Six word Saturday


The Algarve produces some beautiful shadows.



img_5931Just wandering, as I like to do, in the Eastern Algarve, I found myself chasing shadows in the area of Lota.  The combination of lagoon, beach and boardwalk is an enticing one.  I loved the delicacy of the shell patterns, and a chance find- a sea urchin.


The Weekly Photo Challenge has confused me a little by moving to a Wednesday.  But I didn’t let it cast a Shadow on my week.  Well, perhaps one or two!  A little like the six words that I like to share with you here on a Saturday.

Apologies in advance to those of you who walk with me on Mondays.  Next week there will be no blue sky.  Have a great weekend!


Six word Saturday


Lazy leaf or a beach ‘bum’?



Drifting to the end of Verena’s Festival of leaves.  You have one more week for sharing.  Join Cate if you have six words spare.

Have a great week, and don’t get stressed over Christmas.  It’ll come and it’ll go.


Before and after


I love this shot.  It was a balmy day earlier this month, on the beach at Seaton Carew.  Who’s in charge- man or dog?  I’m not entirely sure that I wanted to convert it to black and white.  But then, I usually feel like that about photos.  What do you think?


I don’t usually do the Black and White Sunday challenge, but Paula made this one so easy, even I could join in.   Backwards, of course.

I’m posting this just before I disappear off to Edinburgh for a day or two, so apologies if I’m slow with responses.  I’ll be back on Saturday.

Six word Saturday


The devil is in the detail


Mistress of the beach

Drifting, swirling on the tide.

Fronds that tease tiny fish

Then lie stranded on the shore-

A frothy, green petticoat.


Jen’s photo in the Weekly Photo Challenge this week is a real beauty.  I can’t hope to compete, but I did want to share with you a few of the details of my recent trip to the Algarve.  As half expected, it was unbelievably hot, and much of the time was spent with my toes in the water.

A weekend at home in the UK will be an entirely different prospect.  Perhaps I shall relish the cool.  Whatever your weekend brings, I hope it’s a good one.  Join me on Monday and we’ll find somewhere to walk.  But first, pop in on Cate with six words?


Jo’s Monday walk : Back on the beach


Whenever we go walking on our north east England coastline, we keep an idle eye open for sea glass.  Usually it’s in milky soft hues, but bottle green and turquoise are not unknown . The little chap above had us well fooled.  He’d obviously swum out of a child’s bucket, to twinkle up at us from the beach.

I won’t be walking with you next week, so I’m determined to leave you with some sunny images.  Last week was a little glum, wasn’t it?


The other half wanders through the shot, distracting me from getting a level horizon.  The one below is better. (and minus my shadow!)


The tide was advancing rapidly that day, and I had to do my famous teetering on rocks act, camera stowed safely in my pocket.  Why is it that he has so much better a sense of balance?  He kindly came back to hold my hand, or we might never have got there.


It’s a coastline with an industrial past, so the rocks are always interestingly speckled and battered.  And there’s the sea glass to enjoy.



Not forgetting the occasional sea monster!  There’s one structure that always draws the eye.  Rotting timbers and frayed stumps simply add to the appeal of the magnificent remnants of Steetley Magnesite’s pier.





I never tire of shooting it, from all angles.  The last shot is a good example of convergence, isn’t it?  Sonel pointed one out to me the other day.  If you’re looking for photographic skill combined with creativity, hers is a great place to visit.

At this point you have a choice.  So long as the tide cooperates you can carry on along the craggy coastline, towards Crimdon Dene.

Sometimes the wind whips up, swirling the sands around you.  Click on the last photo in the gallery above and you’ll be able to make out the pier, in the far distance.  We’ve walked quite a way.  You can continue through the Dene, catching a bus back down the coast road, or you can retrace your steps along the beach.

Eventually you come back to Hartlepool Headland, with it’s proudly standing town walls. It’s been a safe haven for me for many a long year.  Look beyond the harbour, and on the horizon you can just make out the industry along Seal Sands Road, where we went seal spotting last week.


On the Headland, Mary Rowntree’s tearooms have a lovely view across the harbour.  But I feel I know you well enough to invite you back to mine.  I’ll just pop the kettle on.  See you soon!

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My posting will be haphazard, to say the least, for the next month.  I’m deserting this safe haven for my familiar Algarve one, where I usually switch off from the world and its worries.  I hope to have another walk for you on Monday, 25th April, but just a few days after that I will be accompanying Dad to Poland for 2 weeks.  Another family visit and lots of smiles.

If, in the meantime, you’d like to share a walk, please feel free to do so, but be aware that I might not be able to share it for a while. Many thanks for your continuing support.  As usual, the logo above will take you to my Jo’s Monday walk page.


SO excited to kick off this week with a walk by Lucile!  If you don’t know her, you’re in for a treat (and if you do, you’ll expect the best, and not be disappointed).  AND she’s in Portugal!

Walking through Sights and colours of Lisbon

Introducing a blog called MyScribblez next.  All scribblers amongst you, please pop over and say ‘hi’ :

Quebec on Foot

Drake likes the ladies, especially in an artful pose :

Blooming nudity

The scenery around Greenock is a nice surprise.  Take a look with Anabel :

The Greenock Cut

You won’t be surprised to find that Jackie likes shopping :

St. Lawrence Market

Or that Ellen has a badly behaved dinghy?  Maybe it’s been reformed since this post :

Going for a Walk : Coromandel Town (or Coro pies are best)

Smidge has some nice romantic looking photos from the Scottish Borders :

Dryburgh Abbey & The River Tweed

And Susan… how about close encounters with a good-looking cow or two?

Sadie’s Walk

Denzil got up at the crack of dawn for this walk, so he deserves your appreciation :

GR571 Stage 4 : Trois-Ponts to Vielsam 

And getting me nicely in the mood for the Algarve- thanks a lot, Becky!   Your place or mine?

Exploring the Grande Rota do Guadiana

That’s it folks!  Thanks again for all the shares and for the pleasure you give me.  Take care of yourselves.






Just yesterday I looked at Paula’s Scheduled Challenges and thought, ‘I don’t have anything panoramic’.  Funny how life sometimes supplies what you need without even being asked.

The day dawned bright, beautiful and empty of plans.  A phone call later and I had walking company.  The coastline north of me is rugged, former mining territory.  The magnesium limestone rocks are steadily eroding and at low tide you can enter the resulting caves.  The shore is littered with reminders of the past, washed and washed beyond recognition.

Washed clear to the horizon

Washed clear to the horizon

Save for a gentleman and his dog

Save for a gentleman and his dog

From the confines of the caves

From within the confines of the caves

The rich colours of the stones beckon

The richly coloured stones beckon

Strewing the beach as far as the eye can see

Strewing the beach as far as the eye can see

Rough and ready jewels

Rough and ready jewels

Rinsed by the sea

Rinsed clean by the sea

It seems I had a ready made panorama all along!  Perhaps I’ll take you inside the caves next time. Now to see what kind of Panorama Paula has in store.  Whatever it is, I know it will be beautiful.


Jo’s Monday walk : Praia da Rocha

Winter in the Algarve- the deserted beach at Praia da Rocha

Winter in the Algarve- the deserted beach at Praia da Rocha

Despite the high rise, I’m sure you can see the attraction?  Praia da Rocha was the Algarve’s earliest resort, and it still makes a pleasant place for a winter stroll.  I don’t have much time to create a walk post, having just arrived home, so I’ll be starting you off very gently.

Praia da Rocha and the city of Portimão meld into one where the River Arade empties into the Atlantic Ocean, on Portugal’s southern coast.  Next week we can wander the river bank at leisure, but let’s start simply, with the beach, shall we?

Smart hotels line the promenade

Smart hotels line the promenade

In contrast, the remains of the 17th century Fortress of Santa Catarina de Ribamar come as something of a surprise. Testimony to the days when pirate corsairs raided these shores.

Pirates beware!

Pirates beware!

But these days it's more of a look out

But these days it’s more of a look out

And isn’t that the most inviting causeway stretching out into the sea?  I think I can spy a lighthouse at the end.  Zip your jacket up!  A windsurfer or two is testing the breeze.

The empty beach tells it's own story!

The empty beach tells it’s own story

And playing with the shadows

And playing with the shadows

Collar huddled against that bracing wind, it’s a brisk stride back to the shelter of the cliffs.  You can feel yourself relax then, as the warmth tickles your shoulder blades.

Near perfect weather for sailing

Near perfect weather for sailing

But it’s the boardwalk that beckons, and those mysterious stacks at the end of the beach.

You can walk back along the beach, admiring the cliff face in detail, or return to the cliff top. There are several sets of steps.  Most of the available parking is around the marina, at the east end of the resort.  Let’s just pop our noses in there first, then go looking for something to eat.

Take your pick!

Take your pick!

If you’re not too hungry, you can wander out around the marina.  There are plenty of restaurants to choose from, even though many close in the winter.  I’m moving on to Portimão, and I hope you’ll join me there, next Monday.

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I had a wonderful two weeks ‘away from it all’, and I have so many of you to catch up with! Thank you for your patience.  I’ll stop by as soon as I can.  Meantime, there are some wonderful walks to share.  Some of you have been very diligent.  For anyone new to my walks, the logo or my Monday walks page will give you more details.  Goodness- I’m on to my second cuppa already!


Any of you know Warsaw?  That’s where my lovely friend Meg is right now, visiting family   :

Shopping in Praga

Paula has been checking out ‘restless fliers’ in Zagreb.  No, nothing to do with me!

Shooting birds on the lake

I can’t ski but I’m always game for a chair lift or two!  Thanks, Drake  :

Off-white or rough white

Two Megs this week, just to confuse you!  This one’s in Virginia  :

A Winter walk

Lucy often stays in Paris, lucky lady!  Share a beautiful walk with her in St. Germain  :

The streets of St. Germain

What about a little poetry next?  And a classic from Dionne Warwick- thanks, Esther  :

Walk on By

Amy really does take wonderful photos.  Just check these out!  :

Architecture walking tour of downtown Fort Worth

Welcome to Anabel, who introduces us to a beautiful light show in Glasgow Botanic Gardens.  Jude- you’ll like this!

Electric Gardens

And you can rely on Elena for quirky!

Hundertwasser House in Vienna

I’ve always wanted to visit the Far East, so I’m very happy to tour Vientiane with Colibrist  :

Experimental travel in Vientiane, Laos

Who wouldn’t want to eat with Yvette, and share music with Frizz?  What a combination!

Pasto Italiano (and Belichick quote)

Or maybe try beachcombing with Tobias  :

A Walcheren walk

The Eternal Traveler has joined us this week with some stunning views of Japan.  I’m so jealous!

Unusual, unexpected, unbelievable

I’m delighted to end with lovely Sherri Matthews.  You can’t help but enjoy her stories  :

Virginia Woolf’s Round House and Lewes Priory

That’s it for this week, folks.  I didn’t think I’d make it!  Thank you for all your brilliant contributions, and I can’t wait to see what next week brings.  Have a good one!

Jo’s Monday walk : Along the shore

Can you guess where?

Can you guess where?

I wasn’t sure what to post for this week’s walk.  I haven’t yet taken you to Nottingham and I know that many of you like castles and history.  But when this is published, I will be in the Algarve, and hopefully on my way to a Monday walk.  It seemed only right to take you along.

My favouurite kind of shell

My favourite kind of shell

The river beach on Tavira Island is rich with this type of delicate beauty.  It never ceases to amaze me that, no matter how many are taken home, there are always more to discover.  Come with me on a simple stroll along the beach and see what we can find.

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When you ride across to the ilha on the ferry, the river beach is where you land.  Often enough I loiter here.  There’s always a passing boat to wave at or admire.  I like to follow the shoreline looking for ‘treasure’.  There is a greater variety of shells on this side of the island, which seldom gets dashed by the Atlantic waves.

Looking back at Tavira from the river beach

Looking back at Tavira from the river beach



When I tire of looking, I head over the ilha to the main beach.  There are a number of sandy trails crossing the island- some easier to follow than others.  I sometimes get a little disoriented and wish I’d stayed with the main path, but eventually the sea always appears on the horizon.

Am I nearly there yet?

Am I nearly there yet?

At last!

At last!

Depending how hot the day, I may just choose to collapse here for a little while.  Down on the beach, someone has been creative with shells and two fish survey the world, just a little wearily. It is rather a warm spot to be out of the water!

Creative with shells

Creative with shells

Leaving behind the crazy fish, I simply have to kick off my flipflops and dip my toes in the surf. I know I’ve said it before but this beach really does stretch for miles.  You have the choice of simply returning to the river beach by following the sea wall, or you can walk along the beach till you’re ready to flop.  I’m sure you can guess which I’m inclined to do.

Fancy a paddle by the lighthouse?

A bit of a splash by the lighthouse?

The beach bar at Barril acts as a powerful incentive.  And there’s the beautiful Anchor Graveyard. Because sunset comes earlier at this time of year, this trip I may just manage those sunset images I’ve always coveted.  For now, I’ll leave you with a gallery I took last time I was here.  I think you can find your own way home?  See you there!

I’ll be back in the UK for next week’s walk.  Maybe we’ll do Nottingham, but we’ll definitely be walking somewhere.  I hope that you’ll join me.  If you have a walk that you’d like to share, it would be great if you could link to me, or leave a link to your post in my comments.  The details are on my  Jo’s Monday walk page.

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Time to share this week’s walks.  Kettle on and feet up!  Many thanks to all my contributors.

Drake has me singing again as I stroll alongside him  :

Here, There and Everywhere 

High fashion and shoes this week with Violet Sky  :

Shows who you are

Enjoy a change of pace and place with Cardinal  :

Berlin Street 0741

Sharing comes naturally to Amy.  Do join her and her delightful ducks  :

Jo’s Monday walk

A very special garden from Jude.  Enjoy it because it’s her last before she’s off to Australia!

Garden Portrait : Abbotsbury sub-tropical gardens

Dear Meg takes us to the Australian bush, on a serene walk with nature  :

The river road 4

Noe is back this week, playing with the children on their island paradise  :

Amazing journey to Rajuni Kiddi Island

Brilliant, aren’t they?  I hope you enjoyed them all as much as I did.  Happy walking!

Six word Saturday


‘Seaton celebrates’ was a big success!

The sand pies were quite big too (and happy!)

The sand pies were quite big too (and happy!)

A certain lady was hard at work

A certain lady was hard at work on the sand sculpture

And there were a few other crowd pleasers too!

And there were a few other crowd pleasers too!

I loved these ladies so much!  Maybe a new Gravatar?

I loved these ladies so much! Maybe a new Gravatar?

Meanwhile my t'ai chi group 'worked the beach'

Meanwhile my t’ai chi group ‘worked the beach’

And there was all the usual 'fun of the fair'

And there was all the usual ‘fun of the fair’

These were my daughter's favourites when she was small

These were my daughter’s favourites when she was small

There were 'goodies'

There were ‘goodies’

And craft stalls galore!

And craft stalls galore!

And it was great weather for kites!

And it was great weather for kites!

And look what this little girl got to take home on the bus!

Just look what this little girl got to take home on the bus!

All in all, a good day!  The sun shone gently down.  Mike led the t’ai chi group into the water and my ‘crops’ got soaked!  A good time was had by all.  Just one omission!  I forgot to go back for a ‘finished’ photo of the sand sculpture.  It must have been the lure of the icecream.

Have a happy weekend, won’t you, and don’t forget to visit Cate at Show My Face.  You only need six words!


A promenade to Roker

Grab your coat! It's time to go.

Grab your coat!  It’s time to go.

It’s Monday, my usual day for a walk.  Do you fancy a stroll?  I’m starting out today on the banks of the River Wear at Sunderland.  Ship building used to be the mainstay of this area, till foreign competition priced us out of the market.  For a lot of years nothing much happened around here, but gradually life is creeping back in.

The National Glass Centre blazed a trail and it is the start and end point of my walk.  At the river mouth a small marina huddles against that sometimes biting north east breeze.  In its absence, this is a very pleasant stroll, with some quirky sculptures along the way.

But best to head off round the marina

But best to head off round the marina

What can I tell you about Sunderland?  I expect you’ve heard of Geordies, people who hail from Newcastle-on-Tyne, but have you heard of Mackems? The name Mackem (‘make them’) may have derived from the Wearside shipyard workers, who would design and build ships, which would then be taken by the Tyne-siders.  The expression “mackem and tackem” (make them and take them) seems to refer to the rivalry which has always existed between these two cities.

My favourite sculpture is the stained glass boat

My favourite sculpture is the stained glass boat

Beyond the marina the river mouth opens onto the beach front at Roker, newly made over.

With more sculptures

With new sculptures and seating

And numerous rock pools

The beach is full of tempting rock pools

Just the place fro walking your dog

It’s just the place for walking your dog

And admiring the lighthouse

Or admiring the lighthouse

This area is not without its admirers.  Lewis Carroll wrote some of his works in neighbouring Whitburn and local landmarks are believed to be the source of inspiration for his “Alice in Wonderland”.  The painter, L.S. Lowry, regularly stayed at the Seaburn Hotel, here on the front.

The promenade stretches off into the distance and you can walk as far as you like.  Buses run all along the coast so, if you overdo it, you can always hop on a bus back to Sunderland centre.  I think we may have walked far enough for this morning, so it’s time to retrace our steps, and maybe pick up an icecream en route.  A  short detour through pretty Roker Park will bring you back down to the beach.

The lighthouse at Roker

Upper or lower promenade at Roker lighthouse?

An old drinking fountain

An old drinking fountain

Back to the beach, from Roker Park

Back to the beach, from Roker Park

The National Glass Centre has a very nice riverfront restaurant where you can take some refreshments, and maybe fit in a free tour of the glass factory.  I love glass blowing.  Don’t you? But more of that next time.