Flashback Friday #44

This post takes me back to my last visit to Australia in November 2014 when I went over to meet my newest grandson (at that time) who was already 7 months old. Now he is 7 years old! Still an amazing little lad. The compilation was for a WordPress 101 challenge at the time which I really enjoyed as it was all about focusing on different photographic techniques.


PhotoGRAPHy 101: Week 1

As I have been travelling for two days during this week I haven’t had the time to register for this challenge  so I am putting together a post to meet the five themes introduced this week and at the same time introduce you to my new neighbourhood (albeit temporary).

Home

HomeSydney, NSW, Australia is home to 4.576 million people and is the most populous city in Australia and Oceania. It is also home to my eldest son and family.

 Street

Corso in Manly

The Corso in Manly is one of Sydney’s more famous streets and runs from the harbour side at Manly Wharf to the ocean side at Manly Beach. In my image the focus is on the Victorian building on the left of the street with the palm trees and the people forming the background.

Water

Sydneysiders are lucky to have many beautiful beaches on their doorstep. This is the surf at Dee Why, one of the northern beaches. Finding this odd iron piling along the beach I couldn’t decide whether a vertical or horizontal composition suits it best. Which version do you prefer?

Bliss

Bliss
Lorenzo in his ‘sunnys’

This theme asks you to consider what the word bliss means.   To me, today, bliss means that first cuddle with a new grandchild. Bliss to him was wearing his shades to block out the glare of that Australian sunshine.

Solitude

solitude

The Manly Scenic Walkway at Shelly Beach. Today we are asked to consider placement of the subject in a photograph. My focus was on the bench, but I waited until a solitary figure appeared on the bend of the track and lined up the horizon with the metal railings to frame the sea from the sky. I was also rather pleased that the bench colour matched the sea and the lines were at a nice angle to the lines of the railings. Often a photo can look to be accidental, but I moved around quite a bit to get this deliberate shot.


This post is a contribution to Fandango’s Flashback Friday. Have you got a post you wrote in the past on this particular day? The world might be glad to see it – either for the first time – or again if they’re long-time loyal readers.

Flashback Friday #42

Back in the old days the OH and I used to try and take a short UK break around our birthdays, which worked very well as we then had a holiday in late spring (May) and one in early autumn (October). This one was my choice for celebrating my birthday in 2014.


Just Back From… Dorset

A last minute booking to Bridport in Dorset for a birthday and wedding anniversary celebration was made in lieu of the proposed trip to Seattle. After a gorgeous sunny September, autumn also decided to come along too, so it was a mixed week of sunshine and showers and even a few dramatic thunderstorms with lightning and thundering waves.

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Bridport

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Bridport is a quaint market town in West Dorset and only a mile from the famous Jurassic coast at West Bay with its lovely harbour and shingle beach. It has an open and airy feel to it because of the wide streets that contain several hundred listed buildings many of them built to accommodate the twisting and dyeing of ropes and nets during the late 12th century. It also has a lively arts and literary scene.

Although in a self-catering house I don’t consider it a holiday if I do all the cooking so we  ate take away fish and chips from Longs in West Street which were excellent – thin batter on the succulent cod and crisp chips. And the best deal was a thin crust pizza, salad and 1/2 pint of local cider from The Stable, behind the Bull hotel on East Street  – £10 on a Tuesday. If you like it hot go for the Blaster! Or what about the Bucky Doo?

Burton Bradstock

The Hive Beach Café
The Hive Beach Café

Good fish and seafood can be found in local pubs and restaurants, but head to the Hive Beach Café, a tarpaulin-sided hut which is a popular place for lunch as it is right on the beach at Burton Bradstock, 4 miles from Bridport along the shingle Chesil Beach. It is very busy at the weekend, even at this time of year, but worth the wait (no bookings) for the fresh lobster, sea bass or grilled sardines. An obvious choice for Saturday’s birthday lunch.

Continue reading Flashback Friday #42

Flashback Friday #41

Back in 2013 I wrote about a trip to Slovenia and the picturesque town of Bled. A place I actually wouldn’t mind revisiting if only for another wonderful Bled Cake!


A Quiet Corner in Slovenia

Bled and its perfectly formed lake located in the Julian Alps is in the Gorenjska region of Slovenia, not far from the Austrian and Italian borders. A lake just the right size for a comfortable stroll around its shores with spectacular views from all sides. We found ourselves there for a week in June 2012 when my OH attended a conference. Not far from the airport it was a quick transfer to the Hotel Golf, an ugly sugar-cube building above the lakeside, which had pluses and minuses.

The plus was a lakeside room with wonderful panoramic views. The minuses included no air-con, a steep climb back to the hotel from the lakeside, poor breakfasts and a noisy bar close-by where the natural amphitheatre of the lake basin amplified the sound.

The 6 km trail around the lake is long enough to take in the views of the island with the Church of the Assumption which demands a climb up the 99 stone-step staircase; visitors should ring the bell for good luck, and a local tradition at weddings is for the groom to carry his bride up these steps. Behind the island the background is of the Karavanke mountains. The castle is perched on the high limestone mass at the north of the lake and you will see the colourful traditional Pletna boats and boatmen who will row you over to the island; swans, ducks and fish swim in glacial waters so clear you can see the bottom. There are convenient benches for you to rest and absorb the beauty surrounding you.

The lakeside town is charming and popular with lovely cobbled streets in the old town, plentiful lakeside restaurants serving the famous Bled cake (kremna rezina), a delicious custard and cream confection, and the lovely neo-gothic St Martin’s Church below the Castle. The castle can be reached up a steep route from the Castle beach, or slightly less tortuous routes by road from behind the Bledec hostel. The castle offers magnificent views and is an interesting medieval fortress, well worth the effort of getting there.

When you are tired of the scenery around the lake you can visit Vintgar Gorge, 4 km north-west of Bled. A public bus will get you there and back. The 1.6 km gorge carves its way through vertical rocks and you alternate between paths and boardwalks alongside the River Radovna and its waterfalls, pools and rapids crossing over wooden bridges. It is a lovely cool place to visit on a hot day.

The Triglav National Park covers almost the entire Julian Alps and offers a completely different experience. Majestic mountains, steep gorges, clear mountain streams and traditional farms. Take an exhilarating and spectacular drive up the hairpin bends of the Russian Road to the Vršič Pass which is on the border with Italy.

Triglav National Park
Triglav National Park

Not only is it special for the views and scenery, but there is a history behind its existence. It was built by Russian prisoners-of-war in 1915 and because the road had to be kept open all year round, prisoners were kept in camps to shovel off the snow. In 1916 an avalanche buried one of these camps killing around 400 prisoners and 10 guards. There is a small cemetery near hairpin 4 and a beautiful Russian Orthodox Chapel on the site of the camp at hairpin 8.


This post is a contribution to Fandango’s Flashback Friday. Have you got a post you wrote in the past on this particular day? The world might be glad to see it – either for the first time – or again if they’re long-time loyal readers.

Flashback Friday #40

On the 1st October 2015 I was raving about my new macro lens which I took on a walk to a nearby broadleaved woodland down by the River Teme in Ludlow. One of my favourite places to walk when I lived in the town.


little things in life

A fellow blogger and friend has been posting some images of spring in Australia including close-ups of moss starting to sprout. It prompted me to take my new macro lens down to the river where I knew moss grows abound and where I had seen some tiny fungi growing just the other day. Unfortunately it was quite dark by the river (it is flanked by a high cliff and trees on the one side) and moss isn’t as attractive in its latter stages, but I did find the fungi and a few interesting little things to photo. They are not the sharpest of images, but as I have mentioned over on the flower blog where you will find more macro images, I am happy to record my journey with the new camera with the hope that as time goes on I will improve!

We will start with this quite small leaf covered with tiny hairs on which there were beads of moisture – from the early morning fog I imagine.

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Next a look at some fungi – note that the puff ball ones are actually very, very small, probably the size of the nail on my little finger.

Then some moss – again with the droplets – ferns and a couple of flowers. I had not realised until now how much the spores on a fern look like tiny eggs.

And finally one insect (there was a spider too but the quality of that shot is far too embarrassing to post here) a bright red-brown fly. If you click on him to enlarge the image you will see the hairs on his back.

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This post is a contribution to Fandango’s Flashback Friday. Have you got a post you wrote in the past on this particular day? The world might be glad to see it – either for the first time – or again if they’re long-time loyal readers.