Monday, June 29, 2009
Sunday, June 28, 2009
I spent the entire day organizing the fabrics, mainly on colors or collections. There were even fabrics I had forgotten I have!
Here's the result! The stash-cupboard is filled to the brim with fabrics (above) and what I didn't have space for is stored on top of the sewing chest. Not that bad - huh?! :) Well, I have to confess there is left a tiny heap with fabrics on the floor, which is blue fabrics for the Colorado Star blocks I'm working on. That's allowed - isn't it?! You may ask if I did the sewing chest too? The answer is NO - not this time! I know I one day have to do that one too, but not today! :) It's going to be interesting to see what I discover there! :))
As you may understand I haven't done much sewing the last days. I've basted the place mats and the small tablecloths, but I'm waiting for some quilting threads I ordered the other day - so that job is stuck at the moment. I'll see what I'll make next....
Monday, June 22, 2009
Saturday, June 20, 2009
Sunday, June 14, 2009
Some of the vacoas trees and its fruit.
Roots of a very old tree.
A gazebo in "Grand Bassin".
Ever since I settled here in 2003 I have wanted to visit the botanical garden in Pamplemousses - Sir Seewoosagur Ramgoolam Botanical Garden. It is not that I haven't been there before; I've been there twice, but never on my birthday. Either the weather has been nasty or my back has not behaved. This time I really wanted to go - no bad back and the weather was reasonable in the early morning. We left the house at 06:30 in the morning to catch the bus to Port Louis. We are both early birds, so no problem being out on the street that early. We hit the rush over; the bus took nearly one hour to reach Port Louis - usually it takes less than 30 minutes. In Port Louis we walked it up to Immigration Square where we caught a bus heading north. The garden is situated approx 11 km (7 miles) north of Port Louis, the bus ride didn't take that long and there were no rush over at that side.
Last time we visited the garden we didn't pay any entrance fee, but this time we had to. Mauritians pay 25 rs while I had to pay 100rs - as a non-Mauritian. I don't think that is fair - I am married to a Mauritian. I didn't think of bringing my "alien card" (residency permit), but according to the ticket officer it is only the National Mauritian ID card that is valid. Oh well - 100rs isn't a fortune though... I believe we were the first visitors that morning - it was so quiet and relaxing - pure solitude.
The garden's origins go back to 1729 when a French colonist acquired about half the present site, then called Mon Plaisir. Governor Mahé de La Bourdoonais bought it in 1735, and started a vegetable garden for his Mon Plaisir Château. The garden was also used as a nursery to encourage the growth of plants imported from Europe, the east and South America. In 1770 the garden became the private property of Pierre Poivre, the administrator of the island. In 1810 - when the British took over - it reverted to government ownership, but sadly the British neglected the garden. In 1849 the British horticulturalist James Duncan reinvented the garden as an arboretum for palms and other tropical trees. Today there are approx 500 species of plants, of which 80 are palms and 25 are indigenous to the Mascarene Islands. The entire area covers approx 93 acres (approx 38 hectares).
Morning atmosphere over the water lily pond - the huge Victoria amazonica lilies from the Amazon.
Wednesday, June 10, 2009
Sunday, June 7, 2009
Tuesday, June 2, 2009
The blog owner trying to be brave climbing a very old and huge tree that most probably was blown down by a cyclone. Look how big the trunk is!
Curepipe Botanical Garden was created in 1870 and nowhere near as large or impressive as the one in Pamplemousses, but it is a nice and quiet spot just a few minutes walk from the cacophony of the town.
Part of the garden.
My beloved bakery not far from the garden... Waiting in vain for it to open - we thought it was closed during lunch time - but got to know it is closed Mondays. I dare say this bakery makes the yummiest cakes on the island! :) ...We have tasted a lot of cakes in different places... :)
Trou aux Cerfs - the vulcanic crater.
After a busy weekend sewing log cabin blocks, a trip out was well deserved. Actually I'm looking for more shelves for my fabrics, so we decided to go to a furniture shop just outside Curepipe. I know what kind of shelves I need, but the furniture shop didn't have what I'm looking for. It was too early to go home, so we decided playing tourists in Curepipe.
Curepipe is the highest town on the plateau - approx 550 meters (1800 feet) above sea level. A malaria epidemic hit the island in 1867, which caused thousands of people to flee infested Port Louis for the healthier uplands. Curepipe is cool in the hot summers, but the town is often swathed in clouds. According to lowlanders, Curepipe has two seasons; the little season of big rains and the big season of little rains! Always bring an umbrella - it can rain without warning! :) Mark Twain described Curepipe as "the nastiest spot on earth".... But he has also written; "You gather the idea that Mauritius was made first and then heaven, and that heaven was copied after Mauritius"....
Trou aux Cerfs (approx 650m - 2130 feet - above sea level) is an extinct volcanic crater. It is approx 100m (328 feet) deep and 1km (0,62 miles) in circumference. It is one of the "must see" places on the island, and yesterday morning there were already quite some tourists there.
Panoramic view from the crater.