Marigold Says...

Random thoughts on travelling and life in general.

Our blog didn’t win Blog of the Year. Again. That’s three consecutive years it’s been on the Shortlist and all it has to show for that feat is three ‘Highly Commended’ awards.

Not even a rosette!

Oh well, que, sera,  sera. 

We have well over 150,000 ‘unique’ followers by now, over 154,000 actually, so we’re not too disheartened.

What’s different this year is having not one but two separate blog posts being singled out for a ‘Best Single Blog Posts’ award. They're on very different subjects but recognition of any kind is welcome. Feed the ego; body and soul. That’s never a bad idea.

If  you're interested in what critics think (!) the two posts they selected for special praise are:

Hippie Life in Spain


Party for Grownups

You'll find them and much else besides in the list of titles, almost 200 separate postings on a wide diversity of subjects and locations. 

As for awards... Well, as we've  had well over 150,000, yes, that’s  ONE HUNDRED AND FIFTY THOUSAND individual readers  by now,  we must be doing something right.  Anything over ten  thousand readers meant we'd arrived  in the Bloggin’  Premier League, so hitting a hundred and fifty thousand plus  is just WOW! 

Who needs awards anyway?

G regards himself as an ex-writer these days, but a pandemic brings many surprises in its wake. He's written a new book, quite the departure from the style that brought far too much fame and far too little fortune as compensation for all that life disruption, hence the ex-writer tag.

The new book is a Young Adult novel about a pandemic, written a year before most people even imagined such a thing. More details and a link to this book and a few others long hidden from public view are in the recent blog post, Staying Alive. 

Stop Press.

We may not have won Blog of the Year, but our blog post Only the Lonely, written during Covid-19 Lockdown, has been chosen from a few million other offerings as the Best 'Pandemic' Blog Post by the very clever people who judge this sort of thing for a living. We like critics!

The rosette must be in the post...




This isn't Marigold. Far too sophisticated.

Finding Stuff

At the top of the page, underneath and to the right of the 'Marigold Says' heading, find 'MENU' or 'MORE' or ' PAGE LIST' (no idea why the names vary) on the right hand side.
Lately, there's also an occasional arrangement whereby the list of blog post titles is at the very top of the Home Page. Click on any of these links, each of which is a different blog post. There are a couple of hundred o
f them, so far, a real mixed bag. If you get that far, enjoy!


I only discovered there was an option to add 'Likes' and comments after having already added over over sixty posts to the blog. Oh well, better late than never.

Who is Marigold anyway?

My name isn’t Marigold. Maybe not the most enticing opening sentence, but several of my so-called friends dislike my given name so much they call me Marigold instead. Even the old codger, who should know better, has been known to lapse when referencing the light of his life. Okay, so be it. Just call me Marigold.

And, I'm interested because?

Well, apart from being fascinating, not to mention beautiful people, we like to travel. A lot. We left England 25 years ago and  although we pop back again fairly regularly we have been wandering around ever since. If you're interested in where this wanderlust began, you need to click on 'Becoming Expats' in the list of blog posts, top right of page or maybe 'Traveller/Tourist' for a more rounded view of our basic 'philosophy' as 'travellers.' 

Marigold or Lady Gaga, so difficult to tell.

What's Special About You Then?

Waking up to views like this can't be bad.

Nothing special. We've owned houses, rather a lot of them, in a few different countries, but in between we go travelling. I asked the old codger, aka G, for his take on what we do and why. He's the deep thinker, or claims to be.


Here's a very brief summary of G's travelling philosophy.


We spend perhaps half of the year, travelling, often in our clapped-out van. Meeting  people ‘on the road’ can be interesting. In almost every case the people we meet will never cross our path again and in almost every case that is fine by me. Occasionally, I meet someone and we just click. Instant chemistry. A shared interest, finding humour in the same subjects, whatever the reason, in a single evening we can discover enough common ground to become friends. The transient nature of our truncated relationship isn’t a problem. We get on like a house on fire and the next day part with no expectation of ever meeting again. Is that so bad? I can still recall meeting people who entered my life fleetingly, never to return, even when the meeting took place years before. 


I found myself thinking about friendship while in a detached, fugue-like state looking over the sparkling Mediterranean to the Rif Mountains of Morocco from the cemetery in Tarifa where the dead have a better view than most of the living. It’s a million-pound view and if the entry requirements weren’t so draconian there’d be a waiting list. A grave marker said, simply, ‘my husband, my lover, my best friend.’ Now, being gracious and assuming the message related to a single person and not three, this sent shivers down my spine. What a wonderful epitaph. The addition of ‘friend’ is so poignant. This man deserves the best view in Spain as a final resting place.


A long trip is the perfect way to discover what’s really important in life. No distractions, no telephone, no television, just two people who happen to be ‘best friends’ spending a few months in each other’s company. What conclusions did I reach? Quite a few.


Sunshine treats everyone as equal. A rich man, basking by the pool as he relaxes in the luxury of a hard-earned vacation enjoys the same warming rays as  the minimum wage pool boy putting out the loungers. Perfect democracy. We’ve parked our van in some truly spectacular settings. A view that would cost millions from the terrace of a mansion is ours to enjoy for a rather more modest outlay. Even amongst our fellows, there are vans dwarfing our own and costing as much as a house. We all share and appreciate the same view. Nature’s bounty is free. Money doesn’t buy happiness. 


The best aspect of life on the road? There are so many to choose from. The opportunity to decide the day’s activity without having to involve others. Experiencing different cultures. Seeking out glorious places. Deciding whether to stay for a while or move on and seek fresh challenges. 


For me, the joy of travelling is encapsulated in that somnolent time just before dawn when we set foot on a deserted beach to greet the sunrise and are to all intents and purposes the only people on Earth privileged to view such splendour. Bare feet walking across soft, golden sand with the whisper of white-tipped waves as a soundtrack and the great crimson globe of the sun rising in the distance, just for us. Life surely can't get any better, but having  Marigold to share the experience improves even such a perfect idyll. 


So what? Am I bovvered?

Photos like this wall poster directly opposite our bedroom when we were in Copenhagen. A tad unsettling, or is that just me?

Well, we thought you might want to hear about our travels and some of the odd things that invariably seem tohappen to us. We're off again any day now. Places to see, things to do, people to meet, friends to make. 

This next trip will be different as we're (perhaps temporarily) sans van and are travelling by car and staying at hotels on an ad hoc basis, as the mood takes us. 

G's a proper  ‘professional ‘ writer  and I just spout rubbish most of the time so you'll soon get to know who's talking to you at different times in this blog.

Anyway, I don't suppose anyone will read it so we'll just blather away and show a few photos.