Monday, 28 November 2011

The dungeon

Being in the medieval city of Guadalest I would be dissapointed had there not been a dungeon.
Made out of stone, carved into the mountainside. Dark. No TV. No Toilet. Torture devices. Claustrophobic. No bed. Just like a proper dungeon should be. A place where they should put people like Breivik for a couple of years.





Still in Guadalest

Just thought I'd add a few more photo's.
This one below is the belltower for the village church and is quite possibly the landmark of Guadalest.


The gun in placement wall



...and another quick look at the stunning view. 

Guadalest Castle

The Guadalest Castle was originally constructed in the XII Century and it was reformed in the X Century and then again in XI Century. In 1644 it was affected by an earthquake and left to what it is today. 
The interior on the inside they've tried to keep as it was and they have also added a art gallery.



A picture of the kitchen, how it used to be, and the old cabinet full of porcelain. 
 
It was pretty awesome to walk around in here and get a feel for how things were done way-back-then.




Guadalest

 Located up in the mountains around 25km from Altea, is the tiny village of Guadalest.
It is perched on a pinnacle of a granite mountain and has fantastic views.

It used to be a place of strategic importance and the only way in through this little mountain village is through these doors:


In the 18th Century they were bombarded during the Spanish war of concession but apart from a few canon holes in the monastery walls the place remains intact. When you walk in past these doors you walk into a little tunnel and you come out on the other side at it feels like you've just been transported back to the 18th Century, apart from a few new features like this stairway:

The view from up here is breathtakingly beautiful. More pictures to come.


Sunday, 27 November 2011

Bruno, -the champagne cork lover

Bruno, the biggest one of my aunties dogs is an absolute sweetheart.
He  L O V E S  chasing after champagne corks, 



...and has his own collection of soft toys that he shows off.
It is honestly the funniest dog that I've come across.


Apart from all this he is also a highly dangerous guard dog, which you wouldn't believe looking at these photo's but his barks and his perfect set of teeth could scare off even Voldemort I reckon.

Foya Blanca

The last ten days I've been in Spain, Alicante to celebrate my mum's 60th birthday. A huge change from our little paradise island in Indonesia, in many ways. 
My auntie (and uncle) live here and it was great to finally be able to pay them a visit. My uncle was unfortunately not present as he is working in Korea at the moment but it was really good to re-connect with my auntie. 

Everything is really green and lush here and there were lemon, lime and orange trees growing everywhere. Also big juicy pomegranate fruit trees.







Jorunn has three lovely dogs and it was great doing walks with them every afternoon around in the area she lives in. 

Saturday, 26 November 2011

Wedding Boa Style

Just before we left our Paradise we got invited to our worker Hanok's wedding.
He's done things a little nontraditional and gotten his wife pregnant before they got married. They now have a daughter who is almost two years.
The weddings go for three days and there is a lot of live stock being slaughtered for the occasion. We went the last day where there is A LOT of people wanting to say a few words to the happily married couple. Unfortunately we got here for the beginning of the speeches and so we had an hour of listening to the priest blessing the couple in Bahasa Rotenese. Then the head of the village had his speech, then the family.

By looking at the couple's faces it looks like even they had enough of the speeches in the end. It could have been that or the hang over from the previous two nights of Sope drinking and hard partying.















We got to hide out underneath the shade with the rest of Hanok's family and got served some unidentified lumps in a clear broth soup and rice whilst in the background you could hear the squealing of a pig getting slaughtered in the middle of the speeches.
The rice was good.
The lumps neither of us had the stomach to face.




Sunday, 13 November 2011

Biku

So I am into my last days here in Indonesia on my way back to Europe to celebrate mum's 60th birthday. 
Finally this year Sascha and I managed to get to Biku and have a real proper girlie High tea afternoon lunch. (That for me turned into my dinner as well).  
 I think we must've spent two hours here and it was such a delight to catch up with Sascha again and she managed to put a big smile on my face for the rest of the day.

Biku is a great combination of a book store, antique store, tea lounge and restaurant. It is fusing a bit of the old Indonesian style with the new. 



The scones and real strawberries and cream is to die for. Especially when you haven't seen a Strawberry for a while and the tea was as always good. A great spot to go to for a real treat and some quality time with friends. 

Candles

Outside it is probably a bit over 30 degrees and humid,


  but it still doesn't stop me from lighting up the candles once the sun goes down. 















It brings a relaxed atmosphere to the lounge and I have the citronella candles pretending that the mosquitoes will stay away. 

Monday, 7 November 2011

My heart wanders

I've just finished reading an absolutely lovely book by a blogger called Pia Jane Bijerk. Sally has been following her blog for quite some time and she came over earlier last week to lend me the book, for more info on the story click here.

Full of inspirational pictures it was a treat to read.
Home is where the heart is. Lucky for me I found my homes scattered a bit here and a bit there. Norway and Bergen will always be in my heart, it is where I grew up and I have a lot of lovely childhood memories from there.
Then I met John and started travelling and I soon fell head over heels in love with Indonesia, especially with this quirky island we now call our paradise.
In the end we have Trafoi. Nestled high up in the mountains on the border of Switzerland, Austria and Italy. They are all different, they are all wonderful in their own ways. They all feel like home but still away.

So my heart wanders everywhere. I wouldn't want it any other way. To choose between any of them would be heartbreaking.
I only have a few more days left here in paradise and I have been working hard on my bracelets.
Finding inspiration everywhere I look. I know I will miss our little paradise when I leave and will look forward to returning here next year.
In the end I've been lucky to find a home within John's heart.

Saturday, 5 November 2011

A day at the beach

Whenever we are back here on the island sunbathing is something we very rarely do.
The beach is basically on our doorstep but I think I can count on one hand the times I've actually gone down to the beach to lay down and sunbathe this year.
Funny that. When I was in Norway this summer I would run out the door at the first sight of sunlight and press myself to sit out in cloudy, cold weather. I guess it comes down to wanting what you can't have.

Anyways, yesterday we had a brilliant beach day. We hopped on the motorbike and set off to a secluded bay. It is awesome here with no people around and the only beings you are sharing the beach with is the hermit crabs. The water is crystal clear and the snorkelling is awesome.

Having now learnt my lesson from earlier this year when I managed to get seriously sun-burnt in Bali I lathered on spf.30 and put a big hat on my head and then just enjoyed the company, peace and quiet and the smell of sunshine on my skin.


Wednesday, 2 November 2011

With a little help..

The lounge is all set up and clean with new cushion covers.
My cats are taking great pleasure to "help" me.
Taking turns to chase around after the mop pretending to hunt it down and kill it. Makes mopping a lot more fun, although it takes me twice as long.
In the end exhaustion takes over even for my feline friends.

Tuesday, 1 November 2011

Mandi

We have this old coconut holed out trunk that we use in our bathroom as our Mandi water. Every year we sand it down and put a new layer of epoxy on it to make it waterproof.

Then we pour water into it and use that water as our reserve shower water, toilet flush etc. for those times when we run out of water. We're getting water in from the village as the water in our well is way to salty. The village water is nice and fresh although you cannot drink it. Oh, and we don't have hot water. One tap, one temperature. Freezing in June/July, utterly refreshing come October and by November you'd want to spend as much time as possible underneath the little stone shower just to try and get re-freshed. The water out the front is like a bath-tub.

It is also nice to put flowers in this big urn.
I've decorated the bathroom shelf with shells and other treasures I've found on the beach.


Presents

We have two different bird families living in our grass roof.
Quite charming.
They leave me little presents every morning, like this beautiful feather.


I thought they would be more scared of the cats but the fact is they love to swoop down low and tease them and then fly off again. The old ones knows it is next to impossible to catch them and would rather sleep, while our young kittens love the chase. To no avail. I've still to see them catch a bird.