Crown or Crucify

Crown or Crucify 2

There is something about the cross that compels us to make a choice, either for him or against him. You can’t find a middle ground when it comes to Christ, even though at times we try to. (Fr. Sunny John O. Carm. )

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A Winter Wonderland -Picture Speak

“I wonder if the snow loves the trees and fields, that it kisses them so gently? And then it covers them up snug, you know, with a white quilt; and perhaps it says, “Go to sleep, darlings, till the summer comes again.”- Lewis Carroll

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Nainital, in Uttarakhand, India. I’ve lived and worked here and have lovely memories of this hill town.

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A visit To A Home On A Parcela

A ‘parcela’ means a large plot of land in the suburbs or outskirts of a city. They’re usually very big plots….going into acres of land. Back home, they’re called ‘farm houses’ even though there’s no real farm or farming happening on the land.

This was the first time I was visiting one which was private; the family lives there. Many such places are either rented out during vacations to tourists or then they’ve been commercialized as party venues with a crew of party planners who do everything for you. So, this was a first for me and I loved the place that was nestled in the lap of nature, so to say, and our hosts were gracious people.

Here are a few pictures that’ll take you on a tour around the house; no inside pics…it is a private residence! Even so, I’d like to add, the interiors were done up beautifully and tastefully.

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We drive up to the house (parking)

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Our hostess walks us along the driveway to the entrance….but we stop on the way to pluck a type of maracuja off the tree, and proceed to taste the fruit before we go ahead…no fruit gets fresher than this – fresh, off the tree, and sun-ripened fruit!

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One of the dogs accompanies us to the door.

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The part of the casa that opens out onto spreading green foliage – garden, tall trees…awesome place!

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Looking out at the far boundaries of the property, from the terrace.

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View on the left…

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Terrace sit-out…loved it!

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The outdoor barbecue area with picnic table and benches.

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The pool was so inviting!

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We come down to walk around and feel the beauty of nature envelope us.

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The patio…

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Patio…

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This little one was the cutest of the three dogs and was aware of it!

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Rows of fabulous white roses.

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I couldn’t help clicking this!

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The Maracuja tree that stopped us in our tracks and got us eating the (unforbidden) fruit! That yellow submarine shaped thing hanging behind the flowers is a kind of maracuja.

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That’s what we were munching on…bright, orangey flesh, full of little seeds!

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Walking down a path lined with white rose bushes to see the vegetable patch and nursery.

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A closer look at the lovely barbecue area…

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I had a moment of fright and panic on the patio where I was relaxing with my legs stretched out…you don’t see it? A lizard! And I’m terrified of these creepy crawlies… :O

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But my attraction to natural beauty got the better of me…I picked up courage and myself…crept fairly close and clicked a pic of this gorgeously coloured creature….(but I still remain terrified of lizards!)

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The three musketeers…one, the German Shepherd, doesn’t belong to the family, but you’d never know! He spends his entire day here and retires to his own home and family at night!

In retrospect, though I love the countryside (I’ve lived in one such place, back home) and at the time, as I was soaking in nature’s delightful ambiance; the peace and quiet…was so inviting and encompassing that I wanted to stay there forever, I know I can’t do that. I love the countryside, the wide open spaces, the tranquility – but I’m a city girl at heart. No, I don’t have a hectic social life and a nightlife on the town is non-existent. But I do prefer to live in a city and take frequent trips to relax in the quieter areas of the place…a get-away place! I’d feel pretty isolated if I were to live forever in a house on a parcela, however beautiful, attractive, and comfortable it was.

 

Picture Speak – By The Sea

“Look at that sea, girls, all silver and shadow and vision of things not seen. We couldn’t enjoy its loveliness any more if we had millions of dollars and ropes of diamonds. L.M. Montgomery, Anne of Green Gables

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“A fragrant breeze wandered up from the quiet sea, trailed along the beach, and drifted back to the sea again, wondering where to go next. On a mad impulse, it went up to the beach again. It drifted back to sea.” –Douglas Adams

Joy Over The Weekend- Picture Speak

I usually do not go for a walk on Sundays. My Sunday mornings are dedicated to getting in shape and ready for church. I get back from church half an hour after mid-day if I don’t stay to chat over a cup of tea…and I’m ravenous by then having had breakfast at 8.00 am. Anyway, what I’m saying is by the evening, I’m in such a state of languidness that a walk in the evening, which is routine, is scratched off my list! But, not so this past Sunday. I did go for a walk… and on my way back I ran into the twins and the parents. Amu, one of the twins, wanted me to go for another walk with them and wouldn’t take ‘no’ for an answer. She took my hand in her little pudgy, warm hand… and trust me, “no” was definitely not an option…my heart was all mushy and oozing love! I went along. And I’m glad I did. You’ll know why when you see these pics! The videos bring out the fun, though, too bad I can’t upload them here! But you can hop over to my facebook page http://www.facebook.com/dstepladder2hope That’s where I’ll be uploading them.

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The park by the sea. Always full at weekends and holidays!

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“Driving in my car, feeling like a star, driving down the street in my car…vroom, vroom!” That’s their song as they go “driving like Papa!”

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The corner with the slides…and on weekends the shops and game stalls too!

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Time to return the cars and go home…

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…But not before buying some flying propeller discs.

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We did want to get a cup of coffee at this cafe but opted to get dinner instead at a restaurant close by!

Needless to say, I was quite ready for bed when we got back home. I was a totally contented Gramma!

But I did have some ‘flops,’ literally on Saturday. These pics will tell you about it.

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I decided to buy some empanadas and a slice each of ‘Yogurt Diet Berries’ & ‘Nueces Kuchen’ for lunch. The parcel of dessert sitting on the parcel of empanadas slipped and fell to the ground!

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Two knives and some scraping and putting together… and I had a decent enough slice of yogurt cheesecake and walnut pie to dig into!

I have to mention an old gentleman in a hat who was watching the fiasco on the street and said comfortingly: “No se preocupe. Estara bien!” (Don’t worry. It will be ok!)

How wonderful to run into such people when you think your dessert is lost!

 

 

 

Picture Speak

It was six in the evening. The sun was lower on the horizon. The moon, all three-fourths of it was up in the sky. Caught between the palm trees in the park…

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“Agua…mucha agua,” say two little voices in total awe.

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A few steps the other way…the moon is like a pearl entwined!

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