Green Bottle Tree – Travel, Food, Design and Inspiration
Green Bottle Tree website is a work in progress, currently being updated with previously posted blogs. The format and appearance will have to wait, though it pains me to say.
Travel has categories with countries/places I have visited and written practical listings for. There is usually a mixture of general and specific information included. All information is purely from my experiences and I have never been sponsored or asked to write about anywhere in particular. All comments and opinions are purely my own and any inaccuracies are entirely through my misunderstandings.
Food is largely connected to Travel in that a huge part of my enthusiasm for travel is in trying new ingredients.
Design sounds more creative and knowledgeable than it is. A recurring theme within my photographs is architectural and textile details along with patterns and shapes. I have also started buying souvenirs from my travels that either appeal to me for their design or as ideas to incorporate into my home. This page, design lite, and the posts within are to share those ideas and photographs.
Lifestyle is a concept that I feel a bit uncomfortable with, but begrudgingly I accept that it is the best way of summing up what I want to publish within this page. Lifestyle is my forum for ideas, mostly inspired by my travels, to incorporate into everyday life. (This is why I dislike “lifestyle”, it has a slightly patronising suggestion, or maybe that just comes from how I’ve tried, badly, to explain what I mean)
About is probably even more self-explanatory than the other pages so I’ll not trouble myself to find an exciting way to express the contents of that page.
All Rights Reserved © Green Bottle Tree 2015-2018
Everyday things often seem more appealing and desirable when they’re spotted on holidays. These photos from a holiday in and around Turunç, Turkey are mainly of plant pots, gourds and other outdoor hanging ornaments, ubiquitous features around the Bozburun peninsula but unusual and covetable to me. The use of white on white, white with blue […]
How is it possible that a form of pottery and its design from up to 7000 years ago can be recreated in the 21st century and seem modern? This Romanian Cucuteni-Trypillia-style dish was made in Cucuteni in 2018 to pottery-making methods and design dating back to somewhere between 5200 BC and 2750 BC. Cucuteni is […]
To my unrefined nose it’s a load of romantic nonsense when people enthuse about the air of their holiday destination being scented with blah, blah or blah. I can appreciate the odd waft of flowers, baking, wet soil, etc, but not with every step taken inside and out. Oman, however, is the exception where my […]
If I were to play word association linking Sicily with souvenirs, the immediate follow-on would be “heads”. Glazed ceramic heads of a (Moorish) man and a (Sicilian) woman are as everywhere as everywhere means when you’re exaggerating an otherwise valid generalisation. Unsurprisingly, there is a story behind the heads and, equally unsurprisingly, there are variations to […]
Breadcrumb-coated balls of rice stuffed with ragu or ham and cheese, fried and presented as perfect balls of crispy, ricey, squidgy deliciousness; if you like all those ingredients, what’s not to love? I had orange and basil risotto leftovers, ragu leftovers, tasty fresh ham and mozzarella and the night before’s bread made into breadcrumbs. It […]
“Mallorca” is a bit of stretch as these tile photos only cover Can Prunera Museum, Soller, and a random wall in Andratx. Nevertheless, thanks to them I associate Mallorca with beautiful patterns. The Can Prunera museum of modern art is housed within a stunning Art Nouveau building and all tiles are on the floor and […]
I like Majorca, particularly as its being an island means beaches are in abundance. My friend and I, September 2017, visited beaches around the southwest-west side of Majorca. However, while noting that none of these beaches are amongst the consistently nominated “best beaches” of Majorca, none of them for me tick the majority of what […]
Ignoring the fact most of these plants wouldn’t survive outdoors in the UK, here are some ideas for funky, colourful Sicily-style plant presentation. All photos taken around the beautiful, tiny island of Ortigia, Sicily in August 2018. Here are some potentially useful links, which make me realise there is more effort required than merely painting, […]
I hope that Ian Fleming’s brother, Peter, inspired at least something of James Bond, though in this account of Peter Fleming’s 3000-mile journey to discover the whereabouts of a mysteriously vanished English explorer, it’s slightly more Indiana Jones/Johnny English. In terms of writing style (though bearing in mind it was written in the early 1930s […]
Oranges, lemon, olive oil, white wine, parsley, onion, salt and pepper. Chop a bit, soak, cut, faff quite a lot, mix, drain, squeeze, mix a bit more, pour, sprinkle, grind and scatter. That pretty much sums up how to make my current favourite summery salad side dish. I first made this in Sicily from a […]
Kokoda is Fijian ceviche/cured fish and is served in a bowl of creamy coconut with a few bits of vegetable. That doesn’t sound exciting enough. It’s cured fish in cold coconut soup. That sounds even worse. It’s fish with lemon, coconut, chilli, tomato, coriander and onion. If you don’t like fish, I’ve probably already lost […]
Would I go again and/or recommend a holiday in Doha? No and no. Would I advise a friend to take up a ludicrously well-paid job for more than a month in Doha? No. Unless the money would be hugely, and I really do mean “hugely”, life-enhancing. If you have visited other Middle Eastern countries but […]
I am Brooke Shields in Blue Lagoon, though in reality weathering more like Tom Hanks in Castaway. Go to Viti Levu island, Fiji if you: are British and want to holiday with few other Brits; love fresh fruit, especially papaya and pineapple; enjoy opportunities to chat to friendly locals; appreciate lush, green countryside; have […]
Empire Coffee Ezdan Hotel Tower 2, West Bay, Doha The flat white: 8. My first flat white at Empire was a 10, but largely because I’d had such a foul night in an Ezdan “standard” room. After joyously checking out of that hotel for a proper hotel room with non-Arctic air conditioning (whether switched on […]
In Doha, I am wearing an invisibility cloak that keeps blowing off in the wind, at which point people stare and make me nervously fumble to return to invisibility as quickly as possible. Go to Doha if you: are enthusiastic about innovative, modern architecture; want to abstain from alcohol; want to visit one of the […]
I have a new system for culling and de-cluttering my wardrobe which incorporates my quirks, Mari Kondo’s concept of “does [each and every item inspected one by one] spark joy”, a clipboard, A4 paper and two coloured pens and a Bullet Journal page. Perhaps I shall name it The Kathodic Clothing Cull, The KCC if […]
Galleries are exhausting, places a novice critic wanders around slowly, nodding sagely, frowning and expressing seemingly-knowledgeable scrutiny. If you know nothing of significance about art and artefacts, once you abandon any pretense to the contrary, wandering round a gallery really amounts to looking for pieces you’re drawn to because they look pretty/interesting/unusual/familiar. A taxi, a […]
Roseleaf Cafe, at the back of Dubai Garden Centre (just off Sheikh Zayed Road, Al Quoz, 10-minute walk from FGB Metro Station) March, 2018. Tuesday, 11.45 am. (*score out of 10) The flat white: 8. Looked too dark to not be bitter and it was a bit bitter, but still a nice coffee though. Although […]
3.03 pm – 3.09 pm, Monday, 26th March 2018 (Room 809, 8th floor, Ibis Al Rigga, Dubai) Double or triple glazed windows don’t open but still hearing constant motorised sound of tens of air conditioning units in operation. Construction bangs, metal on metal, occasional vehicle horns. Plane taking off, Emirates. Dusty and hazy air merging […]
Have most people been using curry leaves for ages and kept this culinary gem secret?! Go on, add to the list of people, roll your eyes and exclaim you’ve been using them for years. However, on the off chance your curry leaf experience has been either non-existent or reliant solely on crumbly, uninspiring dried curry […]