Two Dutch Girls on a Road Trip to Wiltshire

Road Trip 2017 (2) - Richmond to Chawton to Salisbury.

Good afternoon! Would you like to join me for the second part of my road trip in the South-West of England? A long time wish of my daughter...

Thursday, 28 November 2013


What do you do when your son tells you that he wants to become a photographer?

Do you enthusiastically embrace this concept, knowing that it is exceptionally hard for professional photographers to make a living in this digital age?
Give an orang utan a Nikon and it will take photos...Right?


Sure, everyone can take a photo; sharp, HD, instant imagery to upload on FB and Instagram. But only a truly gifted photographer can take a photo which captures the imagination for longer than a few seconds.

I believe creativity is a gift to be nurtured, cosseted, but above all to be used. If you are creative but unproductive, no-one will see your photos. It's as simple as that.
(It's like writing. A blog, for example. The fact that hardly anyone will read it, isn't all that important. You feel the need to write, and thus you do.)
Sky with gulls, by Wibe Koopman

So, to return to my original question: what do you do?
You stimulate, you facilitate, you pay up. But above all, you are so damn proud.
Beach, by Wibe Koopman.

Wish List

Once in a while I stumble across a shop which immediately makes me wish I had a lot of money.
I don't. So usually I stick to browsing and wishfully think. A few days ago I came across such a shop in Rotterdam, in the Karel Doormanstraat.
It is called Zenza, and it's a chain... I hate chains, as they have taken over our shopping streets and have turned every city into one more pea in a pod. Everywhere you go you see the same shops. Boring!
But for this chain I will make an exception. For it is simply beautiful.
I wouldn't recommend it to those of you with a taste for stark industrial design. Neither to those of you of the chintzy traditional English persuasion.
But if you love Eastern, romantic, fairy-talish handcrafted furniture, light fixtures, jewelry, table wear and even slippers, Zenza definitely is the shop for you!
I've done some photo stealing, so you can judge for yourself. Hope they won't mind. (Hi, Zenza people, I adore your shops! Don't be annoyed with me, please?)
This is one of my favourites. I'd love to have this one in my bedroom! It's made of metal, with tiny holes punched out. Isn't it gorgeous?
And below is another example of the atmosphere of this shop.
They do have a website, so have a look for yourself:  Meanwhile, I've put half of their stock on my wish list!

Wednesday, 27 November 2013

There is hope.

Hi there, reader.
(Or is it readerS by now? Hope so!)
This is an installment about hope.

Now what do hope and art/design have in common, you may ask? Good question!
There's the hope of the designer, obviously. He (I'll use he, but you can read she into all of this as well) hopes that his creation will inspire, or be of use, or be the answer to world famine (to give but one hopeful example).
And there's the hope of the designer's family. Will he bring in the bacon for this month?
You have the hope of the nation. Is our pride and joy going to win the Eurovision Song Contest for the first time since that too-dumb-for-words ding-a-dong-song in ....whenever that was. Eons ago.

One of the most touching things is the hope that parents nurture. Hope that their kids will be alright. That they will stay healthy. That they will find love. That they will succeed in life, and will be able to fulfill their dreams.
Today was quite an eventful day for me. It started well, then took a nose-dive into near-despair, and then - like a see-saw - up it went again towards a dizzy height (success at last!), only to plunge me down into the next abyss. So, as is my habit, during my 1 1/2 hour tube and bus trip home, I did some reflecting. What is keeping me going? What is important? What do I live for?
My son has some sound advice. Right. I'll live for that 45 minutes of result I had this afternoon.
And with hope in my heart. That somehow, someway, someday ...
(I'll leave you to fill in the dots)

Obviously I've got other things to live for! I live for my family (corny!!!!Sorry!!!). And I live for music. (Yesterday my voice coach gave me a Pete Townsend song to learn. Wonderful! Such fun!)
And last Monday I had a free song workshop at work which was hilarious. We did an Edith Piaf song in phonetic French with Dutch rap thrown in. That was giving me hope as well.
As I said, hope springs eternal. Doesn't it? I'll only have to look into my daughter's eyes.

(Photographs by Wibe Koopman)

Sunday, 24 November 2013

Still trying to find my feet here....

I've posted a profile...sort of, because I don't think it's that important to tell the entire world population when I turn 56, or where I love and live exactly.
Still, what I do think important is that I can link to other sites, and that I haven't been able to do (yet).

So, what else have I tried to do today? Get tickets for Maison-Objet in Paris. And this I haven't been able to do either, as the machine was very obsessive about my company. I don't have a company. I just want 4 tickets, thanks!

Still. I have managed to find the blogspot account for my photographer son, so that's something. His name is Wibe Koopman. Do look him up, it's worth it!

To keep you occupied (grasping at straws here), I'll post a photo of a corner in my home.

A fresh start? Hmpff! Fresh Start.58-and-counting!

August 31st, 2017.

Song Smith - Maasvlakte II

You have reached my tiny corner of this blogger's world, where I rule and tell you about my life, passions and pet hates (sometimes). I am fast approaching the 100,000 readers mark - gosh!

You have also reached Viggo's Blog. This is a spin-off from Rays of Light, and - I, Viggo, am proud and not at all surprised to announce - much more popular. Hence I have persuaded my woman to add my photograph in place of honour: gorgeous, am I not? I have my very own Collections Collection on Google+ named Viggo's Life as a Macho Cat.And there you'll find lots of cute photos of our latest addition to the family, Bowie a.k.a. The Brat.

Song Smith - Viggo

Bowie, a.k.a. The Brat

You can also witness my occasional attempt at writing a local whodunit; you'll find this at the right hand side, under the header "The Menopausal Detective on a Slippery Slope".

Who am I? 
I've decided I'm not going to tell you. You'll simply have to read the blog, and by all means read Viggo's, as he is painfully honest.

Yup. You still have time to move on...
If you do not, then you are onto and into a wild and gentle ride (depending on my mood).

Ever since I started this blog on Nov. 24th, 2013, I have seen people from all over the globe read my posts. And this pleases me!

I am a gentle soul, and gentle souls have it tough in these troubled times. There is so much misery and unfairness in this world of ours. But what strengthens me is that I am convinced that there are many, many more people like me, who try their best to live their lives with integrity, and without hurting others.
Writing regularly is a bit of a problem at the moment, as I am a care-giver to my 89 year old very ill Mum next to my full-time job at school. But I'm trying to update and post with some regularity.

Lovely to see you, until next time! 
And meanwhile, walk with me on my

If you are a music junkie, like myself, it might amuse you to look me up on Youtube. Simply type in Song Smith and then dig down deep. I have the grand total of 5 songs floating around - but more will follow no doubt when the mood takes me.
I have started a new series titled The Hike in 2016. Although honesty demands I should change the header to The Ramble.  Look for it under the heading The Hike using the search button. There is also a Google+ "Collection" by that name (The Hike), so do take a look if you're interested.
My other Google+ collections are: 
"Flowers", (duh)
"Song's Best Books Club", about...books (double duh)
"Wetlands Style", about everything that tickles my fancy
and the aforementioned "Viggo's Life as a Macho Cat", about Viggo and Bowie.

PPSS: I am a regular contributor to and have an Instagram page: songsmith2962. You cannot accuse me of acting my age!