Every now and again I need to connect with my ˜woo woo’ side just to keep everything in balance. We set off from Kent on a Sunday afternoon, and arrived at the hotel which we had researched on Trip Adviser, we were looking forward to our Executive room. We got to the room and it was like the black hole, ground floor looking at a wall, we put the light on and it made no difference, I marched to reception and made a complaint, the manager came and upgraded us to the best suite in the hotel (ha ha) it pays to complain!
On the advice of Trip Adviser we went for dinner to an Indian Street Food restaurant, 5* rating, Martin has been to India many times and said he had never seen food like this, it was ok, extremely overpriced, in fact would have fed a family in India for a month with the amount of money it cost. I am beginning to lose faith in Trip Adviser! We had walked miles and were unsure where we were in distance to the hotel, so went to the taxi rank, the driver tutted when we said where we were going, apparently a train was due in and we were not going far so WE had made him lose a decent fare. He had waited in the queue to be at the front for an hour, now he was taking us on a £6 drive, he was not happy, however, it was funny as he sounded like he had been educated at Eton, the poshest taxi driver we had ever met, shame he was a dick head.
The next day we went to Glastonbury, I have been here many times before but decided I wanted to buy a diva friend as a companion to the one I already have. Here she is, I love her!
From here we went to Avebury just in time for a guided tour of the stones, we were in a nice little group, then it happened, the fluffy question asker joined us, at every point she compared the stones to the Egyptian pyramids, (yes because they are nearly the same (not)) Christ she got on my nerves, I said to Martin I bet she is just back from Egypt, sure enough she could not wait to announce she was just back from Egypt, I mentioned to the nice lady standing next to me, what an arsehole the annoying lady was, I did not realise they had come together and were friends, oops.. We went to a stone called the Devils Seat, of course she sat in it and had an ‘experience’ yes of course she did. “Can I share what I felt” she said, the guide ignored her and we walked on, the next thing she was crying with emotion, probably because no one was taking notice of her. It was entertaining to say the least. Because of her, the one hour tour took 2, it does get to a point when you have seen one rock you have seen enough. The wishing tree was beautiful with all the ribbons blowing in the wind, and we had the privilege of standing in the newly found spot where they have found a new set of stones under the earth which are in a square, excavation starts at the end of the month. This stone (below) is the point where they will start digging, apparently they are expecting a big historical discovery.
We had been out for 10 hours and feeling knackered, we made our way back to the hotel, quick change and out to a beautiful Lebanese Restaurant.
The next day we spent in Salisbury, we went to the Cathedral but at £7 each I refused to go in, I won’t give the church a penny, but the place is lovely as you walk around the grounds. The following day we picked up Grandma as it was her birthday, she lives about an hour from Salisbury, we took her on a mystery tour, our destination was the Bombay Sapphire Gin Distillery, we had a lovely day here, the weather was glorious and to finish off, a gin cocktail to die for. Phew we did fit in a lot in 4 days, but a change is as good as a rest, now raring to go with preparation for the conference, clients, meditation groups and private tuition.
Artwork Victoria Frances & Book by Kim Arnold
Lo Scarabeo £15.99
When I was first approached to write the accompanying book for this deck I was thrilled, however, on receiving the images initially my heart sank (stay with me), some of the images I found distressing, but I had committed to write, so no turning back.
Working with this deck was very different from any other, it taught me how to react and work with the darkness which often lurks within each of us. Of course we don’t talk about this, preferring to pull a nice fluffy angel card or something more familiar out of our Tarot decks for guidance. As I worked with each card, with every one of the 36 cards I spent in quiet contemplation, I would sit quietly, observe and look at the voice within each of them and take note of what was going on beyond the images, intuitively I would be guided to the meaning of each card, some I struggled with, but I realised, this reflected my own struggles, the images make you work at facing your fears, and love or loathe them, Victoria Frances is one very talented artist.
This may not be a deck you would naturally be drawn to, but I feel that for self development there is not a better deck on the market. There is also a meditation to help you get started.
Half way through working with the deck I was ‘given’ the Arch Spread which is detailed in the accompanying book::
- What blocks me?
- Who is blocking me?
- How do I remove these barriers?
- How will my life flow differently once I make changes?
- What is my true potential?
Much of this deck works with light and dark, it guides and advises us to appreciate that where there is darkness the light is not far behind.
Of course I highly recommend this deck, as the author, I know how much love, soul searching and effort went in to this.
Please go to our Shop page to order a copy signed by Kim
(Please note for signed copies the seal will be removed)
My first impression of this deck is that it is half way between a Tarot and Oracle deck. There are 78 cards, and the suits are divided in to Earth, Air, Fire and Water. My initial curiosity was to flick through the cards to find Death and as I thought, no Death but Transformation.
The borderless cards are beautiful and nice quality, but if you are looking for a traditional Tarot deck then this does not tick the boxes. There is hardly any visual reference to tarot symbolism, this is explained later in my review.
Each image is gentle but as a traditional Taroist, I did find them hard to read. For me, I would have to read the images intuitively rather than connect them to the traditional card meaning, as if you know your Tarot, the image does not always relate to the card number , for example 5 of Fire V’s 5 Wands, visually I just don’t get it!
The guidebook is well written and Colette actually mentions that the deck was a calling from spirit and this clearly comes through in the images. I love the fact that each card has a meaning and an affirmation to work with, I think this would be helpful for some clients. Colette writes that she was guided to do things differently, in a non conformist way and it will take time to get use to working with them. I agree with this, but I must reiterate the cards are beautiful, and it is good to see something new hitting the Tarot shelves.
Take a look at the cards, if you want something different then invest in the deck, certain cards will call you as they did me, in particular for me The Magician. This deck will stretch your imagination and make you think outside the box, as a reader this can only be a good and positive thing.
A couple of years ago it was decided that instead of buying Grandma a Christmas present we would travel to a European city and have a few days away, last year we went to Berlin, this year Prague.
We drove to Grandma’s the night before, Martin as always equipped for travel, had his supply of clear see through bags as we were only taking hand luggage. He explained to Grandma that all liquids must go in the bag and taken out when going through security. Great, all sorted, I took one of Grandma’s clear bags and she had a bag with a lipstick and face powder, so far so good. We arrive at Gatwick and go through security, Martin and I glide through, Gma gets pulled over, her luggage held back. Half an hour later the security guard was still pulling cosmetics from her bag, I was waiting for a cricket bat, rubber chicken, kitchen sink etc. to appear, as it turned in to a scene from Air Plane! Oh Christ I thought here we go, as Grandma walked away from security she was twittering something about … well I am an old lady I need A lot of cream ha ha, bless her. The 9a.m. flight was fine, all on time, but I have to say Martin and I were stunned when ordering a coffee Grandma ordered a Heineken, they say to watch the quiet ones!
We arrive in Prague, the car was not waiting as it should have been, then bloody Gustuv turns up and piles us in to a van with other people, did you hear me OTHER PEOPLE!! It was supposed to be private hire, well he was not getting a tip.
The Hotel was stunning, Unitas was full of history. A baroque church next door, where you can hear the chant of the convent a place where its history tells amazing stories of the Jesuits, the Grey Sisters of St. Franciscus, Communist Secret Police who took over the building with its infamous prison. The president Vaclav Havel and H.R.H. Prince of Wales have stayed at the Hotel. Well if it is good enough for them ……. The energy was powerful and peaceful.
Prague is a walking city, and every corner you turn there is something else of interest, as you may know I do love to shop, but this time it was to the dulcet tones of Grandma saying ‘where she gone now’ lol. Needless to say my spending was well under control!
The next day we took a bus tour of the City. The guide as lovely as he was, was cross eyed, now, I am not making fun but it was very distracting when he said to look left and his eyes went right. I found it hard to look at the sights as I was quite fascinated by him. Our Fit Bits recorded 17000 steps on day one, we decided to rest with a drink at the Easter market, bursting for the loo it got quite complicated when I ended up in the restaurant kitchen and could not find my way out. The Easter Market was lovely, lots of colour and noise, a real buzz about his place.
Friday it rained so we went on a boat trip, there are many Russians in Prague and they don’t queue like us Brits or have a sense of humour it seems. An elbow fight commenced with me and pushy man as I was not giving up our spot. Martin laughed as he said the determination of me nearly pushed him in the river, well that would have been a shame lol. We came off the boat to pick up the bus, only to have our crossed eyed guide waiting for us, honestly you couldn’t make it up, now we all had the giggles.
One negative about Prague was the food, nothing was hot, and the choices were a bit odd, I ordered a coffee in a restaurant which was almost cold, so I took it back, the barista look at me as if he had scrapped me off his boot as I complained, and he duly stuck his finger in my drink (I have to admit I thought oh f*ck please don’t give it back to me) but I held my stare, he agreed it was cold and duly made me another cold one, and before you think it, no I was not that brave to take it back a second time.
Our last night we had dinner at an Italian, the only real decent meal of our stay, we got a bit tipsy as Grandma and I almost got run over by a car backing in to a space, can I put on the record I saved Grandma from death! We walked to the Astrological clock as it struck 9p.m. (yes we are stop outs) the 12 Apostles moved around the top of the clock looking down on us, then everyone cheered, well not us, they need to get out more.
Prague is beautiful, in fact one of the nicest Cities I have been to, the people are lovely, the place is stunning and the beer and wine is cheap. The Churches and holy buildings dot around the city, which is interesting as apparently 60% are non-believers or atheists, I know that because the cross eyes tour guide told us. If you get a chance GO, you will love it.
Published by Watkins £14.99
The first thing that struck me about this deck is the quality, beautifully packaged and designed with a vibrant orange theme, it certainly stands out from the crowd.
On opening an 80 page booklet it provides a good amount of information about each card. Also pages are dedicated to a brief history on Tarot, the definition of what minor and major cards are, and at the back of the book, example’s of spreads with clear layouts for you to try.
The cards themselves have small white borders with orange backs, each card design is colourful and whimsical. In my opinion these are aimed more for a beginner to intermediate level. Although the cards look quite simple, they are based on traditional Tarot with a modern twist, as you look deeper in to the voice of the card, you begin to notice small details which may not be immediately obvious. I love the idea of choosing one card and working deeply with it, something new always springs to mind.
They are lovely to read and you get a good flow of energy when using the cards. If you prefer cards with a lot of depth then these may not be for you, but in my opinion they are a good addition to any collection. If you are a beginner then I would highly recommend these, and they are a great price for the quality of cards, packaging and book.