Tag Archives: photography

Dogs Around the World: One Man and his Dog

Scott Memorial 1

One man and his dog, Spot, a bottle of lemonade and ginger pop; went to mow a meadow!

I couldn’t resist quoting the song One man went to mow that we sang as kids on school coach outings. The addition of “a bottle of lemonade and ginger pop” was a local variation.

This is the Scott Monument in Princes Street Gardens, Edinburgh, Scotland. It commemorates Scottish author Sir Walter Scott. Completed in 1844 after the author’s death in 1832, it is in Victorian Gothic style and is the largest monument to a writer in the world.

Scott was a dog lover and you will often see dogs in his portraits. His favourite dog, Maida, depicted gazing lovingly up at his master in the statue, was a Deerhound cross. Actually, many people do not spot the dog at all, maybe because it looks like a lamb!

I sat on a bench right by this edifice while I ate a sandwich, accompanied by that seagull (You’ll never eat alone.)

As it is one of the tourist attractions, it’s difficult to get a picture of the memorial from a distance without lots of people in the shot, so the photo below isn’t too bad.

Scott Memorial 2

Residents of Edinburgh might be surprised to learn that there are more dog statues or memorials than just Greyfriars Bobby and this one. Apparently there are at least five more:

Greyfriars Bobby, Maida, Toby, Bum  (the American 3 legged one), Cuillin, Dobbler and Beauty.

 

You can read about them all here: Other dog statues or memorials in Edinburgh, Scotland.

 

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Windswept!

Wind Turbine 1

I was chuffed with this image of a wind turbine that I managed to snap from a train window in passing. You really get the sense of size as the massive blades loom over you.

Wind Turbine 2

Even seen from a distance they are truly majestic!

You can read here about Wind Turbines, how they work and their advantages and disadvantages.

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I’m all for using alternative sources of energy like the wind, water or sun, which are all there for the taking. I don’t know why we don’t use them more.

There is a strong persistent wind that blows in Cape Town from September to March, which is known as The Cape Doctor, because it supposedly blows away the pollution. Cape Town is actually known as The Cape of Storms!

I was happy to find out that we do have some wind farms around the area.

 

These photos are from one of my train trips in the North of the UK last August.

 

Lavender Blue

Hydrangea 1

Whether you see this as pink, lilac, mauve or purple . . .

Hydrangea 2

I think it is a lovely colour!

Hydrangea 3

This ancient hydrangea was already in the garden when we moved here yonks ago.

Hydrangea 4

The plant looks dead in winter but always amazes me by producing these lovely blooms each spring.

They don’t usually last long in our harsh sun, but I enjoy them while they’re here.

 

post script: I have promised my Northern WP friends gratuitous Spring photos to sustain them as they plunge into the depths of winter! In return they will supply me with Snow Photos in due course, to sustain me during the searing temperatures (38C – 100F) of summer here in Cape Town, South Africa.

post post script: And because I love the song, here is Lavender’s Blue from the movie Cinderella.

 

Remembrance Sunday

Poppy Day

 

They shall not grow old, as we that are left grow old:

Age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn.

At the going down of the sun and in the morning

We will remember them.

Poem ‘For the Fallen’ by Robert Laurence Binyon.

 

November 11th was Armistice Day and today is Remembrance Sunday.

Traditionally red poppies are worn to symbolise those that grew on battle fields such as in Flanders Fields. Here I have a photo of my own little yellow poppy that survived itself against all odds.

A two minute silence is held to mark the end of the First World War, at the eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month.

Because we should remember all those fallen in all wars.

And make sure that some day it stops.

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As a young kid I used to buy a poppy each year at school and when older, go round selling them to the other kids.

I used to observe the two minutes’ silence while watching the poppies fall in a remembrance service on TV, at 11 o’clock on the 11th November. They just kept on falling.

So    Many    Poppies.

So    Many    Lives.

And still we go on killing each other.

When will we stop?

 

Shimmering Reflections

Reflections 1

I have always been fascinated by reflections in water. I can stare for ages transfixed by the rippling images, as one would do a flickering campfire flame.

Reflections 2

Here you see buildings mirrored in the glossy Water of Leith, the main river running through Edinburgh, Scotland, for 35 km, till it flows into the Firth of Forth at Leith and thence into the sea.

Reflections 3

It was a little windier on our return trip walking back up the river, as can be seen by the cloudy appearance of the water closest to us; the surface whipped up by the strong Scottish wind.

 

Dogs Around the World: Greyfriars Bobby

Bobby 1

Meet Greyfriars Bobby; a little Skye Terrier, famous for guarding his master’s grave in the Greyfriars Churchyard for 14 years. He is immortalised here in a bronze statue mounted on a granite plinth, which was originally a drinking fountain for both people and dogs.

I had always intended to visit the little statue of Greyfriars Bobby, when I was in Scotland, but hadn’t managed it and my holiday was nearly over. Quite by chance, I found myself very close to his statue one morning, when I had been wandering round Edinburgh Old Town with my daughter Pix and her husband.

So we finished our croissants at the outside cafe on a narrow cobbled street and wandered over to the statue.

Bobby 2

There were many people congregated around the little dog, posing for their photos to be taken alongside. It is supposed to be good luck to touch his little nose; which explains why it is golden and not black like the rest of his old bronze statue.

Bobby 3

We didn’t have to wait long for a gap in the crowd and duly took our photos with Bobby too.

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A funny incident happened while we were waiting for our turn. A man came marching towards the crowd, with a large black Rottweiler. He stormed straight through the middle of everyone, shouting loudly and aggressively, “Excuse Me!” as he barged his way through, barely giving anyone time to get out of his way.

My daughter explained that many Scots people hate the Edinburgh Festival in August, as the streets are thronged with happy tourists. Well I understand that, but really, all the angry man had to do was walk on the other side of the street to Bobby’s statue. That side was empty!

Bobby 4

Of course there are going to be crowds round every tourist spot during the Edinburgh Festival!

It is similar here in Cape Town during the long summer school holidays in December and January. We are over-run by tourists from other parts of South Africa, such as Jo’burg, and also from overseas. So we locals avoid the tourist spots during these months, or we go very early in the morning, before the tourists have finished their breakfasts!

Sorted! No need to get all grouchy and barge through the poor visitors!