Tuesday, 31 March 2015

Pleased be seated - Thematic Photography

Are you sitting comfortably? 

Then we will begin with photos from my archives. In the first, you have to guess the year in which the two had taken up the invitation to be seated.

Not exactly modern beach wear I think you will agree
Sixties' youths can get comfortable anywhere.

Our two boys testing out the harbour wall
While Dad and daughter sun themselves at home.

Yarm patio
But when the nest was empty a new patio became the place to be seated instead.

Be seated someone, please
There were even seats available in the empty new front bedroom.

Snow outside - 1992
The window down to the floor just had to go; a wall now retains the heat up to that cross piece. The radiator has been moved but the settee remains for anyone who wants to be seated there.

Into the 21st century Christmases may even be in Michigan from time to time. There is room for our daughter to request 'Pleased be seated' here.

When the meal is ready, that is.
Some do not have to be invited to be seated - just

Maxie. Sit!
Now it's you turn to respond to the the request, 'Please be seated.' with Carmi's friends at Thematic-photographic-331.

Sunday, 29 March 2015

Kew Gardens - Sunday Stamps II

I could have posted some individual trees in this woodlands, forests, parks or gardens theme but chose instead to stay in the famous Kew Gardens.

Great Britain - Kew Gardens, 150th Anniversary
I must admit that this is not a favourite set of mine with what I think are wishy-washy colours. My scan has 'improved' their appearance.

Issued on 5 June 1990, the stamps are:
  • 20p Cycad and Sir Joseph Banks Building
  • 29p Stone Pine and Princess of Wales Conservatory
  • 34p Willow Tree and Palm House
  • 37p Cedar Tree and Pagoda
To see what others have chosen this week, follow the links at Sunday-stamps-ii-15.

Sunday, 22 March 2015

Island Stamps - Sunday Stamps II

One stamp from a Mediterranean island and one from the Indian Ocean are my selection this week.

The grey heron on this stamp from the Republic of Maldives is seen in America and Europe too.

During WWII my elder brother served on aircraft carriers in the Mediterranean involved in the defence of Malta and this is the reason I have included a stamp from there.

Malta - 1938
George VI was our King during the war.

Mdina Cathedral is shown on the stamp. There were settlements in Mdina going back 4000 years. The walled medieval town is situated on a hill in the centre of the island. Called the Silent City by its inhabitants possibly because today it has no cars other than than those of its few hundred residents, emergency vehicles, wedding cars and hearses.

For stamps from other islands visit Sunday-stamps-ii-14.

Friday, 20 March 2015

You can take a horse to water ... - Sepia Saturday

From the time I saw this week's prompt first appear ...

I been trying to get some local horses to take a drink.

However they all are quite happy to

Munch away at the grass
The smallest one might take a drink - 

If there was not a fence in the way.
He just has to be content to look at the water trough where others have been when I've not been about.

Police horses in a park alongside the Paint Creek Trail in Michigan have to do as they are told, but they do get a rest from time to time.

Rochester, Michigan - 2009
They even get taken to see the Clinton River nearby.

A drink for one
And them both on a hot summer's day
I'll try again with my local horses again tomorrow. If I do not succeed I know where I need to go to get a drink thanks to a special kind of horse.

The Cleveland Bay, Yarm
After all if you can't make a horse take that drink, there is nothing that says you have to abstain.

Cheers Sepians at Sepia-Saturday-271.

Tuesday, 17 March 2015

Bodies of Water - Thematic Photography

On some bodies of water you cannot see from shore to shore.

Lake Michigan  - empty shoreline
There's more chance of action at Grand Traverse Bay.

Fancy a yacht on this body of water?
Someone did around the Isles of Scilly.

Off Tresco in the Scilly Isles
Closer to home some bodies take to water.

Like a duck and these geese on the River Tees
While at Portrack Nature Reserve alongside the river you can also show your bodies off.

Herons and a lapwing on a Portrack 'island'
Not a wave in sight; meanwhile down the Yorkshire coast at Whitby

The barque Endeavour creates a ripple as in comes in 
But can you see the bodies 'in the water' back in Michigan?

What no dogs?
For other watery offerings check out the links where Carmi hosts the theme - Bodies of Water - Thematic-photographic-329

Sunday, 15 March 2015

Space Exploration - Sunday Stamps II

I guess everyone remembers that first landing on the moon in July 1969.

In the United Arab Emirates, Ras Al Khaima issued a set of stamps  commemorating International Cooperation in Space on 10 June, i.e, before that landing.

Ras Al Khaima
Others in the set covered the Apollo space program and Lunar Landing. These are two that I would love to get.

Continuing the moon landing theme Poland issued a stamp in 1971 commemorating Lunochod - 1

Poland - Lunochod-1
This was the first of two unmanned lunar rovers landed on the moon by the Soviet Union and on 17 November 1971 was the first to move freely on the surface .

A Hungarian stamp commemorated the 25th anniversary of Hungarian-Soviet scientific technical cooperation.

Hungary - Inter Sputnik Tracking Station
The Hubble Space Telescope has shown us some remarkable images of outer space.

A 2000 commemorative issue from the United States shows some of these.

Others in the set show the Ring Nebula, the Lagoon Nebula and the Galaxy NGC 1316. 

For other space adventures make sure you check the stamps on show linked to Sunday-stamps-ii-13.

Friday, 13 March 2015

It's a Dog's Life - Sepia Saturday

Over the years I have met many dogs and have what seems like thousands of photos of them. Matching this week's theme should not be a challenge for me.

Mind you there are some times when even an air stewardess is not wanted.

"I just want to be alone"
Others need reassurance especially when a strange man has taken you from your mum and driven you to a new place 200 miles away.

"Should I trust him?"
Another pup wants to cuddle up to a Golden Lab.

"It's not fair - someone in the background is getting some affection."
And there are times when you are not sure who is cuddling whom.

"Just one more push ..."
"And then there's room for both of us."
The stars of the show are:
  • Sam under the bed.
  • Milly, an Irish Water Spaniel.
  • Gem, the pup and Sam, with Maxie in the background.
  • Sam hamming it up.
  • Sam and Maxie celebrating their success.

To get your teeth into other canines look for bones at Sepia-Saturday-270.

Wednesday, 11 March 2015

Hit the road - Thematic Photography

I don't drive much these days and to be honest I was never a fan of hitting the road.

These days I take things much more slowly by walking a lot. 

However there are some roads that I remember well, including one where the trees remind you where you are. This dirt road could only be - 

Oakwood Road
Every where you go, it seems to me you meet road works like these,

Approaching Rochester, Michigan
Nearer home it would be a mistake to go off-road.

Off the A67 in North Yorkshire
It's much more pleasant to hit the road in the other direction.

Turn right for home
Hitting this road is fun on a sunny spring day if you don't turn off here.

A driveway that shakes your springs
Better to remain on the open road.

A67 through the woods
Sat-navs would say keep left at this point.

Lay-by for a coffee stop.
Those in cars don't know what they are missing when they hit the road pass these.

Crocus in flower, daffs not far behind.
Whichever way you drive you miss out on them. I can walk by and admire their beauty.

Even with the trash can waiting to be emptied
Next door to us it will be a while before the grass verge will recover from where builders' wagons have failed to hit the road.

But don't let this put you off hitting the road with Carmi at Thematic-photographic-328

Monday, 9 March 2015

A-Z Challenge 2015 - Butterflies 'H'

H - Green Hairstreak; Large Heath

If you are almost bald like me colouring you hair will not improve matters. However for one butterfly with dull brown upper wings - 

it's amazing what a dash of colour does to its appearance.

Green Hairstreak (Callophrys rubi)
when the underside is a bright green. This specimen may be misshapen but there is no mistaking the colour that gives it its name 

It never rests with its wings open in order to maintain that green camouflage.

Green Hairstreak on rough grassland
The Green Hairstreak has a wide range of food plants including bramble, rock rose, gorse and broom. Its habitats are equally wide - chalk downland, heathland, moorland, woods and even wetlands

The Large Heath butteflies always have their wings closed when at rest

Large Heath butterfly (Coenonympha tullia)
The males are smoky orange in colour. The pale brown underside has a creamy white band and a number of eyespots. Sometimes know as the Common Ringlet the number of spots varies from colony to colony.

You will need waterproof footwear when looking for the Large Heath in the North of the British Isles - it's unique in that it is more or less confined to boggy areas.

Love is like a butterfly
As soft and gentle as a sigh
The multicolored moods of love are like its satin wings
Love makes your heart feel strange inside
It flutters like soft wings in flight
Love is like a butterfly, a rare and gentle thing

I feel it when you're with me
It happens when you kiss me
That rare and gentle feeling that I feel inside

Photo attributions:
  • Green Hairstreak - upper wings; up-loaded to CC by Lymantria - free use
  • Green Hairstreak: Ryton Meaodows 27 May 2012 - upload by Amamda44, by Mike Darlow - CC BY-SA 2.0
  • Green Hairstreak on rough grassland: 2 May 2004, by Dave Dunford - CC BY-SA 2.0
  • Large Heath; Methop Moss, 27 June 2014, by Steve Childs (Flickr) - CC BY 2.0

Sunday, 8 March 2015

Riding the rails - Sunday Stamps II

It was wartime when I was a boy. I don't remember ever having a train set them. Years later I had an assignment helping British Rail, as it was then, implementing one of the recommendations of the Hidden Report  following the Clapham train crash of December 1988.

By then diesel and electric trains had taken over from the famous steam trains that featured in this set of stamps from 1985.

Great Britain

The Flying Scotsman covered the London - Edinburgh route, the Golden Arrow London - Dover. The Cheltenham Flyer, as the name implies ran from London Paddington to Cheltenham. The Royal Scot was a west coast train from London Euston to Glasgow and the Cornish Riviera the express between Paddington and Penzance.

Now if you have got steam up, all aboard for trips on other rides at Sunday-stamps-ii-12.