Find me on Facebook

November 23, 2010 at 6:47 pm | Posted in General | Leave a comment

I don’t seem to get round to posting much here these days, but anyone interested who knows me can catch up with me on Facebook where I am far more active. Veronica Lambert Hall.

Hope to see you there 🙂

Tomas’ photos

November 21, 2009 at 1:23 am | Posted in General | 1 Comment

Today my son Tomas, a 26-year-old twin with Borderline Personality Disorder, took part in his first collective photography exhibition at our local Town Hall. The show will be open every day until December 2nd and there are several local young artists displaying their work. Tomas has 19 photos in the show and they can be seen, along with others, at http://tomasvl.zenfolio.com

It is amazing that such a troubled person is able to capture immense peace and serenity in some of his photographs. It is also a great achievement for him to have managed to put all this work together and go through with the exhibition. A few years ago it would have been unthinkable for him. Sometimes his progress seems so slow, but when one looks back to just a year or two ago, the change has been remarkable. The initial reactions have been very favourable and that is SO good for him. I’m really hoping that something will come of all  this that will help him.

World gone wrong: Storm and The Birds

December 28, 2008 at 12:54 am | Posted in General | Leave a comment

These last few days the small town in which I live has been battered by a really vicious storm. The damage to the seafront has been serious. Walls that had been there for certainly thirty years and probably longer have been destroyed. Yesterday half the town had been closed off by the police and we saw why. The waves were pouring over a wall and had knocked over the large containers for separating waste which were floating down the road to a beach that it is a little lower down. Miquel, a retired fisherman in his 70s told me he had never seen anything like it in all his life. Yesterday I didn’t have my camera with me, but today I went out and took photos, at least until my camera stopped working, probably blocked up with all the salt in the air!!

One of the last beaches I visited, Montgó, made  me so sad, and perhaps it’s as well that I wasn’t able to take photos.  A close friend of mine who passed away just six weeks ago had been the councillor responsible for the remodeling of the beach with a beautiful promenade, full of seats and young trees which opened just a few months ago. There was a life-saving hut on the beach with a look-out perch on top, like you see in Baywatch. And it’s ALL GONE:-( The hut was washed up and broken, the promenade was covered in mud and sand. I don’t suppose we’ll see whether it’s damaged or not for quite some time.  Most of the lights were broken, but the most daunting thing was the hundreds of fish that had been washed up and were lying dead or flapping in the sand. So sad.

After all this I went home and had just driven into the drive when I heard a really loud noise that I had never heard before, accompanied by a sound that was like stones being dropped. I soon discovered that there were thousands of birds flying overhead, I’m not sure but they looked like swallows and they made the most incredible noise. The other noise was the olives they were dropping that they must have picked from the trees in the nearby fields. My camera had dried out by this time so I shot some more photos and a couple of videos because it really was just like the Hitchcock film.  It all ended when someone let off a very loud shot or something similar which, my pure chance, I got on the second video. I deduce that the birds had come over my house as they had probably been washed away from the nearby wetlands where they might have been wintering or getting ready to migrate further south.

I have posted two vidoes of The Birds on YouTube. Look for User: CatalanMoon

Joan Baez concert 28th July 2008

August 1, 2008 at 8:16 pm | Posted in General, Music | 1 Comment

On Monday August 28th I set out from home with a friend to head for Barcelona. We had arranged to meet Catherine, a translator friend and several other people from the Joan Baez list first in a Chinese Restaurant just across from the Palau de la Música Catalana where the concert was to take place. Apart from Hyldred, Catherine and myself, there was Bearnice, Jerry, Nadine and Sophia. Poor Sophia had mislaid her credit card and was worried that without it she wouldn’t be able to pick up her tickets, but she was allowed in!!

The Palau de la Música Catalana is a beautiful “Modernista” style building. “Modernisme” was a Catalan cultural movement at the end of the nineteenth century, perhaps its best known exponent was Antoni Gaudí (La Sagrada Família, Parc Güell, etc.), but the Palau de la Música was designed by Domènech i Montaner. Our three seats were in row 4, but they’d had to make the stage bigger and the seats started with row 3, so in fact we were in the second row!!

Joan walked on stage looking physically frail and tired, but at the same time, full of serene energy. She informed us that it was the 50th anniversary of her career, so we all gave her a hearty round of applause. Just giving a list of songs is too clinical, but I feel it is necessary anyway, so here it is:

  1. Lily of the West
  2. Farewell Angelina
  3. God is God
  4. With God on our Side
  5. Long, Black Veil
  6. I’m gonna take a trip in that old gospel ship
  7. El preso número 9
  8. Christmas in Washington
  9. Wonderful World
  10. Love in just a Four-Lettered Word
  11. The Rose of Sharon
  12. Swing Low, Sweet Chariot
  13. Rossinyol
  14. Diamonds and Rust
  15. Gracias a la Vida
  16. Imagine

Encores:

  1. Blowing in the Wind
  2. Donna, Donna
  3. Here’s to you

Impromptu encore with the audience of We Shall Overcome

She introduced nearly all the songs with a short explanation or credited them to their author. She told us a little about her forthcoming album (Day After Tomorrow) and sang God is God, which will be one of the tracks. I have to say that we were a very responsive audience and there were some wonderful bits of repartee going back and forth. At one stage, some of the people up in the gods behind the stage called out “Joan, we’re here” to which she replied “And I’m down here!” (Both Joan and the band were very good about acknowledging the audience in that strange place every time we applauded). Another time, a guy called out “Catalonia loves you” to which Joan replied “It’s mutual” and another guy in the audience called out “I love you” and after a second’s thought Joan said “I’m sure I love you too”, which made us all laugh! For Wonderful World, she invited us all to sign along with her, which, of course, we all did!! Towards the end of the show, she sang Swing Low Sweet Chariot a capella and for a few lines she turned away from the microphone and sang to the people sitting up in the gods behind her. It was a very special moment of the concert. When she started singing Russinyol there was a happy uproar and we all joined in (at least all of us who are familiar with Rossinyol as a traditional Catalan song). We were also encouraged to participate in the chorus of Imagine (Joan cued us with the words). After Imagine, Joan went off stage and came back a few moments later for the encores: Blowing in the Wind, Donna, Donna (wow!!!) and Here’s to You. She was given a huge bouquet of flowers by someone who went up on the stage – I don’t know whether he was a fan or someone representing the Palau de la Música. She also accepted a gift from someone in the front row. And then went off for what should have been the end of the concert….

But we were stubborn!! We applauded so long and loud, and all started singing We Shall Overcome, that 5, maybe even 10 minutes later, Joan came back on stage to acknowledge all the applause. Her microphone had been turned off by then, but she stood on the stage and sang along with us. I really think she was moved by such a thundering ovation despite telling us that she was really tired and needed to get some sleep! She moved along the stage shaking hands with the people in the first two rows, which I think was very brave of her as who knows what would have happened if things had got out of control. When she reached me, I handed her something which for me is very special and which I hope she will at least have had the time to look at. It is a silver moebius bangle with a Buddhist Metta prayer inscribed on it.

May all beings be peaceful.
May all beings be happy.
May all beings be safe.
May all beings awaken to the light of their true nature.
May all beings be free.

I’m sure Joan would approve of those words!

It was an absolutely wonderful concert, it is impossible to describe in words the feeling of “togetherness” of the audience. Certainly, where we were sitting, everyone had a fantastic time and on the way out all the comments I overheard were positive ones.

After the concert those of us who had met up for supper, minus Jerry, and plus Fran who couldn’t make it earlier, hung around for ages trying to work out where we might find Joan and eventually we found where they were loading up the lorries and after a loooong wait Joan finally appeared and went straight to the bus. Several of us thanked her for the concert and she in turn thanked us!! I expect she got straight into the bus and fell asleep very quickly, but we hung around a little longer just in case!!

What a memorable evening, and how nice it was to meet some other Joan fans too!! Nadine was even following on to Segovia for the concert the next day!!

Thank you Joan for an unforgettable evening and I hope you’re now enjoying a well-deserved rest/holiday after your tour!

You can see a couple of my videos of this concert on YouTube. Look for User: CatalanMoon

Posting

July 30, 2008 at 10:03 pm | Posted in General | Leave a comment

So many posts to write, so little time to do them!! I will catch up one day, honest!!!!

Birthday wishes

May 1, 2008 at 12:28 am | Posted in General | 5 Comments

Very warmest birthday wishes to someone very special out there…. if you’ve found this page and are reading this message, you know who you are!!! Hugs…. 😛

To Paul

August 31, 2007 at 12:54 pm | Posted in General | 1 Comment

Ten years ago today I was travelling through France on my way to the UK. I awoke to hear the news about Diana, Princess of Wales’ tragic death. But, I remember this time far more clearly because of a very special person I had met on the Internet and was about to meet in real life. Ten years on I still remember those couple of days I spent with the most wonderful person I have ever known and for whom I still have only the fondest of thoughts. Thank you for those beautiful memories. I hope you are happy, wherever you may be now 🙂

My Motto

March 25, 2007 at 5:02 pm | Posted in General | Leave a comment

Life should not be a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in an attractive and well-preserved body, but rather to skid in sideways, champagne in one hand, strawberries in the other, body thoroughly used up, totally wornout and screaming “WOO-HOO – What a ride!!”

Peace and quiet

March 25, 2007 at 3:53 pm | Posted in General | Leave a comment


Zen3

Originally uploaded by Spanish Moon.
I haven’t written anything in my blog for a very long time now. Lots of changes have happened in my life, but things are gradually returning to normal. One of the changes is that I’ve moved house!!

To start off this new lease of life on my blog I’ve decided to share some pictures of a little corner I’ve made in the front garden for sitting and meditating. I have some photos of gorgeous Zen gardens in Japan and I find them just wonderful and restful, so I decided to make my own little Zen corner. I have a wooden bench so I can sit and just enjoy it all, which is under a huge palm tree which always has birds coming and going. I’ve also got a sort of fountain, although it’s more like a granite monolith sitting on some stones and, thanks to a pump, water trickles down the monolith into the stones and down into a trough where it goes back into the pump again. The sound of the water trickling down the granite and then splashing onto the stones is so relaxing. Behind the bench and in the shadow of the palm tree, I have planted a Japanese Acer which is just starting to produce this year’s leaves. What a gorgeous shade of red they are! Then, in a corner I have placed some white stones to act as a border for containing the gravel, into which I have sat some stones. I took a long time finding just the right stones. Compared to the “real” Zen gardens, mine is pathetic, but it works for me. It is my little haven. I’ve tried to screen it off a bit with some plants. At the moment it all looks terribly “new” but I shall enjoy watching it mature over the years.

I do believe that we all need to find or create our own special place where we can get in touch with ourselves and be at peace. Somewhere that feels “sacred”. Five or ten minutes meditating in my little corner renews me completely.

From Da Vinci to Harry Potter

May 21, 2006 at 10:05 pm | Posted in General | Leave a comment

I should perhaps add that I’m one of those people who just LOVES all the Harry Potter books, and I’m quite convinced that Snape is not bad at all…. perhaps I’ll post my theory on that one day!!! I’ve argued it with several friends and although they disagree with me, they say my theory is possible!!

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