Travel Theme: Hidden

I see that Ailsa has already posted a new travel theme, and I haven’t done the last one yet. Here are my photos for the ‘Hidden’ theme..

The Bignor Roman Villa site in West Sussex, was discovered in 1811 by a farmer who was ploughing his field. The earliest buildings date back to 190 AD, and the mosaics which had been hidden for centuries, are really lovely. Here is an example.

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Whilst excavating the mosaics, a couple of child skeletons were uncovered, which had obviously been buried in the foundations. Our guide told us that the Romans did not consider infants to be fully developed people, so when they died young they were not given a proper burial, but just interred wherever a spot could be found, which in this case was under the floor.

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My next two photos were taken just inside the gate of our housing complex in Florida. It’s always reassuring to see the Sheriff’s car parked there 24/7, and in all weathers too, even if he is hidden by the dark tinted windows. It must be unbearably hot sitting there all day in this heat, and I was feeling quite sorry for him.

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On closer inspection though, the hidden Sheriff was revealed, and turned out to be nothing but a faceless dummy wearing sunglasses. 😀  This really gives meaning to the cliché, “Being lulled into a false sense of security.”

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I hope you enjoyed my pics for this theme. To visit Ailsa’s blog, and to see her new theme, just click here.

WordPress Photo Challenge: Pattern

As Sarah Rosso says,Patterns are everywhere. Patterns are sometimes intentional and sometimes accidental. They can be decorative or merely a result of repetition, and often patterns can be in the eye of the beholder to discover them.”


When I visited Bignor in the centre of the South Downs National Park in England, I was fascinated by the stunning remains of a third century Roman farm and villa. The intricate patterns of the mosaic floors were really pretty.

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It’s mind-boggling to imagine all the work that went into creating these beautiful floors. One of the corridors in this sixty-five roomed home, was 79 feet (24 metres) long.

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At our holiday resort in Phuket, we were most impressed with the skill and patience this young woman exhibited whilst creating exquisite patterns out of watermelons.

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Also in Thailand is some exquisite pattern work at one of the doorways to the ‘Wat Phra Kaew ‘complex, better known to tourists as the ‘Temple of the Emerald Buddha’.

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The Mezquita Mosque/Cathedral in Cordoba, dating back to the 10th century has beautifully patterned horseshoe-shaped arches with 856 columns of  jasper, onyx, marble and granite. These were crafted from pieces of the Roman temple which had occupied the site previously, as well as other destroyed Roman buildings,

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This beautiful memorial at Kuta in Bali was built on the site of the destroyed Paddy’s Pub to commemorate the first Bali bombing in 2002, when 202 people were killed. The memorial is made of intricately carved stone, set with a large marble plaque, bearing the names and nationalities of each of those killed.

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The Balinese are skilled craftsmen and the wood carvings for sale were really amazing. Our guide explained to us that the rooster inside the cage was actually carved through the holes. Wow! No wonder it had a hefty price tag.

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Now for something completely different. In downtown Lima, Peru, is the17th century San Fransisco church, which once had a normal graveyard for its members. When space became a problem, the skulls and bones were removed from the graves and thrown into a deep pit.  This pit, over time, became the last resting place for most of Lima’s dead, and today the remains of some 25,000 to 70,000 people are stored at the catacombs. Until 1808, the bones were just heaped up in there, but in 1943, when the place was opened up for archeological excavation, it was decided that the Catacombs would have more ‘appeal’ if the human bones were arranged artistically. They placed some of  the skulls together in a centre pile, with same length arm bones radiating outward, and matching leg bones extending beyond the arms, and then more rings of skulls; a rather grisly sort of pattern, don’t you think?

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To see more examples of patterns, just click here.

Going round in circles for Ailsa.

Ailsa of ‘Where’s my backpack’ blog, has given us yet another interesting travel theme. This week she’s posted some of her fun circle pics, and asks us to do the same.

I do of course have a few photos to share with you. Just look at this huge fermenting tank at the Jack Daniels distillery in Lynchburg, Tennessee. It had been emptied for cleaning, so we were able to look right inside.

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Inside these charred oak barrels that Jack Daniels makes itself in a Kentucky cooperage, the whiskey is maturing in order to perfect that famous rich colour and taste, before eventually being bottled.

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Off to Egypt now, where we witnessed the amazing energy and spectacle of  a ‘Whirling Dervish’. I felt dizzy, just watching him twirling round and round in circles, so fast that he became almost invisible.

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At the Medina in Fez, the sights, sounds and smells were a feast for the senses.This stall had many circular baskets containing all manner of nuts and dried fruit. No tasting was allowed. 😦

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Bignor in the centre of the South Downs National Park in England, is home to the stunning remains of a third century Roman farm and villa. Here you can see a fine example of one of the beautiful ancient mosaic floors.

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When in London, a visit to Harrods is always fascinating, even if one doesn’t buy anything. At the top of  one of the staircases, we came upon this remembrance shrine to Princess Diana and Dodi, erected in 2008, by Dodi’s father Mohammed Al-Fayed, who owned the store for twenty-five years and sold it in 2010 for £1.5 billion.

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The Pillars of Hercules is the ancient name given to the promontories that flank the entrance to the Straits of Gibraltar. I’m sitting underneath the monument at the top of ‘The Rock’, which is the northern pillar.

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Whilst on holiday in San Salvador in the Bahamas, I had quite a successful attempt at the archery. Just call it ‘beginner’s luck’. 🙂

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Here’s another activity I’m not too shabby at. We were on a family holiday in Punta Cana, and I was showing my granddaughter how it’s done.

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This sort of activity is highly recommended after eating too much of one of my decadent desserts which contains enough chocolate and cream to even fatten up Popeye’s girlfriend, Olive Oyle. 😆

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If you would like to see what other bloggers have come up with for Ailsa’s ‘Circles’ theme, just click here.