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A dream

19 Jan

How do you feel when a dream accomplishes? You’ve dreamt it over and over and at once you are there. Setting foot on the deck of the wooden boat. Gazing upon the horizon.

How do you feel when it’s all there? All the things that you like, that you look for, all there for you. Step by step you start discovering what they organized for you. And it is just perfect.

Oh, this feeling when you know that the moment is precious and that you are actually able to enjoy fully. Not thinking of the past. Not even about the future.

A…

…perfect cruise…

…on the Nile.

Luxor to Aswan, Egypt, 10th to 15th January 2011.

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A New Year’s Eve

3 Jan

What is it that makes the hearts beat so fast on a New Year’s eve?…

As far as we can remember, the expectations for the most special night of the year are always very high. Where to go? With whom would we like to spend it? Where is the best, the biggest, the most impressive party? The one where we will be sure to pay an appropriate tribute to this year ending… The best way to begin this year coming…

Year after year, we get to know ourselves better.

And we reduce the ritual of passing to a new year to the essential. To the simple things.

To enjoying the creative cooking talent of a friend. Getting acquainted with the menu over a cup of coffee. And then set to the kitchen for a few hours of meditative “cooking together”.

To go out for a walk and let the winter magic inspire you.

Until the sun goes to sleep for the last time in this year.

To just enjoy being together , conscious of all we have, and of all we don’t have. And to feel a sparkling happiness thinking of the things to come in 2011.

To remember our childish side and play games together. To laugh, and shout, and smile. And at midnight kiss each other with very shiny eyes…

Happy New Year to all of you!

The perfect hide-away

14 Nov

It had been almost two months. The travel through Asia was about to take an end. And they didn’t want it to be sad. They didn’t want it to be stressful. They had imagined to spend the last few days in the most relaxed, the most simple, yes the most happy way possible.

This is how they arrived at the door of the small wooden bungalow, on the white, shiny beach of a peaceful island. Oh, there was not much. Everything was reduced to the most simple minimum. But perhaps really this is happiness, when you feel that there is not much you really need indeed to enjoy a perfect moment with the one you love…

Our little bungalow on the beach.

A hammock on the balcony for nice afternoon naps.

The vegetation around gave nice shade.

The “restaurant”.

Dreamy view from the “restaurant”.

Perfect place to hang out.

A little bit arty, a little bit bohemian.

A little bit adventurous, a little bit childish.

Calling for more dream.

Sunset.

Sunset.

PS: we are back in Europe, plotting our next trip…

Early morning at the market

22 Oct

The first ray of sun made its way through the coconut trees, our bedroom window and finally through our white cotton mosquito net.

We yawned and strechted. It was Monday morning, 6:15, but we didn’t care much about which day it was and if it was too early or too late.

“What do you think? Maybe we could take advantage of our early wake-up to visit the local market?”. Yes. Indeed. We had wished to pay the market a visit for some days, but were reluctant to put an alarm clock at 5 or 6 in the morning. You see, here in Bali, if you get there after 7 o’clock everything is basically over.

So, off we were to the Ubud central market. Our official excuse was that this is the only place to find young coconuts. A healer had recommended to drink the water of the fresh coconut every morning.

But in reality, oh, in reality, we just wanted to smell and taste and observe everything this market contained. To discover all the spices, to know the name of each vegetable, to taste each sort of rice sweets and maybe to bargain a thing or two.

So we didn’t find the coconuts (at 6:30 they were already sold out ), but we found everything else…

Balinese shallots and garlic, so mild and so aromatic…

Chillis, to fire your mouth and your stomach…

Fully prepared gods offerings, for the busy ones…

Flowers, for if you want to prepare your gods offerings yourself…

Think before you buy live chicken, because then you get to carry them through the whole market, and it’s not very handy…

Silver, silver are the fishes!

Traditionally-made Balinese salt is a delicacy. It is mild and refines the meals with subtlety.

A proud Balinese woman thrones upon her fruits…

There is hardly a more beautiful reason to get up at 6 o’clock, isn’t there?

PS: the Moving Cookbook is getting updated with Balinese health recipes 😉

Great expectations

13 Oct

The first Asian days had gone well. Bangkok, then Cambodia… But there was a special place where they intended to spend special time.

She had heard stories. He had shown her countless pictures. They showed bright colours, perfect and harmonious architecture, exotic flowers, smiling faces. Perfect ground for wild imagination…

From so much excitement, she had been consciously downplaying it a bit. “It might not be as nice as you imagine, as beautiful as he said, as fascinating as many others told you”, she was repeating to herself in the plane that was taking them from Bangkok to the island. The Island of the Gods. The well-named…

And then of course, of course…. How could she have doubted it? Once landed, a car took them into the inside of the island, into the hills. Everything was of a lush green. The rice fields, the coconut trees.

And the houses…. The faces… It was every bit as she had imagined it. They had finally arrived in Bali.

Tat Prom: the lost temple

11 Oct

Second day in Angkor, Cambodia. More early wake-up, more temples, more heat. Well, that didn’t sound so exciting to me at first…

But could I know that we would become like two adventurers discovering treasures from the past in the middle of the jungle?

Tat Prom may have been “discovered” a long time ago, but today’s visitor still gets a feeling of how it must have been to suddenly face a forgotten temple, half eaten by the trees. Isn’t it what we are all looking for when visiting far away destinations? A little bit of adventure… A touch of wilderness…

So here we were, walking around the ruins, with four big amazed eyes…

I think the only reason why we were not jumping around like little kids imitating Indiana Jones, was because of the terrible heat.

Temple of Tat Prom, Angkor, Cambodia.

PS: we have left Cambodia, its beautiful temples and its friendly people for another beautiful Asian destination… Bye bye Cambodia!

A meaningful hobby

25 Sep

“I like to have a hobby that is meaningful”, said David this morning at breakfast table.

We were having a long Saturday brunch with fresh-made little breads, a big bowl of fresh fruits, greek yogurt and a newly-found extravagant eggs recipe*. Oh, and the homemade apple juice… There had been a lot of apples this summer, and they had been pressing many liters of liquid joy for the winter…

But the most wonderful of all was standing proudly at the center of the table: a pot of  homemade honey. Oh, the homemade honey. It was a real delicacy, so sweet, it smelled to flowers and looked like liquid gold. A real treasure.

After the breakfast, we paid a visit to the bees in the garden.

For the not-so-experienced, there was a full-fledge equipment.

We greeted each of the three families, checking for a healthy queen every time. The first queen we found was Fanny. Can you see her? She is quite big and has a blue mark on her head. You know, royalties always do have particular signs of nobelty.

Each house was carefully reviewed. Inspected with expert eyes. The little bees were fed, in preparation for the tough Scandinavian winter months.

Certainly the most satisfying moment is when you collect the fruits of this little wonder that the bees created…

On Tuesday, we will fly to Bangkok 🙂

* The extravagant egg recipe is transcripted in the Moving Cookbook.