postcards from our past for the present It took us about six years to fall in love with our Spanish home and to begin to appreciate its full value to us as both somewhere to escape, and to recharge our intellectual and emotional batteries… Arriving at this point we had survived the physical and mentalContinue reading ““PARADISE REGAINED…””


…BUT WHERE THE ALMOND blossom is ALWAYS WHITER I nearly titled this as a third straight “yearning” post, in the sense that after three months lock-down here in Oxford we are desperate to get back to our finca in southern Spain. But seeing as we are actually returning there tomorrow I decided on a catchierContinue reading “WHERE THE GRASS IS (nearly) ALWAYS BROWNER…”

THE FOLKS WHO WOULD LIVE ON THE HILL The story of the building of our home in southern Spain – in pictures.

We’re often asked by people we meet, and who are familiar with our life story, if we watch the TV show, Grand Designs (on the UK’s Channel 4). For the uninitiated, in 1993 Dido and I together with a small team of local builders and on a limited budget built a house on a ruggedContinue reading “THE FOLKS WHO WOULD LIVE ON THE HILL The story of the building of our home in southern Spain – in pictures.”


I’m sitting on my south terrace of my house in the Sierra Tajeda foothills as I compose this piece. To the right hand side of my laptop is a Jim Beam marked glass filled to the brim with Moscow Vodka and tonic, with a thick chunk of our home grown sweet lime floating on the top. EmanatingContinue reading “HEAVEN ON EARTH…”


This is presented with the presumption that people looking in are familiar with the concept of cholent. For those of you who may not know anything about this Sabbath staple of Ashkenazi Jewish winter cuisine (not to be confused with the Sephardic chamin) I would direct you to here, for a fairly concise explanation ofContinue reading “AN ILLUSTRATED GUIDE TO MAKING – OXTAIL CHOLENT”