Zoetica Ebb

Zoetica Ebb has 551 articles published.

Snow Day

I’ve grown accustomed to January blur over the years, though it usually comes around by way of our two big anniversary celebrations (wedding, and the day we met), and boisterous productivity following a return from a holiday somewhere frosty. In the “blur” respect, this year’s no different, amidst America’s political circus culminating in a finale worthy of the past four years, Covid-19 continuing to ravage England, and feeling drained by renovation among other things. Still, Sunday’s heavy snowfall was needed more …

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Photo Flurry: Skogafoss

A photo-post about longing for the brutal sorcery of Iceland in winter; churning currents tearing through thick ice, a sunrise threatening transient crystalline worlds, and watching cerulean-static infinity unfurl over the torrent from the top of a dangerous mountain.

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2020 Highlight Reel

It’s been a while since I’ve done a year-end round up, and what better year to return to this old-timey internet tradition than Blazing Bin 2020. Since I already touched on some of the hard goings-on in my previous post, I’d like to focus on more lighthearted fare this time. This list is not complete, but covers what I’m comfortable sharing, having recalibrated how I communicate here. Get cozy, pour yourself a seasonal beverage, and join this tour of my …

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Tadaima

One of the strangest years of my life is drawing to a close as I’m moving into the first home I’ve ever owned. An ordinary enough event, but when “home” is a concept shaped by a fractured family, by a storied pattern of running away, and by multiple immigration, a moment like this calls for reflection. I take this leap as a self bolstered and refined by a kaleidoscopic array of experience, and by eight years of an electric alliance …

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Passing Time at Père Lachaise Cemetery

Last week, I finally visited  Père Lachaise – the world’s most popular (and, perhaps, most beautiful) necropolis. Stretched across a formidable hundred acres of Parisian hillside with over a million interments and a veritable galaxy of star residents, it’s difficult to believe that this cemetery wasn’t popular in its early days because of its nondenominational status and somewhat remote location. It took a strategic transfer of Moliere’s remains to win the people’s favour back in the 1800s. These days, greeting …

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Green Dominion at Castle Buchanan

Abandoned buildings are poetic monuments to lost histories, the passage of time, the nuances of decay and inevitably, for now, the triumph of nature over all. What left some the deepest impressions from my recent trip to Scotland is its multitude of such spectral ruins. Driving along the west coast, the word “majesty” comes to mind without a trace of irony – the natural splendour is vast, grand, and breathtakingly beautiful. This land is old and born of fire, its colossal …

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Parchment Ghosts at John Rylands Library

Among the world’s architectural wonders built in the name of love, the Victorian neo-Gothic library built by Enriqueta Augustina Rylands in her husband’s memory on Deansgate in Manchester stands apart. Looms apart, in fact – and it does loom. Opened in 1900, this dark red construction of Barbary stone was designed to resemble a church with Arts and Crafts flourishes, vaulted stained glass windows, and an entrance echoing a monastery gatehouse. The entrance hall and main staircase are stonework masterpieces, …

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Tangled Oaks and Dithering Green in Wistman’s Wood

One of the most memorable days on our recent holiday was spent in the ancient, mythical Wistman’s Wood – a tangle of gnarled oaks growing against considerable odds on a stony hillside in Dartmoor, Devon. After a half hour’s walk across serene hilltops dotted with rainbow sheep (colour-coded by owners to keep track), approaching this tree maze took my breath away. Branches twisted together into a reptilian canopy stretched over roots gripping giant boulders. Plush moss covered nearly everything, creeping …

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Our Own Personal Castle

Imagine being able to choose between hundreds of unique, historic landmark buildings for your holiday stay, with lighthouses, former catholic schools, old hospitals, castles, and medieval farmhouses available for rent as part of a nationwide conservation initiative. In England, you can, thanks to The Landmark Trust. Availability is scarce, but that’s just more reason to make A Plan, then pile your (well-behaved, responsible) crew into a private castle for a weekend. G and I couldn’t resist the opportunity to give the Landmark …

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Megaliths in Avebury Set to Music in the Trees

I’m back from a glorious expedition across the English countryside, which is as good a reason as any to shake off the blogwebs and share some of the beauty and magic I’ve encountered along the way. There’s nothing like a road trip to reset and fall in love with a place, which is precisely what’s happened over the past two weeks. On July 20th, having just taken down a sizeable exhibition (a fantastic one, at that, read about it here), …

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Reykjavik Blast-off: Hallgrímskirkja

I spent my winter holiday in Iceland – the place I’d been dreaming of for the better part of decade. With new year’s eve approaching, I stocked up on cold-weather gear, packed a minimal photo-configuration, and set off for the frosty shores of the North Atlantic Ocean. We set up base in Reykjavik, where the capital’s crowning jewel is Hallgrímskirkja – a brutalist spaceship of a church that’s visible from miles away. It greeted us everywhere we went, accordion wings peeking around corners, steeple waving …

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Sparkles and Spice

“How did it get so late so soon? It’s night before it’s afternoon. December is here before it’s June. My goodness how the time has flewn. How did it get so late so soon?”  – Dr. Seuss It’s December and I suddenly miss this place. It seems with the end of the year approaching, I’m slowing down with as much tenacity as when revving up in spring. But reflection isn’t the point of this update, that’s for another time. Today is …

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Sorbet Spring in Windsor

Someone recently asked me when I moved to London and it made me pause. Though we arrived in late November, it feels like it’s been just a few months. Perhaps it’s because the fist two months were spent touristing around town from our temporary apartment, or because we just built the final piece of furniture for our new semipermanent home two weeks ago – whatever the case, London didn’t really feel like we live in it until we returned from …

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Art, Science and Immortality at the Morbid Anatomy Museum

Last week, I decided to stop by the Morbid Anatomy Museum during a 48-hour trip to NYC. As a long-time reader of the Morbid Anatomy blog –a veritable wunderkammer of antique scientific illustration, among a multitude of macabre treats–, I was elated when the Kickstarter-funded physical museum opened its doors last year. A walk across Brooklyn offered the opportunity to finally have a look around. I didn’t have time to research before my visit, and was surprised to discover no permanent collection, per …

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Disembarking the Torpedo: Goodbye 2015

It’s time to say do svidanja to 2015! If you’ve been here a while, you know I’m something of a Russian traditionalist, in that I take the weeks leading up to New Year’s Eve seriously. Resolutions, deep–cleaning wherever home is at the moment, purging whatever is no longer needed – I’m into the lot of it. I love big fluffy holiday ferns and presents, and end-of-ear blog posts, too. The past twelve months have been so intense, writing this was no small feat. Get cozy, comrades, this is …

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