Sunday, April 24, 2011

Holland: glorious spring!

It's midnight and I wanted to get to sleep by 10 PM because I have another full day tomorrow.

Here are some photos and I'll fill in the details later.

Sunday, April 17, 2011

No Ordinary Monster

This weekend we have had some crummy weather and so I spent a good amount of time finalizing the book I am making for my Mom.  I am so far behind on my photo review and sorting, and fuhgeddabout all the books I have to draft.  I make a photo book about different adventures using Blurb which is a fantastic resource.  You make the book on your computer using your photos and text, and then submit it online to Blurb and a few weeks later you get a stunning bound book that looks quite professional. 

I am currently working on a 2009 trip with my Mom to Provence and Paris.  It is titled "Magic of Provence:  Lavender, Sunflowers, and the Tour de France."  This will be my fourth book.  Not found on Amazon, alas, which would be part of my bucket-list - get published and sell a book on Amazon.

At any rate, in writing these books I don't just paste photos and talk about what we ate!  I do research online while reviewing the photos and I tend to include historical tidbits.  Sometimes I am amazed, like I am this morning.  Included here is a photo of my Mom next to an interesting statue.  We spent all of two minutes next to it and of course did not know the story.  Here is the story!

This statue commemorates the Tarasque.  The town is named after him and in fact he is found on their coat of arms.  He was a fearsome and deadly monster in Provence who was tamed by Saint Martha (apparently a contemporary of Jesus).  She brought her newly tamed monster to this town and the townspeople killed him.  He offered no resistance, as he was tame.  Saint Martha used this as a teaching moment and converted the town to Christianity. They were sorry for having killed the tame monster and thus the people named the town Tarascon. There is a play based on the Tarasque by a famous French playwright, Alphonse Daudet; there is a French anti-aircraft gun named the Tarasque; there is even a dinosaur named after him!

Think about it: a town, the coat of arms, a play, a military weapon, a dinosaur and finally UNESCO recognized him. This is no ordinary monster!

Friday, April 8, 2011

This week, I love...

I am taking a cue from the various blogs I read and post some articles which interested me this week.  I will have to come back later to edit my own views, but below are the posts.  Enjoy!

Soon I am heading to Paris and you can be sure that the Musee Jacquemart-Andre is on my list to visit

What do I want to do when I re-invent my life?  Here is a thought...  The vagabond lifestyle - lawyer-style

Apropos of the trip to Paris coming up...  Will visiting a writer's haunt draw you closer to that writer?

Another favorite city of mine... Donna Leon - an inspiration

and more on Paris!  Peter talks up the Jacquemart-Andre

Peter talks about Montmartre

I have the first edition of David Downie's book and it is fantastic

I just don't know what to do with myself - check it out! 
Can you believe my luck? A big Manet exhibit, just months after I saw the Monet exhibit in Paris.

What is a post without a photo.  Rialto Fish Market, July 2010:

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Coming around again: Meadowlark

Good morning everyone!  I joined my photo club at the too-early hour of 7 AM at Meadowlark Gardens.  Each year our club arranges to have the park photographer (Bill Folsum - and check out his website! meet us before it opens to let us in and wander.  Typically the timing is good for the cherry blossoms.  Each year I miss out (in part because htis would mean I have to get up before 6 AM on a Sunday, and I'm spoiled and lazy) in order to do this.  This morning the alarm went off and I briefly thought of stabbing the alarm clock but I heaved myself out of bed anyway.  Sigh.

Here is the result.  Interestingly enough I have photos taken from one year ago (April 2, 2010) at a more godly hour - see the link far below.  Last year at this time the blossoms were a little bit better but not hugely so.  Of this set I think my favorite is the one that is second up from the bottom.  The Blues...


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