Wild Wales

A review of “Wild Wales”

Walking the Old Ways

I’ve read and re-read Wild Wales many times. It remains for me the most evocative travel book ever written, and brings us closer to the real George Borrow than any of his other works.511oFOKi1rL._SX324_BO1,204,203,200_Wild Wales gives a stunning picture of how Wales would have been in 1854, not just the topography but the industrial and social conditions. But it is the pen-portraits of the people Borrow meets that lifts this way above the average travel memoir.

Along the way we find out a great deal about Welsh poets, a considerable amount about the medieval history of Wales.

Fascinating that at the time Borrow walked through Wales there were swathes of the population who didn’t speak English. Happily, Borrow spoke sufficient Welsh to bring these folk to life as well.

All of George Borrow’s books are well worth reading – he’s the most unfairly neglected of Victorian writers.

I’ve often…

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Like Ruth


Photo Copyright: Rochelle Wisoff-Fields

Here we are again and this week we’re gathered on a street in Jerusalem. We’ve come together to discuss our original stories for the week. This is the Friday Fictioneer’s group. Our hostess for the gathering is the talented and gracious author and artist, Rochelle Wisoff-Fields. The challenge for each of us this week and every week is to write a story with no more than 100 words, not counting the title. It’s supposed to have a beginning, middle, end, and be inspired by the picture prompt for the week. This week’s prompt was provided by Rochelle. Thanks, Rochelle. To read the other stories by group members, just click on the link below, then on the smiling frog. Next, follow the given directions.

18 October 2019

Genre: Human Interest/ Fiction

Word Count: 100 Words

Like Ruth by P.S. Joshi


Doris, her husband, and their small son had lived with her mother-in-law Marion for several years. Now John had been killed in an accident and her job wasn’t bringing in enough money. One day Marion came to her.

“Doris, my widowed brother in Chicago would like to have us come and live with him. He has a large house and is lonesome all alone.”

Doris thought of the story of Ruth and Naomi in her Bible.

     For, where you go, there I shall go, where you live, there I shall live…

She hugged Marion.

“Yes, Mom, we’ll go with you.”


Some of the Friday Fictioneers were curious about my daughter’s wedding. I’m enclosing photos taken at the wedding reception.



Sayjal also recently got a part in the popular weekly serial “Empire”. She’s not in every episode but was in the first one and recently in a fourth one. She plays the part of an agent for the main character Cookie Lyons played by the movie and TV star Taraji P. Henson. For those of you who receive my Facebook page, there is an Instagram scene on it. If you click on the scene, it will take you to the Instagram location for EmpireFox where you can click again and watch the scene. Thanks for the interest, Suzanne.

Life’s a Reflection~

Stunning pictures taken by Cindy Knoke from Olympic National Park.

Of what we see.

What we perceive,

depends on where we look.

Beauty is everywhere,

just waiting to be found,

even on the cloudiest days.

Cheers to you from Olympic National Park~

(Note: We are home at The Holler now. These photos were from our May trip. I wouldn’t want you to think we are never home!)

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Ship your oars

First, an adventurous and amusing story by Tallis Steelyard about the regatta in Avitas. Next, the offer of a book by Jim Webster with more about Avitas. A review by a pleased reader is included.

Tallis Steelyard

ship your oars

There are those who claim, not unreasonably, that usurers and those in their employ are persons sunk deep in perpetual misery. Indeed I confess there are times when I wonder if they are not trapped in a world of piles and perpetual constipation. Yet do not let appearances deceive you. I assure you that on propitious occasions, such as when a client is paying, usurers, lawyers and the rest of their ilk, do indeed know how to celebrate.

Thus at the end of summer, most of the usurers offices close, (if indeed they have reopened) and everybody who is anybody travels to Avitas for the regatta. This ancient event is considered one of the highlights of the season. Originally it appears to have been founded to celebrate the city’s close relationship with the River Dharant. Thus at a profoundly moving ceremony which opens the revels, the Mayor and officers of…

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Getting the bird

First, another amusing tale by Tallis Steelyard of Maljie a Temple Warden at the Shrine of Aea in her Aspect as the Personification of Tempered Enthusiasm and the capture of a preacher bird and cleaning of the Temple roof. Next, the offer of a book by Jim Webster which contains various tales by Tallis Steelyard taking place in Port Naain. A review by a pleased reader is included.

Tallis Steelyard

Getting the bird.jpg

The duties of a temple warden are effectively without limit. The list of jobs that need doing seems to stretch as far as the imagination of an archimandrite can reach. But one of the main duties is ensuring that the building remains clean.
Now obviously this can be easily achieved. A simple task to issue dusters and mops to the mendicants and in an hour or so, everything can be spotless. After all, those who visit the shrine are there to spend time on their knees in their devotions. It’s not as if they come in out of the rain to eat their lunch, leaving crumbs everywhere.

But the wildlife that invests a shrine can be an entirely different problem. Numerous species of small rodent seem to regard clerical vestments as an opportunity to dine with friends; a groaning board spread with goodies to share with all comers. Then there…

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The intricacies of livestock husbandry

First, an amusing adventure of Maljie, a Temple Warden at the Shrine of Aea in her Aspect as the Personification of Tempered Enthusiasm and a pet pig. Next, a book on offer by Jim Webster about the adventures in Port Naain of Tallis Steelyard and some Sedan chair racing. A review by a pleased reader is included.

Tallis Steelyard

The intricacies of livestock husbandry

This is another of those episodes from Maljie’s life that I heard from Laxey, the sub-Hierodeacon. It was just after he returned from his week-long silent retreat. Given that the food had been basically vegetables in one form or another, he was cutting himself thick slices of mott ham with the determined air of a man who had a lot of catching up to do. Indeed he might even have been stocking up ready for the next one.

Still when I think about it, the guilty party behind this story is in point of fact Halwallow Timbartson. This grandly named individual was a mott farmer in a small way just outside the city. He lived in one of those villages which is almost, but not quite, a suburb. At irregular intervals he would arrive at the local inn with a pile of tickets. He would announce ‘buy one and win…

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