Saturday, October 31, 2009

Wandering around the Victorian Walled Garden ...

... at Kylemore Abbey, Connemara, Co. Galway .... (will do a post on the Abbey as it's spectacular with breathtaking scenery .. sooooo watch this space!)

... we came across a pumpkin patch ... never seen one before !!! (Oh, I lead a sheltered life ...!)


... with big round orange -well, turning orange - pumpkins ... (we don't get pumpkins like this in South Africa - well if we do, I have never seen them) ...

.. just perfect for a Halloween face .. which I've also never ever seen before !!!!

I spotted this table of pumpkins .. one with a carved face .. yippeeee! .. I can now say I've seen one !! This was outside a small veggie/herb and all-sorts-of-things shop in Kew, outside London on our recent trip.
Happy Halloween to all those happy halloweeners .... (it's not a big, important event on our South African calendar) I suppose, one of the reasons, is the availability of pumpkins in the Southern Hemisphere. They're an autumn veggie and we are in late spring/summer now.


Friday, October 30, 2009

Skywatch Friday :

Another Ireland photo from our recent trip there -

The Spire in Dublin, Ireland on a clear blue day ...


120 metres (390ft) high in O'Connell Street ... I thought looked a little out of place with all the other statues up and down the street ...

See the tiny white speck on the left? Had to zoom into it to see what it was ... it's a bird!

For more spectacular skies around the world visit Skywatch

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Come with me .....

.. while we walk along the banks of the River Martin, towards the Blarney Castle, Co. Cork ...

... the path leading to the Castle meanders through part of the 60 acres of parkland ...

... with trees in their autumnal shades ...

.... crossing over the Blarney River we come across the Castle reaching high above it's rocky foundation ...



... no .. not up these steps ..

.. we must pass the tower ...

... is Sleeping Beauty in her slumber, waiting for her handsome Prince inside the castle surrounded with thorny rose bushes and climbers ...? ...



... let's enter the gate ...

... and climb 127 very narrow steps ....
.. not quite at the top ... but take a breather and enjoy the view .... overlooking the castle wall and road below it ...
... just like the doves ...


... phew .. at the top of the Castle's keep where the man who-holds-you-ever-so-tightly-while -you-bend-backwards-pursing-your-lips-to-kiss-the-Blarney Stone ... awaits his next 'victim' ...

.... hubby !! ... actually it was me .... hubby didn't want a turn (!) .. but was kind-of coerced !

... while I leaned over the battlements to take in the beauty of the surroundings

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Doolin, Co. Clare ....

... is a small village on the coast of Co. Clare. We had just left the Cliffs of Moher and were on our way to Galway, sightseeing along route

Opposite the row of village shops is a river .. that's how small the village is!! (Actually it's not the smallest village we've seen .. one of smallest, is one we stayed in last year - Lumpley Stoke, near Bath, England - consisted of the pub, hotel and disused railway station!)

This is the pub in Doolin - well known the world over for it's traditional music! The Publican at a pub called The Thatch in Waterford told us about Doolin and it's music! Gosh, he was a helpful chappie and sat with us with our map sprawled in front of him circling the places we should visit - well, this was one of them .. so there we were ... outside the pub ... (no time to stop for a drink unfortunately as we had lots more to see on our way to Galway)

.. and found two music shops ...

... this one was tucked behind the front village shops ....

... filled, floor to ceiling, with musical instruments and everything connected to traditional Irish music and dance ..


.. I asked the chappie behind the counter if I could take photos ... yes I could, but not of him! Should have got a close-up of those dainty leather dancing shoes hanging from the Bodhran's ..


The other music shop was round the corner and had a beautiful garden filled with flowers .. don't know what the pink ones are but the fuschias grow everywhere ... absolutely everywhere!
Strange to see them so large and so bushy - don't grow like that here. Usually this dark variety and sometimes a pale pink one but they are very commonly grown as hedges alongside roads and lanes. Cars, buses and trucks sweep passed them leaving them straight as if cut with shears, a long line of a dip (from the cars' mirrors !!) and then over the top like a tunnel (from the tops of buses and trucks!!) These were taller than me!


We travelled down to the end of the road to the port ..

.. from here there are ferries to Aran Islands in the distance ...

.. or to the Cliffs of Moher in the distance ..
It was strange to see the sea .. the Atlantic Ocean .. sooo calm !!!

Unfortunately, it was a quite a grey, cloudy day. Would have been nice to see the green pastures under sunlight across the bay ... but at least it wasn't raining! ...

Another view of the rocky coastline ..


Monday, October 26, 2009

Disintegrated before our eyes !

She loved it !! We were pleased!!! But it started disintegrating while Elaine was wearing it yesterday !!! Is this some kind of a joke, she asked !!!


I am very fussy when it comes to buying clothes ... I check everything .. the stitching, the quality, the hem ..... so this also was given 'the once over' while in the shop in Dublin - Carrolls ...
perfect ! ... Elaine would like it .. and she does !!

But she put it on the first time yesterday and within an hour or so I noticed a hole under her arm ... how could I have missed THAT ! It looked easy to stitch together .. under the arm .. no-one will see it ... a little while later I noticed more holes .. and more !!!

... then it started on the other sleeve .. which I had scrutinized once I spotted the first hole .. it was clear .. not a sign of a hole ...
Now .. I can't 'pop over' to the shop and exchange it !!! Bryan suggested I write them an email with a photo attached ... not that it will do anything, but just to let them know that they sell 'disintegrating' T'shirts ! ... hence the photos !
It obviously has something to do with her deodorant and the fabric - she uses Dove aerosol deodorant - as I do. The fabric has a good quality feel... ! Never seen anything like this before !!
Carl and Lance - be warned ! You may also have disintegrating T'shirts from Ireland !

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Weekly Winners : 18 - 24 October

Haven't taken many photos since coming back from our wonderful holiday in Ireland ....

Sooooo ... thought I'd give an update on the area in my garden that was squashed and trampled on when the three huge conifers were felled ...

... not looking tooooo bad .. only lost one rose bush but that was because I transplanted it .. not very successfully ... and in it's place planted a Lavender Tree .. to help hide the neighbour's rather ugly house ... shall now plant some more little 'things' in-between to fill the gaps ..

Last night .. we had a lovely evening with our Colombian friends .... plus one !
Thought I'd add some abstract ....
... before showing Bradley, who was the coolest of dudes !!


.... and trying so hard to stay the coolest of dudes ...

Connor .. not to be left out ... showed me his 'cool dude' pose ...

... and ended up being .... the cutest of dudes !!!


'Brotherly' cool dudes ...!

For more Weekly Winners go to Lotus at sarcasticmom.com

Friday, October 23, 2009

Skywatch Friday :

Following on from yesterday's post at Mizen Head, Co Cork in Ireland on our recent holiday there .... the clouds drifted over for a while, turning the reflection of the sun's rays into a sparkling pathway across the Atlantic Ocean ...




It was midday!! ... on the upside-down sundial !


For more spectacular skies around the world visit Skywatch

Thursday, October 22, 2009

On the way to Mizen Head, Co. Cork ...

... over the greenest of hills and dales ... the landscape became a little barren ... we knew we were nearing our destination when we came to this beautiful beach quite unexpectedly!! We only saw a few beaches like this on our route round Ireland ..


... it was a magnificent sight with the Atlantic Ocean spreading out beyond the bay ...

Mizen Head, the most south-westerly point in Ireland, is linked to the mainland with a arched pedestrian bridge which spans a deep gully ...


... walking from the car park to the Signal Station and peering down the cliff face to the sea ... way, way below !
A spectacular view from the arched bridge...

... and another awesome view from the Signal Station ...


There used to be a manned lighthouse, The Fastnet Lighthouse, on top of this building, the building of which was completed in 1904. The Lighthouse is no longer there but the Signal Station is still operational


Looking back to the pathway, arched bridge and visitor's centre (the small building on the right)

Inside the building of the Signal Station is where the Lighthouse Keeper lived ... a lonely life, I would imagine !!

.... with the only means of communication ....!

One of the sides of the lantern is mounted on the wall...

Set of crockery displayed in the narrow passage ....


Very interesting .... with spectacular views !!!