Thursday, 9 July 2009

Summer in Giraffe World!

It's summer time in Giraffe World, and I've hardly any time for blogging!
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No doubt you are looking at the holiday snap above and thinking I've been whiling away the time drinking lemonade in exotic resorts! Not so this year - that was all before we ran our own tours company! (You may recognize part of the photo as being my 'profile' pic on blogger! It is my favourite holiday snap ...)

This summer I've been driving our Giraffe World Tours bus full of tourists! Quite tiring , but great fun too. On the photo above you can see the bus parked down in the valley. We were taking a party of Neckelchester residents on a day trip into the Mountains - Necky Becky, of course, went off on her own with Hals and got lost!

However, the biggest drain on my blogging time is the lawn-mowing ... (Do I hear groans of agreement echoing through the Intergalactic blogosphere?) Necky Knoll House has vast lawns, most of which are at vertiginous angles, making mowing a nextreme balancing act!


It's no use asking for help from one's offspring ...




But I am not entirely without assistance ... in the quiet summer evenings we hear much chewing ... Three cheers for the Knollshire snails!
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I wish you all a nexcellent summer, dear bloggy friends.

60 comments:

The Solitary Walker said...

I find the most effective 'lawnmowers' are the rabbits which are overrunning the gardens at my late father's house right now...

... though the holes and burrows they've dug would not suit the horticultural perfectionist!

Heather said...

I hope you have had some time to relax and enjoy the sunshine Raph. I wish our snails would eat grass - they only take an interest in plants I am keen to nurture. Hals has a very similar expression to Poppy, although they are quite different breeds. It's never wise to hope for assistance from one's offspring, especially with gardening.

Raph G. Neckmann said...

Goodness me, SW! I don't think we have any creatures like that in Giraffe World.

I'm assuming the holes they dig are not perfectly symmetrical? I suppose you could plant a random selection of shrubs in them ...

Raph G. Neckmann said...

We do make time to relax, thank you Heather. (Also, enjoying my work is energizing!)

I wonder if you could train your snails to eat grass? Maybe Aunt Bernard has a book on snail training.

Hals says 'Woof!' to Poppy!

bindu said...

I love the giraffe-dogs, giraffe-snails, giraffe-rocks, giraffe-trims on the house, and everything about your illustrations. Awesome work!

Raph G. Neckmann said...

Thank you Bindu, I am honoured!

willow said...

We wouldn't want you to ne-glect your lawn this summer Raph.

Love those raph patterned snails!

Raph G. Neckmann said...

I like 'ne-glect'ing my lawn, Willow!

The snails are out there now - I thought I could hear them singing a moment ago!

Arija said...

Raph dear, I hope your tour bus has at least power steering, I wonder if a herding dog would help to keep your packsot tourists from straying. Perhaps a brow spotted Dalmatian?
Always happy to offer helpful hints.

Raph G. Neckmann said...

Thank you Arija! Yes, our bus does have power steering, and good brakes!

It's not the tourists who are the problem with getting lost, it's our middle daughter, Necky Becky. She's a bit of a rebel and always goes off with her pet neckshund dog exploring, and we end up spending half the day looking for her! I don't know if a herding dog would work - it would probably just make friends with Hals and join in the trek!

Barbara Martin said...

Offspring are not the best choices for lawn mowing unless they agree to be bribed. As for Necky Becky's disappearing acts, are there ferocious beasts in the hills? Worse than badgers, perhaps?

Of course when I was young I used to wander off, though I was never lost! When I was 5, I had come out of the hospital after a lengthy illness, wanted to visit with my grandmother who lived about two miles away. Parents said no. But I rode my tricycle, even crossing two busy intersections without mishap and was able to watch the last half of the TV show 'Lassie' while having vanilla ice cream and homemade oatmeal cookies.

Cloudia said...

Ah, a delightful Summers evening in your neck of the woods!
Love those Knollshire snails too.


aloha my friend-

Comfort Spiral

RuneE said...

I see that you have the snails too, almost neck to neck, as it where. Maybe you should rent a sheep? Very effective.

PS Thank you for the comments and the link - I looked it up and left a comment.

PPS There is another light tower close by - more suitable for those with longer necks...

Derrick said...

Hi Raph,

It may be hard work but it's good that your tours are busy. Make sure you find the time for a lemonade!

The troop of snails look cute. I hope they continue to help out with lawn work. Enjoy your Summer!

Janet said...

Oh my! How I would love such beautiful snails in my garden! AND they're a wonderful service! HA! Your blog is most entertaining and so colourful! I love popping in! Sending warm regards from Sunny South Africa (where believe it or not, its FREEZING cold at the moment!)

Raph G. Neckmann said...

Barbara, a long and hazardous journey on a tricycle is well worth it for vanilla icecream and homemade oatmeal cookies with Grandma!
There are no ferocious beasts in our Mountains, but there's not much in the way of water and the sun is very hot. However, knowing Necky Becky, if she got so lost we couldn't find her, she'd probably turn up back home riding a wild giraffe!

Raph G. Neckmann said...

Thank you Cloudia - you're welcome to come and drink lemonade with us and listen to the snails chewing!

Raph G. Neckmann said...

Thank you RuneE! I don't think we have any sheep round here - we have the wild giraffes, but they eat leaves on trees rather than grass.

The other light tower sounds interesting! I hope you will be posting photos of it!

Raph G. Neckmann said...

Hi Derrick! Being busy is certainly fun, and my only complaint is that I have less time for visiting all my bloggy friends!

We all raise our glasses of lemonade to you for a happy summer too!

Raph G. Neckmann said...

Hello Janet - glad you like our snails! As well as being helpful with the lawns, they are very friendly and affectionate too.

Freezing cold in South Africa? I hope your wild giraffes are not cold!

Rosemary said...

I am still searching for the portal. I so want to stroll the market place, browsing for a trinket, take photos of the giraffe architecture and take the bus up to the unusual shaped mountains.

Raph G. Neckmann said...

Oh, I do hope you find the portal, Rosemary!

(Bring some strong shoes with you for the Mountains, as the rocks are of an old volcanic variety and quite rough underfoot).

We'll look out for you in the marketplace just in case there is a portal there!

Gaston Studio said...

I've often thought about hiring or buying sheep to live on my lawn but snails would be less noticable.

A Cuban In London said...

A nexcellent summer for you, too, my favourite giraffe (and the only I know ;-D).

Many thanks.

Greetings from London.

The Weaver of Grass said...

Can't you invite a few giraffes round - surely they eat delicious lawn grass. You will see that my blog today is also about mowing lawns - why do we have them? Nice to read you again - have missed you.

Madame DeFarge said...

I do feel as if I should take a trip on Giraffe World Tours. The locations seems so enjoyable and one's fellow guests would be charming I'm sure.

One's children are such ingrates really.

The-Grizzled-But-Still-Incorrigible-Scribe-Himself! said...

You'll definitely get a loud AMEN! from this side of the shining sea regarding the disproportionate allocation of already scarce spare time to the futile business of mowing lawns. Lawns were meant to be grazed, not mowed! Solitary has the right idea—let the rabbits do it. Why be cruel and deprive a bunny of breakfast?

Moreover, who do we blame for the notion that a well-landscaped home needs a lawn in the first place? I'm thinking there's guilt to be assigned here. At least we'd have a name to focus on as we follow our noisy, pollution-belching machines around and around and around…

Raph G. Neckmann said...

Snails are less noticeable, Gaston Studio, and also I believe sheep make loud baa-ing noises, which snails do not - not here anyway!

Raph G. Neckmann said...

Am I really the only giraffe you know, Cuban in London? I must introduce you to my family!

Raph G. Neckmann said...

Unfortunately the wild giraffes don't eat grass, Weaver, just leaves on the trees!

I'll have a look at your lawn-mowing post in the morning - it'll be interesting to read a human perspective!

Raph G. Neckmann said...

You'd be very welcome on our Tours, Madame DeFarge! I hope you are able to find a portal.

Raph G. Neckmann said...

Grizzled - I'd never thought who invented lawns! Either here in Giraffe World, or on your Planet Earth. And if it was long ago, the early lawns must have been cut by hand, (or tooth!) I'll look on the Interneck and see if there are any answers ...

Jeane said...

oh my, no wonder we haven't seen you in awhile - your summer is jammed packed - home maintenance can be so time consuming, plus the touring business - so happy to catch up here :)

Raph G. Neckmann said...

Good to hear from you and glad you're happy to be here, Jeane! I'm just off out to mow the lawns ...

Choices said...

Happy Summer! Can I join you on your tour? I love the mountains. Stopping to have some lemomade does sound very refreshing. Although, I, too would pass on mowing lawns. I would hire some to do it.

Raph G. Neckmann said...

Now there's a thought, Choices! Hire someone to mow the lawns ... Thank you!

You are most welcome to join us on our Tours - do see if you can find a portal to our world!

marigirl said...

it must be so satisfying to share your discoveries with other residents on the tour bus. What fun! any beaches nearby?

Raph G. Neckmann said...

It is fun, Marigirl!

There are great beaches around - I'll take some photos and do a post about them!

Tom Atkins said...

Oh where do you get those wonderful illustrations? I often write of how I enjoy the posts, but whoever does your pictures (you perhaps) deserves just as many kudos. They are always just right.

Lyn said...

Sorry you still have lawn chores to do...guess your leisure time is limited..so just enjoy every minute..and do sign me up for the next tour..I have a coordinating outfit!!

Raph G. Neckmann said...

Thank you so much, Tom! I just take the photos with my rather basic Neckon camera and hope they come out alright! Maybe the journey through cyberspace from Camelopardalis to planet Earth improves them a little!

Raph G. Neckmann said...

Lyn - a coordinating outfit! Do you mean giraffe-style? You must definitely come on our next Tour - I hope you can find a portal!

Poetikat said...

We don't have too much trouble with the lawn as it's quite small and hubby can handle it. We don't use any pesticides and we leave our clippings on the lawn to keep it rejuvenated. So far, it's working out quite well, although the front has a few dandelions that need to be dealt with (pulled up).

By the way, I'd be pleased to do a duet with the band.

Kat

Have a great summer!

Raph G. Neckmann said...

We're organic gardeners too, Poetikat. I like to leave patches of clover in bloom for the bees, and clover is, I'm told, also a good source of nitrogen-fixing bacteria. The snails take care of our dandelions!

I'll tell Necky Becky about the duet, she'll be really pleased! Must get some custard slices in!

The Adventurous Art Teacher said...

Hi Raph,
Thanks for stopping by my blog. The red bushes you asked about are; Japanese Maple and a (prickly) Fire Bush.

Lauren said...

I live in a condo. The building, which has four families in it, does have a very small patch of grass that we usually attack with a weed whacker. I do not look forward to the day when I will have a yard again.

It sounds like your summer is busy but going well :)

Raph G. Neckmann said...

Thanks, Adventurous Art Teacher - they both look like lovely plants!

Raph G. Neckmann said...

Lauren, maybe you could have a lawn-free garden, with shrubs and ground-cover plants!

Kate Hanke said...

These are such great illustrations, do you create them?

Raph G. Neckmann said...

Thank you Kate! Glad you like the pictures. The family and I take the photos our world and each other with our little Neckon camera. ;)

Cloudia said...

I do SO love visiting this sweet land!

Smell that air!

Aloha my friend....smile for the neckon ;-)

Comfort Spiral

Raph G. Neckmann said...

Hello Cloudia - you are always most welcome in our land!

The air smells lovely today, with a hint of rain and the perfume of the trees.

Maybe I'll go out with the Neckon and take some photos!

Arija said...

consto
Dear Raph, is your summer living up to your nexpectations? Everytime I switch on the computer in hope, there is plenty of mail but nothing with a giraph stamp on it....I am dejected, My head sinks into my shoulders, I will have to get a neck brace if you don't post.

Raph G. Neckmann said...

Oh dear, Arija - I had better leave the lawns to the snails, the Gleeful & Greedy Restaurant to Girth and Nektareeni, borrow Nekky Tekky's neckdrop computer and post while driving the Tours Bus!

So crane your neck in nexpectation of a post soon!

It's nice to be missed - thank you!

PERBS said...

You want to see a neat giraffe bench I discovered last night? Go here and enlarge the 2nd photo. You won't be disappointed!!!!!!!!

http://benchpics.blogspot.com/

It was posted on July 4th in case she adds more benches before you get a chance to see it.

Raph G. Neckmann said...

Thank you so much, PERBS! I have just been over to see the bench - it is amazing! I wonder if I can find a portal to planet Earth near to it, so I can go through with the family and we can all sit on it! :)

The Weaver of Grass said...

There is an award for you on my blog if you would like it Raph.

Raph G. Neckmann said...

Ooh, thank you Weaver! I shall come across and have a look!

acornmoon said...

It looks like the sun always shines in your world, I am very envious.

Raph G. Neckmann said...

It looks like there are rays of sunshine around even on a dull day here, Acornmoon, because we're always sticking our bright orange necks out!