Archive for September 2003
Ramage has taken wing for Andalucía and the Algarve, where he will be for the next two weeks. Should the appropriate Iberian cyber-opportunity present itself, he will post from there – but I am sure there will be other temptations…
Find out where you stand with this handy Political Compass. Well, I guess it’s good to feel that I stand roughly next to the Dalai Lama on most social and political issues. And perhaps no surprise that Tony Blair stands only marginally to the left of Silvio Berlusconi. Via a sidebar, way down here.
Ramage is clearly no rolling stone, for he has gathered moss:
(images from Paul Richards, A Book of Mosses, published in the King Penguin series in 1950, but originally from Johannes Hedwig’s Descriptio Muscorum of 1741)
Tha latter, apparently, better known as the oakmoss lichen,
was made into jelly in Turkey , and it was also imported into Egypt to be baked in bread.
Those first three photographs in my Naxos album may have been selected almost at random out of the huge disorganized stack of pix I tend to acquire after any one of the times I go away, but I think they go some way to the heart of the experience I had in Greece just about sixteen months ago. The colours really can be that intense. The lushness of the late spring flowers is surprising. The place is numinous. I’m still not sure whether that goat’s skull, encountered suddenly at the turn of a footpath on an intermittently stormy day, was put there by somebody as a joke, or whether there was some more meaningful reason for its being there. Either way, it reflects a certain sense of drama (that old Greek word).
You could pick virtually any plant at random from this compendium, and learn a good deal about the vanished world our ancestors lived in. Here, for instance, are just some of the local names given to the plant commonly known as Birdsfoot Trefoil (Lotus corniculatus):
“boxing gloves, butter-and-eggs, cat’s claw, cuckoo’s stockings, dead man’s fingers, five fingers, God-Almighty’s-thumb-and-finger, hop-o’-my-thumb, Jack Jump-about, lady’s pincushion, pig’s pettitoes, shoe-and-sock, Tom Thumb…”