… a tale of opium and spanish señoritas

A Spanish señorita has stepped on to the stage in our garden.

Neck proud and erect, earrings dangling, skirt flouncing.

spanish senorita opium poppy

A whirling flurry of passion immersed in her own red dangerousness.

opium poppy red skirt flying

A blurred oblivion of colour and movement.

pink underside opium poppy

But behind the facade of bravado and foot stamping she has a trove of quiet secrets, secrets that she keeps close and well concealed.

The tantalising question is

hidden secrets opium poppy

Who will she choose to unlock them?


    Art in the Vines at Renzaglia Wines

    Art in the Vines Renzaglia Wines

    We are in a huge state of flux at the moment.

    Re-envisioning a new and quite different future for Red Moon. Trying to redesign the blog too. Meanwhile, behind the scenes, Steve and I are getting glimpses of a life where the kids need us less, Darcy now an independent driver having got his Ps last Tuesday, Maddy last spotted in a bathhouse in southern Japan. I can sense we will be negotiating a redundancy package before too long lol. To be honest, it’s taking me a bit of getting used to.

    We took some time out yesterday to visit Sandy and Mark at Renzaglia Wines at O’Connell for their annual Art in the Vines.

    These guys fill my cup.

    Remember I took you there last year …

    A straw bale house in the country. Sandy with her beautiful rock work and drought tolerant plantings … thriving under a scorching hot sun.

    flowers at Renzaglia Winessandy's planting renzaglia wines

    Pulling together a great crew of artists and friends …

    musos and fans

    Mark with his winemaking …

    Renzaglia Wines premium reds

    This was the first time I’d seen the full range of labels we’ve been working on together for the past year or so.

    It started with a complete rebrand which I think Sandy would admit was a bit like letting go of her firstborn.

    Then a website.

    An initial label.

    And now a growing range, of premiums and commercials, some yet to be released.

    renzaglia wines range

    It got me thinking about rebrands and I can’t help but feel that we’re going through one of our own right now. Evolving into something new. I keep reaching for the rudder but we are definitely being carried along by a tide that’s out of our control.

    Sitting out at the Renzo’s yesterday looking at the straw bale home they built themselves, the gardens planted with thought and care, the vineyard in full leaf and a lovely event that is still in its infancy but will grow naturally with the rest of it … it all just made me take a step back and relax. Of course the wine might have helped too.

    I have been a mum for nearly 23 years and I know you never stop being a mum.

    But when you have been something for so long it’s hard to think of yourself as anything else.

    It’s scary.

    But it’s a little bit exciting too.

    Margaret Hogan sketch at Renzaglia Wines Art in the Vines


      A bag full of glimpses …

      It is dark. And still.

      The storm and lightening have passed and compared to an hour or two ago it is relatively cool.

      We are staying in The River Garden and down below in the open kitchen, the girls have stopped laughing.

      It is late.

      They are making their way home along the river. Apsaras all. The loveliest compliment I can give a Cambodian girl. So gorgeous. And funny.

      We are lapping up the peace after the frenzy of Bangkok.

      I am milking the last moments of a happy night learning to play Briscola with the kids.

      The frogs are filling the garden with their deep throated tubercular croaks.

      It’s been too quick a detour but what can I tell you …



      Three days in Siem Reap will buy you a bag full of glimpses.



      Frozen moments at Angkor Wat.


      Time and her entourage of characters will march right before your eyes …

      monks angkor wat

      You will see colour everywhere you turn …

      angkor wat

      And if you make a journey to a lost city in the dark you will see a sunrise, perhaps a sunrise that happens only twice a year and crowns a temple in gold.

      sunrise angkor wat

      You will see the most intricate stories. And bas-reliefs that will blow your mind…

      details of angkor war

      Hidden passages that lead to doorways bathed in blinding sunlight …

      monk angkor wat

      Seductive reminders of a world long gone …

      reliefs at angkor wat

      But still remembered.

      dancer at bayon temple


      You will see it all.


      However, sometimes it’s not about what you see.


      It’s about what you don’t see.


      headless statues angkor wat


      In three days in Siem Reap we saw no elders.

      Not one.

      We were treated with kindness and warmth and surrounded by smiles.

      But there was not a toothless one among them …

      Cambodia is a country playing catchup.

      A country that has lived through storm and lightening.

      Three days will buy you a bag full of glimpses but it’s what I didn’t see that has left its mark.


      it is never too late to be what you might have been


      And now makes me want to return.



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          Hi I’m Margaret. I live in Australia.
          I sprinkle creative magic onto businesses
          over at red moon creative.
          When I'm not there, I'm here and now, doing my own creative happy dance – primarily to avoid housework and other
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