January 2015

So, hey, another year another haggis and contented guests and friends.  Some new and some from previous years. Our ever present piper, Francesc playing pipes (at times accompanied by Enric), occasionally the mouth organ and at times accompanied in song by Bizmarck our baying giant schnauzer.

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The haggis was good, but that in itself is another story and the drams flowed in glasses raised to our bard, Robert Burns.  On each occasion we managed some Scottish country dancing and on one a good sing-song thanks to Bernat and Andrea.


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They came from afar as Perpignan and Barcelona and Jaume provided a fantastic group from Girona and around dressed in more or less some form of tartan attire.


Thank you one and all and here is to next year!




Whilst looking for a piece to recite next week for our Burns Supper, celebrating the immortal memory of the Scottish Bard, I came across these lines that may go some way to summing up what Charlie Hebdo stands for and what its cartoonists and journalists paid for with their lives.  A note introducing the poem states…Burns published this song in the Edinburgh Gazeteer in 1792, updating its political flavour to the period of the French Revolutionary Wars.  The personalities mentioned in the poem were outspoken radicals who, like Burns, sympathized with the Revolution –  at least in its early stages.


Here’s to health to them that’s awa,

Here’s a health to them that’s awa.

Here’s a health to Tammie, the Norlan’ laddie,

That lives in the lug o the Law!

Here’s freedom to them that wad read,

Here’s freedom to them that would write!

There’s nane ever fear’d that the truth should be heard,

But they whom the truth would indite!

(3rd verse of Here’s a health to them that’s awa – Robert Burns)


‘Beneath the rule of men entirely great

The pen is mighter than the sword’

A bright and cold start to 2015.  Just what winter should be like.  With our party of Hogmanay guests sated, cheery and on their way having spent two evenings of great merriment with us we locked up and made the five minute drive to the village, Sant Feliu de Pallerols.  Tired after two late nights (and early mornings) we wanted to clear our heads and do something to mark the 1st of January 2015….a wee climb up to the Santuario de Nostra Senyora de la Font de la Salut perched on the escarpment of Collsacabra at 1,030 (about 600m above Sant Feliu.

A huff and a puff up past some donkeys, a friendly robin and with short breaks to take in the view down over the Val de l’Hostales with the brightly snow capped Pyrenees beyond, it was beautifully clear.

We marked our arrival at the Santuario with the accompanying family snap.

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So here is to a happy and prosperous 2015 to you all and here’s to more writing!