Friday, 29 October 2010

The Grand Tour ...

How many of us would like to emulate the ‘tourists’ of a few centuries ago, by travelling to a variety of destinations dependent on our interests and whims most probably? Certain places would have been essential – Paris, the Mediterranean, Florence, Venice and Rome ... perhaps with a detour into Switzerland for the air and the mountains, or Austria and Vienna for the music and opera.

Could I put my hand up please! – and you?





Sunday Afternoon on the Island of La Grande Jatte, 1884-1886, The Art Institute of Chicago. This picture which took Seurat two years to complete shows members of each of the social classes participating in various park activities.

Recently the New York Times described the Grand Tour in this way: “Three hundred years ago, wealthy young Englishmen began taking a post-Oxbridge trek through France and Italy in search of art, culture and the roots of Western Civilisation. With nearly unlimited funds, aristocratic connections and months (or years) to roam, they commissioned paintings, perfected their language skills and mingled with the upper crust of the Continent.” (Oxbridge = a term for Oxford and Cambridge Universities)

This genre and the ‘invention of the Grand Tour’, by mainly upper-class European young men of means, meant the custom flourished, demanding that other countries be investigated, wondered at and explored – opening up hitherto unknown Europe to its residents.

This tour will gently guide you along the way with some artists in this period whose notecards I bought to reply to letters or birthday cards received from family and friends. The pack contains five cards – and we start at the beginning with Canaletto (1697 – 1768) who painted the “Grand Canal from the Palazzo Balbi” in Venice.





The River Thames from Richmond House: a classic veduta by Canaletto, 1747.

Canaletto came to England in 1746 to be nearer his market ... he had been selling his paintings to Englishmen on their Grand Tour, through an agent,... and apart from painting London scenes, he travelled to see England, as his picture of Alnwick Castle shows in this post.

Canaletto and many artists from this period until the late 1800s practised the art of ‘vedute’ and were mainly known as vedutisti (“landscape or cityscape painters”). Two cards from Austrian artists the first of The Grand Canal Venice by the old master Franz Richard Unterberger (1838 – 1902); the second by Charles Euphraise Kuwasseg (1838 – 1904) of a continental river scene – but here I show a painting of the Battle of Fuzhou; his father had emigrated to Paris from Austria and both father and son specialised in landscapes.

Chinese ships Yangwu and Fuxing being attacked by French torpedo boats No. 46 and No. 45 at the Battle of Fuzhou. Combat Naval De Fou-Tcheou by Charles Kuwasseg, 1885.




The next artist is Paul Madeline (1863 – 1920), who also specialised in landscapes, but who went and settled in an artists’ commune at Crozant, in central France. This particular commune confirms The New York Times’ statement that those early tourists would find here art, culture and the roots of Western Civilisation.





Creuse River in Argenton-sur-Creuse




The River Creuse, on which Crozant sits, rises in the granite foothills of the Massif Central, while the limestone plains to the north form part of the Paris basin. This geographical boundary provides another frontier – a linguistic one.

To the north the languages of Anglo-Norman and Old French (langue d'oïl) influenced the northern tongues of England, Flanders, Germany, Normandy – including the Old French speaking dialects and languages that developed in the States and Canada; while the southern languages of Occitan (langue d’oc) influenced the tongues of southern France, Spain and Italy.



My fifth card is by the Italian painter Angelo Morbelli (1853 – 1919) – and is exactly this picture: A view of the Isola Bella. However Morbelli, along with many others, became influenced by the ‘divisionist’ techniques being promulgated in the latter half of the 1800s.

Divisonism was the characteristic style in Neo-Impressionist painting defined by the separation of colours into individual dots or patches which interacted optically. By requiring the viewer to combine the colours optically instead of physically mixing pigments, divisionists believed they were achieving the maximum luminosity scientifically possible. This was the period where scientific theories of vision encouraged a departure from the tenets of Impressionism: Seurat (1859 - 1891) was a major artist practising this form, which he called Chromoluminarism.



This ties in with a link provided by Delia Lloyd, who is an American writer/journalist based in London – where she blogs about adulthood (when do we get there?), fun intellectual items, and has links to her political and social inputs on Daily Shows, political shows et al ... worth a check out.

Delia highlighted this website – the Modern Art Time Line .. and what an interesting site it is .. if you want technicolour – go here!! Also if you want to know a little more about Modern Art .. then here’s the place to get a colourful overview.

Our Grand Tour is finished for this letter .. but I have a feeling we will be back, especially as I have just paid a visit to the Gauguin Exhibiton at the Tate Modern on the South Bank of the Thames.

So the notecards reached across the genre of ‘verdute’ originating in Flanders in the 16th century, which became more and more popular each century appealing to the local pride of the wealthy, until in the 18th century the locations were included in the itinerary of the Grand Tours undertaken from about 1660 to the advent of the railways in the mid 1800s.

These five artists also as, I uncovered their (to me) unknown qualities, confirmed the travelling intellectuals’ search for art – ‘verdutisti’, culture of each country and then the early linguistic divide between the north of Europe and the southern parts, before today’s languages evolved.

This set of ‘Waterscapes: Beautiful Notecards for all Occasions’ have provided another occasion – a Positive Letter post, where we have discovered that the movement of art and artists opened up Europe to its citizens in way that had previously been unheard of.


Giacomo Quarenghi. View of Terem Palace in Moscow (1797).



The peoples of all Europe, as these travels reached Russia in its days of empire, could see places they were unlikely to visit, could learn more of the cultural and historical contexts from the ‘veduti’ paintings ... leading to new travels, new learning, a new desire to know and understand other lands.

We are extremely lucky to have access to these works of art, which in reverse can teach us of times gone by. The Grand Tour loop, as I call it, goes on ... peoples now travel to see Old Masters' exhibitions and explore some of that city and country ... modern artists interpret our world of today for future generations to wonder at ... also no doubt in card format to, I hope, write letters to friends and family – or perhaps post about .. an open letter.

Jannie .. has given us a link to the photo recreation of Seurat's La Grande Jatte .. please go here for it.

Dear Mr Postman – my mother expressed her thanks to everyone who sent her birthday wishes, and she is amazed that so many care .. – so thank you very much. Amy from Soul Dipper replied to a comment I made re my mother .. which brought home to me something “I’d forgotten” ..

"Thanks, Hilary. My oldest brother emailed me after reading this post, commenting how our mother taught us lots. He shares memories of good parenting. He was the brother who helped immensely after our mother had her stroke. I purposely did not say “suffered” a stroke because I’m not sure she did suffer. I suspect she lived in her right hemisphere in a state of bliss – as per Jill Bolte Taylor on Ted.com."

As I mention in my reply – I’m not sure my mother is completely at this point – as her left-side brain kicks in quite often! She is aware .. but emotion is not an option (left-side part not working properly – but there). Amy makes a good point and I was grateful for her reminder... it provides a 'sense of relief' ...

Hilary Melton-Butcher
Positive Letters Inspirational Stories

58 comments:

Betsy Wuebker said...

Hi Hilary - I loved learning about this practice, which I believe evolved into the 19th - early 20th century American expectation that one wasn't properly "finished" without a Grand Tour of European capitals, etc. We see more evidence from the literary set with Lord Byron, the Shelleys, in popular knowledge, so it was nice to see the painters.

Edith Wharton, Henry Miller, and come to think of it, and entire ex-pat community populated with the likes of Fitzgerald and Hemingway, et al appear to have promoted and embraced the tradition from our side of the pond later on.

In any event, I still believe it's an essential objective. Thanks for a lovely post and so glad your mother continues to do well.

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Hi Betsy .. I am so pleased to have your comment - as it adds so much to this post - thank you!!

You definitely know more about this subject than I do .. so I'm delighted to have your notes re the literary set .. & the relevance today from your side of the pond.

Yes the definition of wealthy .. I guess included people who needed patronage .. that certainly would have applied to the 'artists' .. the painters, poets and writers who wanted to travel and experience new places and spaces ..

Perhaps the definition within the NYT should have included intellectuals who were influencing society.

A Grand Tour would be wonderful .. and your post "Following in the Steps of F Scott Fitzgerald" .. is an absolute must read relative to this post .. I hope friends reading this comment thread will pay Betsy a visit .. her blog is fun.

http://passingthru.com/2010/10/in-the-footsteps-of-f-scott-fitzgerald/

Thanks Betsy .. super comment to have first here .. have a lovely weekend .. Hilary

The Exception said...

Hi Hillary –
How I would love to have taken the Grand Tour – I would do it now if I could. My cousin’s are into cruising and take the month long cruise at the end of the different cruising seasons… *sigh*
I hope that your mom is having a wonderful year thus far.

vered said...

I would travel full-time if I could! Maybe spend a full year in each location.

Patricia said...

I just so enjoyed all the art we studied on our tour, we tried not to miss a museum on our tour but were limited by the travel organizer to what other folks wanted to do more...I see Betsy commented early on and I was going to say your post sounds like a Betsy travel adventure. I was pleased to learn about these paintings
That your mum enjoyed her birthday and that your commenter shared such a good observation...
I have to leave for work now...forgive me for one more week for not visiting properly - then again I may just get another job sooner rather than later - that would be lovely rather than all these "no thanks" letters.
Great job Thank you

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Hi TE, Vered and Patricia _ many thanks - up in London will reply properly a.s.a.p. - much appreciate your thoughts
Hilary

Karen Lange said...

Love these pictures! Where can I sign up for a Grand Tour? :)

Happy weekend,
Karen

Joanne said...

If I were ever to visit Europe, I'd love to take a tour of some of the great artists' painted locales. How wonderful to see the actual places much the same way they did, along with the awareness of their paintings.

BK said...

I would love to have a Grand Tour like this too.

Thank you for dropping by and a beautiful weekend to you and your mother.

Davina Haisell said...

Hi Hilary.

Loved the artwork you featured on these cards. That first one by Seurat is one of my favourites.

The Pointillism style fascinated me when I studied it in high school. It sounds similar to the description of Divisonism that you've shared. Our world would be empty without art. Can you imagine!?

Hi to your mom. :-)

Chris Edgar said...

Hi Hilary -- I've never had much of that sort of wanderlust myself, although for some reason I've ended up in all kinds of exotic places anyway. Now that you're on the subject of travel, your writing style in this piece actually reminds me a bit of a high-class travel guide. Oh goodness -- there's no one I'd prefer as my tour guide to a place you knew.

Short Poems said...

Great pictures, the artwork on these cards is amazing!

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Hi Karen,Joanne,Bk,Davina,Chris and Short Poems - thanks so much ... back Monday

Full replies then - happy Sunday ... Hilary

J.D. Meier said...

I hadn't seen Sunday Afternoon in so many years. It's funny how a simple painting can spawn such a flash back.

I am a fan of waterscapes and railways.

Jannie Funster said...

Hey, Hilary!

Did you see the photo of the recreation of La Grand Jatte? So cool!

http://farm1.static.flickr.com/67/179768787_c2cf90edc0.jpg

Oh yes, very ready for Grand Tour, I am -- first class all the way. Nothing like an Old Masters vedute excursion. With maids to draw my bath and iron my fresh linens. I'm there -- art in travel. Off now to that link for Modern Art Time, sounds delish.

Your brother sounds like a real blessing.

Lots of love to you all.
xoxo

Mason Canyon said...

Enjoyed the pictures and learning about them very much.

Mason
Thoughts in Progress

Teresa aka JW said...

Lovely post! Where do I sign up for the tour? :)

Teresa

Stephen Tremp said...

I would love to do the tour today. Hundreds of years ago ... I'm not sure. These people look awfully hot in the clothes they wear. I like to wear shorts. But I would love to see all the artwork and meet the artists. But alas, I would miss modern lucxuries like air conditioning and the Internet.

Susanne Drazic said...

When I was younger, I'd have likely done more traveling if the oppourtunity came along. Not so much anymore.

What a wonderful post, Hillary. Thanks for always sharing such interesting things.

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Hi TE .. You had a wonderful trip with your daughter .. it's these kind of childhood memories we have of places .. but just to travel and see the sights then must have been amazing.

Your cousins have taken the new option .. it must be a wonderful way to see parts of the world, travelling in comfort!

Thanks for your thoughts - I'm sure you'll get to do more travelling at some stage .. and for my Ma - she is peaceful .. Hilary

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Hi Vered ... now that sounds like a good plan - I suspect I wouldn't have enough years left!

I'd love to see your insightful reviews from you travels too!

Great to see you - Hilary

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Hi Patricia .. you crammed so much into your visit here - taking the maximum possible out of it. The museums are special and have so much to offer .. if we take the time to look and discover their wealth.

Thanks - it was good to have Betsy's comment and the information she shared on the writers .. I loved it, and am glad to hear you enjoyed both the post & Betsy's comment.

I'll continue with Mum's cards this week .. as she hasn't really had the chance to take them in, and I can take my time with her.

Good to know you've got some work and hope you get more .. but it's great you've taken a little time away to be here - many thanks, always lovely to see you.

Have a good week - all the best Hilary

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Hi Karen .. thank you - I enjoyed resourcing this and learning at the same time!

I know wouldn't it be lovely to sign up and travel away to places unknown rediscovering our days of time gone by ...

I'll definitely join you .. if I don't organise it!

Hope your Halloween weekend was happy .. now for the week ahead - enjoy .. Hilary

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Hi Joanne .. your thought would be wonderful .. though some of the sights will have changed beyond recognition .. but we should be able to get superimposed shots - which would be so interesting to see the changes and differences.

It's the awareness of what the painters were trying to achieve - which perhaps we understand more now .. whereas then - they were advanced thinkers in their art.

I'd quite like to visit Crozant - sounds beautiful with such a 'hidden' history.

One day perhaps we can get to see a few of the places these artists portrayed .. have a lovely week .. Hilary

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Hi BK .. wouldn't it be lovely .. seeing the sights, no time frame and just going to see people or places at a whim.

Good to see you here .. I had a good weekend .. and I'm sure my Mama is comfortable, thank you .. Hilary

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Hi Davina .. thank you - Seurat tied in the Divisionism .. and as you say Pointillism practises to these cards - so I had to include him.

Divisionism is the more technical method concerned with colour theory, whereas pointillism is more focused on the specific style of brushwork used to apply the paint.

Davina .. as you've studied it .. you will definitely more than I've put in here - but it's something else I knew little about.

Absolutely our world would be empty without art .. and no I don't think I can .. I have pictures all over the place!

Thanks re Mum - she'll enjoy seeing these pictures, when she's sufficiently awake to do so. Have a great week .. I'll be catching up with you and our course later on .. looking forward to it - Hilary

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Hi Chris .. wonderful to see you here .. and I'd love to travel with you showing you a few of the major sights of Europe, and taking a few tours off the beaten track .. It'd be fun to organise a Grand Tour with a few bloggers ... now that's an idea!

Delighted that you enjoyed the post and the 'dream' of a first-class Grand Tour - that would be amazing fun ..

See you here one day - and you've obviously done some travelling unintentionally .. probably the way to go ... but seeing the world or parts of it - is really so enlightening.

Have a really good week .. Hilary

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Hi Marinela .. thanks and glad you enjoyed the art work .. I see you've written a poem on haunted London - I was there at the weekend .. and the place was full of youngsters painted up, or dressed up with ghoulish costumes .. I think they had fun (mainly) ... Good to see you here .. Hilary

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Hi JD .. isn't it amazing how a post can bring back memories we'd forgotten about - delighted to hear this piece did that for you.

I just love the learning - as I knew nothing about these artists - other than Canaletto .. so it was so interesting to delve a little deeper.

Ah .. waterscapes and railways .. I have such a mix of pictures .. a great many influenced by Africa .. but seascapes ... railways not so sure about!! Though they certainly are evocative!

Have a good week .. thanks for the visit .. Hilary

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Hi Jannie .. No I hadn't seen the recreation .. I've added the link in at the bottom of the post - thankyou! Interesting comparison .. modern dress etc ..

Oh yes - we could do with a guitarist on our tour .. to help us while the travel hours away .. and sing to us while we sup and take wine - you must join us of course!!

I hope you enjoyed the Modern Art Time line .. I thought it was really interesting ..

Art in travel .. with all the accoutrements of wealthy old world living - wouldn't it be great!

Amy's brother sounds wonderful I agree .. really empathetic ..

Thanks - Mum will be pleased to see me back .. as will Hardwick .. so you too have a great week .. and love back from us here .. oxoxo Hilary

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Hi Mason .. thanks so much for coming by .. and very glad to hear you enjoyed the pictures and the brief notes .. Have a great week .. Hilary

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Hi Teresa .. Thank you .. it does sound as though we should have a blogging Grand Tour .. start a trend!

Sign here .... !!! Cheers - enjoy the week .. Hilary

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Hi Steve .. I suspect you'll be doing a few Breakthrough Grand Tours soon .. but like you - I'm not sure I could spend days on a coach travelling by carriage - bumps and potholes all the way to Italy?!

Still frankly .. travelling by aeroplane .. isn't that much different is it?!

The world was a cooler place then! But yes - like you .. I prefer relaxed dress or short code.

How right you are .. we would miss our luxuries .. but at least we can know about the art and see it - even if not for real ..

Good to see you .. I must catch up with your Breakthrough .. later on - enjoy the month .. sounds exciting .. Hilary

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Hi Susanne .. wonderful to see you here .. like you I'd have like to do more .. though I've been lucky enough to do a little.

I appreciate that I can carry on learning now ..and see things in a different light through the internet etc .. I'd still like to travel though .. !

Delighted you enjoyed it .. lovely having you here .. have a wonderful week .. Hilary

TALON said...

My daughter did a solo six-week trip through Italy, Germany, Switzerland, Ireland...all over the place and loved it all so much. I'm more of an armchair traveller myself, but I did love seeing the world through her eyes and her experiences.

I hope your Mother is well...

Sharon K. Mayhew said...

Loved the artwork, Hilary! Visiting art galleries is one of my favorite things to do on holiday...

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Hi Talon .. your daughter certainly kept moving! I'm sure from those experiences .. she'll want to come back - I know every time I go somewhere I just want to revisit to see more and learn more.

Like you .. I love the armchair traveller bit and seeing different slants people take on places or tying information together ..

Her stories and her photos .. must be wonderful to interact about now .. and in the future .. brilliant.

Mum said to me yesterday - when she's better .. we must go away on holiday again!! She loved our holidays .. sad, but lovely that she remembers and wants to do more - she will but not physically. Mum was awake yesterday and pleased to see me back ... all is well - thank you - enjoy the week .. Hilary

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Hi Sharon .. thank you - I learn so much doing these posts!! So many galleries I now would love to see .. and something I will definitely do more of ...

Great to see you ... I loved your dressing up - your pets are so well behaved!! Have a good week .. Hilary

farouk said...

that was so deep
thank u

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Hi Farouk .. I'm glad you enjoyed it .. good to see you here ..

Have a good week .. Hilary

Sara said...

Hilary -- I thoroughly enjoyed your version of the "Grand Tour." I sort laughed to myself about this because I first learned about Grand Tours from my historical romance books...someone is always going off on a Grand Tour in those books, but they go into the detail about where and why...like you did so well.

I also loved the postcards!! I really liked your discussion about Divisonism. I have a reproduction of a modern painting that uses this style but via a computer. It's really kind of cool.

Thanks again for Hilary's Grand Tour:~)

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Hi Sara .. wonderful to see you .. and thanks so much .. I think my young romance reading days were before this time .. but perhaps bordering on it ..

However the actual 'generic detail' of the Grand Tour becomes well known as we read more in our youth. I did like the NYT's version of "The Grand Tour" .. which gave me the title of the post ..

My cards are beautiful .. and I felt I just had to do something with them before I used them ..

Divisionism .. opened my eyes a little, but as with everything I then find out more .. and more .. which is so amazingly stimulating ..

Your reproduction sounds rather fun .. and as you say cool .. I love seeing new pictures ..

Delighted you enjoyed "Hilary's Grand Tour" .. perhaps you'll join me one day and we can fix up a Grand Tour .. have a great week .. we have a busy time?! Some reading to do ..

Better scoot on .. see you very soon in the blogosphere .. happy days til then .. Hilary

Mark said...

Hilary,
You enrich my life. Thank-you for the knowledge that you share.

Patricia Stoltey said...

Hilary, I'm so glad we've connected.

As for Grand Tours, I'm definitely in favor of them, but I must say I think they're wasted on the young. Better to have our adventures when we're older. more experienced, and less arrogant.

Liara Covert said...

The grand tour you describe reminds everyone they are constantly expanding on their sense of who they are, what matters, and the nature of reality. As you are open to broadening your horizons with information, travel and creative imagination, you are also building on perception of things, widening the blinders that prevent you from experiencing unlimited being and pure consciousness. Every trip is a glimpse of pure freedom that is reality for the essence of being.

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Hi Mark .. delighted to hear it - wonderful comment .. thank you - have a great week ... Hilary

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Hi Patricia .. me too - I was a way .. so am taking a little time to do catch up ..

You're right .. but when young we get to dart about and see things, then we can go back to chosen places to see more and learn more .. take our time and notebooks in hand .. I do!!

Have a great rest of the week .. Hilary

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Hi Liara .. you certainly put your perspective on this .. the opening of the sense of who we are, what matters and the nature of reality. So wise!!

Without realising it .. you're right that is what is happening .. every broadening brings new thoughts and aspects to my ideas ... so so right.

I shall remember this .. "every trip is a glimpse of pure freedom that is in reality for the essence of being". I'll apply this to my daily living trips .. an excellent point ..

Thank you so much .. Hilary

gloW said...

Just discovered your blog. It is very interesting. LOVE it!

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Hi gloW .. great to see you and welcome .. Delighted you think the blog is interesting .. it'll be a pleasure to see you here again ..

Thanks - and see you soon .. Hilary

Chase March said...

Hi HIlary,

I haven't been on much of any kind of tour lately. Things have been so busy with me that I've barely even made my way around the blogosphere for a while.

I would so love to go on a grand tour, to take my students with me, and to learn all sorts of things outside the classroom.

Thanks for this great post.

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Hi Chase .. it's good to see you & I can 'feel' you've been busy .. as I pop over and comment.

Wouldn't it be wonderful .. at this moment I'd set off and fall asleep - probably awakening in Italy! Like you - lots going on.

But taking your students with you - now that would be a job and half!! But they'd love it, and so would you .. & as you say they'd see so much .. the country, the culture, the foods, architecture, museums .. etc etc .. the thought is quite inspiring ..

Glad you enjoyed it .. hope you can catch up a little and perhaps have a rest at the weekend .. see you soon .. lovely seeing you here again .. Hilary

Jannie Funster said...

Ma chere hilree

j'aimerais bien faire le grand tour. Mais, pour maintenant ca va être seulement dans ma tete.

Enchantee.

Une Amie aux etats unis.

Bisous.

Xxooxco

Jannie Funster said...

Merci!

xxoo

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Ah ma chere Jannie .. je suis amusement que tu "scribble" en Francais pour moi .. la tongue Francaise n'est pas mon mieux ..

mais je suis enchante que tu aimee mon grand tour .. et sometime we shall travel together .. on a wine grand tour?!

La dictionaire francaise .. n'est pas nearby .. so .. half en anglais et half en pauvre francaise!

Au revoir m'amie en Etats Unis ..

Bisous .. aussi! Oxoxo

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Merci Beaucoup ..... aussi .. xoxo have a fun weekend .. H

Holly Ruggiero said...

So, this weird thing has been happening. I post but never post. I can’t figure it out. Maybe I’m being to impatience and close the window before it posts. I assume the code is right and don't scroll down to check. I'll check this time ;) I came to thank you for your purchase and to tell you I hope your fiend enjoys it.
Back to
the post. I’m love art and I would love the tour then, now it would all be good. I would add places like the whole of Asia, Africa, etc. because the art there is just as fascinating. OR I would love to visit the places of inspiration like Monet’s garden.

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Hi Holly .. posting comments can be tricky .. and I understand what you're saying .. you do have to watch .. I can't quite understand it either! .. but I usually make sure it goes through .. & I sometimes do my comment in Word & copy across .. in case I lose it - which irritates!!!

That's fine .. I'm sure Linda will love the little book & bring the American version of tea up in her talks .. it was another 'prop' for her to use .. and any book that recommends lobster sandwiches for tea - can be highlighted! Some of the recipes sound delicious .. I'll be along for tea one day!

Art .. ah yes - and we could travel to all places .. it would be great to have one of our own design .. allowing a few years! Family and friends could come visit us along our way?!

Love your thoughts though & great to see you here .. have a good weekend .. Hilary