Camera too small, landscape too big.
I was struggling with this problem yet again in Iceland, on the side of an enormous glacier, when an Australian approached.
We exchanged adjectives and smiled at the view.
“Still,” he said. “It must be just like home for you here.”
It’s Hitchcock round my place.
The chickens are taking over.
“Why the bloody hell do they build these
monstrosities?” the cross English woman shouted at her terrified little husband. “Why? It’s just so bloody a wful!”
She was glaring at a sparkling new adventure playground in the final stages of construction high up the side of a Swiss mountain.
The husband nodded sadly and watched his wife pull her hat down over her ears, stretch her waistband high up under her bosom and storm off to start the bloody nature walk she had bloody come here for.
Meanwhile the five of us, absentmindedly wiping her spittle from our faces, were spellbound.
There are three chickens in the garden.
But not for long.
[A story with a happy ending]
What a teeny tiny difference between the words well and unwell.
Just two letters of the alphabet.
I was against having chickens for obvious reasons.
Unfortunately no one else in the house understood any of them.
How did I end up on top of a Swiss mountain, feet planted, pistol-ready hands, blocking the entrance to the cable car in which I am standing?
The man and woman facing me cannot wait.
They must get onto the cable car.
Yet I don’t seem to be letting them.
Every now and then travellers are rewarded with a moment of sublime timing.
Ours came at the end of a lovely day exploring The Camargue wildlife reserve, spotting flamingoes, wild horses, beavers and thousands of water birds. We were planning to top off the day with a late afternoon ice cream at a sleepy seaside village nearby.
But Saintes Maries de la Mer was not asleep.
Nerves of steel are required to drive this road every day
Whoever dares to question French courageousness needs to drive on my road.
Countless fearless Aixois commuters do it every day of the week. Twice. At speed.
The road is as wide as a catwalk model’s ankle.
Steep ditches line each side of it.
Huge trucks travel at ferocious speeds on it.
Tractors and trailers, graders and even horses and carts can be seen on it.
Yet the only one who is terrified is me – leaning pointlessly toward to the centre of the car where it feels a tiny bit safer.