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Some of you already know that I write a couple of blogs (when the mood takes me!) my other blog being about my travels and experiences in Iran-Persian Posts. Over the past few days I have been catching up with my articles based on my 3-week holiday back in July 2014. Thank goodness then that I always keep a travel journal which I religiously and lovingly write up each evening so that I don’t forget even the smallest detail. It is amazing what you do forget and I love re-reading my journal weeks and months after my holiday.
My travel journal has come in very handy this whilst writing up my posts and I have managed to complete quite a few. We are already planning our 2015 visit so I must catch up before we go!
Travel journals are easy to put together and good fun. Collecting tickets and stubs, receipts, leaflets, postcards, menus, photos, labels and anything else that will stick onto the pages or slip into pockets is addictive but they give a great flavour of your travel experience and trigger memories otherwise filed away.
For this trip I used a great wire-bound book from paperchase. For £7.00 I got
lots of pages, both lined and plain so I could add my own drawings, plastic pockets and half-page paper pockets which were really useful to keep the leaflets and menus in.
You can buy the book online-Paperchase
If you are short of ideas but have collected a wealth of material, you will do worse than look on Pinterest for inspiration. There are lots of completed pages to view, ideas for travel-themed embellishments and layout designs as well as suggestions for what works well.
I will be writing another journal to cover my 2015 travels and have already got the book ready to pack! All I need now is to sort out the rest of my equipment to take and I will be set. Only 5 months early!
I will soon be able to resurrect my other Blog “Persian Posts” as we have now booked our tickets for our next visit to Iran. This time we are taking William with us and I am relieved that his Visa came through just this week so we can plan properly.
It will be an amazing experience for him especially as it is his first time in Iran but we will try and prepare him as best we can. Of course, nothing can prepare him fully for the different culture, food, weather, family, customs etc but there are certain things we do need to go through with him before we land in Esfahan.
William is looking forward to his trip, as am I, and I hope he loves the country and its people as much as I do. There are not many Western boys of his age that get this opportunity and we will try and show him as much of the country as is possible in the 3 weeks we are there and in temperatures up into the 90’s.
The good thing is that Feri’s nephew is exactly the same age and they will be housed together on the self-contained second floor-God help us! I have packed a spare English-Farsi vocabulary book so here’s hoping they manage to communicate! We will be there during the World Cup and as both love football I am sure that we will witness the evidence that football is a truly global language!
In the meantime, Will has his A Level exams to finish and his last school Prom to navigate so he is going to be busy. I have marked out a few things and places that I would like to see this year so look out for more Persian Posts coming soon!
A big “THANK YOU” to Megan’s Miscellaneous Menagerie for nominating me for the Liebster Award. It really made my day 🙂
I will now answer the 10 questions that Megan has asked, and very good questions they are too!
- Where would you live if you could live anywhere in the world?
I’m very happy where I live at the moment but given the choice I would have to take up dual-residence in Swanage, Dorset and Esfahan, Iran. We have had some amazing holidays in Swanage and it is a place I feel very close to. By the sea, unpretentious and beautiful in a natural way.
Esfahan, my husband’s home city is so beautiful and full of history and culture. I think I must have been a Persian in a previous life as I feel so very comfortable in the country and am perfectly at home with their customs and attitudes.
- What is your favourite pet that you have ever owned? (that is cat, dog, horse etc.)
This is a difficult one to choose as I’ve had many pets and they are all lovely. I guess my two cats Tom and Tess are my favourites, especially Tom (close your ears Tess) as he stays with me, by my side, whenever I am poorly. He senses when I’m ill and looks after me.
- How would you describe your fashion style?
Ha! ha! What’s fashion? At work, smart. At home, my son calls me a hippy! I love bright colours and funky shoes (I even tried to turn up to work in 1 red shoe and 1 purple shoe last week!). I guess if I had to describe it, “Young at Heart”!
- Are you a spring, fall/autumn, winter or summer person? (that is which season do you prefer)
Apart from my flowers in the summer, I’m not great in the high season. I get very out of routine and agitated and love it when autumn comes around and everything settles down again. Born in February 1963, winter snow is always welcome and there’s nothing like yellow daffodils in the spring.
- What is the one thing you wish you were good at that you currently struggle with?
- Would you prefer to work, or go to school as a student?
Without doubt I would be a perpetual student. The first thing I would do if I came into some money is chose a University course and start over. That’s my dream. My son is looking to start University next year and I’m so jealous! I’d swap tomorrow.
- What is one thing you haven’t tried that you would like to have a go at?
Driving a steam train.
- If you had a million dollars to donate to a charity, which on would you choose?
Oooo, a difficult one but most likely a charity that supports young people with mental health conditions and M.E/ CFS get qualifications and into employment.
- If you were to open a business, what product or service would you offer?
- I would offer to go and talk to businesses and employers about employing more people with disabilities, especially mental health conditions.
- What 3 things would you change in your local community if you were elected mayor?
Firstly I would make sure to open the old railway line between our village and Market Harborough for walkers and cyclists to travel safely. AdamSmile.
Secondly I would veto the building of any more houses within a 5 mile radius of our village.
Thirdly I would try and encourage someone to open a village shop!
The bloggers receiving this reward today are;
The Project: Me, by Judy-great inspiration and support always.
We Are One-by Ruth- My journey out of the darkness of depression. How I changed from not just surviving but thriving.
Roots To Blossom-I am living proof that you can in fact return from the point of no return.
My Fibrotastic Life– The journey of hidden blessings
Leanne is learning to Drum-It’s nice to know I’m not the only nutcase!
My ten questions for you all are these;
1) What is your greatest achievement or proudest moment and why?
2) What was your favourite subject at school and can you remember a particular lesson?
3) If you could have fresh flowers delivered every day, which would you chose?
4) If you could employ ONE of the following, which would you have? A chef, a massuer/euse, a chauffeur, a gardener or a personal shopper?
5) What is you favourite book or story?
6) What was the last song or piece of music you listed to?
7) What makes you laugh?
8) When and what was the last thing you did for YOU?
9) If you could do anything you want today, what would you do?
10) If you were an animal, what would you be?
The past two days have been marked by the gorgeous blue skies and ever-increasing temperatures to the extent that by 10.00am yesterday morning it was too hot to be outdoors and we abandoned all thoughts of planting our flower beds as intended and retreated inside.
By midday the tiles were scorching hot and without shoes it was like walking on burning coals.
After the heat however came the rain storm, although we were clearly on the edge with only one clap of thunder, and it proceeded to rain like I have never seen here. Massive puddles formed quickly on the roads and we could hear the water pounding on the roof as we ate dinner. It was strangely comforting though as it reminded me very much of home and being on holiday in England.
This morning the clouds have disappeared and have been replaced by clear blue skies once more. Not only did the rain water all the plants but it also settled the dust which has plagued us all week.
We have our mountains back.
On a beautifully warm and sunny mid-morning Feri and I walked along the Chahar Bagh (Persian: “Four Gardens”) and into a park. What struck me immediately was how very green everywhere was. The trees and the grass were a vivid and verdant green which only comes from copious watering. Gardeners bearing hosepipes make sure that the Bagh-e-Bolbol (“Garden of the Nightingale”) is kept well-watered and the lawns and flower beds full of smiling pansies in full bloom were immaculate.
A marble pool filled with crystal clear water sits in front of the Hasht Behesht ( “Eight Paradises”) palace and the fountains spout cascades of water all the time whilst gentlemen abandon their bicycles and sit round on benches telling stories all the time rolling strings of prayer beads in the palms of their hands.
It is a peaceful and calming place and just as beautiful as the Hasht Behest pavillion which opens onto the gardens and draws visitors into its rooms.
Sadly, the upper story is closed due to restoration work but there is enough beauty to admire in the ground floor octagonal rooms without having to climb upstairs and it will be something to look forward to when we return.