Snow

Edit – click on the images to enlarge, i’ve figured out how to do it!

Sorry everyone, i know this place has been somewhat lonely lately. Still working through stuff and things just keep dropping on the pile accumulating… But more about that sometimes when it won’t be just an unreadable windge-fest.

On to more seasonal things.. or not, as you will see shortly πŸ™‚ The lovely Herba and Poe have been setting monthly creative themes, which have been much fun to read and see so far. I got in late for the Oktoberfest one with a theme inspired meal of Schnitzel and potato salad but this was a no-brainer!

Herba’s monthly theme was snow πŸ™‚

So, here it is:

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Isle of Skye – Cuillins

And you’re probably asking yourself: where??? Well, on the top of the mountains, where else! Of course, there is a bit of fog so you can’t quite see it well, so here’s some more:

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There it is, between the peeks…

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and on the tops… (yes it was raining as you see, and it rained…. and it rained and rained and rained…)

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Wet did not tarnish the beauty, at least i didn’t think it did….

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Since i am not sure you can see in any way when these were taken.. it was 2nd of June 2015…. yes, snow… in summer πŸ™‚ Quite unusual even for the highlands and the isles, but it was 8 degrees C and snowing that weekend and the temperatures stayed that low all week.

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It had the major advantage or saving us from the highland monster – the midges- and giving us dazzlingly fresh air to inhale up and down these mountains. In spite of appearances it was not really mucky, just wet and pretty slippery. The ground is mossy and it absorbs water like a sponge. The season had been however unusually wet so there were waterfalls and ponds everywhere and you had to watch your step if you didn’t want to end up with wet ankles.

Oh and it makes for perfect weather for a wee dram πŸ™‚

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For those still doubtful here are some wobbly speed snaps from the bus on the way around Skye πŸ™‚ Fresh snow, our guide had been skiing there that very weekend.

But it wasn’t all grey, the very next day i was on a boat at breathtaking winds and mostly clear skies (dolphin spotting trip).

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The Cuillins in the distance and parts of the Black isle closer by.

It was Burn’s night the other day and i got email from my usual restaurants in Edinburgh with evening menu of cullen skink, haggis, cranachen and i thought of snow and Inverness and Skye and missed Scotland terribly… and had the taste of Singleton of Glen Ord in my mouth. Now i wish i had found a way to squeeze a bottle in my backpack last summer…

I just want to close my eyes and be back in the highlands, with the patches of snow in the summer πŸ™‚

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and back to this place where i had the most amazing lunch bap with fresh crab, salmon and Scottish langoustines! It’s heaven on the palate.

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Some days only a warm voice will do

(don’t think this allows me to embed the link, so if the video doesn’t show please click on the link πŸ™‚ )

Sorry for the lack of post! Not yet back on track but soon..

Until then this little thing πŸ™‚

Monday, barely back i went to the Royal Opera House to seeΒ Tchaikovsky’s ‘Eugene Onegin’, one of my favourite operas. I not only love the music but also the themes in this opera, love, loss, regrets, development, etc. The characters are beautiful and there is something to enjoy in all.

However, in spite of the brilliant music this was a bit of an average performance, not in the orchestral playing but in the singing. I missed the singers from the premiere, who interpreted everything with much more elegance and sensitivity. Because i missed their voices i went looking for bits of youtube, maybe the Onegin arias sung by them (which i couldn’t find unfortunately) and inevitably ended up with my drug of choice:

  • belcanto
  • not just any belcanto, but Donizettti’s Lucia
  • some of my very favourite voices πŸ™‚

There are a few artists i love a lot and who bring such joy to my soul with their singing and a few of these i haven’t heard in way too long!!

In case you are wondering which one i am talking about it is him:

Ludovic Tezier, French baritone πŸ™‚ (Not that i don’t like Roberto a lot, but this time it is not about a tenor πŸ˜‰ )

In case you doubt it he is the ‘bad guy’. The evil older brother who marries his sister off in a political alliance. She of course is secretly in love with the tenor πŸ˜‰ (last heir of a enemy family – this is opera after all). Here the brilliant emotional blackmail scene where he convinces her into the marriage (he’d be finished and would be killed if she doesn’t do it, bla bla bla…):

And here is another aria from Lucia, this time in Italian (Donizetti initially composed the opera in French, but the more commonly played version is the Italian one ):

and ok, a bit more (i can’t resist), from Massenet’s Werther (after the German novel) where he plays Albert, the man Charlotte will marry (not Werther ;-))

So there we go, this warms me up on cold winter days πŸ™‚

(And i can’t wait to hear him again a few months from now in April in Lucia at ROH)