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Archive for 'Travel'

Strolling Through English Village Life

With the approach of the Olympic games I thought I’d post a few photos from Britain. This week I’m all about villages. England has some gorgeous villages with pretty cottages and thatched roofs.

UK - Cornwall, Mousehole

This is the seaside village of Mousehole in Cornwall. (pronounced Mowzel) I remember eating morning tea—a vegetable pastie and a cup of tea—in a small cafe in Mousehole. It was delicious.

 

UK - Cotswold 2, Lower Slaughter

The Cotswold area is full of pretty villages. They’re also over run with click happy tourists—a trade off for the locals, I guess. This is the village of Lower Slaughter.

 

UK - Dartmoor thatched cottages

This is a village in the Dartmoor area. The roads are narrow and you never know what you’ll find around the next corner. These ones all have thatched roofs. Very cute!

 

UK - Cotswolds, Bourton on the Water

And finally Bourton on the Water is one of the prettiest Cotswolds villages in my opinion. There’s a river running through the center with tiny walking bridges so people can cross. One of the attractions in the town is this miniature village, which is an exact replica of the real one. It even has a model village within the model village.

I always think of cozy mysteries, Miss Marple, Hercule Poirot and Midsummer Murders when I think of English villages. The quaint buildings hide so much crime and passion! I have a real soft spot for these books and TV shows. Maybe I’ll even write a village set romance one day—with a few bodies strewn around, naturally.

What comes to your mind when you think of villages?

Shop Until You Drop!

For some people shopping is a sport. Others, like me, don’t find the past time as much fun. Battling with crowds—forget about it! There’s a few exceptions to my dislike of shopping. I can shop for books for hours, and I enjoy exploring markets, especially when they’re involved with travel.

I thought I’d share a few market photos with you today.

Zimbabwe - Bartering for Avocados

It’s always fun bartering for goods. This is me bartering for avocados for lunch.

 

India - Cochin

A vegetable stall in Cochin, India. People are always so friendly.

 

India - Jeypur

Stalls selling fabric, also in India

 

India - Mysore

Some stalls are colorful and full of mysterious things, India.

 

Nukualofa, Tonga

You can buy fans in Tonga.

 

Pakistan - Quetta

Or fabric from a tailor in Pakistan.

 

Do you like shopping? What is your favorite thing to shop for?

Keep on Truckin’

One of the things that sticks in my mind about India and Pakistan is the large number of trucks, all highly decorated, honking their horns nonstop. At times the horns are deafening. No one seems to pay attention to them, but I remember the racket with fondness. All that noise and confusion. The photos below were all taken in Pakistan.

Pakistan - convoy

We were part of this convoy of trucks, driving through Pakistan. From memory we all came to a halt because one of the trucks was overloaded and fell off the road.

 

Pakistan - Quetta

An overloaded truck!

Pakistan - Quetta

Trucks have to go around pedestrians…

Pakistan - Quetta

And lots of other obstructions. Perhaps that’s why they toot their horns.

 

Pakistan - Shelley & slingshot

And finally, here’s a shot of me and a group of Pakistani boys. I’m trying out their slingshot. Notice the boy right behind me. He has no faith in my abilities!

World Travel and a Takeover

Shelley is a little busy and I have offered to blog today.

Be patient, I’m a virgin blogger.

Recently I’ve been scanning our old print travel photos to digital. Trying to condense them as well, since there are thousands. A very time consuming but rewarding exercise. It’s like going back in time, reliving all those experiences. Some pics made me cringe, 7 months traveling through Africa – what were we thinking? An adventure, definitely NOT a holiday.

Traveling 3 months across the Middle East after Suddam had invaded Kuwait – we were two of the foolhardy few, great time, no other tourists getting in the way of that unforgettable shot [photo not gun].

Actually, saying that the photos are old is not a good description as that also relates to us! I can’t speak for Shelley but I don’t feel old, because I’m not. (Shelley says she’s not old either!!)

I was chatting to a lady last week who had visited Petra in Jordan [Indiana Jones fame]. She showed me a photo of her in front of the treasury, should I say she was in front of hundreds of other tourists on a day excursion from a cruise ship.

Here’s our photo: Spot the tourists – there aren’t any!

Treasury, Petra, Jordan

Some of the most rewarding photos I have taken captured Shelley at a height of excitement. One was after a flight over Victoria Falls:

 Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe

Another seeing Mountain Gorillas in Rwanda:

Gorilla Hunting, Rwanda Gorilla, Rwanda

This one was taken in a Lobster shack out of Bar Harbor, Maine. To be fair, I was more excited at the thought of eating it!

Lobster, Bar Harbor, Maine

 

Bora Bora, Tahiti helmet dive:

Shelley, Bora Bora, Tahiti Shelley, surrounded by fish, Bora Bora

 

Don’t worry, Shelley will return tomorrow.

Climbing Mt Kenya

Mr Munro has been scanning more of our print photos into digital format. Today I’m going to share some photos from our trip to Kenya.

It’s quite strange finding a mountain in the tropics, but Mt Kenya is definitely a mountain and a challenge to climb. We almost made the top, but the weather closed in during our final push to the summit. It’s difficult to walk when it’s raining and the mist closes in and obscures vision.

Mt. Kenya Base Camp

This is me at base camp. I can’t believe how skinny I am here!

 

Vertical Bog, Mt. Kenya

While climbing Mt. Kenya you have to navigate a vertical bog. It’s quite hard work jumping from tuft to tuft. The vegetation is unusual too, and it made me think of alien planets. I’m the second person back with the red on my coat.

Mr. Munro, Vertical Bog

Mt Kenya vegetation

Mt Kenya

Mt Kenya, camp after vertical blog

I don’t like this photo of me, but Mr Munro said I should add it to show how high the second camp was, nearer the top of the mountain.

Me on Mt Kenya

We had an awesome time during our Mt Kenya visit. It was tiring and definitely hard work climbing the vertical bog but very rewarding once we made camp. It’s a pity we didn’t make the top, but it was still fun. A great experience to tick off the bucket list.

Do you think you’d like the challenge? Do you like walking or trekking?

Camel Fair, Pushkar, India

Pushkar, India

Pushkar, India

The Pushkar camel fair takes place once a year in November. We visited Pushkar just as the people were starting to arrive with their camels. They say around 200,000 people view the 50,000 camels and cattle on sale, and most of the buying and selling takes place before the official start of the fair. The top photo shows camels as far as the eye could see. I can only imagine the sight once all the people and camels arrive!

Gone Wine Tasting!

Today I’m playing hooky and going on a wine tasting tour on Waiheke Island. The island is a short ferry ride from Auckland city. Here are a few photos from a day trip my husband and I did around this time last year.

Waiheke Island

Waiheke Island

Beach, Waiheke Island

Vineyards & Olive Grove, Waiheke Island

Waiheke has a slightly warmer climate than Auckland and is excellent for grape growing. I’ve never tried Waiheke wines before, so I’m looking forward to my tour. Have a fun day – I intend to!

Statue of Liberty, New York

Statue of Liberty, New York

The Statue of Liberty, New York, USA plus me!

Elephant Ride in Thailand

Elephant Ride, Phuket

Hubby and I during an elephant ride in Phuket, Thailand.

A Trip Down the Nile

Today I thought I’d take you on a virtual trip to Egypt, on a trip down the Nile.

Our Ship for the Nile Trip 

Our ship was small, and it looked a little plain compared to some of the other floating palaces, but it was very comfortable.

b142 Felluca

We saw lots of felucca, the traditional sailing ships.

Kom Ombo Temple

Each day we stopped to view various temples and ruins on the banks of the Nile. This is at Kom Ombo Temple.

View from our ship

We sailed past green islands, used for grazing camels and cattle, and looked to the deserts beyond. It made for a glorious contrast of colors.

Abu Simbel

Once we reached Aswan, we organized a trip to the fantastic Abu Simbel. This entire site was moved to make way for a dam.

Old Cataract Hotel, Aswan

We also visited the Old Cataract Hotel when we were in Aswan. Agatha Christie stayed here and wrote Death on the Nile.

The Mummy is one of my favorite movies, so I was predisposed to enjoy a visit to Egypt. Smile  We had a lot of fun, exploring both the old and the new, and I highly recommend the experience if you ever have a chance to visit.