Tales of A Travelling Mum

‘I’ll take the water; they’ll have the wine.’ My husband and I travel a lot. This is one fact of our lives together that, unlike so many others, hasn’t changed since the arrival of our daughter two years ago. Much of the time it’s rewarding – the Crevette has an innate interest in new places, people…

Nice Pecks!

Our kitchen calendar is usually filled with scenes of far-off places, inspiring our future travels or triggering memories of those we’ve visited in the past. This year, it’s a bit different. The Happy Egg Co crew kindly sent me a Nice Pecks cockerel calendar, so we have cocks in the kitchen for once. This is the third in the…

Sardinian Free Range Pork

Driving from Cagliari to Sardinia’s Costa Smeralda gives the option of two main routes: one zig-zags you up the island on an efficient, wide autostrada (the SS131); the other snakes precariously around the sheer cliff faces of the east (the SS125). Never again do I want to travel the second way. At various junctures along this serpentine route signs…

Parc Caillebotte

When I was a child, we always had prints of famous paintings on various of the walls at home. It’s little wonder I grew up with a taste for things French (including a certain man), because most of these prints were of works by French painters – from Chardin to Lautrec. One of my favourites…

When London Canals Freeze Over…

Last Sunday I decided that something had to be done about my current addiction to (a) duvets, (b) blankets and (c) our gas fire. Donning as many layers as possible I took my camera to photograph the canals of Little Venice, which had frozen over. Looking down Regent’s Canal from the blue Warwick Avenue bridge the…

Minnie the Wonder Bunny

When I was a wide-eyed early twenty-something, I moved from my hometown of Auckland to Sydney to work at a hotel in King’s Cross and no, it wasn’t offering ‘private client services’. At work, I made many wonderful friends, most of whom were gay because (a) the hotel industry is known for being a pink profession…

A Package for The Planet (a.k.a. The Monkey’s Uncle)

Some while back, My Friend, The Planet (otherwise known as Planet Ross) sent me his blue monkey. He’s a funny little figurine with a pointy hat that probably has some sort of spiritual significance, but the only spiritual influence he’s had so far in London has been scaring one of my colleagues so much just…

Living in the Casa della Signora – Venice revisited

Reluctantly leaving the toasty interior of Taverna San Trovaso behind, Monsieur and I headed for the Collezione Guggenheim, or Guggenheim Collection. This is where I had served as a museum intern, many a moon ago, in the days before every kid had a mobile phone and when we all wrote snail mail, not e-mail, to…

A R-Oily GOOD Night with Braham & Murray

Splendid’s been at it again; this time Splendid people Rax, Chris and Jenny invited me along to a dinner party celebrating GOOD Oil. This is a relatively new concept in cooking oils, being made from hemp seed. As if that wasn’t interesting enough, the creators of GOOD Oil and the off-shoot products of GOOD Seed…

Epic Kitchen Accessories: APRON 1

My boss knows I like to cook; he should do since I’ve become a little more curvaceous than usual since I started working for him 4 years ago. When Boss returned from holiday at the end of the summer, he brought me back a gift for holding the fort: an apron with a design by…

Are all sniffer dogs DOPEY?

Following on from my recent experience with a sniffer dog who got it wrong, I thought I’d look into the success rates of these working dogs. In Australia, they’re not convinced. Following research into sniffer dog accuracy a couple of years back, it was found that only one quarter of positive sniffs yield drugs. I don’t know…