Warwick Castle

April 2006

Of the stops on our day-long bus tour, this was the longest and, possibly, most interesting. The castle has an interesting history all around, but its recent history is almost as fascinating as the ancient bit.

It seems that the owner got into some difficulty over gambling debts and had to sell. The castle is now owned by Madame Tussaud's, of wax figure fame, which itself is owned by an entertainment conglomerate. In all fairness, there are only a handful of wax figures placed in suitably educational spots.

It is well worth the afternoon, or perhaps a full day visit. Even though it was April, it was also a school holiday week and the place was teeming with families and kids. The abundant educational exhibits and live demonstrations provided plenty of things to see and do. I highly recommend a visit.

#Travel #England #Warwick #Castle

 

Pretty Little Flowers

Hyde Park/Kensington Gardens

April 2006, the weather on this day was mostly sunny, if cool. We toured Kensington Palace, then headed on foot toward the Albert Memorial and Royal Albert Hall. Even though it was still barely spring, there were flowers and blooms everywhere. I bent over and took this close-up shot of some pretty little blue flowers that seemed to be enjoying the sun.

#Travel #England #London #HydePark #KensingtonGardens #Flowers

 

Looking Up

Beneath the abbey.

I love old stuff. Castles, cathedrals, historical sites of every kind. Sometimes, though, it is easy to miss a feature because we naturally look around. We may even obey the photographer's rule of looking behind us when facing some outstanding feature. But it is easy to forget to look up.

In the Battle Abbey ruins there are places that once served as storage, or as dormitory, or . . . I read all of the plaques and markers, but I didn't take notes. In this case, the vaulted ceiling of a basement or cellar area revealed some interesting designs.

I don't often attempt this kind of shot since, as a tourist, I don't work on a tripod for stability. This time, however, it was dark and it seemed like I might get a decently stable shot by using the on-camera flash. And it worked! Because I got my positioning right, the shadowing from the flash was also minimized. I do get lucky sometimes.

Photo taken 6 May 2007

#Travel #England #Battle #BattleAbbey #Ruins #Abbey

 

After The Storm

Cold, quiet.

During the week before this photo was taken we had some pretty major storms pass through. Heavy rains, high winds, local flooding in some areas. But by the time I made my way to San Bruno Mountain for my weekly maintenance visit, things had cleared up. There had been freezing overnight in sheltered areas.

I had intended to hit the pier in Pacifica for sunset. Just missed it by about 20 minutes. but the pier and beach were still beautiful in the afterglow slipping over the ocean horizon.

#SanFranciscoBayArea #SanFrancisco #Ocean #Beach #Pier #Sunset