Sincerely, Loree is a lifestyle blog that focuses on travel, books, culture, fashion and slow living on the small Mediterranean island of Malta.

Tuesday, 13 October 2020

Life lately: October days, spooky reads and dead man's bones

 In just a few days it will be mid-October. Right now, some days feel like summer. Other days feel like autumn. Today was one of those days: grey skies, wind and bursts of rain. We're in the final stretch of the year. At work it will be completely crazy from now until the Christmas break. I can't bear to think about Christmas this year as, like everyone else, I have no idea what it will be like. But, for the time being, not thinking about it sounds like a good idea. 

Earlier this month we took our final swim of the year. It was absolutely lovely. There were hardly any people on the beach and the water was crystal clear. I didn't really want to leave but 2020 has been a great year for beach days - one of the few things we could really enjoy.

I'm also making the most of the mellow autumn  light to take as many photos as I can. The golden light makes the limestone buildings look magnificent and it really makes all the other colours pop. Since the light has lost its summer harshness, it's practically possible to take good photos at any time of the day without risking them being washed out because of too much sunlight. I never used to notice the quality of the light before taking photos became an obsession but I've now learnt to appreciate all its nuances (although I am far from an expert, of course).

October will, of course, bring Halloween with it but, as I've said before, it's a fairly new addition to the local calendar and I never really got into the whole affair. I have a few token ornaments that I take  out every year but they always look a bit sad and lonely as there's no real Halloween groove around our house. 

Spooky reads

So perhaps the next best thing to  'get into the mood' is to read a spooky book. A few years ago I had shared a list of Books for a spooky Halloween on my old blog. To be honest, I'm not a big fan of horror stories but, every now and then, I don't mind a spooky read. The real reason I don't delve wholeheartedly into this genre is that I have the sort of imagination that can make me scare myself half to death at just the slightest creaking of a door.

If you'd like a few more spooky recommendations I would add the following novels to the list: The Woman in Black by Susan Hill, The Tooth Fairy by Graham Joyce (a mixture of horror and dark fantasy) and House of Shadows by Pamela Hartshorne (although I saw the twist in this book coming from too far off for it to be scary in any way but there is still a spooky element to it). 

Dead man's bones

Before you all wonder why I'm writing about something so grisly, let me just explain that dead man's bones are a type of pastry that is popular at this time of the year. Although the name doesn't sound very appetising, the pastries are actually very good. The tradition of making pastries in the form of bones came to Malta from nearby Sicily. They basically consist of a layer of marzipan sandwiched between two layers of sweet pastry - shaped like bones, of course. The bones are generally covered in white icing but, these days, you can also find them covered in chocolate. I can assure you that they taste nothing like bones. Since Instagram no longer allows photos to be embedded into blog posts, you can take a look at some tasty bones on Jo's Delights IG page. Would you eat dead man's bones now that you know what they are and what they look like?

I will leave it at that for today. If the trees in your area of the world are changing colours, enjoy them and think of me. I have seen some breath-taking photos of jewel-coloured trees on some people's Instagram accounts and they are really a remarkable sight. It's no wonder that Anne Shirley said "I'm so glad I live in a world where there are Octobers". Take care and enjoy this beautiful season.


Salty Pumpkin Studio said...

I love the street photos. The shadows and light are inspiring.
The bone pastries are cute. The books are just what my reading list needs this time of year. Whatever the season brings, I pray you and yours are safe and happy.

Pipistrello said...

Beautiful photos, Loree. It's interesting, how in the modern world, it often takes some sort of external factor - like your interest in photography - to get us to notice the world in the same way that our ancestors would have done. As it was once important, and probably because we wouldn't have had so many distractions, people were generally incredibly aware of the subtleties of the world around us. Today there's a lot that passes us by.

Marzipan marrow? Now there's a thought.

Mary said...

I'll eat anything with marzipan/almond paste no matter the shape!! An almond croissant is always my favorite - especially when in Europe where they really know how to make the best ones!

Great post - glad you have enjoyed the days swimming at the beautiful beach. The views are so pretty along the streets and alleys. . . . . bringing back my short visit to your lovely island Loree.

Happy Autumn days dear. . . . . even though your trees aren't oaks pouring acorns non-stop on the roof as here!!!!!

La Contessa said...

THAT PHOTO with THE SHIP in the distance!!
But then I have THAT PIGGY to PROTECT ME!HA HA HA........he gets SCARED more frequently Than ME!
The Christmas catalogs have started to fill up my MAILBOX!
I suppose WE will get there but I'm with YOU lets not think about it YET!
YOU took me back to PUNTA ALA with the SEA shot and swimming!
THOSE WERE THE DAYS...........did I enjoy them enough while I was there?I do not think so..........XOX

Debbie Nolan said...

Ah Loree I disagree - you are a very talented and expert photographer. Your pictures and words (talented in writing as well) transport me to such lovely places in your part of the world.

I enjoy celebrating fall's arrival with pumpkin, cider, and apples galore but am not a fan of Halloween. Although I enjoy a scary novel. Take care and hope you are beginning to enjoy cooler days. Don't worry about Christmas - like you I will not make big plans but just wait to see what happens. Lets pray all will be okay and we can be with those we love best. Hugs!

Gattina said...

It's a real holiday place where you live and this year without tourists ! that's nice for inhabitants, in one way bad for the economy ! Here too autumn has started but not so nice, it's cold, grey an rainy and with the Coronavirus restrictions people are rather morose. Tonight we will get new rules ! I am really fed up, but there is no escape, all countries in the world are more or less victims too !

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