An English woman in Sicily handling parenthood, corruption and a Sicilian mother-in-law, all at once
My blog has been nominated for the Sunshine Award. How exciting to know my blog is really loved by someone!
This award is given to bloggers who positively and creatively inspire other bloggers. I was nominated by a blogger whom I think very well deserved this award herself, as her travel blog Brief Hiatus has often inspired me to write new posts myself, and is always uplifting to read. Her exuberant personality radiates from her writing so warmly that I almost feel as if I have actually met her in person. I would nominate her right away if she hadn’t already received the award!
Whilst I do realise blog awards are basically a form of chain letter, they are nevertheless all good in my view. They give us a chance to tell the people who write some of our favourite blogs how much we appreciate them, and perhaps introduce some of our readers to new blogs they may love too.
The rules are as follows:
Once you are nominated, you must link the blog post to the person that nominated you.
Well, here are the Questions:
1. Who is your favorite philosopher?
This question is to blame for the fact that I am posting this now, instead of back before Christmas when I was nominated for this award. It triggered a long attack of navel gazing on the relative merits of all the philosophers. I have a third of a degree in philosophy, which may be why I thought about this rather too profoundly. (In case you’re wondering how one gets a third of a degree, the answer is that I studied Classics, thus the other two thirds are in Latin and Greek literature, and Ancient History. Ask me about Julius Caesar crossing the River Rubicon. Go on, I dare you!)
Well, Philosophers. The Ancient philosophers were all such a bunch of nuts it is hard to choose. Should I pick Thales of Miletus, the first ever known Western Philosopher? He believed that everything is made of water, and that magnets have souls, so, nah. People who do philosophy degrees read “translations” of their thoughts in to English and think they are profound, but when you read their musings in Greek it is clear they were all just mad.
How about Pythagoras? Famous for inventing the right angled triangle, his lesser known achievements included figuring out the do-re-mi musical scale, insisting that each of the planets in our solar system hummed a musical note, and forming an extreme misogynistic religious cult that worshipped maths and sustained that shrubs and many vegetables have souls, women and black things are pure evil and we are all reincarnated repeatedly as animals, fruits or vegetables (but not dairy produce) until we achieve a kind of Nirvana in the form of a mathematical abstraction. It was costly to join his cult, rather like being a Scientologist. Whilst being pursued by a gang of unsatisfied customers he was stampeded towards a field of beans. Since he believed beans have souls and eating them is cannibalism, he chose to die rather than risk knocking a few of them off their stalks.
Yes, I’ll go with Pythagoras.
2. What is your favorite number?
3. What is your favorite animal?
The bee. Most plant species would die out without their pollination services. We’d have almost no edible plant produce and certainly not enough plants to regenerate the oxygen we need, so all the animals on the planet would die out. There’s already a bee shortage in Sicily and farmers go round with brushes cross pollinating their plants by hand. I doubt that could take place on commercial farms globally.
4. What are your Facebook and Twitter?
Not saying! I value my privacy.
5. What is your favorite time of day?
Evening, when I get into bed with my little boy and we cuddle and read stories together.
6. What is your favorite holiday?
I don’t have a favourite. They are different every year!
7. What is your favorite physical activity?
Oh I probably shouldn’t say in public! OK, Besides that, I love hiking up to the tops of mountains. There is something about going through the clouds and looking down upon them that makes me feel I can think and exist on a higher plane for a while. The troubles of my life down there in that tiny-looking world shrink down into perspective. I did once get butted by a terribly large goat on Table Mountain, flew up about twelve feet in powerful winds, completed the ascent crawling on my belly, and was then bitten by a rock hyrax at the top. You have to take the rough with the smooth.
8. What is your favorite non alcoholic drink?
Tea of course! I’m English and cannot live without it.
9. What is your favorite flower?
I love all flowers and so it is hard to choose just one, but I do like Zephirine Drouin roses very much because of their exquisite perfume.
10. What is your passion?
I have so many! The common factor in all of them is creating and expressing my imagination. I love painting and sculpting, creative writing, sewing, making jewellery, playing the clarinet and really rather a long list of other things!
Now it’s time to nominate ten other bloggers and link back to their pages. In completely random order:
An Indian travel enthusiast, business consultant and philosopher who consistently writes thought provoking, challenging and fascinating posts. My life is truly enriched by his intellectual input and stimulation.
English Man In Italy
This Englishman in Italy is my counterpart: Married to an Italian woman he calls Mrs Sensible, he goes through the same bewildering and sometimes frustrating sensations I do when trying to make sense of Italian logic. Yet he does it whilst steadfastly refusing to learn Italian, which I deeply admire. His accounts of everything he ever does are hilarious. I do wish he lived close to me so I could invite myself over for some PG Tips and cadge some of his Branston Pickle.
Sat Nav and Cider
This is a photography website with interesting anecdotes accompanying the pictures. It always inspires me. The photographs are beautiful, both because of the subject matter and because of the exceptionally skilled photography.
Another beautiful photography website by a retired Chinese man. His subjects are alwauys stunning and the photography is outstanding.
This is a hilarious South African man. Just read it. Don’t blame me if you snort tea through your nostrils.
Homesick and Heatstruck
Another homesick lady living abroad, this time in the dusty Middle East. She’s entertaining and thought provoking.
Stunning wildlife photos – something I have loved since I was a tiny girl and these are among the best I have ever seen. I gaze at them for a long time before clicking away and I usually return for severl more views each time new pictures are added.
Confessions of a culture addict
This yound lady writes about her highly ammusing adventures in thailand. He writing style is charming and her human spirit inspires and uplifts me.
Add Grain of Earth
This has to be the most unusual blog I follow and I think it is on a higher plane than most of us. The writer is Singaporean Chinese and, despite the fact that English is not his mother tongue, he writes with a concise beauty that sometimes reminds me of Haiku poetry. His thoughts are beautiful and surprising.
This blog is written by a young lady who has severe, disseminated Lyme disease. I have had Lyme disease for the last 3 decades and I have suffered so much that it is one of the things I find too painful to write about or even talk about much of the time, yet she manages to write courageous and eloquent posts on the things everyone with chronic lyme disease has thought but usually dared not say; how we sometimes wish we had cancer instead, for example, because at least other people understand it is a terrible disease, and because it rapidly ends in cure or death, either of which would be preferable to living with Lyme disease.
It’s hard to find people who care about Lyme disease (for more than about 5 minutes) so those of us who have it usually rely on each other for understanding and support.