“Pic of the Week”, June 15, 2018: An Interesting Shed, Gold Hill, Colorado

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My eye was drawn to this old shed situated in someone’s back yard in the historic mining town of Gold Hill.  The town is not far from Boulder, is charming and visiting it is much like stepping into the past.  

I have to admit, I would love to own a shed like this, wheels, bed frame, antlers, ads and all! 

(Click on thumbnails to enlarge, right arrow to advance)

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“Pic of the Week”, June 8, 2018: Burj Al Arabia

00 Burj Al Arabia, Dubai (8)

In a country of spectacular modern buildings and architecture, the Burj Al Arab more than holds its own.  A beautiful white structure, it was built to resemble a dhow sailing into the blue waters of the Persian Gulf.  The Burj Al Arab was one of the first big constructions in modern Dubai and like the Eiffel Tower in Paris or the Statue of Liberty in New York, it has come to symbolize today’s Dubai.  

Some of the Particulars:
The Burj Al Arab is considered one of the world’s great luxury hotels and is the third tallest hotel in the world.  It’s built on an artificial island 280 m (920 ft) from Jumeirah Beach and is connected to it …

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.All Trips / Asia / Food / Sri Lanka

Exploring the Pettah Market, Colombo

00 Pettah Neighborhood Colombo Market 04-2017 (56)

I love to explore markets and walked a few miles to see this one — the Pettah Market in Colombo.  Situated in an older portion of the city, the market extends over several blocks in the Pettah neighborhood and caters to local residents, not tourists. In fact, I think mine was the only white face in the market.  The market was lively, filled with colorful produce and interesting smells, and full of conversation and bartering — as any good market should be.

The fresh produce was beautiful, featuring what was in season, notably pineapples, wood apples, papayas, watermelon and lots of different types of bananas.  A huge assortment of vegetables were piled on the ground or on low tables and a …

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.All Trips / Central USA / North America / North Dakota

“Pic of the Week”, May 25, 2018: The Flood Memorial, Grand Forks

01 Red River and Flood Memorial (10)

I’ve previously discussed how flat the great plains of central North America are.  Like the Amazon basin in South America, when there is flooding of a river over its bank the flat topography lets the water spread a far distance before there is enough contour change to stop it.  Obviously this can do a lot of damaged in populated areas.

The Red River, which flows through Minnesota and North Dakota on its way into Manitoba and on towards Lake Winnipeg, is one of the dominant rivers of the plains.  It seems like the Red floods every few years and usually a small flood can be reasonably managed.  But there are rare springs when the elements combine to make flooding particularly severe, …

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.All Trips / Asia / Dubai / Food

A Visit to Dubai’s Spice Souk

13 Spice Souk

When you disembark from the abra (water taxi) that takes you across brackish Dubai Creek and begin strolling the streets of the older Deira neighborhood, you’ll soon enter the market district. A favorite stop here is the spice souk, which you’ll smell at a distance of several blocks before you even enter it. It’s a pleasant aroma, associated with beautiful and colorful displays. The spice souk adjoins the popular gold souk and, like it, is shaded by a high roof.

There are large piles of spices in front of the many shops in the souk, including cooking spices, frankincense, cinnamon, rose (and other flower) petals. You’ll find an assortment of dried fruit as well. One of the most popular spices sold …

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“Pic of the Week”, May 18, 2018: The Orangerie Museum, Paris

02 Paris Orangerie

Situated adjacent to the Seine in the Jardin des Tuileries, not far from the Louvre, you’ll find a wonderful museum.  It’s next to the Place de la Concord and is housed in the palace’s old orange-tree growing greenhouse (orangery), a building completed in 1852. The building is lovely, with some statues outside including one by Rodin, but it’s what’s inside that’s truly special.

The Orangerie museum is a 20th century art gallery and its best know pieces are a series of Monet water-lily paintings known as the NymphĂ©as which occupy much of the upper floor.  Eight huge canvases of lilies are hung in two galleries, all painted by Monet when he was an old man beginning to lose his eyesight to cataracts.  …

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“Pic of the Week”, May 11, 2018: Wild Peacocks, Yala National Park

01 peacock yala

Yala is Sri Lanka’s largest National Park and is best known as a good place to spot leopards (although we didn’t see any).  We did, however, come across lots of wild peacocks — both male and female– including this male who was putting on quite a show for the ladies.  Feather erect and fanned out, he slowly moved in a circle and strutted his stuff!

Peacocks are a type of pheasant, but with distinctive iridescent tail feathers.  As you can see from the bottom photos, the feathers make up over half of the male bird’s body length.  It is believed females choose their partners according to the size and colors of these feather trains.  These birds are blue peacocks, native to …

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“Pic of the Week”, May 4, 2018: Reclining Connected Forms, CityCenter

03 Around the Vdara (9)

Who would have believed that Las Vegas, in its ongoing transformation, would become a center of fine public art?  Certainly not yours truly, at least not until recently.

This is especially true at the $10 billion CityCenter, where part of the master plan included $40 million to purchase some world-class pieces.   One of these is by English sculptor Henry Moore, a work called Reclining Connected Forms.  It is one of several similar-styled pieces by the same artist found around the globe.

Here are some specifics:  Crafted between 1969-1974 of Roman travertine marble. A massive piece measuring 10 x 17 x 7 feet. It is thought to represent a baby wrapped in its mother’s embrace.  

You can find this work between ARIA Resort …

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