Mannheim Baroque Palace, home to the Wittelsbach dynasty, one of whom married Napoleon’s niece and adopted daughter, Stephanie.


The enfilades of state rooms are half high Baroque and half Biedermeier, united by the central Ritterssaal (Knights Hall), with chandeliers and statues a go-go.


Minimalism is not encouraged, but it did stay my Vienna cravings.


July 2017.

Rural idyll


As most bank holidays involve a trip out of London but I chose to stay at home for this one, here’s a final shot from the previous one. Bosham church, Easter, 2017.



Seeing this a few weeks ago was an eye-opening experience. I’d go again soo , despite the queues. And how clever of the RA to recreate the cultural appropriation by the Bolsheviks by covering over the Angelica Kauffman roundels in the entrance hall and replacing them with Constructivist imagery. Thank you Becca for taking me and being guide.

photos March 2017.

Simple things

img_2493Simple Things is a series on a former Blog of the Week, Reading My Tea Leaves. I do like a good house tour, and positively welcome dark nights so I can see other people’s sitting rooms looking cosy when I walk home.


Reading My Tea Leaves features an awful lot of white and beige, which isn’t my thing, although this cabin did rather catch my fancy. I found it interesting, therefore, that the first in the Simple Things series was the much more colourful Frolic blog, featuring Chelsea’s travellings and eventual settlement in Lisbon.


The play of light on the marmalade pot and check tablecloth, the spray of bright flowers against a tile splashback  or the colour of a fried egg against a plate really are the simple good things for me.


For more, Chelsea’s Instagram is here.

Blog of the week

I actually came across Ed on Instagram and via his savoury lunch posts, but as befits a Great British Bake Off contestant his blog (The Boy Who Bakes) is a detailed survey of some highly technical patisserie making.


Luckily amongst the detail are plenty of recipes you can make at home. All photos are from Ed’s blog and cover the pistachio and pomegranate cake, bergamot and gin bundt cake


and espresso and cocoa nibs banana bread. Yum.



An edge-of-your-seat podcast from Gimlet Media, Homecoming is a six-episode series that unravels a series of events five years ago at a rehab centre for soldiers returning from tours of duty.

Is Heidi lying, or can she really not remember what went on? Why can we now hear phone calls with her boss from back then? Why is it so important the men are cured?

Each episode is about 15 minutes long, with another 5 minutes of aftershow, which explains through interviews with cast, neuroscientists, or the sound editor how that week’s episode was put together and how it holds up.

Available for free via ITunes or the Gimlet Media page.

I am gentle with you

I am gentle with you

as with bees

the sharp smell of flowers

as to the bird’s tired wings

a swinging branch

as gold

I fall on your lids

with a smile

I chase away thoughts – stinging wasps

this night

has given you to me

the vast night

with my hair strewn in disorder over canvas

you are

clear like the moon

you shine

in my cold sky

I pray to you

what religion is this

where they worship the lips

of the curved god of dawns

ah religion

magnificent blasphemers

we are to one another

a close four-cornered world

Halina Poswiatowska

Sarah Ferone


Witty and cheeky, these playing cards contain recipes for some of the best classic cocktails along with the sharp illustration.



Read here how Sarah Ferone got her Kickstarter campaign off the ground. All images either via the deck’s Kickstarter page or Sarah’a own Instagram feed.