Windows on my world

If you’ve ever flown in there, you’ll recognise this approach to Pisa airport.  It was my gateway to Florence, a city I’d always wanted to visit.  Once in a while I get a nice shot from a plane window.  The city was so much more than I expected and I went around with jaw dangling.  I wrote about Florence on my return until I could feel my readers dosing off, and simply had to stop.  It all came bubbling back when my lovely friend Gilly posted Santa Maria Novella.

I stayed just around the corner and walked past it numerous times, as did Gilly.  I had read of cloisters and frescoes and knew that I simply had to squeeze a visit in.  The interior entirely belied first impressions, and I wish I could have lingered.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

The shots in the cloisters are understandably faded but maybe you can get an impression of their glory.  I scaled the heights and did everything I conceivably could in the short time I had in Florence.  And still there was more to see.

It’s all there!  Old, new and ever pleasing to the eyes.  Each and every window revealed more splendour.

The camera came home dying of exhaustion but I have never felt more alive.  The old mercado had been similarly reinvigorated, with a top floor full of exciting dining options.  I hardly knew which way to look.

I have to thank both Gilly and Michelle at the Daily Post for giving me this opportunity to look back through some wonderful windows.

A window on Shropshire

Windows are delightful things and I have to confess to collecting more than my fair share on my travels.  Looking out or looking in, I’m equally happy.  You never know what you might find, do you?

On my visit to Shropshire this week I stayed in a wonderful old Arts and Crafts property, Arden House, in Church Stretton.  Looking out of the windows I could hardly wait to get started on another adventure.

It has the nicest of country pubs, even if a malevolent wasp might be hiding beneath the plate, ready to pounce.  What’s this chap doing up there, you might wonder? Trimming back the wisteria, I believe, in rather precarious fashion.

I don’t mind scaling the heights now and again myself, in search of a good view. Stokesay Castle was a prime example.

There will be more, of course, but for now let me reassure you that the swelling from the sting has stopped.  I hope to have matching hands again in the near future.  Meantime you are free to go and look at Paula’s unusual Windows, because Thursday’s Special.  And maybe spare a thought for Dawn?  I haven’t lingered at her monthly challenge in the longest time.

Life is full of choices


Windows, or doors?


Old, or new?


Real, or imagined?


But the hardest choice of all?  Which challenge to enter!  And I’m spoilt for choice this week, because Klara Bach has given me choices in Thursday’s Special.  I’ve promised Dawn I’ll linger by a few more windows, and then there’s Norm’s Doors!  I ask you- what’s a girl to do?  Enjoy the challenge, I guess.  I hope you do, too.  Every picture tells a story!  Do you have a favourite?

Clifton windows, Bristol

Who'd live in a house like this? Me, please!

Who’d live in a house like this? Me, please!

I probably shouldn’t, but I never did have any willpower, and I know you’ll want one last Bristol stroll with me.  You do, don’t you?  I promise to keep it short.

The plaque, Sir Abraham Roberts, a distinguished Indian general, in case you wonered

The plaque, Sir Abraham Roberts, a distinguished Indian general, in case you wondered

We seem to be in a very genteel and affluent area of Bristol but, as I stroll, people are going about their every day, and we nod and exchange smiles.  It’s good to be here.

I am purely following my nose, and hoping that I will arrive somewhere I recognise.  I hadn’t realised that Clifton had such mighty architecture as Royal York Crescent.  Adjoining Clifton Village, it is a Grade II listed terrace of 46 houses.  Allegedly the longest terrace in Europe, building began in 1791 but was not completed until 1820.  What is indisputable is that the views from up here are far reaching.

Next, a treat for shoppers

Next, a treat for shoppers

Clifton Arcade is the very height of temptation.  Small, but perfectly formed, it has ’17 unique shops set in Victorian splendour’. Originally opened in 1878, it then fell into disrepair. Beautifully restored, you can even take a virtual tour on the link I have enclosed, and pop in for coffee at the Primrose Cafe.

I have a daughter who would adore this window

I have a daughter who would adore this window

A veritable Aladdin's cave of nostalgia

A veritable Aladdin’s cave of nostalgia

I promised to be short, so maybe this is a good time to leave you browsing.  There are modern items alongside the nostalgia.  Have fun, won’t you?  I really do need to go.

For those of you I have confused (sorry, Meg) I have a 2 week laze about in the Algarve, then am home for 6 days before gallivanting off to a wedding in Poland.  Sigh!  The things you have to do to be Restlessjo.  But first I must link to Dawn, who loves lingering at windows.

No more Bristol!  Toodle pip!


Wacky windows in Nottingham

Headine news!

Headline news!

Many of you will know that I took a flying visit to Nottingham at the weekend.  But not so swift that I couldn’t have a healthy salad (and a naughty cake) in Hopkinson with my lovely daughter. A Vintage store that spans four floors (yes, 4!), you can sit in the cafe on the ground floor surrounded by the most delightful clutter.  No need to worry about calories!  The 4 floors will soon work them off.

Click on a photo to view the galleries

The external is quite arresting too!

The external is quite arresting too!

Nottingham has shops by the gazillion, but I’ve always loved arcades and Flying Horse Walk is surely an eye pleaser. Let’s go a little more upmarket, shall we?

And inside the arcades

Inside the arcades

And looking up

And looking up

More flying horses!

More flying horses!

I’d like to say thank you for the kind thoughts and good wishes I received at the weekend.  A few prayers won’t go amiss but I’m hopeful that things will get better.  Love is all you need, but sometimes we need a little help too.

And, of course, I’m linking to Dawn’s A Lingering Look at Windows.  Let’s go window shopping!

Window gazing in Kraków

Irresistible stained glass angels

Irresistible stained glass angels

I’m quite partial to a spot of window gazing and there can be few better places than Kraków to indulge. Beneath the cloisters of the Cloth Hall (Sukiennice) all kinds of temptation beckon.  I really couldn’t remain outside the shop with the stained glass angels, but my timing was bad. The gentleman behind the counter politely informed me that he was closing for lunch and gave me his card.  So my Polish money stayed in my pocket a while longer!

Click on the gallery below to shop with me

Inside the Sukiennice stalls offer up every kind of indulgence, but no windows, so I contented myself with a stroll around the rather damp Rynek.  There’s a swish cafe above the Sukiennice, with a terrace open to beguiling views of the Rynek Główny, Europe’s largest Market Square.  I didn’t linger long as it started to drizzle.

Lots of windows but not many customers fro the coaches

Lots of windows, but not many customers for the coaches

I actually spent a very interesting couple of hours in the museum beneath the Rynek, Podziemia, which kept me out of the rain very effectively, but more of that another time.  One last shot caught my eye before I headed for home.

But this one, complete with view of the Rynek, may have been my favourite

A fashion window, with a lovely view of the Rynek

I’ve been promising to return to Dawn’s Windows challenge for the longest time.  This month’s windows are so ‘pretty in pink’.  I do hope that you can join me there.

A Lingering Look at windows : week 41

Any guesses where?

Any guesses where?

It seems so long since we were there, yet it’s barely two months.  I suspect it’s much longer than that since I took part in Dawn’s Lingering Look at windows, so I thought that I’d bring the two together this week.

Come and press your nose up against a few windows with me.  Click on a photo to start the gallery and look for clues.

But just in case you haven't guessed

But just in case you haven’t guessed

It’s Paris, of course!  One of my many wonderful memories this year.

Dawn keeps finding interesting windows, week after week.  Maybe you have some you’d like to share?  Click on this link to visit the challenge.

I’m lingering again!

Newcastle Rail Station gets a makeover

Newcastle Rail Station gets a makeover

I’ve not done too much lingering by windows lately, but a railway station is often a place for hanging about.  Usually I arrive at Newcastle-upon-Tyne by bus, so the recent improvements, blocking out those draughty spaces, have crept up on me.  But I like them.  A lot!

It's a piece of artwork, in itself!

It’s a piece of artwork, in itself, don’t you think?

And from inside the impact is even more dramatic.

Like most cities, Newcastle has its share of windows, in all shapes and sizes.  I was meeting a friend for coffee and we stopped to admire The Gate- a cinema and restaurant complex.

Could be my kind of film!

Could be my kind of film!

We rode up the escalator for a look out

We rode up the escalator for a look out on the street

I was very taken with this structure

And I particularly liked this structure

Not exactly a window, but you can definitely see through it.  Then Waterstones upstairs cafe delighted me.  A cafe in a bookshop- perfection!  But I did have to wonder about this window.

Is the bike for sale?

Is the bike for sale?

A little strange, don't you think?

I’d rather have a view with my coffee!

The Danish pastries were very nice though.  Quite a few people have asked about the green glass structure so I’m belatedly including a link with information on the sculptures in Newcastle.

Got to see which windows Dawn has been lingering by this week.  Click this link and come too?

More Algarve windows

The sight of Barril beach bar always lifts my spirits

The sight of Barril beach bar always lifts my spirits

It’s often the midpoint of one of my walks, or a place to linger when it’s too warm on the beach. Come, stroll with me around a few more Algarve windows.  Just click on a photo and off we go.

I know this isn't purely a windows shot but I love the atmsphere

And as the light fades, the windows sparkle!

Thank you for indulging me again.  There’s nothing I like better than a stroll in my Algarve streets.  I know that Dawn’s windows will be completely different, and it’s time to take a look.


A lingering look at Algarve windows

Can you see the lamp reflected in the top left?

Can you see the lamp reflected in the top left?

It’s a while since I found time for a windows post, but I did find some rather nice ones in the Algarve recently.  The one above is in the village of Cacelha Velha.  The others are pure Tavira!

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

I think I’ll save some for next week.  You can have too much of a good thing, can’t you? I like a bit of a story with my windows.  The one below is one of the upstairs windows at the cafe Anazu. You might remember I have a penchant for a glass of port there?  The piped music is always gentle and relaxed and, if that’s not enough entertainment, you can watch the swifts swooping overhead, into their nests.   The umbrellas provide a spot of cover, just in case!

A good view of the swifts nests

Here’s one, just returning!

I wonder what kind of windows Dawn is featuring this week.  Old, new, shiny, stained glass- they all have that something that makes you linger, don’t they?  She’s up to #week 25 in the current series!  Let’s go take a look.