We’re out at last! First day post-lockdown in Italy. Like Basil Fotherington-Tomas, I was saying, “Hello clouds! Hello sky!” as I skipped (well, walked) along.
For those of my readers who are not familiar with this character, he appears in the book “Down with Skool!”, written in the 1950s, purportedly by one Nigel Molesworth, a boy in an English Prep school.
The delightful cartoons which pepper the book’s pages are by the great Ronald Searle.
Molesworth’s judgement of Fotherington-Tomas is severe: “you kno he say Hullo clouds hullo sky he is a girlie and love the scents and sounds of nature … he is uterly wet and a sissy” (Molesworth’s spelling is also quite erratic).
Well, I’m not utterly wet and a sissy (although I do admit to being a bit of a nerd), but my joy of finally being let out of my apartment is uncontainable.
Hello birds! (even if they are filthy urban pigeons)
Hello ancient church!
Hello canal of Milan!
Hello bridge over the canal! (even if you are a pretty ugly bridge)
It’s great to be out here and see you all again!
We now just have to hope that we don’t get too much of a spike back up in the numbers, otherwise they’ll send us once more into lockdown …
I like writing, but I’ve spent most of my life writing about things that don’t particularly interest me. Finally, as I neared the age of 60, I decided to change that. I wanted to write about things that interested me.
What really interests me is beauty. So I’ve focused this blog on beautiful things. I could be writing about a formally beautiful object in a museum. But it could also be something sitting quietly on a shelf. Or it could be just a fleeting view that's caught my eye, or a momentary splash of colour-on-colour at the turn of the road. Or it could be a piece of music I've just heard. Or a piece of poetry. Or food. And I’m sure I’ve missed things.
But I’ll also write about interesting things that I hear or read about. Isn't there a beauty about things pleasing to the mind?
I started just writing, but my wife quickly persuaded me to include photos. I tried it and I liked it. So my posts are now a mix of words and pictures, most of which I find on the internet.
What else about me?
When I first started this blog, my wife and I lived in Beijing where I was head of the regional office of the UN Agency I worked for. So at the beginning I wrote a lot about things Chinese. Then we moved to Bangkok, where again I headed up my Agency's regional office. So for a period I wrote about Thailand and South-East Asia more generally. But we had lived in Austria for many years before moving to China, and anyway we both come from Europe my wife is Italian while I'm half English, half French - so I often write about things European. Now I'm retired and we've moved back to Europe, so I suppose I will be writing a lot more about the Old Continent, interspersed with posts we have gone to visit.
What else? We have two grown children, who had already left the nest when we moved to China, but they still figure from time to time in my posts. I’ll let my readers figure out more about me from reading what I've written.
As these readers will discover, I really like trees. So I chose a tree - an apple tree, painted by the Austrian painter Gustav Klimt - as my gravatar. And I chose Abellio as my name because he is the Celtic God of the apple tree.
I hope you enjoy my posts.
http://ipaintingsforsale.com/UploadPic/Gustav Klimt/big/Apple Tree I.jpg
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3 thoughts on “HELLO CLOUDS! HELLO SKY!”
Oh ,Yes that canal which came as a great surprise when I came to Milan two years ago to look at the statues on the roof of the Duomo and went on to explore no less than 25 churches,and most of the art galleries.It is a fascinating city full of unforgettable art and some enchanting parks.
Thanks for the comment! I’m glad you enjoyed Milan. It is under-appreciated by many visitors to Italy, no doubt because of its reputation as an industrial and commercial city. As for the canal, the plain around Milan is cross-crossed by old canals, many of them falling into ruin. Which is a pity.
Thanks again for writing!