Yesterday I thought it would be really nice to combine them with another one of my favourite activities - shopping for beautiful things for Shark Alley.
So up I travelled to London to trawl the fabric shops around Oxford Street and Soho for lovely big prints on pale fabrics to make into fox & otter purses. Unfortunately, I didn't find as many as I'd hoped, but I did stumble across this little gem in John Lewis. Yum yum!
|Detail - Loulouthi Summer Totem in Grapefruit by Anna Maria Horner|
|Love the beautiful illustration on the front by Kelly Dyson|
The three extracts she read were very evocative and sometimes moving, especially as she described carrying the heart of an otter in her hands whilst attending an otter autopsy. Her descriptions of being alone in the countryside and encountering wild otters were incredibly vivid - so much so that all day today I have had the strong sensation that I have recently been in the countryside myself.
One of the other joys was meeting so many other otter afficionados. Thanks to the wonders of Facebook and the internet, I have connected with otter-lovers all over the world, but it's always nice to meet face-to-face. Daniel Allen is a friend-of-a-friend many times over, and I feel quite sure we could have chatted all evening. I also had the privilege of meeting (albeit very briefly) Daphne Neville, who has cared for otters for over thirty years and is the author of a book about these experiences - 'Bee - a Particular Otter'. Having had a brief online exchange with her daughter Sophie in the summer, it seemed quite a coincidence to meet her. She was incredibly lovely and let me have a signed copy of her book.
|Sniffing the spraint!|