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bath: play day

April 19, 2009

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March 7, 2009

My definition of a perfect day:  sunshine, walking around for hours capturing beauty, pointing my feet towards whatever my camera lens is drawn to, stopping once in a while for coffee and sweets, enjoying a nice meal with friends, laughter (always), good music (a must), writing or chilling with a good book at the end of the day.  Better yet though?  Doing it with someone who enjoys it as much as I do.  Better still?  Spending it in a foreign country where everything is new and bathing in soft light and I can take it all in because my mind is vacant for any experience, my eyes are wide open, my heart is beating like a hammer.  Today is such a day.

We play with polaroids on her living room floor in the morning then venture into the Botanical Gardens, croissant and espresso in hand.  We find Spring there, kelly green lawns carpeted with soft purple crocuses. Bees going about their business and trees with flower-tipped branches are an added bonus.  They become our subjects for hours.

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Eventually, Susannah turns the camera on me.  Perhaps I’m just speaking for myself but I think most people who spend time behind the camera loathe being in front of it.  And though I’m not 100% comfortable, she puts me at ease.  I let her move me around as I would do with Wilbur and end up having a good time of it.  I carefully sit in a bed of flowers and she shoots with her vintage Polaroid and heavy Hasselblad (this camera is a beauty, I nearly weep at the sight of it).

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photo by susannah conway

photo by susannah conway

After the gardens, we head to Jamie Oliver’s Italian restaurant for lunch.  We sit in the room with torn vintage wallpaper and exposed plaster and order three pastas to share.  Tagliatelle Genovese (basil pesto with heritage potatoes, green beans and pecorino cheese), sausage pappardelle (Italian sausage, tomatoes, red wine and parmesan) and spicy prawn linguini (pan fried garlicky prawns with tomatoes, chili, rocket and fennel) with a basket of Italian breads (focaccia, rosemary crisps and sourdough country bread) served with extra virgin olive oil and balsamic vinegar.  Absolutely divine.

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At the Bath Abbey, a choir practices for a performance that evening. Angelic voices echo off the high fan-vaulted ceiling.  A rugby game attracts an enthusiastic crowd near the Pulteney Bridge across the River Avon.  We walk around the city for awhile then stop at a little café for espresso in the late afternoon.  I introduce her to Wilbur.  He likes her a lot.

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wilbur meets susannah and just loooooves her!

The past two days have been inspiring, relaxing, eye-opening, confidence-building and just the career-changing back-to-school boost I needed.  I wish I had words to describe how lovely it was to meet Susannah and what a beauty she is.  She is nothing short of stupendous.  I adore every bit of her.  Her ability to tell a story, her wicked sense of humor, her willingness to share herself, her ability to make you feel extraordinary and help you tap into your source of creativity and her skills as a writer and photographer inspire me to no end.  Thank you, beautiful, for everything.  I hope to be able to return the favor someday, dans ma belle ville de Montréal.

photo taken by susannah conway

photo by susannah conway

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14 Comments leave one →
  1. April 19, 2009 7:00 pm

    yummy, delightful photographs. i especially love the two of food in the middle. the blue background on the pasta one = perfect. and the pics of you made me smile. love how much happiness is conveyed.

  2. April 19, 2009 7:37 pm

    sounds so glorious and wonderful. the photographs are just divine. I want that wallpaper for my very own.

  3. April 20, 2009 5:05 am

    Beautiful pictures!

  4. April 20, 2009 6:37 am

    darling, you got some really gorgeous shots that day – i especially love the one in the Abbey, and me & Wilbur 🙂 and god, wasn’t that choir AMAZING… i wish we were back there xx

  5. April 20, 2009 9:27 am

    I love those photos and I’m loving your travel series! Thank you for sharing your stories.

  6. April 20, 2009 1:00 pm

    such fabulous photos 🙂 it sounds quite transformative and oh so much fun!!

  7. April 20, 2009 1:17 pm

    YUM YUM YUMMY!

  8. April 20, 2009 2:36 pm

    What a beautiful post. thanks for sharing.

  9. Randy permalink
    April 20, 2009 3:01 pm

    I appreciate the effort you put into these posts. Provides this reader with a vicarious vacation.

  10. April 20, 2009 3:03 pm

    E.Y.E.C.A.N.D.Y.

  11. April 21, 2009 2:59 pm

    Great post!

  12. April 22, 2009 12:37 am

    Never been a Polaroid Warholite…but a Hasselblad, now that’s a REAL camera. A systems camera is a bit of a bulk to pack into the mountains in this digital age – and as age creeps into my bones…but what a beauty! Indeedy.

  13. Alison permalink
    April 23, 2009 11:08 am

    oh that crocus photo. Yum.

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