Simplicity

We are living through a very strange period in our lives. One that affects us all. No matter where we live or who we are. A time when we are isolated like as never before. When life is reduced to the simple pleasures. Uncomplicated. Free from excesses and distractions.

Patti’s challenge got me thinking about what this means to me. I live at the best of times in isolation, although I don’t live on my own, but I enjoy my own company and I am never bored even though it would seem to others that I do nothing.

It’s not that I am anti-social, I am just very self-contained. And I have the time to enjoy the simple things in life and appreciate what is around me.

Preferably in the natural world. Trees, water, rocks, views. Although I can and do enjoy a city visit now and then as long as I can find a peaceful place to recharge my batteries. And not just those of the camera.

I don’t need much in life. I am happiest when wandering somewhere, anywhere, where I can disappear unnoticed with my camera in hand.

Lens-Artists Photo Challenge #91 | Simplicity

The Birks of Aberfeldy

Popularised in a song by Robert Burns, the fine circular walk up the steep gorge of the Moness burn reveals several waterfalls.

Begin along the obvious trail from the car park, bearing left to cross the large bridge over the foaming Moness burn.

This lower part of the Birks is in fact mostly a beech wood. The walk continues along the path beside the attractive burn with several small waterfalls.

“Now Simmer blinks on flowery braes,
And o’er the crystal streamlets plays;
Come let us spend the lightsome days,
In the birks of Aberfeldy.”

The Birks (Scots for birch trees) still cloak the steep slopes of the Moness gorge, along with oak, ash, elm and willow.

“The braes ascend like lofty wa’s,
The foaming stream deep-roarin’ fa’s
O’erhung wi’ fragrant spreading shaws
The birks of Aberfeldy”

Lens-Artists Photo Challenge #89 | River

Time x Square

Time for another square month hosted by the lovely Becky. The photos don’t necessarily have to be of a timepiece, but are open to interpretation to reflect time in some way, or sayings such as ‘the passing of time’, ‘a stitch in time’, or time running away from you.

Day 20: A Floral Clock

I love floral clocks! The first one I recall was in Great Yarmouth, I think, when I was around 8½ years old. So this would be early  in the 1960s. Sadly due to continuous vandalism the clock was removed in 2005.

The Floral Clock which stood on the seafront, was actually a working clock, telling the time for all to see, which had flowers showing the numbers on its face.  Even the hands were covered in flowers.

I also got a photo of one in Ostend in 1971 and there is one in the English Garden (Le Jardin Anglaise) in Geneva.

But the one seen here is in the Princes Street Gardens in Edinburgh taken in 2016. Commissioned in 1903, it was the first of its kind in the world. Clock hands, numbers and the surrounding display comprise of growing, photosynthesising life. In 1973, an electric motor was installed to keep the clock hands moving. Before then the clock’s mechanism had to be wound daily. Each year a new display is planted in West Princes Street Gardens along the lines of a topical theme. Plants vary each year but some of the more commonly used varieties include Lobelia, Pyrethrum, Golden Moss and succulents such as Echeveria and Sedum.

I am very glad to see that floral clocks live on. Where have you seen one?

To join in with the Squares challenge please visit Becky for instructions. Remember the only proper rule is that the photo must be SQUARE.

December Squares | Day Twenty

Time x Square

Time for another square month hosted by the lovely Becky. The photos don’t necessarily have to be of a timepiece, but are open to interpretation to reflect time in some way, or sayings such as ‘the passing of time’, ‘a stitch in time’, or time running away from you.

Day 19: The Golden Hour 

To join in with the Squares challenge please visit Becky for instructions. Remember the only proper rule is that the photo must be SQUARE.

December Squares | Day Nineteen

Eassie Old Church: Gravestones

Whilst looking at the Pictish Stone in this churchyard I had to take a look at the unusual headstones, including a series of tablestones.

I am always curious to see what symbols have been used on the headstones. Here the hourglass is used which symbolises a short life or swiftness of time. The cross and skulls as well as angel wings are common. But my favourite was the pressing iron and shears that indicate the grave was that of a tailor.

Sometimes the dates indicate some illness struck a family; above the two children died within a month of each other. The son only 4 days short of his 7th birthday and his sister not even 5½ years old. What illness struck them down? Measles? Smallpox? Influenza?

The grounds of this cemetery appear to be well looked after, the grass is short and the area around the stones is cleared, but it is sad to see some of the old headstones broken and discarded, some in piles, others propped up against the walls of the ruined church. Lichens and moss make some of them illegible.

A war grave stands proud in the cemetery. Though it too raises questions. How did the young soldier die? And what is 3/5th Black Watch? ¹

When we take such great care to protect one ancient stone (the Pictish Stone) we also need to protect stones that in the future would also relate our history.

Thursday’s Special | Traces of the Past

¹ 3/4th, 3/5th, 3/6th and 3/7th Battalions
Formed at home bases in March and April 1915. All moved to Bridge of Earn and later in 1915 to Ripon.
8 April 1916 : renamed 4th to 7th Reserve Bns; on 1 September 1916 4th absorbed all others.
Moved to Edinburgh in May 1918.