Blog Archives

Shamwari, arrive as a guest, leave as a friend

Shamwari, arrive as a guest, leave as a friend

Posted on: 25th July 2018| By: Marielle

  Shamwari … it’s a name whispered with much reverence when speaking of game reserves in the Eastern Cape. Shortly before we set off for Tuscany-Provence it was our privilege to spend an inspiring four days there. Most of us South Africans can’t afford to get past Shamwari’s entrance gates … this is five-star territory,…
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A study in two tone

A study in two tone

Posted on: 18th July 2018| By: Marielle

       Shapes, lines, symmetry. Texture and contrast. That’s what black-and-white photography loves. A non-distraction of colour promotes a clarity of line. And without distraction, the tonal shades and shadows in-between begin to play mind tricks on you … creating optical illusions. Above: design flair in Provence.   Nuclear warfare? The Apocalypse? A warning against…
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Dedicated to you

Dedicated to you

Posted on: 11th July 2018| By: Marielle

Part of a giant poster of South Africa at O.R. Tambo airport. We’re home! We love travelling but, oh, we do so also love touching down in our beautiful country and stepping back into our lovely home in Knysna. And this post is to you … all my friends who responded with such enthusiasm and…
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An unconventional wedding

An unconventional wedding

Posted on: 9th July 2018| By: Marielle

  So … the principal reason for our trip to Israel … and by extension, Tuscany, and Provence. THE WEDDING. It was the celebration of a special nephew of Hirsh’s. It was also the most unconventional wedding we’ve been to. The setting was a vineyard originally established by Baron de Rothschild (actually, Abraham Edmond Benjamin…
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Teasing life from sand

Teasing life from sand

Posted on: 6th July 2018| By: Marielle

Israeli farming technology is unbelievably sophisticated. Watering of crops is done via drip techniques which, in many cases, is computerised and is often remotely controlled by phone. Below, at top left, the soil is being sterilised under plastic to rid it of bacteria that has accumulated after crops and plantings.            In this desert…
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Sneaking to the border

Sneaking to the border

Posted on: 6th July 2018| By: Marielle

Palm trees, palm trees, everywhere You don’t come to Israel for its beauty. You come here to get your eyes opened. Where we are in the south, the country is flat and arid. Other than the dusty tree groves and assiduously tilled farmlands, it’s baked earth and trimmed palm trees. As you drive around, there…
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Negev wine-maker

Negev wine-maker

Posted on: 5th July 2018| By: Marielle

One of hobbyist wine-maker Amnon Honig’s most anticipated (and celebrated) occasions is when Hirsh comes to town! Hirsh has been informally tasting, commenting and giving helpful suggestions and direction on Amnon’s cabernet sauvignon vintages since 2003 (!). He even sends Hirsh his latest vintages by mail — with disastrous consequences). They’ve always arrived smashed to…
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Negev cultural tour

Negev cultural tour

Posted on: 5th July 2018| By: Marielle

Among the many things the Israelis are particularly noted for is the respect they afford, and the efforts they go to, to care for their people. Education and culture are foremost in importance, as is the nurturing and support of the sick and ageing population. In the smallest of communities, there are schools, community centres,…
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Negev creativity

Negev creativity

Posted on: 5th July 2018| By: Marielle

During our stay on a Moshav in the Negev Desert, we’re very fortunate to be staying in a wonderfully creative home. Plenty of artistic talent running in Hirsh’s entire family! I feel compelled to share some of it …                   Painted butterflies in the bathroom … flitting around the shower door, up the…
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Farming in the Negev

Farming in the Negev

Posted on: 2nd July 2018| By: Marielle

I’ve always told friends that Israel is an industrious nation … forward thinking, tough and resilient, immensely hard-working. So, on our first morning here, what did we do? We went out into the fields and got working. Up early before the sun gets too fierce (and we thought Tuscany was hot!), the task of the…
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