flow over me with the horrid, dreadful realisation/paralysis that what was a certainty, what I was so sure about, is no longer.

And then the panic, the anxiety, the STRESS!

Is it behind the boiler? In the freezer? At the bottom of the cotton wool ball bag?

Followed by the relief. It was in my dressing gown pocket. Of course it was. Der.

 

These pearl earrings won’t cost you millions, and I doubt they’ll find their way into the Louvre, but they are very beautiful, and would make a fabulous gift.

Put them in a safe place. One you can remember!

Click on the photo, and they can be yours!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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May 11, 2014 · 10:20 am

Where in the World?

Where in the World?

So PoshPedlar has been away again, hence the acres of silence through the ether.

But where?

It was bliss.

More posts/clues to follow.

And more importantly, more lush lovely objects to look at!

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May 9, 2014 · 9:04 am

Working Windmill in Windy Wales (Pt II) All Grist to the Mill

George Orwell wasn’t a fan.
Of dying metaphors, that is, I’m not sure whether he was a fan of windmills or not.

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What’s not to like?

Windmills are wonderful. Literally.

It is an awesome thing to watch wind captured, to witness invisible swirls and draughts caught by, embraced by huge lumbering sails.
That great gigantic beehive coaxed into action by gusts of breeze and bluster.
Not just the wheat or barley adding grist, but the wind itself.
Without wind – grist grinds to a halt.

Which is what Orwell would have preferred:

‘Dying metaphors … a huge dump of worn-out metaphors which have lost all evocative power and are merely used because they save people the trouble of inventing phrases for themselves. Examples are: Ring the changes on, take up the cudgels for, toe the line, ride roughshod over, stand shoulder to shoulder with, play into the hands of, no axe to grind, grist to the mill…’

What dying metaphor would you add to his list?
Or have you invented your very own cliche?

My donation is not a metaphor, nor a cliche.
But it is the most overused/misused word in the history of words. And that is:

Absolutely.

Yes, absolutely. You’re absolutely right.
Absolutely no way. Absolutely perfect. Absolutely ridiculous.

Anyway. I absolutely must go. I’ve got grist to grind.

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April 30, 2014 · 7:18 am

Kashmir Shawl sewn with Chinar Leaves

Kashmir Shawl sewn Chinar Leafs

This amazing Kashmir Shawl is huge.

It is pure wool. And it is beautifully embroidered.

With Chinar Leaves.

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The fire of the Chinar is reknowned in Kashmir.

Myths and legends abound in its branches, weave through its roots, whisper and waft to the tips of its twigs.

Platanus Orientalis. Flame orange, scarlet, crimson.

Read  this fascinating piece in The Free Press Kashmir here.

This is a very important tree. It symbolises so much for the Kashmiri nation.

And if you want to look fabulous, and feel warm, and wear wisdom.

Then Treat Yourself here.

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April 27, 2014 · 9:25 pm

Windy Wales Weekend with Windmills

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Forgive me, I haven’t been in touch for a while.

I’ve been abroad, over the border, across the water.

To Wales. For the Weekend.

Wow. Not a Washout. We enjoyed sunshine. Warm, dry, crinkly-eyed sunshine.

It’s worth writing about, because it’s the first time I’ve been to Welsh Wales for many years, having sworn never again – after two or three soggy, sodden, torrential, miserable visits in a row – would we venture into the land of Barabrith, Laverbread and Leeks.

We’ve all been there, flicking through the glossy Travel Section, pausing over some quaint Fisherman’s Cottage, or Shepherd’s Retreat. Or Drover’s Den.

What fun! Log burners, and Scrabble, and walks along the beach…

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The reality is the log burner spews out the cheap wet hunks of whatever, bought from the petrol station, and Scrabble ends in tears, too much cheating, too few vwls, and walks along the beach are tricky in Force 9 hail storms.

NO INTERNET. NO FOOTY ON SKY.

NO GARLIC/ROCKET or Organic Ice Cream. No Villa Maria.

Back to basics. But who wants basics? On holiday? Who wants to be wet, and cold and somewhere else?

So this weekend was a gamble. An outside chance. And it galloped home. I’m even thinking about booking again. But the possibility of four consecutive days of sunshine is remote.

Whoaaaa.

For the time being, I’ll look at my photos and smile – warmly – inwardly, and share two or three.

 

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So no bijouterie or beautiful bits and bobs today.

PoshPedlar’s been in Wales.

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Filed under Artisan, Community, Culture, English Countryside, Musings

The Co-operative – here for you for life

I met a lady from far away, whom, whilst showing me her wares, (a cardboard suitcase oozing vintage scarves) whispered I should visit a market in a Northern town.

Two scarves (one polka dot polyester, one lilac silk) and 47 miles later I park here:

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Hope Mill. Or rather Hope Mi.l, according to the sign on the fir green door, not so much dark and satanic as dank and sagging.

The smell was overwhelming, growing stronger as I paced towards the bustle of the Market Hall.

Fish and Chip Shops. Attacking from three different angles. Enough vinegar to pickle the whole town.

Stalls set out in a square grid. Anything from armless Action Men to rampant bronze lions. With a great deal of CD’s, chipped plates and Chinese fakery in between. But it was good. Interesting. Very busy, and shouty. Lots of activity; banter, buying, bartering. I bought. Earrings, cufflinks and two bulbs of smoked garlic. I put back a Losol jug. Which I now regret of course.

It began to rain. I asked a woman with dreadlocks and creamy cappuccino skin to suggest a decent cafe.

And did she:

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The Bear. Deli downstairs, eatery upstairs via a staircase Scarlett O’Hara wouldn’t sniff at. Was once The Co op, when once the Co op stood for Caring and Sharing. Unlike now. Help yourself why don’t you?

Pink lemonade in a silly ballon and celeriac soup in a bowl with basil and bread like this:

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They like their chow in this Northern town. And they’re happy to share it.  The ‘Incredible Edible’ project plants orchards and vegetables in unused spaces around the town. For everyone to partake. Cherry trees in the car park, and flocks of herbs along the canal.

What a marvellous idea. Prettify brown sites, rally a community, eat your greens.

Simple. Cooperative.

 

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April 12, 2014 · 9:21 am