I can't look at the pictures and not still be thrilled to bits. How can a place evoke such emotions. There are a few of such places in the world, magical and extraordinary. I'm working on an ebook about it. The family it belonged to also has a fascinating history.
While this is not Ninfa but a house , abandoned outside the gates of Ninfa. It was a thrilling moment when I arrived that early morning. I waited outside with baited breath. I have waited a whole year to visit and now I was at the cuspid of my visit. It finally opened and visitors started to trickle in, mostly locals but then a few foreigners including some Chinese students. I told the Chinese students that the English tour will start later but they told me they were students at an Italian University and was fluent in Italian. Oh well! Pardon my ignorance.
I went especially to see the snakehead fritillaries and I saw lots of them. While Magdalen field in Oxford is supposed to be the best place but I arrived 2 weeks late. They were mostly spent. North meadow in Cricklade still has them in full bloom and here was where I was the happiest. There were acres and acres of them, purple ones mostly and some albino ones among them.
Today is the last day of my month long trip abroad. I head home stateside tomorrow and I'm ready. I've collected lots of stories and inspiration and am ready to work on them. I took the train to Whitstable today. It wasn't beach weather, it rained the whole time. For years I had wanted to go to Whitstable and I finally made it there. I had some oysters, a lunch of lobster with a glass of hard cider. Life is good, very good.
Finally on my last day I got to eat this. I tried them from other stores but these are better from the original store. The first time I was here a week ago it was so crowded that I couldn't get near the counter. I bought 2 for 2.20 euros, went next door to Starbucks for an espresso and ate my tarts. Mmmmm they were good. Goodbye Portugal, this is my last day, leave tomorrow for London.