The camel was probably laughing at the tourists who were trying to bribe the owners of the few horses that were there to help those who couldn’t walk through the old city in the heat. I won’t disclose the nationality of those who had disembarked from a cruise ship and thought to buy their way on to a horse, but they all seemed overweight to me. Surprisingly, in this poor country, the horse owners insisted on first come firsdt served. Or could there have been someone overlooking overlooking the situation, who wasn’t obvious to us?
Another reminder from that trip. One in our group asked the guide if he could stop the sellers of jewellery from pestering us. He just quietly said., “No, Madam. Your buying a small trinket from him could mean the difference between his children eating tonight or not”. Something I’ve never forgotten when I’m feeling under pressure from itinerant sellers.
Like many people, I hesitate to photograph people without their knowledge. Sometimes, if the mood is right, I ask permission, but then the people invariably strike poses or give an embarrassed smile for the camera. So, the few I have are usually street scenes or action scenes. Some I feel I couldn’t display publicly as they could be misinterpreted, have vulnerable children in them, or are otherwise not suitable. Below are some I hope fit the challenge and I have captioned them.
A misty morning on the pedestrianised bridge over the Lake of the Restored Sword in Hanoi, Vietnam.
They assured me I could walk in safety here but I chickened out when I saw the railway line running down the middle of the street. Unfortunately, it also started me humming The Railroad Runs Through the Middle of the House, which my grandfather used to sing, and it stayed with me for days.
Both my ‘texture’ pictures come from Bratislava, a lovely city where old traditions are still honoured, lace making is still practised by ladies who sit in the square with their spools of white cotton, and where the coffee house is an institution.
This first picture definitely reminds me of texture. Before visiting I had read about the fabulous Bratislava chocolate and couldn’t wait to try it. It was a cold, rainy day and I was looking forward to some hot drinking chocolate with a dollop of cream on top. No one had told me that it is a liquid chocolate eaten with a spoon. Texture.
My second texture is also nostalgic. This was a sweet-shop in the centre of town with an array of boiled sweets, caramels, toffees and chocolates, that so reminded me of my childhood. I could taste the texture of the clove sweets, the bullseyes, and the fruit caramels but I ended up buying some delicious chocolates. You guessed it, I’m a chocoholic.
I couldn’t resist this one. I also saw it printed in very large white letters on a wall in the downtown area but it was in an area in which one felt uneasy taking photos so I didn’t even take my camera out.
It reminded me that we once had notices all over the place, including buses and trains, that said: “Do Not Spit”. How times have changed.
Just literally bridges. I thought of all sorts of ways in which to interpret the challenge, but when I started looking through my photos I decided to go with the obvious. It’s too hot for serious thinking today, so here is a selection of some of my favourite bridges.
Above – Sur le Pont d’Avignon
Amsterdam, Triana Bridge Spain, and Ponte Vecchio Florence, Italy
Rome, Italy: Pisa, Italy: and the famous painted bridge at Lucerne, Switzerland
La Somail, France, Linked houses in Strasboug, Williamstad, Curaco from our cargo boat.
The Daddy of them all – the bridge at Avignon, France.
I am Brangien [Brangaine] of Weisefort, Ireland, lady-in-waiting to my cousin Isolde, who became promised to King Marc of Cornwall. His nephew Tristan escorted us to England by ship. But Tristan and Isolde fell in love at sea. As ye may know, or will find out, they cite the philter they drank as the cause, over which I was supposed to keep vigil. I would like to share my perspective of how I have created good in the world through my herbs and observations. There is much to tell, including how I have adopted this odd language. In good time. My life is in God’s hands. –Inspired by the modern French translations of the Tristan and Isolde texts