the friend online
01 August 2008


Dog in B flat major (or a week in Liguria) - preview

Paddy Watkins describes an art-filled retreat in Italy

Sculpture by and image courtesy of Meg Hull.

Sculpture by and image courtesy of Meg Hull.
It was billed as 'Ligurian landscapes – a time for painting and reflection' and that, so amply, it was
  • Organised under the Quaker Retreat Group umbrella a small group of us, eight all told – six Quakers, an Anglican priest and her husband – united at Nice and were driven by Roger, our host, across the border into Italy and up to Villatalla, a few miles inland from the Italian Riviera

  • Roger and his Italian wife Marina built their guesthouse with the idea of it being a place for yoga and other spiritually minded groups to enjoy
  • It is nestled against a precipitous hillside of the Nervia valley where terraces of olive trees produce the notable small, sweet olives and fine oil
  • There are beautiful views of hills and mountains, always changing with the light
  • We were the only Quakers our hosts had come across, and were no doubt relieved we were not the straight-laced and pious bunch they might have suspected
  • They played a significant part in making the week so restorative
  • Even Bonnie, their amiable spaniel whose rear end never stopped wagging, was a therapy!

    Paddy Watkins

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    UN urges UK to improve human rights implementation
    Jez Smith
    News round-up
    ‘A bigger punch’ – do we need it?
    Ken Veitch
    Judy Kirby & Allistair Lomax
    Hearts and minds prepared goes forward
    Zélie Gross
    Where fiction meets reality: meeting with Ann Turnbull
    Tess Satchell
    Dog in B flat major (or a week in Liguria)
    Paddy Watkins
    Lost in translation in a Quaker context
    Jaana Erkkilä
    Tony Stoller & Trish Carn

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