Jakesprinter Sunday Post

A musical interlude

Pearlescent beauty

Pearlescent beauty

Sometimes this blogging world leads me down paths I don’t really want to take.  What place does an Ibanez guitar have in a travel blog?  But it is an instrument of great beauty, and though he rarely plays it these days, a treasured possession of my son’s.

You’re used to seeing my daughter sashay through my pages, with her inimitable flair and style. James, though, would not appreciate an appearance here, though he’s happy enough to perform in another venue.

He’s a left hander who started his musical journey as an Iron Maiden fan.  A proud moment when he was in sixth form college was having Janick Gers (a local lad made very good) from Maiden come to their new recording studio.  The photo still lives on my study wall, and I won’t embarrass James by showing it here.

His real love is recording, though he loves to play too.  Down the years I have followed his musical tastes, sometimes with real pleasure, sometimes with horror.  Instruments have come and gone, but these days it’s not so much the instruments that occupy every available space in his bedroom (and beyond!)  It’s the array of sound pedals and gadgetry which I totally fail to appreciate. There’s little beauty to them.

Many have graced his pedalboard, and I do remember a pretty yellow one.  A little like photography, nothing comes ‘untampered with’ these days, and James will spend many happy hours on his laptop, composing and mixing the sounds.

For me there is nothing quite so fine as listening to my son strum his guitar and sing.

So, many thanks to Jake for reminding me.  Have you joined in with this week’s Sunday Post challenge?  You’re running out of time!

A place to relax

I 'heart' this view!

I ‘heart’ this view!

My habitual perch

My perch in the sun!

This week, Jake was wondering if I have a place to relax.  Well, for me that can only mean one thing.  My roof terrace in the Algarve.  I’m always in the mood for a swing.

There's simple Shell Beach

And if I get tired of swinging, there’s laid back Shell Beach
Nestle down by the anchors at Barril

Or I can laze by the anchors at Barril

Or chill at the beach bar

Or maybe chill in the shade of the beach bar.

Or you can fight for beach space on Armona

I could even fight for beach space on Armona!

Abandon your kite

I’d abandon the kite

But I do get better as we approach the lovely village of Santa Luzia

And take to the water

Then it's back to the terrace for sunset

Till it’s time for sunset on the terrace

Step forward a pace and you get a "free" umbrella

Evening’s are nice and easy on the river bank.
How restful is this?

Truly, what could be more relaxing than this?

I only have to look through the albums and it’s calling me back again.  But for now I’m sharing my memories with you and Jake.

Do you have a place you go to when you need to relax, even if it’s only in your mind?



The simple kind

The simple kind

Ready to go!

Ready to go

As far as you can take me

As far as they can take me!

Edited by Viveka Gustafson

Or maybe something grander?  (Edited by Viveka Gustafson)

With a little more style

With a bit more style
And panache!

And oozing panache!

Some elegant wood carving

Perhaps some elegant wood carving

And a figurehead to charm the world

And a figurehead fit to face the world!

Jake has asked the question this week- how do you like to travel?  You might have noticed that I’m very partial to boats- all shapes and sizes.  How about you? The last five shots were taken when the Tall Ships Race came to Hartlepool in 2010.  My lovely friend Viveka admired them but it wasn’t a bright day and one of them needed a hint of brightening up.  She was kind enough to do it for me, unasked.  Isn’t that what friends are for? I think my husband may have taken some of the Tall Ships.  My memory’s not so good these days! But I do remember to join Jake in his Sunday Post challenge whenever I can.  The subject this week is Transport.  Come take a look!


Six word Saturday



A moonlight wander.

fills the night


with romance.

And romance

I’m cheating just a little because I have too many challenges and not enough week.  So I’m linking my Six word Saturday to Jakesprinter’s Sunday Post, but at least I’m keeping it brief!  If you’ve never met him, Jake is a lovely guy who produces amazing animation.  The theme this week is Moonshine. Go and say ‘hi’ but then don’t forget to visit Cate at 6WS, or she’ll be upset.


The price of a unique home

Thatched cottage 3Santana on Madeira has some of the cutest homes I ever saw.  Beautifully maintained, I found it a little sad that I had to queue up for a look inside and to purchase a thimbleful of liqueur, when once such hospitality might have been offered freely.  Still, I suppose it’s a small price to pay to preserve these unique homes, with their triangular roofs, thatched in straw.  Once they were occupied by local farmers.  Now they are a mainstay of tourism in this rugged northern part of the island.

Thatched cottage-oval

Thatched cottageThey’re a little different from Jake’s chosen home this week, but equally unique.  Pay him a visit? It won’t cost you!  Just click on the logo.


Flowers for Jake!

Flowers in bread oven

Flowers in bread oven

You have to smile, don’t you?  Whenever I’ve done one of Jake’s challenges, I’ve always sang along to myself as I selected the images.  Don’t ask me why, but it’s become a habit.  I didn’t spot this challenge till late in the week so even by my standards it’s a bit late for a Sunday Post.

What am I singing?  Well, I was humming away to an old tune “Where have all the flowers gone? Long time passing”…  I don’t know if you know it, but when I got to the line “gone to graveyards everyone” I realised what a very sad song of war it is.  And that just won’t do.  So, determined to make you smile, I’m singing the Move’s “Flowers in the rain”.  Far more appropriate for many of us, I’m sure you’ll agree?

Yes, it rains in the Algarve, but it's still beautiful!

Yes, it rains in the Algarve, but it’s still beautiful!

I think I may have seen these in England, too

I think I may have seen these in England, too

It's always amazing what you can find in the hedgerows

It’s always amazing what you can find in the hedgerows

Just growing completely wild and beautiful

Just growing completely wild and beautiful

Or tamed in the landscape

Or tamed in the landscape
I found this pretty fellow shining in some bushes

I found this pretty fellow shining in some bushes

But I always love a "pop" of colour

But I always love a “pop” of colour

So we'll end in the rain. This might be the guy for me!

So we’ll end in the rain. This might just be the guy for me!

As ever, I hope you enjoyed my singing.  You’re quite lucky not to be sitting here in the front room, with me! Please give Jake a little of your time and attention.  His graphics are totally inspiring (unlike my singing).


Oh, Christmas tree!

Oh, Christmas tree, how lovely are your branches!

Oh, Christmas tree, how lovely are your branches!

I tend to be an early riser, even on these dark days before Christmas.  I love to watch the morning sky flush with colour at daybreak.  But sometimes I pull the cover up and think I’ll just snuggle a little while longer.

Until my Christmas tree goes up!  Then it doesn’t matter if I’m still half asleep. The second I plug my tree lights in, the magic of Christmas is there.  The warm scent of pine needles tickles my nose.  I make my morning coffee, and settle down beside the Christmas tree, to start my day.

Beneath the tree, the Nativity Scene; above, the angel smiles fondly down.

Unto us a child is born, king of all creation.

Unto us a child is born, king of all creation.

More of Lisa's handicrafts.

More of Lisa’s handiwork!

I had no intention to write this post today, but when an old friend comes calling, what can you do but respond?  As if by magic, Jake’s Sunday Post appeared in my Reader, bearing a beautiful Christmas Tree.  I’ll supply the carols.  Coming round for mince pies, anybody?


Urban Design

View from Christ Church tower over Hartlepool

View from Christ Church tower over Hartlepool

I walked into town today, thinking about Jakesprinter’s theme for this week’s Sunday Post, Urban Design.  I live on a green and leafy estate, with a variety of housing styles.   Some of the older properties are full of character, but, as you approach the centre, many of them are rundown in appearance.

I was randomly taking photographs, and writing the captions in my head.  As often happens, the shopping I had set out to do was on the back burner.  We have a state of the art college of further education and I was thinking what a fine photo it would make, with the multi-national flags flying outside.  Alas, the flags weren’t flying today, but the sky was a beautiful shade of blue.  It struck me that it was the perfect day for something I had meant to do for quite a while- climbing Christ Church tower.

As a girl, I attended Sunday School at this church.  Over time it fell into disuse, but then was given a brilliant new lease of life as an art gallery.  A new stairwell has been constructed for safe access to the tower, from which the views were said to be wonderful.  I was warned that the church bells would chime noisily every 15 minutes, and off I went.

Looking down on the bells and hoping they won't chime just yet.

Looking down on the bells and hoping they won’t chime just yet.

Almost there!

Almost there!

Wonderful to look through the old walls to newer Hartlepool.

Wonderful to look through the old walls to newer Hartlepool.

Looking down Church St. to what used to be docks.

Looking down Church Street to what used to be the docks.

The railway station, and beyond, the Historic Quay and marina

The railway station, and beyond, the Historic Quay and marina.

That shiny new college of further ed I told you about.

That shiny new College of Further Ed I told you about.

My husband's beloved football ground- Hartlepool FC.

My husband’s beloved football ground- Hartlepool FC.

But never far away, the sea.

But never far away, a little industry and the sea.

And there you have it- a beautiful use for an unwanted church, and the town planners current version of Hartlepool.

I’m a little late with this challenge, but I always love to support Jake.  Come with me to look at his wonderful graphics, and check out the other entries.  The lucky snake or any of the links will take you there.


Water under the bridge

Or stunningly,as part of a "waterfall" light installation

I seem to have done quite a few posts on bridges.  But Jake is back, so how can I say no?   Jake’s Sunday Post is always a cause for celebration.  I might even have to open another of those bottles of wine!

I love the violet hues of this photo.  It was taken in Durham in 2011, during a biennial event called Lumiere.  The light installations over and beside the River Wear were like nothing I have seen before.  If you’re fortunate enough to be near Durham this November, I can promise you a beautiful evening of colour and sound when Lumiere comes to town.

Water flowing under a bridge will always hold me captive, drifting in the current.  Where would it take me, if I let it?  A lifetime has slipped past while I wonder.  All just water under the bridge.

And it wouldn't be complete without my favourite bridge, and we're back with the subtle colour.

You probably recognise this bridge, but I can share a view of it you won’t have seen before.  It hangs on the wall in my favourite cafe, Anazu, on the riverfront in Tavira.  It’s in 3-D, though you really can’t tell from my photo.

IMG_6221Not that I’m often inside the cafe.  The pavement outside has the view that I love.  I have watched so much water pass under the bridge, but some will have seen very much more.  I found this black and white photo in the Galeria Palace museum in the town.  Times may have changed but the water flows on.

Ponte Romana B & WThe evening light fades and the moon rises in the sky on a warm Summer’s night.  I stand beside my bridge and look out to sea.  I’m filled with hope that I might return.  Well, who wouldn’t be?

IMG_6522It only needs me to remind you that Jake’s place is a good place to be, on a Sunday or any other day.  Please click on the logo below or any link to pay him a visit.


Sunday Post : Perspective


Perspective is used by artists to give an illusion of space and distance.  I remember struggling mightily with it at school.  My brain understood the concept but my fingers didn’t.  I don’t know of a better graphic artist than Jakesprinter.  He never would have had my problems.  This week he’s sent us a message in a bottle, and I’m reminded that I haven’t sang to you for a while.  Perhaps you could be distracted that way, or should I just show you a couple of photos that, I think, represent the concept of perspective?  If they don’t, hopefully you’ll enjoy them anyway.

After all, I’m only trying to gain a little perspective on one of my favourite subjects- the lovely city of Krakow.

Perhaps you should look at some other entries to get a little better perspective.  But don’t forget to visit Jake.