Category Archives: Weekly Photo Challenge

A Romantic Evening in Venice

The prompt for this week’s photo challenge is bridge. Unfortunately, after an extensive search through my photos for an inspiring bridge in Portugal, I drew a blank. Will a bridge in Venice suffice?

Gondolier - Venice

Gondolier – Venice

On our first evening in Venice we sat at one of these tables sipping wine while watching the Gondoliers at work. It never ceased to amaze me how they managed to squeeze under the low bridges, and still maneuver the gondola. I wanted a ride but we just ran out of time.

Bridge in Venice

Bridge in Venice

If you’ve never been to Venice do add it to your bucket list. I hope to return one day  to claim a romantic ride in a gondola.

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Order or Out of Order?

My passion for gardening has now extended to include collecting succulents and cacti so every time I visit a garden centre my first port of call is the succulent and cacti bays. So far choice has been limited as most garden centres and shops sell nigh on the same plants. If anyone knows any specialist centres along the Algarve or Alentejo please let me know.

You can imagine my surprise when I spotted these!

Mix and Match Cacti

Mix and Match Cacti

Apparently they are grafted cacti. I am not sure … to me they look grotesque. I never bought one.

What do you think?

Stretching the imagination into the realms of weird horror I wonder if in years to come they will be be grafting a woman’s head onto a man’s body. Or even a dog’s head onto a cat or a dog’s head onto a man!

This post was prompted by the photo challenge prompt Order not by excess vinho.

A mystical sunset in Portugal – was it a sign?

I was searching through my photographs when I came upon this mystical sunset. The cross was evanescent, fading just as quickly as it had appeared.

A mystical sunset in Portugal - was it a sign?

An evanescent sunset in Portugal – was it a sign?

I still wonder if there was some spiritual significance.

Portuguese Heritage – Fado

The theme for this week’s WordPress photo challenge is Heritage. Thinking of the words ‘heritage’ and ‘Portugal’ in the same sentence the first thing that comes to mind is Fado.

We were fortunate to see the highly acclaimed Fado singer Mariza in concert in 2010. It is one of those treasured memories that will always stay with me.

Mariza in concert - Lagos 2010

Mariza in concert – Lagos 2010

Dating back to the early 1900’s Fado (destiny/fate) is traditional Portuguese music with its roots in Lisbon. From my experience of listening to Fado I can only describe it as the voice of a soul in torment. The fadista (singer) usually sings about the harsh realities of daily life and is extremely melancholy. Expression also plays an important part of the performance with anguish not only portrayed in the voice but also in the facial expressions.

Mariza in concert 2010

Mariza in concert 2010

The fadista can be male or female and is often accompanied by guitars including a Portuguese guitar

The Challenge

This week, share a photo of something that says “heritage” to you. It can be from your own family or culture — a library, a work of public art, a place of worship, an object passed down to you from previous generations. Or, like me, you can choose to focus on a tradition to which you don’t belong, but to which you’ve been exposed whether through travel, moving, or the people in your life.

Related posts: Fado is like Marmite (or should that be Veggiemite?)
Useful websites:
https://portugal.com
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fado

Reflecting

WordPress Weekly Photo Challenge: this week’s challenge is ‘Reflecting

Wordpress Weekly Photo Challenge: Reflecting

WordPress Weekly Photo Challenge: Reflecting

I was taking a walk though the Portuguese countryside when this reflection caught my attention. Can you see what is missing from the picture that is reflected in the rather large puddle?

Strawberry Quest

 August Strawberries in Portugal

August Strawberries in Portugal

I’ve been meaning to set myself this challenge for some time so after reading the theme for this week’s photo challenge is  ‘Quest’.

and according to Merriam

Simple Definition of quest
: a journey made in search of something
: a long and difficult effort to find or do something

I think a ‘quest’ to pick strawberries for nine months out of twelve for the next year is ‘long and difficult. So this will be my quest.

Growing Strawberries containers
stawberry-quest

Palácio de Mateus Reflections

This week’s WordPress Photo Challenge is all about reflections.

Palacio de Mateus2

Palacio de Mateus

Palacio de Mateus

One of the least memorable trips on our Douro river cruise was a visit to Palácio de Mateus, near Vila Real. Please don’t ask why but I was expecting to visit a vineyard for the Mateus Rose wine. Yep, the devil is always in the detail and I failed to connect the dots.

I am not a student of architecture so the building while providing an impressive photo oppotunity on our arrival failed to stir much interest within. Even Wiki only has a page stub.

The official website is www.casademateus.com

Gazanias – Unusual Daisies With Exquisite Detail

I love the way the droplets of water linger on the petals and leaves like tiny bubbles. These are small details we often fail to notice yet when captured in a photograph remind us of the simplicity of nature.

Gazania

Gazania

Other details include the unusual combinations of colours.

Gazania (pink and cream striped petals)

Gazania (pink and cream striped petals) Photo taken in Spring

And bees gathering pollen.

Gazania with yellow and orange flowers

Gazania with yellow and orange flowers (photo taken in Spring)

While I find Gazanais relatively easy to grow, I disagree with the experts comment that they are drought resistant. If I don’t water my plants regularly they resemble a bed of birds nests.

Are Gazanias drought resistant?

 

Gazanias are not drought resistant. (July 2016)

Gazanias are not drought resistant. (July 2016)

Useful websites for care of Gazanias
About Home
Gardening Knowhow

This post was inspired by the WordPress Weekly Photo Challenge. This week’s theme is ‘Details’

Opposites: Remain or Leave?

The theme for this week’s WordPress challenge is ‘Opposites’. Contemplating the differences in opinion for Brexit: ‘Remain’ or ‘Leave’, how could I express the extremes behind the vote and the wisdom of the ‘Leave’ result in terms of a photograph?

In the end it will boil down to money. Some think the UK will be better off leaving the EU while others disagree. Some people will benefit financially while others won’t. There are always winners and losers so let’s just hope the UK ‘leavers’ with their ‘island’ mentality eat their words and count the money (or not).

So for my ‘Opposites’ contribution I present a photograph of money: coins and notes. Both of value yet represented by different properties.

Counting the cost of Brexit

Counting the cost of Brexit

Image

Weekly Photo Challenge: Curve

The theme for this week’s WordPress photo challenge is curve. Initially I was drawn to architectural curves and the many photos I’d taken of archways and bridges. But how boring… so seeking inspiration I looked in the mirror and thought of ‘bodily ‘curve’s’ and the sculptures of Karl Heinz Stock displayed in the extensive grounds of Quintos Dos Vales wine estate near Lagoa in the Algarve.

Sculpture of Swinging Grace by Karl Heinz Stock

Sculpture of Swinging Grace by Karl Heinz Stock

Sculpture by Karl Heinz Stock

Sculpture by Karl Heinz Stock

Sculptures by Karl Heinz Stock

Sculptures by Karl Heinz Stock

How can bony be beautiful when you have curves like these?