Sarah Coles
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King of Colour – Edinburgh

Margot says you must see Kaffe Fassett at the Dovecot!  Kaffe Fassett?  It rings a bell, yes, at Alf and Niki’s wedding he and another gay man admired the jacket I was wearing.  It was faded black cotton, embroidered with pale yellow suns that I’d bought at a market in Dali, China for 20 dollars.  I was pleased at the compliment but when he introduced himself I’d never heard of Kaffe Fassett, quilter, embroiderer extraordinaire.  Since then I have, and wish I had talked and asked more.  So now in Edinburgh, off to the Dovecot.  On the walls are dozens of brilliant...
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2023 Late April in Edinburgh 67 bus stop at North Bridge, then nearly an hour on the 67 to Pencuik. winding through  suburbs with the prim little houses (based on crofts?), warehouses and shopping centres of south Edinburgh, and sometimes glimpsing the Pentland Hills.  Thank heavens builders don’t put houses on hills unless they have to, they want it flat, leaving jagged country gloriously free.   A few fields and then – sorry Scotland – a typical mean Scotch village, Rosslyn.  The driver calls, and several of us get out. A fancy visitors centre, crowded, lies at the end of a lane.  £7.50...
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2022 – GREECE AGAIN, 1. Athens. Delphi and the Corycian Cave

Greece, Greece, we must go to Greece, says B.  He’s 91.  I get tickets. Why am we so smitten by Greece?  From the first time I saw Athens, coming in by bus and glimpsing the Parthenon floating on the Acropolis I have loved the place. Forget the slavery, men’s views on women, their bellicosity and infighting, that touchy Achilles, their religion which has nothing of transcendence or universal love, and think of the Greek love of beauty – the sight of a beautiful naked body! (why did this vanish with Christianity?) – their curiosity and friendliness, their openness to every idea. ...
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2022 – GREECE AGAIN, 2. The Peloponnese and Athens

Over the new bridge and the blue Gulf of Corinth onto the Peloponnese.  A peninsula. PATRAS Industrial buildings all the way to the port of Patras, happily not that far.  We are disgorged at the dock for Italian ferries.  No hotel booked, but eventually a taxi comes and I tell him the Astir Hotel because my ipad showed a swimming pool on its roof.  A large, dark, shiny impersonal hotel, used for conventions, weddings and the like.  Yes, a room, and when we get there it is a view (oh how views matter!) across the gulf to Byron’s Messolongi. A day to spare, and I walk – it’s some way – to...
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May 2022. A lift to Cheesefoot Head. The distant blue chimneys are Fawley Oil Refinery on Southampton Water (?). Wheat, here not tall yet. Path strewn with massive flints. Apron of open downland spreads out for miles. Sporadic sun lights the ground with fleeting, angels. Path becomes hedged. Jack-by-the-Hedge, also known as Garlic Mustard for its smell when rubbed (must try). Blue ground ivy. Blue self heal. Mostly coarser than the flowers of spring. Sapphires of speedwell. White butterflies, and cow parsley which I imagine wafts a gentle scent and then I see through a gap beyond huge fields of...
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