About Lottie

This blog started its life in Indonesia shortly after Pete and I moved to Jakarta in 2011. Finding myself at a loose end, with long days to fill and no family or friends to play with within a seven thousand mile radius I needed an outlet for my energies. It was Irishman’s suggestion that I should start writing a blog and, as it turned out, it wasn’t such a bad idea. There was plenty to write about and I found it helped to keep me sane because at times living in Jakarta made me want to hurl myself off the balcony. Fortunately a sense of humour and copious amounts of Bintang kept me from topping myself and by the time we left in 2013 I’d almost grown to love the place.

From the sublime to the ridiculous or should it be the other way round? We moved from a traffic island in the centre of Jakarta to a tumble down house deep in the olive groves of rural Southern Spain.  After two years of renovations and slowly finding our feet, we embarked upon an even larger project in the centre of the medieval town of Alcalá La Real. Our dream was to have an art school/bed and breakfast.

Atelier 88 started as little more than a pile of stones; a dilapidated building crying out for love and restoration. We poured everything we had in to the renovation, taking a huge financial risk but we were determined and despite setbacks and hiccups, we opened our doors in autumn of 2017. Despite having no qualifications in the hospitality industry, we had remarkable success with the B and B and a lot of fun running Art/Printmaking courses. The trouble was, I spent all day ironing, cooking and cleaning, and Irishman spent far too much time on keeping up with all the paperwork. Both of us started to feel that we needed more time to focus on making our own work. We also had a radical rethink about how we wanted to live. The world is changing, climate is changing and however lovely Andalucia is, there will come a point when water is going to become a big problem. Time to move to somewhere greener and wetter.

We now live at The Red House in Mañón, A Coruña, Galicia in the north west of Spain. Nestled in the rolling hills with a backdrop of mountains and the sound of the rushing Rio Sor, our life here is starting to take shape. As gluttons for punishment we have bought another old property and over the past nine months have been busy working on renovations.

The Red House is a magical place, and I feel blessed that we have this opportunity to start afresh and to live in such a glorious part of the world. The path that we have taken is not always easy but its certainly never dull and when I have time, I love to write about what we’ve been up to and our adventures. I hope that you enjoy this blog and that maybe it will inspire you to take that leap of faith and follow your dreams.

If you are interested in what we are up to and would like to find out more about courses/workshare etc here is the link to Atelier88Galicia http://atelier88galicia.com

Lottie Nevin 2019

69 thoughts on “About Lottie

  1. Sorry for not answering your email of 13th of November sooner.
    Sophie and I have just read your blog and are wiping the tears from our eyes.
    Glad to hear that everything appears to be going well for both you and Pete in Jakarta. We are all missing you terribly and the club just isnt the same without you both! Maggie has asked when are you coming back as the takings have dropped massivly since your departure!
    I will be sure to log on again from work to see what you have been up to and it read the next installment of your diary.
    With lots of love
    Michael, Sophie and Katie. (the evil bunny) xx

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    1. Roger, thank you for your message and for reading my blog. I hope you get to travel too. It doesn’t really matter where you travel too, it’s the journey and the experience that you learn from it that counts. All the best Lottie

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  2. It’s great to find your blog here! And I love your pictures there, they’re very unique!! 🙂

    And guess what? I was born and grew up in Jakarta, South Jakarta, to be precise. Whereabout do you live? I haven’t been back for nearly two years, but I’m sure the city is now a lot more crowded.

    Great to find you here and have a wonderful week! 🙂

    Kind regards,

    Subhan

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  3. Selamat Pagi Subhan! 🙂

    Thank you for your lovely comment and thanks for your ‘Likes’ too! I’m happy that you stopped by to read my blog and I’ll be checking out yours later!

    We live in Pancoran, Jakarta Selatan.

    You have a great week too, take care and all the best Lottie

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    1. Thank you Anton. Yes, I feel very happy and blessed to be living in Indonesia. Jakarta feels like home now and I’m looking forward to travelling all over the archipeligo when we have some more time.

      Thanks for your comments and I appreciate you stopping by to visit my blog. Lottie

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  4. Hi Lottie!
    Thanks for dropping by my blog and liking it too! Nice to read another expat-in-Indonesia’s blog, full of observations and experiences far from… ummm., home (wherever that may be)! Hope you enjoy your stay and the blogging too.
    Come and visit (again) in Bali, I’m here!
    Amit

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    1. Hi Amit, really great to hear from you! Bali has become our sanctuary away from the madness of crazy Jakarta! It’s always a wrench going back after the weekend but we feel so fortunate to have this experience and to be able to have the peace that we crave for making our own work. Thanks for stopping by and reading my blog, I really enjoy yours. Lottie

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      1. Thanks! Yes, I’ve heard enough about Jkta to know that it’s nowhere on my bucket list 🙂 You are indeed fortunate to have a paradise getaway… Sampai jumpa nanti!

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  5. Briefly knew Pete at Kent Institute of Art and Design in ’94. As such came across your footie related post. Best wishes to you both, I am am a Tottenham fan, but I will be watching the match !

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    1. Hey! Great to hear from you and I shall tell Pete that you got in touch when he’s back on monday. One of my daughters is a Tottenham fan so all is forgiven! I’ll be watching the match too but at 3am in Bali if I can stay awake long enough. Send loving vibes Chelsea’s way, it would be the icing on the cake if they won and make Pete’s long trip to Munich complete.

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  6. Love your pictures. For those of us who can’t travel, blogs like yours help to keep us aware of others in “faraway” countries and villages and islands. Thank you for your love of “others.” Barb

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    1. What a lovely comment Barb, thank you so much. I’m very touched by what you wrote and it makes happy that you enjoy my blog and looking at the pictures. Even though I am currently living in one of the most beautiful parts of the world, I often feel very ‘faraway’ from people so my blogging is a wonderful way to connect with others such as yourself. Thanks for stopping by, it’s really appreciated. Lottie

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  7. Thank you so much for liking my post! I decided to read your blog and follow it and I’m really glad you love being here in Indonesia. As a fellow Jakartan, may I ask what do you love and hate most about this city? 🙂

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    1. Mary, my fellow Jakartan friend! Thanks very much for your comment and for now following me – I shall return the compliment the moment that I’ve sent this message back to you…. 🙂

      In answer to your question, I’ll start with the negative and end with a positive.

      I HATE the disparity between the rich and the poor and I wish that I could wave a magic wand and change it instead of feeling hopeless and helpless.

      I LOVE the passion and drive of the young Indonesians that I have met and how they value education – it’s awe-inspiring.

      I look forward to reading your posts and following you too, it’ll be fun! Thanks for stopping by, Lottie.

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  8. Lottie, I’m looking forward to following your blog — I love London and Indonesia (although I’ve only been to Bali) I love your sense of humor and your photos. Thank you for checking out my blog.

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  9. Hi Lottie, thanks for liking and following my Blog – we seem to have a bit in common ya !!! really love your photography, your photos of Bali are amazing and I really like you artistic sensibilities… Ill follow your Blog too ! Tanya

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    1. Wow, what an accolade! thanks so much Tanya. I think your photos are fantastic. I’m looking forward to reading more of your posts. Thanks for following me and for your lovely comment. It’s made my morning feel special 🙂

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  10. Thanks for visiting the the Pigsarms . Drop in any time – and feel free to send us any material you’d like us to publish or republish. We get between 100 and 400 views per day and we’ve been going for over three years with more than 300,000 views and 40,000 comments so far.

    I really appreciated looking at your wonderful photographs.

    Cheers,

    Emmjay.

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  11. Hi Emmjay

    I love the Pigarms and have been following your blog for a while. Twas Mr Oosterman that led me to your door. Glad you like my photos and it’s kind of you to invite me to send some of my material in, thank you.

    Lottie

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  12. I discovered your blog throw Rexlin Victor’s blog when I sw your name and clicked on it. You have much scenery to photograph and all of it is appealing to those of us who live in places with dull and drab scenery. I will be back to look at your blog/photos another time.

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    1. Thank you! Your lovely comment has cheered me no end. I’m just back from a week in London and feeling a bit glum – it’s always hard leaving family and friends behind when I return to Jakarta, but your kind words have reminded me to get on with my next post and appreciate all the good things that I have here! Lottie 🙂

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    1. Hello Elise, I would be absolutely delighted to feature on your blog and thanks so much for the invitation – wow, I feel very flattered, and very honoured by your request. I’m going to email you right now this minute! Thanks again, Lottie.

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    1. I’m delighted that you came to check things out over here, thank you!
      Andrew’s posts are always great fun and we have a lot of banter. Thanks also for now following me, I’m looking forward to catching up with you and returning the compliment. Lottie 😀

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  13. Lottie i have to say you ROCK! Your posts and pictures .adventures are just breathtaking.Makes me feel like my little posts are so trivial.Such a inspiration.Always looking forward to new posts,blessings Aerobabe619 ( cheri Linster)

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    1. Thanks so much Cheri. Your comment really cheered me and I am tickled that you enjoy my blog, that means a lot to me. Sorry that I’ve been so long in responding to your kind words but I’ve been away and ‘off radar’ for a while. I look forward to catching up with your posts soon. Lottie xx

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    1. Hello! I’m glad you like my Gravatar. I think it’s important to have a bit on anonymity on here! Thanks so much for following my blog – I’ve signed up to yours and look forward to catching up with you soon 😉

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  14. Lottie I have now just read the new About. The “wino” thing has me laughing still. I love wine too but it does not like me or rather my body does not. I sip a bit now and then if I can find some that is considered organic and has no sulfur.But a nip of wine here and there isn’t very satisfying. The About is great and by now you will have read my email replies to you. Still thinking of the photos you sent. It is REALLY pretty where you live. Open air and nice neighbors- wonderful.

    ~yvonne xxx Thursday 10:30am CDT

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  15. Hi Lottie
    I was new to blogging last year and I guess I have explored hundreds of different blogs over the year – people who live in Spain, writers, photographers, foodies, book reviewers and some I struggle to define! That’s a lot of reading. Your blog is one I keep returning to, and so I’d like to nominate you for the Sunshine Award.
    Please click below to read more about the award:-
    http://notesonaspanishvalley.com/2014/01/07/un-premio-del-sol/
    Many thanks, and Happy Blogging in 2014!
    Sandra

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    1. WOW,WOW, and WOW again!! Thanks so much for nominating me, Sandra. I love reading your blog and I found it really helpful when we were thinking of moving to Spain. You were one of my inspirations! Lottie xxx

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  16. I was wondering why the name “Rioja diaries” when you’re living on the other end of Spain. A rioja – Marques de Riscal is reliably good and something that I could get in the supermarket in Brussels – is almost always my choice of vino tinto. All this talking about wine makes me want to open a bottle now! Pinot noir will have to do for tonight.

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    1. Thank you and I’m so happy to read your comment. Your suggestion of a good Rioja will not be wasted, I am always thrilled to be given a tip off about a good vino tinto! We are slowly working our way through the wine list here. Tragically we have a very tight budget which means that more often than not, it feels like we are drinking vinegar. Sometimes we get a nice surprise! Enjoy your Pinot Noir, it’s not a bad grape 😀

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      1. I hope you get the chance to go up north to the Spanish basque and Rioja wine-making region. You can get a decent bottle (again, referencing MdR as this is the only brand that I’m familiar with from the region) fof white for less than 10 euro, and red for less than 20 euro. I had enough of the Pinot Noir for tonight and now am ready for bed 🙂

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      2. I am sure we will as it is on the way to the ferry that we catch from Bibao. Thank you for you wine tips, always good to hear from you. Lottie 😀

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