Remembering


Here we are on the cusp of a new year which I hope will be filled with good cheer and good health. 2019 has been a very good year leaving behind some special memories.

Tops among them is an African adventure. After nearly two days of travel the hubby and I arrived in Zimbabwe where we stayed just long enough to renew our energy.

We did take time to visit the remarkable Victoria Falls which thanks to the just completed rainy season was its powerful best.

The highlight of the trip was Botswana where my dream of staying in a tent camp came true. These modern day facilities provide a far from roughing it experience.

Seeing animals in their natural settings was thrilling. There was no shortage of elephants as Botswana is home to the largest population anywhere. Since we were there, the ban on hunting has been lifted because of their numbers, and it’s sad to think of those magnificent creatures becoming someone’s trophy.

It was hard to pick a favorite animal as each had its own unique characteristics. I was drawn to zebras and was amazed to see how differently they are striped.

Giraffes with their long eyelashes and soulful eyes had a special appeal. Their spots seemed as different as the zebra stripes.

From the bush, it was on to Capetown with all its marvelous offerings. There were penguins galore with antics that were quite entertaining.

What I liked best was the amazing Museum of Contemporary African Art. The building converted from silos is a work of art itself.

Africa is a place that has worked itself into my heart. A visit there is always full of new adventure. I just wish it were a little easier to get there.

Next up was a granddaughter’s high school graduation followed by a promised trip to Spain. She wanted to see a castle, a flamenco performance, learn about Spain’s history, have a cooking class and try new tastes. Somehow we managed to work all of that in!

After Spain, it was time to go to Maine where my heart sings a happy song. Hours were spent on the water exploring the magnificent coast.

Always there was time to frolic with friends and family whether it be at home or a country fair or a tasty farm to table dinner at any one of several wonderful locations.

The only down side of this summer’s time in Maine was this innocent looking caterpillar. Its hairs are air born and cause incredibly irritating rashes that take forever to go away. Hopefully, by next year the caterpillars will either be gone or there’s some protection from their toxin.

After a fast and furious few months, it was back to Houston where we had to unpack all those boxes that had been prepared for an anticipated move. More about that later, but suffice it to say that all has turned out well and we are happy to be staying in place.

2019 will soon be nothing more than a chapter in the story each of us is writing, and we will move on to whatever happens next.

11 thoughts on “Remembering

  1. Wonderful memories Lulu- my favorite image of course is Portland Headlight. I echo you, in that my heart truly is in Maine. All the best for a great 2020.

  2. Marcia Fennell Gardner December 29, 2019 — 8:17 pm

    I’m out of breath, packing and unpacking, listening to your 2019 travels!
    So happy that it’s been a great year for you and the Family!
    HAPPY NEW YEAR! ( What’s up, Doc?!)

  3. Linda, I always enjoy your musings and the gorgeous photo. Here’s to a fine and exciting (in the best sense of the word) New Year!!

  4. Linda, what a wonderful year you enjoyed traveling to Africa and Spain. I always love your posts from both of your homes. Wishing you a Happy New Year!

  5. Happy New Year, I hope your future travels will be safe and 2020 is filled with joy.

  6. Your trip to Africa was so amazing, I loved revisiting it today! Happy 2020 Linda!
    Jenna

  7. Love visiting you and seeing both of your homes!

    Your travel to Africa was spectacular and I know Spain is not disappoint!

    Happy New Year!

  8. Happy New Year to you and Phil. You do more interesting things than anyone else I know. Always love to see your photos and read about your adventures!

  9. Lulu,
    We also have this caterpillar problem in the Netherlands. They are called: ‘Eikenprocessierups’ (pronounced: ike -n-pro -sess-ee -ruups’ and translates into English as ‘ Oak Processionary Caterpillar’.

    Sadly global warming means that there are no longer cold enough winters to cull their numbers so the population is now so out of control that it is upsetting the ecosystem, and effecting humans as well as other animals, birds and insects.

    In the summer of 2019 they had massive teams of safety suited people armed with backpacks of insecticide to kill them, the pictures showed entire trunks of trees crawling with them. It’s been in our News a LOT.

    Even this action was not nearly enough to keep up with the caterpillar population explosion so unless we have a really severe winter (with winter record high temps so far it seems unlikely) this is going to be an ongoing problem in Dutch parks, streets, cities as well as the countryside.

    I haven’t had contact with the caterpillars personally but have seen News segments showing people young and old, some young kids even having extreme reactions that required hospitalization. It saddens me that we are poisoning our planet and these are some of the clear consequences.

    Your photographs are AMAZING… your tables, landscapes in Maine and Africa photographs, wow, Wow, WOW !!!(oooh, I could ‘camp’ in that African tent any day!) Botswana is high on Himself’s and my wish-list too, Hopefully as soon as the kids have finished their studies. Little Mr is now fourteen, first really big exams coming this school year and next.

    Our 2019 has been very different to yours, I’ll post stuff about it as soon as I correlate all of the zillions of photographs and later in this year finish with the ‘ after’ photographs of all our renovations. Still a heap on-going but paused for Dec/Jan travels to New Zealand (just a couple of days back) and whilst we work out the best way to get a new kitchen the best way possible into a small space.

    Your tables are amazing, I wish we had the storage for extra dinner sets, beautiful glasses etc. (Drool, drool, drool at all of your beautiful dishes and decorative items)

    May we strive to be become better people, to make a difference as is of course expected in not just the lives of family and friends, but also in that of strangers so that the world in 2020 becomes a more positive, peaceful place.
    I also hope that humanity stands up and takes responsibility for what we as a species has done to the planet, that we be the generation not afraid to deal out harsh international measures necessary to slam on the brakes of the runaway Global warming machine and try and avert complete, total environmental disaster for all creatures on this planet, including ourselves.

    Here is to a FANTASTIC 2020, filled with love, laughter, good work life balance, meeting health challenges head on, winning some of those battles, and making the best we can of every day we have been granted, bestowed ,blessed with.

    I wish you many more wonderful days blogging so that I can continue to read and enjoy your posts!!! I often just lurk, or read in fits ans starts but your posts always make my day.
    All the best for 2020, love, HUGS and regards… kiwi 🙂

  10. Thanks for sharing. You were quite privileged to see Victoria Falls with such a high volume of water. A friend visited in 2019 as well, but it was the dry season, and so the water volume was smaller. I love those majestic elephants, and beautiful zebras with their stripes.

    1. The falls were powerful as well as drenching!

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