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My favourite things


Every once in a while I find something in an antique fair that makes me go: 'Wow!!!' and I literally just have to have it. Here's an example: A disjointed hare. Around where I live, these hares are meant to bring you good luck. Isn't he lovely? Pride of place in my study where I simply cannot stop smiling when I see him.Photo copyright SvD.Original link
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© Words and photos copyright Samantha van Dalen

  825 Hits

Radio- how to make an idiot of yourself publicly


What great fun I've had doing radio over the years! Sam at Susy Radio, Ridge Radio and Meridian FM. Whenever I have a nervous guest- all my shows are live- I suggest that they think of the interview like having a cup of coffee with a mate and having a good chinwag. It always works and they relax completely.Original link
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© Words and photos copyright Samantha van Dalen

  947 Hits

Of memories past.


'Yes, it was very good and glad you think so too.' This is a conversation I had with an old lover- I was 25 and he was 50, it was thirty years ago and our romance lasted for years. I had heard he was suffering with cancer and we renewed our contact. When I look back at all those years gone by and the way my life has turned out, I recall that he was the one lover who mattered a great deal. He taught me a lot about nature and about the excess of too much rum and sex. At his weekend forest home he had fashioned an open-air shower with a pipe from a nearby stream which poured cold water over you. Mountain crabs would nibble at your toes as you stood in this makeshift 'bathroom'. A chemical toile...
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© Words and photos copyright Samantha van Dalen

  942 Hits

The Hunt turns my legs to jelly


I was walking down the main street in our little 17th century village today when all of a sudden the most tremendous roar of horses hooves sounded suddenly behind me. As I turned around I had barely ten seconds to step out of the way as the local hunt, some fifty of them, so magnificent in their green tweed jackets, blazed past me along with their pack of foxhounds, gleefully chasing after them. Both lanes of traffic instantly ground to a halt to allow the thunderous ensemble to pass by. It was all quite a sight which literally took my breath away. If there was a fox somewhere in the mêlée, running for his life, I did not see him. I have to admit that the sight of the hunt is breathtaking to...
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© Words and photos copyright Samantha van Dalen

  887 Hits

Beef and onion pie to soak up the alcohol, of course & New Year's resolutions


This weekend I shall be imbibing rather a lot of booze as most other Brits will as we welcome in the New Year. At my age and with my life experience here's my advice for the New Year:1. Follow your own drummer: yourself. People will let you down, use you as  convenience and everything, including their interaction with you is relative and based on their own needs. Learn to be wholly self-sufficient.2. Remove all toxic people from your life- don't murder them but walk away from them. Repeat after me: if someone doesn't make you happy, it's time to say goodbye.3. Expect the worst- that way you'll be pleasantly surprised because if you have high expectations of others, you'll fall hard on your f...
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© Words and photos copyright Samantha van Dalen

  861 Hits

A Story of Mushrooms


Found on my walks and photographed as they lay.Photos copyright SvD.Photos copyright SvD.Original link
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© Words and photos copyright Samantha van Dalen

  881 Hits

The true meaning of Christmas


At this time of year there is a sense of frenetic urgency to overspend and overindulge almost as if without excess Christmas would be neither festive nor joyful. I would like to remind everyone that Christmas is about the Christ. Whether you are atheist or agnostic, Christian or Muslim or Jewish or whatever, the derivative of the word 'Christmas' is 'Christ'.The 25th day of December is associated with the birth of Christ, the son of God who was born of a virgin mother. The resonance of the idea of a Christ being is both powerful and moving. This was a man made of flesh and bones like you and I, and who was chosen by God to suffer and die. In the story of Christ we are essentially reminded th...
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© Words and photos copyright Samantha van Dalen

  832 Hits

Portobello mushroom and meatball broth


I get home from work at around 6.30pm which doesn't leave a lot of time to make a wholesome meal. I have recently begun making broths- a cross between a hearty full throttle meat-and-two-vegs and a light soup- using meat from my organic boxes delivered once per week. I love these boxes where you never know what you're going to get and you have to be as creative and in tune as possible in order to make nourishing sustenance out of them. Last week I created a lamb and spinach broth and this week: pork meatballs and portobello mushrooms.The pork mince was so light that it moulded effortlessly into balls (never press or squeeze too hard or you'll end up with dead weights). A pinch of thyme, salt...
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© Words and photos copyright Samantha van Dalen

  760 Hits

On a clear day you can see forever...


...both metaphorically and if you open your eyes wide enough. This morning on my walk:Glorious Northamptonshire. Photo copyright SvD.Original link
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© Words and photos copyright Samantha van Dalen

  736 Hits

A Christmas Story- if ever you're down, read this


This story was sent to me by my friend, Hardip Barot (in his own words):'I remember 3 years back bought one homeless guy free beers(!) and a bottle of wine with some dessert to go with it. To my surprise he gave me a gift of an expensive tie with tears in his eyes and said if I don't accept it, it will break his heart. Man, it touched me. He was all alone and thanked me for expressing kindness. I truly cherish that Christmas. I still have that tie. I dont wear it because it seems he must have stolen it from somewhere but looking at it, it reminds me of a cold Christmas night in Shoreditch..with only him on the road..at dawn..in tears and for me, Christmas was truly celebrated that night!!!''...
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© Words and photos copyright Samantha van Dalen

  830 Hits

My latest article on The Huffington Post


06 December 2016Photo copyright SvD.Original link
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© Words and photos copyright Samantha van Dalen

  463 Hits

A Story of Feathers


All taken on my walks and found as they lay. Photos copyright SvD.Original link
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© Words and photos copyright Samantha van Dalen

  820 Hits

Surviving Christmas On Your Own


This Christmas marriages will break up, old lovers will commit to one another, new lovers will find each other, families will argue, children will hate their presents, vegetarian guests will stick to spuds and sprouts, and granny will overdose on sherry. These people will all have something in common: each other. There is another side to Christmas that is overlooked: those who are alone. The elderly who have passed their use-by date, the divorced singletons who are persona non grata by virtue of being solo, the homeless, and those too impoverished to celebrate Christmas at all. Each of these people will feel desolate and unhappy on Christmas Day - please think of them.For those who are alone...
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© Words and photos copyright Samantha van Dalen

  804 Hits