Tag Archives: holidays

Footprints washed by the waves.


First tentative steps down to the sea turn into a dash as she feels the wet sand between her toes and realises that this is a place where she is going to have a lot of fun!  My little water baby.

One from our Christmas holiday, and my first pass at the wordpress photo challenge this week: the rule of thirds.  I love taking black and white shots of my aquatot using the rule of thirds, but without the bokeh, so that she is framed clearly in her world at that moment in time.

Next, I’ll maybe look for some macro inspiration in the great outdoors. I’ve got lots in my archives, but as we’re heading to the beach again tomorrow I may see what I can find while I’m there…

Word for Wednesday: x is for xenial.

Today feels a bit sad day really, as my Dad took the long flight home to England after four lovely weeks as our house guest.  With the flight alone being a 34 hour round trip, friends and family from home who come visiting are always invited to stay as long as they can.  It is a very long, expensive journey to do as a short stay.

We love having guests and offering them our hospitality.  Brunei isn’t the most exciting place on any tourist map, but it is lovely to be able to share our everyday life, and the sights and sounds that we are used to with our nearest and dearest.

Most importantly, our little girl and her granddad have had an amazing time together and are thick as thieves now.  At least we have FaceTime, so we will be able to catch up with him again at the weekend, but I think she is going to get a bit of a shock when she wakes up tomorrow and her ‘gaggy’ isn’t there. Such is expat life I guess.

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I’ll admit I don’t have a raft of true ‘x’ words that sprang immediately to mind for this week’s challenge.  Although lots of unwanted ‘ex’ words broke through unbidden into my thought process!  Many true ‘x’ words are very technically to do with science or medicine, so when I stumbled upon xenial, I knew it was the perfect choice.

Xenial (adjective).

  • of, relating to, or constituting hospitality or relations between host and guest and especially among the ancient Greeks between persons of different cities / relationship / customs.
  • pertaining to hospitality.
  • hospitality, especially to visiting strangers.
  • the friendly relationship between a host and guest.

Word derivation: Greek xenios xenial (from xenos guest) + English -al

First known use: 1834.

“Xenial’ is a word which refers to the giving of gifts to strangers. . . . I know that having a good vocabulary doesn’t guarantee that I’m a good person. . . . But it does mean I’ve read a great deal. And in my experience, well-read people are less likely to be evil.”

(Lemony Snicket, The Slippery Slope).


Stealing the limelight from feathered friends.

Taupe is not a colour I am usually drawn to, so I didn’t have a raft of photos already in my archives to consider for this week’s colour challenge from Jennifer Nichole Wells.  So I was pretty pleased to find this gorgeous lady today.  I thought she was a lovely shade of taupe.  She was preening her feathers whilst basking in the sun, and was more than happy to model for me.  Even so, she was not my favourite model of the day. Not even close.


That prize goes to this little guy.  Yes, okay he’s still kind of brown, but definitely not taupe.  He’s more an orangey, reddish-brown. But what does the colour matter?  He’s a baby orangutan!!

I have been in Borneo for three and a half years, and this is the first time I’ve seen orangutans.  It was a truly indescribable, incredible experience.  He and another orphaned young male are currently both being rehabilitated at the Rasa Ria Resort Orangutan Sanctuary in Sabah, Borneo.  They roam free on a 64 acre site, fending for themselves and learning to live in the wild.  But they can go to the feeding station for fruit top-ups and some extra sugar cane if they are feeling peckish.  That sugar cane was a big hit, I can tell you!


I have a whole folder of photos of the two young orangutans, but I’ll save them for another post, instead of hijacking this one any further.  She really was a very pretty goose; it’s a shame she was just never going to be able to compete with a pair of cheeky young orangutans for wow factor!