If there is one thing (apart from fashion) that the Europeans do well it is formal gardens.
I spent an afternoon in the Jardins de Luxembourg just strolling around. It was a beautiful autumn day and lots of Parisians were out taking advantage of it.
The great thing about parks and gardens in Europe generally is that lots of people use them. Children come to play, couples come to picnic, people come to sit on the benches and read or just sit and watch the world go by.
I have used some pages out of a really old volume of The Girls Own Paper to make Christmas crackers. The spine had completely disintegrated and the pages were all falling out so it seemed only fitting to use them for something festive.
I will have them at my stall at the Craft Markets at the Claremont Showgrounds tomorrow (Friday 18) and also at Upmarket at UWA on Sunday 27 November.
What I like best about travel is just blending in with the locals and watching the world go by, rather than beating the well worn tourist trail. That's when you notice the minutiae of life and even the ordinary can be wonderful.
Having planned this trip months ago we had no idea that France would make it to the final of he Rugby World Cup nor that we would actually be in Paris the weekend of the final.
As you can imagine, the city was in full rugby final mode and excitement was running high. I (along with half of Paris it seemed) braved the cold weather to watch the game on a huge screen which had been erected outside the Hotel de Ville. Of course I was supporting the French so I joined in with all the audience participation!
I grew up in Ireland, so took the landscape very much for granted. Whilst I go back to visit regularly, this time I tried to see it though the eyes of a stranger and capture some images of the essence of Ireland.
Whist in Prague we took ourselves on an adventure. We got a bus to the old spa town of Karlova Vary which is about 200 kilometres west of Prague, near the German border. The trip took us through the countryside, which is intensively farmed, and through several small villages.
Karlova Vary itself was once a very magnificent spa town and has been wonderfully preserved, including the beautifully landscaped parks and gardens. Only occasionally you got a glimpse of a slightly faded splendour, but I think it just added to the character.