Wednesday, April 16, 2014

dur comme un ane









hard as a donkey. hopefully the title of this post translates correctly?  :)  dear friends, my trip to the islands was sometimes dur comme un ane! we paddled for hours and hiked for miles (nine at one time!) many uphill and into the wind. oh but there are no words to describe the beauty. there is moisture on the island, unlike california, so there were wildflowers, and green. rolling green hills dotted with blossoms and the smaller island oak. birds sang well into the night and foxes scampered playfully (and sometimes annoyingly, one pooed on our cooler and another left muddy little paw prints on our tent, knock knock, let me in!) while on our hike we spread out a blanket near the top of montañon ridge and devoured our picnic lunch of salami and hard cheese, trail mix and tiny apples. we agreed there was no more prettier view, no place we'd rather be. sitting there together, with only the birds and the wind and the earth and sky. i'm reading robert louis stevenson right now, 'travels with a donkey' (hence the influence of today's post title) and wishing for just one moment i could put together words as r.l.s., to bring a moment to life... like these from 'travels with a donkey'... that truly describe our island time, "the view, back upon the northern gevaudan, extended with every step; scarce a tree, scarce a house, appeared upon the fields of wild hill that ran north, east, and west, all blue and gold in the haze and sunlight of the morning. a multitude of little birds kept sweeping and twittering about my path; they perched on the stone pillars, they pecked and strutted on the turf, and i saw them circle in volleys in the blue air, and show, from time to time, translucent flickering wings between the sun and me." sigh...
while chuck worked, guiding kayak tours, i read and knit and knit and read. the black shetland hap shawl, i'm hoping to make, destined for shetland islands this summer, now has it's beginnings on california's channel islands. if you'd like to know more about this national park (national treasure!) follow the links below.





xoxo lori

48 comments:

  1. lovely. some day i would love to spend a few days on that beautiful island

    ReplyDelete
  2. Yes, stunning is a great word. Thank you for the beautiful photos and words today. I just love Chuck's hat, did you make that? I hope you get to enjoy more time knitting and reading and knitting surrounded by nature's splendour :) Looking forward to seeing your black hap.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. thank you so much leigh for your kind words, i really appreciate them. i did make his hat, tried to match his work uniform, it's his favorite :)

      Delete
  3. So pretty! One day for sure.

    ReplyDelete
  4. Beautiful!!! Always love your adventure photos.

    ReplyDelete
  5. What an unusual and extraordinary life you lead. You are brave enough to choose such a life and so you see marvels and riches that few get to see. Thank you for sharing the riches...beautiful, beautiful sights. RLS just perfect.

    ReplyDelete
  6. Thank you for sharing your photos and adventures Lori. What a beautiful, wild place! I just have to tell you, I've been reading and thinking a lot about weeds this last month (reading Richard Mabey's wonderful 'Weeds' and a fabulous little book about edible weeds - mainly for antipodean readers, also slogging away at the never ending battle in the garden between the weeds and the plants I want to nurture). Anyway, sorry to digress so much, but in the bottom right corner of your first photo I was struck by the appearance of what looks like mallow leaves, and lots more mallow (I think?) in the foreground of the photo of Chuck. I have it in my garden too. It seems to be a plant that thrives in most climates and most places. Anyway, although I have not yet tried it, apparently the young leaves are very good in salads and cooked are much like spinach, though a little slimy. So maybe next time you're out camping and in need of fresh greens in your dinner, you can turn to the weeds! I'm looking forward to seeing your finished Shetland hap; and thank you for the reminder about RLS. He's on my must-read list. fiona x

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. i think it's mallow too, must find out now, the poor maligned weed! and to think we were standing in a salad! thank you so much for your comment fiona, i'll look for a copy of mabey's book. i hope you enjoy rls!

      Delete
  7. Amazing Lori, really amazing!!!!!
    xxxxxxx Ale

    ReplyDelete
  8. beautiful...as always! (have you read Under the Wide and Starry Sky?? a biographical novel about rls....nicely done)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. i've only read what he's written, i'll look for it, thank you!

      Delete
  9. Oh, that gives me a new perspective on californian nature!
    Didn't know it could be soo green!
    Heading to your country of roots today to see my girl!
    Have a happy easter Lori!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. happy easter karin-ida! have a wonderful time in sweden with your girl!!

      Delete
  10. Beautiful! I almost thought you had already gone to Shetland :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. it does feel like we are not in california anymore ;)

      Delete
  11. Such beautiful photos of a stunning place, and wonderful words too. It is the perfect place to dream and to read and to knit.......It is always such a pleasure to go exploring with you, dear Lori.
    Wishing you a happy weekend.
    Helen xox

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. thank you very much helen, it is a pleasure to share this place we LOVE :)

      Delete
  12. oooh....
    i can imagine that there is no prettier view
    that second image.... so green, so blue
    thanks for sharing
    and enjoy!
    and
    thanks for the birthday wishes
    the year 1964 is the best ;^)))
    x

    ReplyDelete
  13. What a beautiful looking place. Do people live there?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. only a few rangers anymore, in times past native americans used to live on the islands, and woolly mammoths too!

      Delete
  14. Oui, "dur comme un âne" is the correct translation (you're just missing the donkey's little hat, lol)

    What a breath of fresh air these photos are!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. how do i find that on my keyboard? i've yet to figure that out. indeed the donkey need's his chapeau ;)

      Delete
    2. This type of accent is called an "accent circonflexe" :

      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Circumflex

      On my keyboard (MacBook Pro), it's option i, then a.

      There's something very visually appealing to me about accents, though they are a pain when typing, that's for sure!

      Speaking of pretty writing with accents, have you seen this? I think you will appreciate it:

      http://themetapicture.com/write-your-name-in-elvish-in-10-minutes/

      Delete
    3. hmm...now do i need an elvish keyboard? :) i can't seem to figure out the accent circumflex on my pc, but did find it on my iphone! wouldn't coco written in elf be a pretty tattoo?

      Delete
    4. Oooh, an elvish tattoo! Why didn't I think of that!!! very tempting

      Delete
  15. So beautiful! Your trip and the words of RLS. :) Hiking, being outdoors ... all so relaxing and revitalizing at the same time. Best wishes, Tammy

    ReplyDelete
  16. What an adventure! I love that this hap is going to have a connection to two different far flung island groups!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. it will be a well traveled shawl, one with many stories to tell! right now i LOVE the garter stitch beginning!

      Delete
  17. Oh. My. Goodness! Gorgeous! I CAN NOT wait for your trip to Shetland. I have many plans to live vicariously through you while you are there. :-)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. i wish you could be there kristina! i hope i manage some photos that really give a sense of place!

      Delete
  18. It's been a while since I read Robert Louis Stevenson (a very long while...), but dear Lori, you too have a wonderful way with words. Not to mention the photos! Thank you for this visit to that fabulous island!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. soo kind, thank you irene, i'm so glad you enjoyed!

      Delete
  19. I am imagining the savoring of the quiet while you were there....and the stillness. That is what the photos portray to me :)

    ReplyDelete
  20. Oh, these photos (and your post) take my breath away! What an amazingly beautiful place to be. I love RLS, too. In January I read a wonderful historical novel (Under The Wide and Starry Sky, by Nancy Horan) about the love affair between him and his American bride Fanny Vandergrift; Travels With A Donkey was mentioned in it. : )

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. thank you very much susan :) i'm going to look up that book, i've only read what rls has written so far, thank you for telling about it!

      Delete
  21. Lori, the beauty of those islands continues to astound me. How also grand it is that you can Chuck can have that magnificent landscape to yourselves...well, along with those frisky little foxes.

    Best wishes to you and yours for a very Happy Easter. xo

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. happy easter to you too dear frances :) xo

      Delete
  22. I've always wanted to get to those islands! Thanks for sharing your pictures, I feel almost like I made a visit myself. You know, RLS's family business was lighthouse design, and his dad designed the lighthouse at Muckle Flugga that we'll see when we visit Unst.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. i did know! and can hardly wait. i'm so looking forward to so many things...seeing his childhood home (his birthplace) in edinburgh too! you must come here again, and this time we'll go kayaking in the sea caves, chuck is the best guide!

      Delete
  23. What amaizng colours in your photos! Thank you, intrepid traveller for sharing yet again a spot of heaven on this earth!

    ReplyDelete
  24. Wow! Lori beautiful pictures look at those colours

    ReplyDelete
  25. The Channel Island looks like a magical place Lori. To be there together, surrounded by nature, must be lovely! How do you manage to cycle and paddle for such a long time? :-) I think I (as a city girl) would find it very hard!!

    Just read your comment on my blog. Hope you will be able to find an allotment garden too when you stop work. We should have done it years earlier when the girls were still young....

    Wishing you and your family a Happy Easter!

    Madelief x

    ReplyDelete
  26. It looks amazing there!!! I want to get there someday.

    ReplyDelete

xoxo lori