|Good thing I took this picture - I've rediscovered the dogs' brush!|
|The dining table gets the morning sun - a good place to start the day.|
For travelling purposes any pen will do. The first draft of a book has to be written with my Parker inkpen. Stationery is ridiculously expensive over here. The Chinese bazaars do a roaring trade with their cheap notebooks and disposable biros with me but the cost of ink is prohibitive. I brought cartridges back from England in August and a trip to Spoleto, Italy saw me re-stock after finding a quaint, old-fashioned toy and stationery shop where the prince of ink was not greater than that of oil, gold and saffron combined.
For Christmas I received a rather fancy notebook which has sections for hotels, sights, cities etc, with each page having handy headings. I have used it twice already - Seville and Antequera. It is all rather organised for me, but it did prompt me to put things down that I often forget - the cost of coffee and entrance fees being two of the main culprits. I like the spiralbound notebooks with plastic and cardboard pockets from Paperchase. they are very useful for keeping pamphlets, tickets and other bits and bobs in one place and relevant to the writing. Just looking at a ticket can bring back memories of a trip.
Ernest Hemingway said that you should only write about a place once you've left it, to give you perspective (I paraphrase). He's right, but keeping rough notes and memorabilia are essential for someone with a disorganised cerebrum. And so I continue to write, in any place I can find space, about the places I have been, surrounded by my aide memoirs.
|The palace at Caserta, one of the places in my next book|
City Chronicles: A Little Bit of Italy