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A Tumble of Questions

I am a tiny bit unwell, this rainy old morning, and have nothing interesting to say. So I've gathered some questions from tumblr, just for the fun of it. Maybe you would like to share your own answers to them in the comments section? That would be lovely.

If you could move to a foreign country, which would it be?

England, if I could live in the countryside. But as I have loved its history and literature for so long, and was raised with other people's love for it, I feel English in my soul and to actually stand on the green hills of Albion almost seems unnecessary.

Name three books you keep rereading through all your life?

The Anne of Green Gables series, the Riddlemaster of Hed series, Robert Frost's Complete Works.

If you were set in only one season, what would it be?

Spring. Cool, quiet, lush and flowering, with bewitching nights, wild-hearted storms, and lovely days - not too long - of gentle warmth. I feel such hope in spring, even though I know summer is coming.

What is your favourite perfume?

Rose for everything. Rose talcum powder, Yardley Old English Rose perfume, rosehip soap, rosehip creams, rose drawer sachets.

Describe your dream home?

A small old-fashioned cottage in quiet countryside surrounded by trees and hedges and a dreaming garden. It doesn't have a chimney for I dislike the sound of open fires, but its neighbours do as I love the smell of hearthfire smoke. A village is within walking distance and town not too far on a bus. My daily strolls would take me along peaceful lanes overlooking green meadows and wildflower fields. None of this exists in any part of NZ I have visited (although it used to) nor probably in England these days either! Thank goodness for old books; my heart lives in them.

What film could you watch over and over?

The BBC 2009 version of Emma. Honourable mention to Ever After and Ladyhawke.

Tea or coffee?

Tea. English Breakfast by preference, although Earl Grey for the quietest moments. I've never done more than sipped coffee once my entire life. I can not bear even the smell of it. Of course, everyone who surrounds me is a conoisseur of it.

Summer rain or autumn rain?

The former, because summer always leaves me so desperate and rain is a relief.

And you?


  1. I adore this, Sarah. It's been far too long since I last popped into your lovely online space, and it is as beautiful as ever.
    I already live in the foreign country of my choice, France. But if I were forced to choose a second, it would be a tie between Italy and England. // the Anne of Green Gables series, A Tree Grows in Brooklyn, Where the Red Fern Grows // spring. // lavender, everything. // a decent sized flat in Paris, the 6th, 7th, or 16th arrondissements. Decorated cute and cozy with florals everywhere and a working fireplace. // Midnight in Paris. // Tea, earl grey. // summer rain.

    1. It is so lovely that you are living in the country of your dreams. :-)

  2. these are always fun!

    live anywhere? england, in the most rural spot possible. runner-up would be somewhere in the countryside in slovakia or similar area...

    3 books? today, i'll say "beauty" (robin mckinley), "earthsea" series, "wind in the willows". maybe "possession" (byatt), "jonathon strange & mr norrell", "lord of the rings", or "a little princess"...but in no way could i ever pick just 3!

    one season? autumn. mid-to late autumn feels like everything is ending and yet beginning again to me. and it's cool after the torment of summer.

    favorite perfume? how to pick just one?! rose attar will be a contender, but shalimar and many others are too.

    dream home: isolated. rural. a river or very big stream nearby. away from the sea, with rolling hills about. a large-but not huge- old, rustic stone house with leaded glass windows and spacious rooms, great hearths, containing a library, a still-room for my herbs and for brewing things, a wine cellar, a huge old kitchen, a south-facing vegetable garden, many ancient trees, beautiful plants including a rose garden, and a small stable for a horse or two and perhaps a few other creatures.

    film to watch over & over? "the illusionist" or "chocolat" or "vanity fair" or "enchanted april"...

    tea or coffee? TEA, always and no questions. every kind of wonderful tea except fruity stuff. especially a lovely darjeeling or one of the amazing oolongs, or lapsang souchong in winter.

    summer or autumn rain? oh, autumn, definitely. as long as it's not part of one of these dreadful hurricanes.

    1. I love Robin's Beauty book, my copy is so old and battered now from many rereadings. (I didn't like her second attempt at the story.) Also Earthsea - that is another I read at least yearly. And I watched the movie of Little Princess just last week :-)

      Your dream house sounds wonderful.

  3. Oh I love this! Let's see...

    I would live in Wales. My ancestry is heavily welsh and even before I knew that I was very drawn to the country full of history and mythology.

    Little Women, works of Edgar Allen Poe and Garden Spells by Sarah Addison Allen, but there are many, many more that I re-read.

    Hmm, season is hard. I love the spring and summer flowers but my heart sings during autumn and winter. So, I'd say I'd exist on the cusp just between autumn and winter.

    I can't wear perfume anymore, but I have a body wash/soap I love that is orange/ginger scented.

    My dream home has always been an old farmhouse in the mountains. Even better would be if we could have those mountains be along an ocean.

    Just like books, I tend to watch films over and over. Practical Magic, Witches of Eastwick and Pride & Prejudice (Mathew McFayden version), just to name a few.

    I loathe coffee and rarely drink tea and then it's mostly fruity teas. So, I'll go with water. :-)

    Autumn rain, no question.

    This was fun. Thanks!

    1. How lucky you are to have Welsh heritage! It's such a magical place.

      I loved Matthew McFadyean in P&P but couldn't abide Keira Knightley - so much so that I gave away my copy of the dvd. Which is a shame because everyone else in it was excellent, and the cinematography sublime.

  4. England why not? I think the way your blog is often filled with such soft images that it somehow reminds me of England

    haven't really been re-reading much but I did just re-read Anne of green gables series and I actually like it a little more than before

    spring for me too as I think of it as in between weathers which I prefer.

    a dreaming garden - yes, I would like that too for my dream home though I can't garden at all

    ladyhawke - love that film

    tea always since I don't like the scent of coffee

    any rain is good rain especially after a hot day

    have a lovely day.

    1. I love the film Ladyhawke too :-)

      And I agree with you, any rain is good rain! <3

  5. Oh, these kinds of posts and questionnaires are so much fun! I loved reading everyone's responses. Here are mine:

    If I could move to a foreign country it would be: French Canada or Finland. In either case, I would want to live in a small country village.

    Three books I keep re-reading: Well, if I'm honest, I typically don't re-read books, as there are just so many more to be read. A short list of my favorites, doesn't really answer the question. So, three books I have truly read over and over throughout my life are: The Holy Bible, Roger Tory Peterson's guide to Eastern Birds, and 100 Best Loved Poems.

    If my life were set in only one season, it would be autumn.

    My favorite perfume is wild honeysuckle.

    My dream home is an old house full of years and good woodwork and ghosts. It has a fireplace (or at least a woodstove), and the kind of large kitchen (with ceiling beams for drying herbs and apples and such) that has a cozy nook at one end where one can sit in a comfortable chair and watch the birds at the feeder out the window or write. The house would be situated in the countryside with space for a good kitchen garden, a fruit and nut orchard, and flowers, too. Behind this cultivated area would be meadow followed by woodland. It would be near a river or lake, and a small rural village.

    The films I have truly watched over and over again are: The Wizard of Oz, White Christmas, Sun Valley Serenade, Skeleton Key (scary!), Pride and Prejudice (the 2005 version directed by Joe Wright), Knight and Day, The Princess Bride, and Dragonheart.

    I only drink tea--black tea, not herbal, although I do like chai.

    I love a summer storm and a gloomy, cold autumn rain pretty equally. :)

    1. What interesting countries you'd like to live in!

      I reread books because they are like dear friends to me, and because my tastes are fairly limited so I'm always cautious trying out a new author.

      Wild honeysuckle! What a wonderful perfume. There were hedges of wild honeysuckle at my primary school and I would sit beneath them drinking from the flowers and gazing out at the misty hills.

      I love the sound of your dream home :-)

  6. If you could move to a foreign country, which would it be?

    Britain, but the romantic dream of it. The one we see on films or just 40 years ago. I feel a connection to both the rolling English countryside as well as Scotland – but it's the scenery, the stories, not the overpopulated mess it seems to be these days. I don't even know if I fit in culturally, I think I probably swear too much. ;-)

    Name three books you keep rereading through all your life?

    Since we can name series: 1. Discworld – I just love his wit. 2. The Tao of Pooh. Actually I haven't read it in forever, but I just spotted it on my shelf while pondering the question. I've pulled it out to verify whether I still enjoy it 3. I've been drawn to a new type of books that may be what I'll be reading for the rest of my life but didn't know earlier. Such as ”Quiet”, ”A Party of One”, ”Pilgrim at Tinker Creek” - they are my support in deciding that I no longer play the game of pretending I want to fit into an extrovert, busy, profit-seeking world.

    If you were set in only one season, what would it be?

    Spring. lush and flowering, and lovely days of gentle warmth. I feel such hope in spring,

    Copycatting here. Although I do like the transition between summer and autumn too, there is a wonderful, crystal energy in the air, not just the cool temp, but something else. As well as a feeling of powering down. We've had a miserably grey and cold summer here and as much as I long for real summer days (which aren't sweltering here, 23-24 C is adequate), I'm ok with now moving towards winter, it feels ”right” in my bones.

    What is your favourite perfume?

    None. I like it best when people don't smell of anything, even a strong soap or detergent can be too much.

    Describe your dream home?

    My current home has many of the qualities I like, so I only dream of an upgrade. Cottagy feel but big windows – we of the north do love lots of light – and a bit more space than now. Countryside, some ways from the nearest village, check. Neighbours at a good distance, check. Big forest in my back garden with trails for walking and horseriding, not having to deal with traffic is on my list. Maybe on a hillside with a view of the surrounding country? House should be old but well kept, lush secluded garden with an orchard. And then my 100 m2 + studio with lots of light, where I'd probably spend most of my time – at least twice the size of the one I have now. And I love my woodstove. I don't really have any dream furniture or kitchen plans, I don't like it too sterile and high tech but I'll work with what's there. I don't need new stuff once I'm comfortable. Comfort above prestige always for me.

    What film could you watch over and over?

    I don't really have a love affair with ONE movie. After I post this, I bet some name pops up anyway! I like a variety of stuff, preferably something that leaves you thinking and wondering, but I also watch Star Trek... Initially I was going to say Monty Python and the Holy Grail or ”Life of Brian”, but I think I may have actually, finally, grown out of them. Maybe. I should run it again just to check! As you may have gathered, soft romance bores me just a little bit.

    Tea or coffee?

    Earl Grey

    Summer rain or autumn rain?

    Autumn, since I'll be spending more time indoors anyway. A gentle summer rain can be lovely, but not if you feel like all of June is actually November. Summer is for being outside. I've not used my garden pavillion once this year!!!! Hammock twice.

    1. Christ onna stick, I didn't know it would be so long! (used a Word doc to write in first) Sorry!

  7. And I completely forgot to mention I hope you are feeling better now?


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