Sunday, November 30, 2008

Shadow Shot Sunday/Echoes

In Tribeca some berries were catching the light under blue scaffolding.

This photo seems to echo Summer Kitchen Interiors' one.

Yesterday afternoon we walked up to 39th Street since I wanted to show R. the fabric district Frances had told me about. Big mistake as we passed right in front of Macy's which was a mega-mob scene. 
Beckenstein's on 39th Street has a wonderfully retro window. The car reflections reminds me of Sweet Repose's car shadow today.

There is no actual shadow in this one -- just the ghostly retro shadow of a shop that once was.

On 39th Street, between 7th and 8th Avenue, there is a heaven of glorious fabrics.
Many of the shopkeepers are Indian. We are thinking of the people of Mumbai.

I must thank Heyharriet as ever for hosting ShadowshotSunday and making the super collages.
Go to her site for the ever expanding and enthusiastic roll of Shadow Shotters.
This week I'd really like to thank her for  her very kind plug for my little book.
Bloggers rule!

Friday, November 28, 2008

Jane in Winter

When we lived in Morocco, and the days were growing shorter, I started thinking about my childhood in England. 
In those days I loved reading and wished real life was as exciting as what happened in books.

So I started writing a story which combines elements of both what really happened and what should have done. 
My heroine, ignored by her brother, manages to have an adventure on her own and travels to a mysterious kingdom deep under a lake.
In writing the book, I drew on elements of all kinds of classic stories: Grimm's Fairy Tales, Beowulf (all bad creatures have lairs under water!), folklore: the four elements -- earth, air fire and water and so on. 

Several young people in Morocco, among them Leonora Brebner, Nikole Cairns and Maria Thornhill, were my first readers. Their enthusiastic reception  pleased me enormously.

Then I had to make a cover.
I took out the water colors my daughter gave me, and old photos and prints. 
Thorndon Hall in the print is Myrtle Hall in the book.
The little cottage in the photo is the house I grew up in. 
I think the story is best suited to  8-12 year old readers, but grownups will enjoy the descriptions of food and life in the days before video games and cell phones. 
I have just finished writing Jane's next adventure called Jane in Spring. This will be available soon.
JANE IN WINTER is available from

You can read the first ten pages of the book to see if you like it!
The preview is also here (
I love feedback so please e-mail me at if you have any comments or suggestions.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

A Walk and Some Busy Bakers

A walk down 9th Avenue where a shop has a nice silvery display.

For some reason silver is more appropriate in the winter. Perhaps because it echoes candles so well?

A very handsome cat hangs out in the vet's office dreaming of turkey.

Macy's (on the left) was meant to come at the end of the post. I won't be going there today.
 Too many people and too much exciting parade. 
It opens at four on Friday morning for die-hard shoppers who will get amazing bargains...
I won't be there then either.

This character was waiting for his owner outside the English shop.
He was very noisy. We saw the dog show on TV today and thought all the dogs were too primped and groomed.
I think dogs prefer to be muddy.

Time for a snack outside Sarabeth's in the Chelsea Market.

Inside Sarabeth's the bakers were exceedingly busy. So many pies to bake........

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Almost Thanksgiving

I went to Dean and Delucca in Soho yesterday to buy olives.

The cashier was very cheerful there too.

These birds caught my eye in a rather crunchy granola looking shop.

As did this little, real bird hopping round in the drizzle.
A pleasant surprise when I got home....

........a  package of presents from India, via Norway.
Britt-Arnhild is a wonderfully generous friend and blogger supreme.
Look at the astounding richness of the purple in the scarf!

Tuesday, November 25, 2008


Though this photo has nothing to do with New York -- readers can guess where it was shot --I offer it in the spirit of the season. Photo courtesy of Claudia Schmid.

Monday, November 24, 2008

Cold Day at the Green Market

Clear bright and bitter out.
Shakespeare said it best.

WHEN icicles hang by the wall,
And Dick the shepherd blows his nail,
And Tom bears logs into the hall,
And milk comes frozen home in pail,
When blood is nipp'd, and ways be foul,
Then nightly sings the staring owl,
To-who!—a merry note,
While greasy Joan doth keel the pot.

A costume suitable for the season.

Windfall Farms had to protect the delicate mesclun salad by rigging up a little plastic edifice...

....where one of the helpers warmed her leg on the stove.

Even the dogs had busted out their winter coats.

When all aloud the wind doe blow,
And coughing drowns the parson's saw,
And birds sit brooding in the snow,
And Marian's nose looks red and raw,
When roasted crabs hiss in the bowl,
Then nightly sings the staring owl,
To-who!—a merry note,
While greasy Joan doth keel the pot.

I always sympathize with Marian.

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Shadow Shot Sunday/Apple Store

Shadow Shot Sunday again.
Go here for more participants.

Friday lunch time at the Apple Store on 14th Street.
R. was looking at techie stuff.
I was transfixed, as ever, by the staircase.

One thing I like about Apple is that all the young people who work there are so keen on everything.
They wear orange and turquoise T-shirts but do not treat a technophobe like me as the idiot I am.

A vendor has set up a stall selling jewelry outside the door. What are we now? Soho light?

Saturday, November 22, 2008

A Very Cold Afternoon at the Beach

We left it rather late to go down to the beach.
It was beastly cold.
Here Huntington Bay looking towards Northport.

The ubiquitous reeds and bare tree against fading light.
There were some kids at the beach with their dog.
One of the boys was wearing shorts. Ah youth...

The little boats don't look very inviting.

Luckily Celeste has a very inviting chair by the fire...

...and offers a nice cup of tea.

Friday, November 21, 2008

East Side

Very bright green...

Tasteful and warm colored ivy cascading out of a window box just off the Bowery.

A very enigmatic poster. What do all these disparate things have to do with one another?
That is the question.

On a bright clear, cold day, black and white looks stupendously crisp.

The merchants house seems part of a quite different and gentler world with its ornate doorway and tree reflected in the window.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

A Post about People

This character lives in john Derian's Shop on E. 2nd Street.
He looks very polite - bordering on obsequious - but says little.
In spite of his youthful appearance and slicked down hair, I think he is quite old.

Good to be young and cheerful.
And to have festive headgear.
I think Desiderio de Settingnano made the original of this, but if he didn't, he has a very fine name anyway.

Lots of good stuff --including Heinz Baked Beans and lots of them-- were being delivered to Myers of Keswick on Hudson Street.
I asked the people doing the unloading if I could take their pictures, and they were very obliging.
How tiresome bloggers can be.
Note the elegant bystander in the background. Prize to the first person who recognizes her.

Easier to have your picture taken when you aren't actually toting anything.
More baked beans -- to look at and for nostalgic purposes rather than to eat.

Yesterday was horribly cold. This delivery man, carrying at least four lunch orders, sped off through the chill.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008



Wintry sky over 17th Street.

Man delivering a blue package.
18th Street.

Monday, November 17, 2008

A Post About Inanimate Animals

We have no pets right now.
So our animals live on our plates.
Lots of people out there like M.Kate and Diana are quite dotty about rabbits.

This rather bemused looking one lives on a plate we bought in Italy years ago.

This cheerful character looks a bit muscular. Perhaps he has a gym membership.

I am not a great fan of seagulls. I find them large, unsubtle and oddly depressing.
However, when offered a little jug featuring one in the sort of pottery sold to visitors to the Isle of Wight, I was wild with delight and taken back to wet sand and the smell of seaweed and shrimps.........

This last rabbit lives in the hall on the book shelf. He was painted by an art school friend more than thirty-five years ago.