Journal Language Music Sketching Thoughts

Stylish Blogger Award!

I’ve just been awarded this by Dolly over at Journal Addict. Thanks to Dolly.

So now I have to share 7 things about myself.

1. ITALY I live in Italy which I fell in love with in 1988 when I first went to Milan. I moved from Manchester to village of about 850 people, where I live in a cantina, which was built in 14th century ap.

2. MUSIC I began playing the guitar more than forty years ago and I still love it:.I have performed my ‘contaminated blues’ throughout Italy, playing at many major festivals such as Trasimeno Blues, Tropea Blues and Etna Blues. I have only done one gig in ‘English’ since 2006- and that was a private party in a bookshop in Paris. I recorded music for short that was featured at Cannes Short Film Festival in 2009 and wrote a song for documentary that was nominated for a BAFTA in 2010.

3. WALES – I was born in Gorseinon hospital just outside Swansea. My wife was born Lesley Jones, my mother was born Mary Jones, and Lesley’s mother is called Mary Jones. One of my great grandfathers John ap Caradoc Jones ran The Globe – a pub in Swansea, but also conducted classical music concerts somewhere in North America during the 1860’s(?) One of the other great grandfathers was called Moses.

4.JOURNALS I started to keep a journal in 2003, using it for ranting, writing and scribbling(see below). 2009 my work is featured monthly in the Maastricht based arts paper ‘Zuiderlucht’. 2010 Amsterdam based publisher invites me to contribute a book to their collection. It is published in October 2010. Subsequently I am asked to produce illustrations for a book of Dutch poetry which is being launched in April 2011. I am also close to completing ‘My imaginary Lives’ described by my editor as ‘a graphic novel for the 21st century’ – a lot to live up to 🙂

5. DRAWING I always wanted to draw, but at school in the 50/60 you were classified as those who could and those who couldn’t I couldn’t. Leap forward to 2004 when Paul Nolan drags me kicking and screaming to a life-drawing class. I’m hooked and it becomes of regular routine together with keeping a journal.

6. PHOTOGRAPHY I started taking photographs when I was about 8 with a KODAK 44A which I still have in its original box! Self taught, I have taken photographs professionally mainly for audio-visual presentations, and finally in 2001 returned to university and was awarded a Masters degree in Photography.

7. CATS I love cats, and most of all Archie, my Bengal.  He is beautiful, intelligent and funny. He is elegant like a wild animal, a ferocious hunter, but also loves company and accompanies us to the bar and the pizzeria where he will wait patiently outside while we eat!

So now I pass the stylish blogger award on to three people

Pete Scully at

Pegoleg at Ramblings

Don at

Language Thoughts

New words I’ve learned today . . . .

DOTTLE – the mixture of burnt tobacco and moisture in the bottom of a bowl of a pipe

RIFULGENT – shining

RATIOCINATION -1. Reasoning    2. Thought that is logical  3. a proposition arrived at by such thought

REMARK – 1. To comment  2. To notice


Sherlock Holmes syndrome . . . a possible solution . . . .

Dear Mr Jones,

I read your letter with interest, but unfortunately cannot see a real problem. I think you simply need to pull yourself together, take a brisk walk, and a hearty dose of one of my stories, and then you’ll be as right as rain. Don’t forget that a picnic in the woods with lashings of ginger beer can work wonders, too!

Yours cheerily,

Enid ‘Dot’ Blyton


What was he smoking?!!

I came across a reference to this quote in a Sherlock Holmes story.
‘Some circumstantial evidence is very strong, as when you find a trout in the milk.’
Henry David Thoreau
What does it mean?
And I ask again: what was he smoking?!


Yes I know that Holmes never actually used that word: it was only Basil Rathbone…. but I love the idea of this basically hyper-observant man… yup thtat’s what it is…. and after watching the new Hollywood version… which I thoroughly enjoyed… almost as much as the UK Granada series with Jeremy Brett, I started reading the COMPLETE stories (again) but hadn’t realised that The Study in Scarlet is HIGHLY critical of the Mormon church and it’s ‘methods’ ……….

PS just went onto IMDB to look at Jeremy Brett, and his words about his wife and her death are really touching……….