.All Trips / Asia / Sri Lanka

Sinhalese New Year Celebration, Sri Lanka

00 New Years, Polonnaruwa

Tomorrow, April 14th, is New Year’s Day in Sri Lanka.  Sinhalese Buddhists call it ‘Aluth Avurudu’, while Tamil Hindus name it ‘Puthandu’.  My last visit to Sri Lanka coincided with this celebration, which I thought I’d share with you today. 
The date and time of Sri Lanka’s New Year’s is determined by astrologists, but  always falls between April 12th and 15th (depending on the cycle of the moon).  It’s a celebration based partially in superstitions — a way to hope for a good harvest and prosperous year.  New Year’s is a time to put on some new clothes and visit friends, family or a temple, and to enjoy good food.  Parades are held, although we didn’t go to one.  Almost everything …

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“Pic of the Week”, February 4, 2022: Lady in the Park, Winnipeg

00 Lady in the Park

I enjoy interesting pieces of public art. Sometimes a bookish scene like this can qualify as interesting, at least to me.
Located in Winnipeg’s Assiniboine Park, inside the English Garden, you can find this statue known as “Lady in the Park”. It’s a bronze created in 1994 by Prince Monyo Mihailescu-Nasturel, a Romanian-American artist.  For years the statue was located at the Winnipeg home of entrepeneur Izzy Asper. After he and his wife Babs died, the Lady in the Park was donated to Assiniboine Park by the The Asper Foundation.
The cold and snow make the setting interesting, more so than a warm green summer scene. I like how someone placed a woolen hat on the lady’s head.
(Click on thumbnails to enlarge, right …

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“Pic of the Week”, January 7, 2022: The Manitoba Maritime Museum, Selkirk

00 Manitoba Maritime Museum

Sometimes you can be pleasantly surprised by things you didn’t know existed.
So it was when I came across all these beached ships off the bank of the Red River in the town of Selkirk, slightly north of Winnipeg. I’d lived in Manitoba for the first 24 years of my life and had no idea it was there. My dad and I were on a drive exploring the local roads when we spotted it — dad can’t drive a car anymore but still loves to go for a ride, so I try to take him around as much as possible when I visit. The scene was surreal, these ships crowded together as if warming themselves on this cold snowy day.
This is …

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“Pic of the Week”, December 10, 2021: The Duck Pond, Winnipeg

00 Duck Pond

The duck pond is a popular gathering spot in Winnipeg’s Assiniboine Park. The character of the pond changes greatly with the seasons. In the summer it’s home to lots of ducks and geese, but with the coming of winter (when the wise waterfowl head to warmer climes in the south) it becomes a popular place to skate.
When I visited with my father a few months ago we drove through the park on a cold day and came across these scenes of people skating on the pond — everyone from kids just learning to people very experienced and fast on the ice.
(Click thumbnails to enlarge, right arrow to advance slideshow)

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“Pic of the Week”, November 5, 2021: Fresh Snow, Victoria Beach

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My family owned a small cabin in Victoria Beach when I was young, located on this very lane. We spent a lot of time here in the summer, enjoying the quiet of the place, fishing, riding our bikes, hiking, and swimming at the beach.
When I visit my elderly father in Winnipeg, we enjoy going for rides to visit places that touched our lives.  This past winter we revisited this holiday community after a fresh dusting of snow had covered the roads and pine trees.  I thought the soft light of winter made the scene quite pretty.
(Click on thumbnails to enlarge, right arrow to advance slideshow)


 

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“Pic of the Week”, October 1, 2021: Fall Colors, Birds Hill Park

Birds Hill PP 00

There’s a nice deciduous forest in a small park just north of Winnipeg known as Birds Hill Provincial Park, which only covers about 8300 acres (3400 hectacres — tiny by Canadian standards).  It’s rich in aspen and birch, and even has some oak trees, so when the leaves change color the scenery can be very nice.  While it’s not nearly as dramatic as the colors one sees in eastern North America, where maple trees add beautiful shades of crimson and reds, the scenery is pretty nonetheless.
Birds Hill is a small park but because it’s so close to Winnipeg it’s quite popular, receiving about a million visitors a year.  Besides a small lake, it has opportunities for camping, hiking, picnicing, horseback …

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“Pic of the Week”, August 6, 2021: Marienkirche, Berlin

01 Marionskirkche

Situated in Alexanderplatz, beside the tall Soviet-era TV tower (Fernsehturm), sits a medieval church known as Marienkirche (St. Mary’s church).  It’s one of the oldest churches in Berlin and is worth at least a quick visit if you’re in the area.
Construction of Marienkirche began around 1250 A.D. in the then recently established town of Berlin. In the late 14th century it was damaged by fire and rebuilt. Originally a Roman Catholic church, it has been Lutheran since the Protestant Reformation.
The church underwent an extensive overhaul in the 18th century yielding the appearance you visit today. During World War II, Marienkirche was heavily damaged by bombs and was nicely restored in the 1950s by East German authorities.
A …

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.All Trips / Denmark / Europe

The King’s Garden, Copenhagen

00 Rosenborg Castle Gardens

The King’s Garden — sometimes known as Rosenborg Castle Gardens — was designed in the early 1600s, during the reign of popular Danish King Christian IV. It was created as a private garden for King Christian and adjoins Rosenborg Castle. It’s the oldest Royal Garden in Denmark and is a popular green space in Copenhagen, with about 2.5 million visitors a year most obviously visiting in the summer.
As you might expect, the garden has undergone a number of changes over the years, but its overall design is mostly preserved.  Within the park you’ll find a large number of sculptures, including the most famous one of beloved Danish novelist, Hans Christian Andersen.  

Rosenborg Castle Gardens - Hans Christian Andersen statue

Rosenborg Castle Gardens – Hans Christian Andersen statue


The oldest sculpture in the garden is ‘The Horse …

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