Monday 24 December 2018

Merry Christmas!

I wish you a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year, Dear Reader!

Tuesday 18 December 2018

Noël! Noël! 2018

Vintage German Xmas card image with snow and pinecones, ein frohes Weihnachtsfest

It's feeling a little bit German around here this Festive Season. No, not like the illustration above; it is, after all, a topsy-turvy world here in the Antipodes. It has been distinctly stormy and steamy this week (or sultry, as my Italian father-in-law was wont to say), as we run headlong toward the Summer Solstice. We've even had some Dramatic Wind to contend with around the Pipistrello roost and the emergency services came to salvage a neighbour's crushed car from under half a decades-old Ficus rubiginosa that had split down its middle in our driveway, but I digress...

I had thought to put paid to the ghastly, commercial, boxed Italian Panettone by baking my own this year (I do have plenty of candied citrus peel to get through) but have been distracted by a recipe for Stollen with a great hunk of marzipan through the middle (and thank you, Clever L for pointing out that they are to be found aplenty at Aldi, but That's Not The Point). It's not something I've ever eaten but it sounds delicious and the picture looks amazing. There are no longer 3 weeks left to have it Mature if I make it today but who's to know the difference? There are no connoisseurs of German baking around here. Not that that stops me from mucking around with new things. I can say now that after a few variations, Lebkuchen is not on my Greatest Hits list and won't be revisited again but Bethmännchen is a keeper and Pfeffernüsse is on my list for today. Yes, I shall be whipping up my own marzipan and Lebkuchengewürz before dazzling myself with some new hausfrau skills. I am optimistic! I'm loving my new German vocabulary, too.

Black and white photograph of woman in vintage kitchen cooking
This'll be Pipistrello later today

These past years, we've musically launched ourselves into Christmas by taking in some olde worlde carols with a group of friends at the concert which rounds out the Australian Brandenburg Orchestra and Choir's season. We regrettably missed 2017, so Mr. P and I were determined not to miss the Noël! Noël! Baroque-fest this year. Off we trundled, our little group of carol faithfuls this year limited to just us and J&P, to the acoustically atmospheric St. Francis of Assisi church in Paddington, our expectations high. And we were not disappointed!

John Melhuish Strudwick, Evensong, St Cecilia, 1897 Pre-Raphaelite painting of harpsichord and singers
Not Paul Dyer!
Artistic director and harpsichordist-extraordinaire Paul Dyer assembled an exquisite programme of delights, showcasing twenty carols and songs across 700 years of music. To present as guest soprano the very talented and glamorous star-in-the-making, Bonnie de la Hunty, he first paid tribute to 12th Century polymathic abbess, Hildegard von Bingen, then all the performers launched into a commissioned arrangement of her song, O eucharia in laeta via, and Bonnie took the stage in the first of four stunning gowns.

Hildegard von Bingen, 12th century German polymathic abbess woodblock print
Hildegard working hard
My favourite pieces were mainly German, and as fluent German-speaker J says, the language sounds so much better in song. The 17th Century tune by Johann Crüger, Nuch komm der Heyden Heyland was particularly glorious, with Baroque drumming, surging choir and Bonnie singing like an angel, sparkling in a sequinned black number, and sporting dazzling gems at wrist and ears. (Possibly paste, so hard to tell from the pew, but when the Brandenburg Orchestra's principal partner is Macquarie Group, who knows!)

Martin Luther's 16th century choral, Nuch komm der Heyden Heyland, from the Erfurt Enchiridion
Johann Crüger's Lutheran chorale

We heard a range of pieces, from Gregorian chant to Irish lullaby, instrumental arrangements of crowd-pleasing carols like We three kings of Orient are, and vocal arrangements of the likes of White Christmas. A stunning piece by contemporary choral composer Ēriks Ešenvalds, Only in sleep, with its shimmering cymbals was as traditional and carol-y as Johannes Eccard's early Baroque polyphonic work, Ich steh an deiner Krippen hier.

German engraving of three musicians, Nach der Music, circa 1580
Like the Brandenburg, dressed by the C16th M.J. Bale

George Frideric Handel's colourful Baroque aria, 'Let the bright seraphim' from Samson, was a terrific showcase for Bonnie's voice (now cutting an elegant figure in a white Grecian-esque gown) and the Baroque trumpet  talents of Leanne Sullivan. Like the magic of agrodolce, what sounds on paper to be a very unhappy pairing makes for an exquisite surprise!

Renaissance era Lady trumpeter illustration
Not Leanne Sullivan!
The Brandenburg concert traditionally finishes with a variation on Franz Xaver Gruber's Stille Nacht (this year in German and with Tommie Andersson leading the orchestral contribution on the theorbo) followed by O come, all ye faithful. Always joyful, always rousing and as ever, we the audience burst forth from the church with big smiles on our dials! The Festive Season has begun!

Saturday 1 December 2018

Citrus Redux

Jacob van Hulsdonck, Still Life with Lemons, Oranges and a Pomegranate, 1620-1640
Citrus Bounty, circa 1620
Jacob van Hulsdonck
First our bowls were brimming with sweet and zesty fruit. It was a Veritable Citrus Cornucopia this winter! And then, just like that, this year's fabulous citrus season was done. Now there are just some Valencia oranges and grapefruit, a few mandarins and some eye-wateringly expensive lemons and Tahitian limes on offer in that department when perusing the shelves at the Greengrocery. Boring.

No complaints from me, however (and not just because the mangoes and melons and stone fruit of summer are filling the void and Look!, cherries!), because during those times of plenty, Pipistrello went all out for Preserving for a change.

Alongside the lemony delicious things like syrup and frozen useful bits I shared earlier about these pages, I did add some candied lemon peel to the list, which is very nice with coffee. And a gift of limes were similarly treated, but I forgot to pare the rinds for candying, so that'll be for another time.

Walter Hood Fitch, Kumquat Fruit and Tree botanical illustration, 1874
Fortunately, we love the Fortunella margarita
My love for Fortunella margarita (a.k.a. Nagami kumquat) dates back to some years ago when I was travelling in an Ancient Land and the mother of my girlfriend served them at breakfast with their preserving syrup alongside walnuts and dates, feta-ish cheese and flatbread, and endless cups of tea from the samovar. I was determined to recreate their deliciousness at home and every season they appear I preserve them with vanilla bean and the glorious little nuggets and vanilla-scented syrup make a fabulous accompaniment to yoghurt in the morning or cheese in the evening.

For a twist on brandied kumquats, I made a batch with a bottle of Brazilian Cachaça, as it was what I had to hand. The resulting fruits are not quite as I expected, they're chewier and of a fire-breathing nature (and a different recipe will be employed next time), but we think that they will work skewered on a cocktail stick in a martini, so we could have a carefree Mad Men Party any old day now. The decanted sugar and Cachaça, too, is a rather interesting spirit now and when we are gripped by needing a caipirinha at said party, we are set, otherwise it's a potent drink to sip neat.

H M Brock illustration for Chivers' Old English Marmalade, 1912
Breakfast at our place these days
The Pipistrello roost was gifted a load of Citrus x paradisi (a.k.a. yellow grapefruit), courtesy of the informal communal book exchange in our building's foyer one fine day, so I set about sterilising every jar in the home as I had Marmalade in my sights. While the recipe I use for my kumquat preserve is indeed called a marmalade, I had up until now never made it before. I remember, with a shudder, the smell every year at my secondary school when the girls who took Cooking (Home Economics, please!) spent a week learning to make marmalade, so making it myself was something that never held any charm for me. Until, that is, I laid my hands on Arabella Boxer's Book of English Food, a delightful and well-used recipe book which celebrates the glory days of Fine English Cuisine (yes, there was such a thing), namely Between the Wars and before Rationing turned the tables on England's culinary heritage for decades.

Off to the Greengrocery, I trundled, in search of some oranges and lo! Citrus x aurantium* (a.k.a. Seville oranges) aplenty were to be had! Armed then with these preciously rare, bitter oranges, I consulted Arabella Boxer's recipe, which boils up the fruit whole, and is thus a doddle to make. Twenty jars later, I made a Blue Ribbon-worthy first attempt at Seville Orange & Grapefruit Marmalade and Seville Orange & Ginger Marmalade (plus four jars of Framboise-scented Strawberry Jam, as I was on a roll!). While 24 jars of breakfast preserve seems like a lot for two people to get through, and it is!, it has been rapidly whittled down as they do make handy gifts and I was keen to get a broader Taste Test.

Verdict: I have a new feather to add to my cap: Marmaladière to Friends & Family!

* Back in the Olden Days when the Pipistrello's had a garden of their own, I did valiantly try growing Citrus × aurantium var. myrtifolia, a.k.a. the Chinotto orange, as I fancied trying my hand at making Chinotto. It all came to nought as the tree never flourished. Notwithstanding these failed experiments, next up on the list is an attempt to make my own Tonic Water, as G&T season is almost upon us. A few more citrus bits will be employed for that recipe, too.

Thursday 22 November 2018


Spartacus! A household name, courtesy of Kirk Douglas, and a masculine, earthy 1950s Russian ballet for the balletomanes among us. Aram Khachaturian's story of the Thracian gladiator's slave revolt of 73 BCE has had a vivid reworking for the Australian Ballet's 2018 Season by choreographer Lucas Jervies and renowned costume and set designer Jérôme Kaplan, and Mr. P. and I had a chance to see for ourselves at the Sydney Opera House. Another ballet not previously seen by this Correspondent but I am pleased to report it was a very entertaining night out for all, and for we, of a particular vintage, surprisingly nostalgic.

When the curtain rises on Crassus' triumphal march into Rome, parading the Thracian captives, including Spartacus and his wife Flavia, I was transported straight back to the age of 11. The flag-bearers in their white mini togas and what looked like white bobby socks and plimsolls dancing around the stage in formation, put me immediately in mind of my participation in the Opening Ceremony of the 1977 Pacific Conference Games in our nation's capital. I was one of 1600 ten and eleven-year olds who ran about the stadium in our matching white outfits and waving a coloured ribbon in a choreographed ballet of our own, to the surging tune of "Fanfare to the Common Man", followed by the very convict-reminiscent folk ditties, "Bound for Botany Bay" and "Waltzing Matilda"*. Rousing stuff!

Third Pacific Conference Games 1977 Canberra

But, lo, the 1970s nostalgia didn't end there! Khachaturian's lovely score, beautifully performed as ever by the Opera Australia Orchestra, includes the Adagio of Spartacus and Phrygia (a.k.a. Flavia), instantly recognisable as the theme music to the long-running BBC drama, The Onedin Line.** While I cannot for the life of me remember anything of this popular maritime series, my guess being that the show probably coincided with bedtime, the music was a bolt from the past. It may need adding to the growing list of televisual viewing, as we do love a good Costume Drama around these parts.

Speaking of telly, the hat trick of reminiscences came in the form of Jérôme Kaplan's sleek and spare sets and costumes. While the gladiators were mostly clad in skimpy nothings and were even beefed up a little beyond the usual danseur's physique, (to the great delight of the Older Ladies sitting beside us; there was even a little bit of "Phwoar"-ing as they took in the programme before the curtain rose and a veritable frisson rushed around the dress circle at times), the Patricians wore precisely the sort of outfits that were the staple costume of all the Sci-Fi programmes from the glory days of the Space Race. M. Kaplan's formative years were evidently spent watching the same shows as the Pipistrello's.

Australian Ballet Spartacus 2018 photo credit Jeff Busby
Photo Credit: Jeff Busby
Throw in some gladiatorial fighting, a bath house Orgy and massacre, bloody crucifixions and lots of flinging about of arms to signify High Drama and Despair and you have a neoclassical balletic imagining of the Third Servile War of Ancient Rome. Mary Beard may have a wry comment to make about the Artistic License but it made for a jolly night out for us.

Spartacus 2018 Australian Ballet photo credit Jeff Busby Bath house
Photo Credit: Jeff Busby

Our principal dancers for the night were Jarryd Madden as Spartacus, Robyn Hendricks as Flavia, Andrew Killian as Crassus and Valerie Tereshchenko as Tertulla. Well danced, all!

Bonus Treat: For any dear Reader so inclined, I'm attaching the link to the Australian Ballet's very good website, where they have a short video on the costume design, here, and a tantalising snippet of the costumes in action, here.

* Australia didn't abandon "God Save the Queen" as our national anthem until 1984, prior to which Pipistrello fondly remembers school assemblies cycling through all the candidates for years, enjoying singing characterful folk ditties about our convict forebears before being saddled with the turgid "Advance Australia Fair".

** I was surprised to read on Wikipedia that The Onedin Line contributed to the fall of the Romanian dictator, Nicolae Ceauçescu.

Monday 12 November 2018

The Colour of Sydney

Jacaranda blooms against blue Sydney sky
Jacaranda Time!
There's a magical purplish-blue hue dotted across Sydney's skyline at the moment. Yes, it's Jacaranda Time! The Jacaranda mimosifolia, a tree introduced to these shores around 150 years ago, for a short period during spring (a.k.a. Michaelmas Term* in the Olden Days) generously gives most of us the treat of a regal display of their purple blossoms. I say most, as for some, (and I'm not naming names, Mum), they are not a treat but a nuisance, dropping their showy petals and carpeting otherwise tidy lawns and driveways and even playing merry havoc with their swimming pools. Tiresome! 

But for the rest of us, tourists and locals alike, they are much beloved and when they put on their splendid display, it's worthy of celebration. The Pipistrello's are particularly lucky to live in an older part of the city, where the trees are abundant and well-established, and as we aren't tasked with the job of cleaning up after them, we are quite happy to Make a Fuss over their seasonal glory. Even a grey and wet day is made brighter by their pop of colour peaking out over rooftops and across vistas.

Woolloomooloo rooftop view if Sydney Harbour Bridge and jacaranda in rain
The Harbour Bridge glimpsed across rooftops
Mr. P. and I walked with J through the rain over to the Art Gallery of New South Wales the other day to catch the end of the John Russell exhibition, taking in the grand floral display through the old suburb of Woolloomooloo, where the harbour foreshore and naval base rubs up against Victorian terraces and narrow streets, public housing and chic modern developments. Eclectic, maritime, but oh-so-leafy, too, this little suburb is what separates the Pipistrello roost from the City and is home to J&P and is a far cry from the plague-ridden slums of its past, a mere hundred-odd years ago.

Springtime jacaranda blooms in Woolloomooloo
The spring streetscape on a sunnier day

The exhibition John Russell: Australia's French impressionist**  was the first survey of this artist who spent forty years from the 1880s in Europe, studying first at the Slade School of Fine Art in London, then under Fernand Cormon in Paris. There he settled into the avant-garde set and experimented with emerging styles and the exhibition is thusly broad and ranges wide. Along the way he formed close friendships with Van Gogh and Rodin and had an influential encounter with Monet in Brittany, which is evident in some of the works which I did prefer (unsurprising, as my taste, as mentioned before, is so very Pedestrian). Alongside Russell's work there were pieces from his friends and contemporaries and a series of Rodin's busts of his wife, Marianna.

Behold, some of my favourite paintings of John Russell's, a former resident of our 'hood come good:

John Russell painting, The Garden, 1887, AGNSW exhibition 2018
The garden,
Longpré-les-Corps-Saints, 1887

John Russell painting, Antibes, 1892, AGNSW exhibition 2018
View from Hotel Jouve, 1892

John Rusell painting, Rough Sea, Morestil, 1900
Rough Sea,
Morestil, Belle-Île, c1900

John Russell painting, Stormy weather at Belle-Île, 1904, AGNSW exhibition 2018
Stormy weather at Belle-Île, 1904

Perhaps it was the seasonal joy of the Jacaranda-Fest working its magic on my subconscious, but the preceding four choices of painting did leap out at me as worthy of a photographic attempt. Because I am unsubtle and need to push my palette point, here are some more gratuitous photos of the same streets walked on a sunnier day:

Jacaranda blooms in Woolloomooloo with street sign
Beneath the canopy

Jacaranda blossoms under blue sky in Woolloomooloo
Painterly palette in Cathedral Street

East Sydney Hotel with jacaranda tree in bloom on sunny day
Classic old pub on Cathedral Street
And a couple more of Russell's painting, for good measure and to show I'm not entirely fixated on purple at the moment:

John Russell painting, Mrs Russell among the flowers at Goulphar, 1907, AGNSW exhibition 2018
Mrs Russell among the flowers in the garden of Goulphar,
Belle-Île, 1907

John Russell watercolour, Pear blossom in grey, 1920, AGNSW exhibition 2018
Pear blossom in grey, 1920

Rainy day outside AGNSW with view to Potts Point and Woolloomooloo in springtime
Rainswept view from the AGNSW across to Woolloomooloo
You could take the man out of Sydney but its colours remain in his work!

* In the unlikely event a Youth is lurking about these pages, Get Back to your Studies!

** If this exhibition is News To You, sadly, you have now missed it.

Thursday 25 October 2018

Chemistry At Home & A Fruitless Experiment

Pass me the pipette, Mr P!
Henrika Šantel, Kemičarka, 1932, lady laboratory chemist

I'm rather fond of playing with a bit of Chemistry in the home. Nothing too technical, nor beyond me requiring more than my kitchen scales and some litmus paper; just the sort of stuff that housewives used to knock up without much fuss in the days before the White Lab Coat of Authority sternly told us through advertising that only factory-produced household sundries &c. are to be Trusted, and anyways are so much more Convenient, and thus those little skills nearly vanished overnight.

Vintage household chemistry book, Two Thousand formulas, recipes and trade secrets, Harry Bennett
Handy Household Reference

While researching some of these lost Olde Ways, I found an excellent second-hand book by Harry Bennett, F.A.I.C., entitled catchily, Two Thousand Formulas, Recipes & Trade Secrets: The Classic "Do-It-Yourself" Book of Practical Everyday Chemistry. It's a reprint from a 1930s publication and an example of the kind of book that most householders had as a handy reference for when they needed to refresh their memory on how to prepare envelope mucilage or cold cream or billiard chalk or Absinthe (choose from English, Fine, two styles of Swiss & à la Turine!).

Norman's Indian Mucilage advertisement, bulldog strength glue
Pipistrello's Frugal Tip:
Make your own mucilage, instead!

Truth be told, some of the ingredients for the myriad recipes are a tad hard to come by these days, if not downright illegal, and serve to remind the Modern Reader just how far Society has regressed in its trust of our Fellow Man. I'm sure some sideways glances would be cast at my local Chemist if I was found to be shopping for some Sodium Cyanide (NaCN) and Mercury (Hg) and what-not for my Iron Rustproofing Solution. But if the End-Of-Days comes and Electricity & Google were to be switched firmly Off then the Pipistrello's will be fine as I now have my handy recipes for making the Rubber Bands which will be necessary for holding our post-Apocalyptic world together and the Tutti Frutti Essence which will add a bit of colour and flavour to our fallout-grey lives.

Hiking boots fail, rubber bands and crocs, one-size fits all
Rubber bands, so essential for navigating the
Post-Apocalyptic Future

Anyhow, it has been a Bit of a Year here, what with one thing and another, and the Pipistrello colony has had to become rather more intimately acquainted with some new-fangled advances in the Field of Medicine than we none of us had expected a little while back. One of the many joys of belonging to a family means that while one member may get the Hands-On Experience, we all get to Learn Something. Today's Lesson, concerning the treatment for a Gentlemen's Complaint, comes not from my copy of Two Thousand Formulas &c., nor even from Modern Western Medicine but from something more thrilling and far, far older: viz. Traditional Chinese Medicine ... Or would have, if Australia's quarantine laws were not so stern and unadventurous.

Chinese acupuncture chart
Coy and mysterious

Last weekend, over at my Brother's place, the Gorgeous A, whose culinary talents are a rival to the transfixing Li Ziqi, was hoping to prepare a decoction for her father as an adjunct to the Western Medicine treatment for his, ahem, condition*. It may surprise you, or not, to discover that when she trundled down to the Chinese Herbalist to fill the "prescription", as dictated over the telephone by the Chinese Doctor in Guangzhou, he merely threw his hands into the air with frustration and declared that this infuriating country prohibits the importation of most of her required ingredients!

While we were all poised to discover how efficacious this Tonic would be, Gorgeous A's quest for seven Periplaneta americana** thus Came to Nought, and I have sadly no scientifically-tested results to report. Now if you know Sydney, you might puzzle over this Quarantine Mystery, as the humble American Cockroach and their German cousins positively flourish in this fine city (and are the pesky reason why my experiments with Home Curing have to be refrigerator-focussed) and wonder why the apothecary did not figure for himself, Oh, a gap in the market! Opportunity knocks!, for they abound in a free-range capacity here, and are thus ripe for canny exploitation.

* He is unlikely to be lurking about these pages so the shared confidence shouldn't cause further embarrassment.

** Yes, the American Cockroach is Farmed in China for the lotions & potions so-beloved by the Chinese. And while you may look askance at the prospect of being prescribed 7 in a tea, Your Correspondent caught and ate one, sashimi-style, as a toddler to no ill effect!

Saturday 13 October 2018

Greek Series: The Marble Masons of Despotiko

Scaffolding Galore
Twilit Scaffolding & Cranework Adorning the Parthenon
Recognise this Grand Design? Yes, it's the Parthenon in Athens. Just so you know, it still looks like a Building Site that's hit a few Snags along the way; maybe a couple of issues with the Council, who knows, but it's still ages off what Kevin McCloud might call Watertight, perhaps never!

To see what it might look like when the Occupants have Moved In you must travel to Nashville in America, and behold the full-scale polychromic replica replete with a 42-foot tall statue of Athena (whose face is reputed to be modelled on a youthful Elvis Presley, according to the amusing docent who was my guide) - but I digress ...

Marble Masons Handiwork
Acropolis Restoration Work: A Giant 3D Puzzle!
In spite of the Curious Neighbours (a.k.a. Tourists) climbing all over it on a daily basis and the Second Fix perhaps still some ways off, there are still some fellows Gainfully Employed on site: the Marble Masons. Notwithstanding the never-ending nature of this project, these skilled craftsmen are rather sought after for other sites besides Athens' Acropolis. So where do they end up moonlighting?

Yes, on Despotiko! You may be forgiven for thinking that Ol' Holiday in Greece of mine was a dim memory by now, but no! there's plenty more juice to be squeezed from that lemon! Here's another peek into the World of Archæology as seen by this Correspondent, before I forget any more of the Salient Details. Let me introduce you to some of these fabled Marble Masons in their natural habitat:

Despotiko Marble Restoration Work
Just add Heat & Noise!
Give these men some scaffolding, a small and noisy diesel generator to run some angle grinders, some hand tools and ropes and pulleys and they will turn your Restoration Dreams into Reality ... albeit rather slowly.

The Despotiko Sanctuary to Apollo Before & After
What came before (well, an artist's impression)
Here is a Handy How-To Guide for those at home: First find an Olde Parian Marble Puzzle Piece that you can identify from amongst the pile of many hundreds, then mark out some useful reference points on its surface with your little laser gadget:

Laser measurements on marble pillar piece to aid in restoration
Not just a lump of rock: Restoration awaits!
Make a perfect fit for this surface in a new piece of marble (freshly quarried not from Paros any more but neighbouring Naxos) with some Trusty Geometry, hand tools and plenty of Skill, like this:

Glittering white Naxian marble ready-shaped for mounting old marble remnants
Gleaming new marble pieces ready for marrying up with the old
Use some Magic to join them together, or failing that, some titanium pins and cement and then shape using said angle grinder as required:

New-meets-old marble column base ready for shaping
A new-meets-old column base ready for shaping

Marble mason at work shaping a column piece with an angle grinder
A Mason at one with his grinder

Shaped and smoothed column base marked up for installation
Nearly ready for moving into place
Using the Time-Honoured Methods handed down by the likes of the Egyptian Pyramid-Builders, wrap your selected piece in ropes, manœuver it off your workbench and then roll it over timber logs to your desired destination. Apply these same low-tech techniques to winching your piece into place.
Nota bene: Allow a couple of hours for this stage - Rome/Athens/Egypt &c., weren't built in a day!

Hand winching marble column base into position on Despotiko's dig site
High-vis. optional

Newly restored 2-tonne marble architrave ready to be installed on Despotiko
 Architrave ready to be winched atop two columns

Marble architrave in position atop columns on Despotiko
Architrave in situ and capped with more original bits
(Not my pic! Photo Credit: Greek Ministry of Culture & Sports

If necessary, drill some holes for some titanium pins for later:

New Naxian marble column bases on Despoiko
Ready for the next column piece
Apply a liberal amount of grinding to effect the finish you desire, and do coat all persons in the vicinity with a fine, glittery coat of Marble Dust in the process:

New-meets-old marble columns ready for finishing smooth at Despotiko's Apollo Sanctuary
In the rough, at this point

Take plenty of time to stand back and admire your handiwork:

The 2018 Season on Despotiko drawing to a close
The old & the new

The close of the 2018 Season on Despotiko showing new marble works
All tidy after the 2018 Season

Continue until you have run out of Puzzle Pieces/Patience/Funding. If you have any leftovers, you could always utilise them in the manner of the invading Franks in the 13th Century, viz. Reduce, Reuse, Recycle!

Frankish castle on Paros built with Classical & Archaic-Era Marbles
Fun with leftovers on Paros, circa 1260 CE

Bats In The Belfry