Sunday Stills: Boats from Bangkok to South Africa.

This is my first entry for Ed’s Sunday Stills Challenge. This week the theme is boats of any shape or size, so here are a few boat pics which I managed to source in a bit of a hurry, as Sunday is almost over.

Bangkok on the Chao Phraya River.

Bangkok on the Chao Phraya River.

Long-tail boats in Phuket

Long-tail boats in Phuket

Yacht in San Pedro, Belize.

Yacht in San Pedro, Belize.

Seen from the beach in Umhlanga Rocks, with the city of Durban in the distance.

Seen from the beach in Umhlanga Rocks, with the city of Durban in the distance.

A somewhat drenched me with 'Jack Sparrow' in rough seas, on a dive boat in Belize.

A somewhat drenched me with ‘Jack Sparrow’ in rough seas, on a dive boat in Belize.

River Thames, London.

River Thames, London.

Beautiful  Bahamas.

Beautiful Bahamas.

Rhine River.

Rhine River, Rotterdam.

A barge on the canal in La Petite France, Strasbourg.

A pleasure boat on the canal in La Petite France, Strasbourg.

I hope you’ve enjoyed my boats for Sunday Stills. To see more entries, go here.

Weekly Photo Challenge: In the Background……sort of

The latest Weekly Photo Challenge, ‘In the background,’ isn’t as straight forward as I at first thought. I looked out a few pics with something interesting in the background, like this one of Table Mountain in Cape Town,


and one taken from our hotel balcony in Rio, with Sugar Loaf Mountain in the distance,


and one taken across the Hudson River, with the Twin Towers rising above Lower Manhattan.


Then there is this one taken on our long-boat canal tour, showing Bangkok coming into view.


What about this one of a country market in Ecuador, with a giant yellow blow-up ‘Pilsener Light’ beer bottle and the smoke from a volcano in the background?


and this one taken on a boat off the coast of San Pedro in Belize, with hubby and his dive buddy bobbing around in the background.


I also love this smiley one of little Sienna, with a shark in the background.


Then as my teachers at school used to tell me, I thought, “Let me read the question again.”

In the Background: The places that we pass through day after day, or even once in a lifetime, leave in their small way, echoes and traces of themselves upon us. But so often when taking self portraits or pictures of friends, the places themselves become a soft blurred mush of indistinct semi-nothingness, the limelight stolen by our smiling faces. In today’s challenge, let’s turn the tables. Take a picture of yourself or someone else as a shadow, a reflection, or a lesser part of a scene, making the background, or — as in the example above — the foreground, the center of attention.

Well this was a different kettle of fish entirely, and all I could come up with, was this one taken by hubby during our kitchen renovations in Florida. 😀


I hope you’ve enjoyed my pics of foregrounds and backgrounds nevertheless, even if I didn’t keep strictly to Michael Pick’s guidelines. 😳

Window seat please.

Marianne’s CBBH Photo Challenge this month, is ‘View from an aircraft‘.  I always try to get a window seat, more for the view than any other reason. For me, the flying experience is enhanced when I can watch the sunrise, sunset, or just see the fluffy white clouds passing by. I guess some people don’t want the constant reminder that they’re sitting in a long metal tube, about 30,000 feet above the ground, or the sea, and would rather pretend they’re on a train or a bus, so sit in the middle, and there are those that have to keep getting up to use the toilet, so prefer to sit on the aisle. Not me though; I revel in the fact that I’m actually high above the earth, flying effortlessly and at great speed, towards my destination. Quite often, I forget to take the camera out of my cabin bag, and by the time we take off, it’s too late to get up and grab it, so some of my pics are taken with my iPhone. I guess if it’s on airplane mode, that’s permissible, but I’m never sure, so try not to do it when the stewards are close by.

Here are a few of my in flight pics:

Coming in the land at Suvarnabhumi Airport, Bangkok.

Coming in to land at Suvarnabhumi Airport, Bangkok.

Taking off from Phuket International airport.

Taking off from Phuket International airport.

Taken from a helicopter over Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe.

View from a helicopter over Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe.

Victoria falls in the distance.

Victoria falls in the distance.

Flying towards Belize.

Flying towards Belize.

Flight from Belize.

Fluffy clouds.

Looking down at the swamps.

Looking down at the swamps.

Smooth landing at Belize City.

Smooth landing at Belize City.

First sighting of Belize City.

First sighting of  San Pedro.

Getting cloer to the ground.

Getting closer to the ground.

This was only a 10 seater plane.

This was only a 10-seater plane.

Miami next stop.

Miami next stop.

Back to Miami.

Coming in to land at Miami International.

Sometimes my attention is distracted from the view out of the window, and I’m more interested in what’s for dinner.

Welcome view on the airplane.

Very welcome view on the airplane.

Stop looking out of the window and eat.

Stop looking out of the window and eat.

Yummy raspberry mousse cake.

Yummy raspberry chocolate mousse cake.

To see more views from airplanes, just click here.

According to the rules of Marianne’s challenge, I have to introduce you to two of the blogs that I’ve commented on in the past month.

First up is my South African blog friend, Adeeyoyo, who writes beautiful poetry which really touches one’s soul.

Then there’s the artistically talented Poppytump, who advertises her blog thus, “PhotographyBooksArtyStuffAndPlentyOfOtherNiffNaffAndTriviaToIgnore.”

Please pop over and visit them both. I promise that you won’t be disappointed.

Travel theme: Bright

Ailsa has challenged us to come up with some really bright photos this week, in contrast to the darker image of Halloween last week. Her first pic is of vivid, cheeky hummingbirds, so not to be outdone, here is the brightest and cheekiest little bird I’ve ever come across. He posed for me when we were visiting the Kuranda Birdworld in Cairns.

In the downtown Chinatown district of Singapore, we came across the amazing Sri Mariamman Temple. This richly embellished Hindu temple is a national monument, and one of the main tourist attractions. It was a cloudy day, so doesn’t look so bright in the photo, but can you imagine how it must gleam in bright sunlight?

The ‘Temple of the Reclining Buddha’ in Bangkok is so brightly and ornately decorated.

The Reclining Buddha was crafted to celebrate King Rama III’s restoration (1824 – 51). At 150 ft (46 m) long and 49 ft (15 m) high, it is the largest Buddha image in Thailand. It’s totally covered in gold leaf, and the eyes and soles of the feet are inlaid with mother-of-pearl.

The temple’s official name is ‘Wat Phra Chettuphon Wimon Mangklaram Ratchaworamahawihan’; quite a mouthful, so it’s known as ‘Wat Pho’, which rolls off the tongue much more easily. 🙂

See how big these brightly painted statues are. I look like a little pixie down at the bottom. 🙂

I think this temple complex was the brightest and blingiest place I’ve ever visited.

Interestingly, Wat Pho, is also known as the birthplace of traditional Thai massage, and courses are offered at a school just outside the temple complex.

To see more entries for Ailsa’s bright theme, just click here.







Weekly photo challenge ……….Today

At the moment, after three flights, and travelling for twenty-one hours, I’m not sure whether it’s today, yesterday, or tomorrow. Nevertheless, here we are in Phuket, and I thought I’d share a few pics, taken very haphazardly on our journey.

I just caught the setting sun with my iPhone, before we were told to close the window shutters.

We flew from Johannesburg to Bangkok on ‘Thai Air’. The seats really ‘hit’ you as you walk onto the plane. Instead of being the usual dull grey or blue, they alternate in bright purple, pink, and yellow. The lovely hostesses, In their colourful silk suits, greet you with the traditional ‘wai’, which consists of a slight bow, with the palms pressed together in a prayer-like fashion, and a beautiful smile.

(pic from Google)

I didn’t sleep at all on the flight, as we had dinner not long after lunch time, and then the lights went off as though it were bedtime. Of course my body clock was not so easily fooled, and refused to pretend it was night time. By the time my watch declared that it was time to sleep, I could smell the coffee being heated up for breakfast, so that was the end of that.

The new Bangkok International airport, is called Suvarnabhumi, meaning “golden land.” There are so many orchids to be seen everywhere, even in the restrooms. Hubby told me that the men don’t get any in theirs. If I was a guy, I think I’d want to know why. ;(

In this pic, you can see the pink seats in one of the airport lounges. Pink and purple seem to be favourite colours here.

From Bangkok, we took a one hour connecting flight to Phuket, where after finding our driver amongst the throng of other placcard-waving guys, and then, we were whisked off  to the resort, at terrific speed. The roads are full of motorbikes and mopeds, some with only two people, but usually with more. We saw quite a few with mother, father and a small child sitting up front; no crash helmets! There was even one moped with four young women squeezed up on the seat. You can even ride side-saddle! Sadly. but not surprisingly, we did see an accident, and a woman was sitting in the road, lucky to be alive after being thrown off.

After unpacking, we went down to have a late lunch, and I then sat sipping a Pina Colada on the deck overlooking the trapeze area. There were several youngsters having a quick lesson before venturing up the ladder.  It really looks like there’s not much to it, as long as you can get your feet through your hands and hook the back of your knees over the bar. The falling into the net looks like a breeze too). I didn’t however, see anyone who looked older than twenty-five, and certainly there no grannies doing their Tarzan act up there. 😉

We had a great meal this evening, with lots of delicious Thai dishes to choose from, and although it’s not very late, we’re both really tired, so will get an early night.

So,that was my today, which is now yesterday, as I lost my post  last night, but clever hubby found it again for me this morning. Today, which is now yesterday, looks rather overcast at the moment, but I’m sure it will brighten up later. I slept quite well last night, and am off for breakfast, after which, we will take a taxi into Patong to do a bit of exploring.

( Here in Thailand, we are now 5 hours ahead of South Africa, and 11 hours ahead of the USA, where it’s still Sunday evening,)

To read more entries for the “Today” theme, just click here.