Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Rusinol, stealing, routine

Posted by PicasaSantiago Rusinol (1861 -1961) writer and painter, at the foot of whose memorial stray cats (see yesterday's post), for whom kind people regularly provide bowls of food, set up home.
I steal, for Heidi the deep red, (blue when first in bloom), flower of a hydrangea, which protrudes over the front garden fence of a house in Mount Sion. Seen close to, the burgundy florets are tinged with green, and calming to contemplate.
Routine is something that applies to children and old people and is intended to shelter them from shocks and surprises. So I prefer to talk about patterns of behaviour when it concerns me and others of my age. There is no doubt that at home and on holiday our days follow certain patterns. Looking back on our holiday I like to dwell on our schedule if that is not too inflated a word. First thing: Raise the Persian blind to see what the sky and sea are doing. Spend a few minutes breathing in the salt air and watching early risers walking beside the sea or performing exercises on the sand.Item 2 Go down two flights of stairs to the swimming pool, which invariably we have to ourselves. Item3 Breakfast on the sea front from the hotel's generous buffet, including its first class coffee. Item 3 Walk to the shops for a paper (International Herald Tibune for Heidi, El Pais for me). Stop for a coffee or, latterly a frshly squeezed orange juice at a bar. Item 4 Return to hotel, change for the beach. Swim again, walk up and down, watch people and the waves running up the sand. Item 4 Go for lunch at one of two bars where tapas are served. Watch the sea while picking at such delicacies as pescaditos (whitebait) and almejas (clams), return to the hotel for siesta and reading. Item 5 Coffee or tea and then back to the beach for another swim and the pleasure of the afternoon and evening light. Item 6 Back to the hotel for more reading. Item 6 Dinner at one of two restaurants where the fish and crustacea are fresh and usually grilled on the plancha. No culture, note. Just a few days of self-indulgence to remember.


The Crow said...

A woman, and a love, worth stealing a flower for is a treasure, and exonerates the 'thief.'

Heidi is blessed.


Lucy said...

Your holiday schedule sounds very full (and quite delightful), especially the mornings, where you seem to cover a remarkable amount of ground and all before lunch.

Rusinol sounds rather like an outdoor wood treatment!

Roderick Robinson said...

Now what does that sequence of simple but intensely enjoyable small events remind me of? A book, perhaps. A largish book. A book where the central character doesn't do an awful lot by the seaside other than observe things. If only I could remember the title.

Children are remarkably conservative and much addicted to routine. Back in the USA, when our youngest was a mere three or four years old, we established a tradition of having Beef Wellington for Christmas. The tradition re-crossed the Atlantic with us and went on for many years. That daughter grew up and had a daughter of her own, a very finnicky eater who nevertheles could be persuaded to tackle her little bit of fillet at Christmas. Finally Mrs BB suggested, and I agreed, we might switch our festive meal to a crown roast. The next year to a goose. For various reasons grandaughter (now in her mid-teens) wasn't present at those two Christmases. But the uproar when she discovered the change. Now it's Beef Wellington until the end of time.

Unknown said...

I forgot to say that part of the holiday schedule is posting on this blog, mid-afternoon. The hotel leaves a lap top on the reception desk, and I am distracted by guests with complaints and questions. But they are as a rule interesting distractions.

BB Regular annual features of daily life are reassuring, like the return of the seasons and what the seasons bring. Breaking with them can be difficult for adults as for children. I enjoy the thought of Beef Wellington dropped and reprieved. Mrs BB must have found the goose rather more of a culinary problem than the BW. The fat goes everywhere and now that you can buy goose fat in tins and jars, its currency has declined a little. Though it is delicious I have often found that a even a large goose is disappointingly sparse, when it comes to carving it.