Monday, July 28, 2014

Fun with Flora



As you have probably gathered, I'm a keen urban gardener but my efforts are limited to the roof terrace and three 'tree pits' in front of the building.


Here are some petunias from the roof and some dill scraps. (The lemons are from the fruit chap on the corner!)


Here is a rose from the roof, much larger than life sized. (Not sure about the orange mini-vase - but light looks cool going through it!)


Again, much larger than life sized. The last violas.


We managed to grow sunflowers on the street this year. Rather brave and bold. However, they have huge root systems and rather overwhelm everything else.

 So I started harvesting and drying the seed heads  - and taking arty pictures.

All very wonderful until the seed heads developed a black mold - so I threw them out of the window.


Yesterday's roof gleanings - about life size (tiny scissors). The nasturtiums were hopelessly over and were pulled out. The blue thing is a salvia.

Gosh, what a thrilling post. Oh well.



Saturday, July 19, 2014

Beach Days/Robert Moses


Cross the causeway across the Great South Bay


heading directly south. 


A huge amount of work was done over the winter, rebuilding the dunes that were battered by Hurricane Sandy almost two years ago. The newly planted dunes look rather unnatural and a sort of lagoon has been formed.


This divides the main beach from the ocean. The water in the lagoon bit was warm but a bit scummy. Needs flushing by the tides.



When the tide came in, kids on skim boards (in the middle) slid from the ocean to the puddle.


A helicopter doing important things - actually just routine, I think.


By midday the beach has filled up, the sky is a brilliant blue - and we headed home


to eat cherries and peaches.


Happy weekend.


Saturday, July 12, 2014

Summer in the City



Lots and lots of new construction on the West Side.....


nowadays you can only just see the river...



Lots of workers busy in construction.


This building near the dog run seems to grow a new story every day.


A super giant truck to haul all these building materials around.


Nearer to home, the cosmos is blooming in  tree pit #3


The sunflowers that arrived by chance -  the seeds must have been thrown in by a passer by - have been much admired - and photographed. "Just like the South of France!" said someone - well, not exactly, but we try!  



Time to picnic on the roof terrace


drink fancy colored cocktails.


Looking south from the terrace when it's still light


and after dark.


Looking west on a rainy evening


and wondering whether orange glass is pretty or not...
Happy weekend.






Thursday, July 3, 2014

Why I Write/Summer Reading



     In May, Cait O'Connor  invited me to join a group of other writer/bloggers including Pamela of The House of Edward in doing a post entitled Why I Write. I was flattered and interested...and distracted and thought I would get to it - in the end.

     In brief, I think I write for the same reason I read: to enter a window into another world.

Chelsea Physik Garden
 I've been thinking of wonderful summer reads - needless to say most set in England. I just finished Kate Atkinson's virtuoso Life After Life. I gobbled it up, loving every minute of it.

Wiltshire
 Several years ago, I felt rather the same about Rosamund Pilcher's The Shell Seekers, set in Cornwall.

Wiltshire
Jane Gardam's Old Filth Trilogy is a real delight - rich and visual and sensual and altogether astounding.

as above
And as for me - I try to recapture a now vanished world - of family and England and love and hardship. I have recently re-edited Ruth and Gisela which was originally published as A Fortunate Child. It's now available on Amazon's Kindle Direct which means you don't have to have an actual book and can download it in an instant.  Click here for details. A very kind review of the book on the super bookish blog A Work in Progress.


Another window in a very old house in Wiltshire, with the light slipping in sideways - like in old Dutch paintings.


Here is the house where part of  Ruth and Gisela is set. My grandparents' house in Faversham, Kent photographed in about 1952. I'm so glad most of the windows are open. The final photo is of a family celebration some years ago, because my story is about family and mothers and daughters.

Happy 4th of July





Sunday, June 29, 2014

First Robert Moses Beach Day of the Year



Finally got to the south shore of Long Island early in the morning on an overcast day.


The sea was gray.


Very few people were there - a father and son were fishing.


The dunes were looking battered and ratty - much worse, oddly, than after hurricane Sandy. Parts were taped off for birds' nests.


Much more darker sand was visible than usual.


The beach itself was much altered - a much more pronounced difference than in previous years. Nice to have a sand bar an an inlet for paddling.


Big ridges in the sand.


Lori heading back towards where we had left the picnic things.


By the time we left in early afternoon, things were looking much more normal.


Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Community Garden


The community garden belongs to people who live in the Penn South complex which our building is right next to but not part of.


 I have lots of friends with little vegetable plots in there, so am allowed in for picnics once in a while - like entering Eden.  I usually stand with my nose to the chain link fence. 
Looking East you can see the Empire State Building.


Looking west you can see London Terrace.


Amazing how wild such a little space can get. Here some yellow cosmos.


some lettuce


and fallen cherry leaves under the tree.


Corn flowers and a butterfly.


Shasta daisies  and hosta under the pergola.


An odd little bust by the parsley.


The barbecue in the distance and in front a good place to read.