Residence Sunflowers – Part 1 – The Neighbourhood

Today was a nice day, and I decided to take my camera and dance a bit around the row of sunflowers that my father has planted this year. I think we will plant them every year, they are beautiful and bees and bumblebees love them, as well as a plethora of other creatures. So this week stay tuned for some pictures from that.

This is the whole lot, looking east in the morning.

© Charly, all rights reserved. Click for full size.

Holidays: Park Güell: Straight Lines are of the Devil

The last pics from Park Güell. The columns make your head somewhat dizzy, and we have a bunch of silly tourist pics where the kids try to keep them from falling over of where I aligned the camera with the columns and the kids “slide down”. No pics of the kids on the net, though.

©Giliell, all rights reserved

©Giliell, all rights reserved

©Giliell, all rights reserved

©Giliell, all rights reserved

©Giliell, all rights reserved

Apparently even the trees decided to play along…

Jack’s Walk

©voyager, all rights reserved

A friend of my mom’s came to sit with her this afternoon, giving Jack and I a nice block of time to get out of town and go for a much-needed forest walk. Jack’s been very patient with the change in his routine, but he hasn’t been his usual cheerful self so I wanted to fix that. I’m pretty sure he had a good time.

Jack’s Walk

©voyager, all rights reserved

The light was lousy this morning and Jack was on leash which means I shoot one-handed, so I consider this photo mostly just a test shot, but there it is again… the water stone that replaced my little pond at the park. I’ve been walking around it for a few days now, framing it from different angles and I admit it’s growing on me. I still don’t like the square base that it’s set in, but it does looks pretty when it’s framed by the gazebo. They’ve also turned up the water volume a bit and it makes a lovely burbling sound now which is nice. The stone itself also has some interesting angles that I want to explore. I still miss the koi and the tadpoles, but that’s life isn’t it. All things come and go and wishing it different won’t make it so. It took me a while, but I’m finally adjusting to this hunk of rock and just maybe I’m even learning to like it.

Jack’s Walk

Unflappable ©voyager, all rights reserved

It’s been my experience that herons are notoriously hard to get close to. They seem to see you coming a mile away and either long-leg it in the other direction or take flight. Not this guy. He’s at the park every morning in about the same spot and people just don’t seem to faze him. In that photo up there I’m about 10 meters away on the other side of the creek with Jack at my feet. Now, Jack is a calm sort of guy so he’s being quiet, but he’s already been in the creek splashing around a bit upstream and the heron looked at him once or twice and shrugged. Jack seems a bit in awe of the bird and always watches him closely. He’s either a bit intimidated or he’s trying to figure out his fishing technique. My bet is on the latter.

Jack’s Walk

©voyager, all rights reserved

My boy was all HappyJack™ this morning playing in the creek at the park. It isn’t my favourite place for him to swim because the water can be a bit smelly, but a quick dousing with the outdoor hose at home takes care of that easily enough. After the hosing Jack smells like an ordinary wet dog, which isn’t exactly odour-free, but it is familiar and I find it oddly comforting. Water equals pleasure for Jack and the whiffs of wet afterward tell me that my boy is tired and happy.

Jack fell asleep soon after getting home today (he is 11 after all) and I’m sure he’s dreaming about paddling and floating and maybe even catching a fish. I hope your day is filled with simple pleasures, too.

Holidays: More Park Güell

Some more details of the tiles at Park Güell. It certainly is one of my favourite places in Barcelona, once conceived as a settlement for workers, with a sustainable water recycling facility and communal area. It was never finished, but has become one of Barcelona’s tourist attractions.

©Giliell, all rights reserved

You can see how the colourful tiles have been smashed up in order to fit them to all the curved surfaces.

©Giliell, all rights reserved

Here they look more random. Anecdote has it that the Barceloneses thought Gaudí was crazy for commissioning perfectly good tiles and the smashing them all up…

©Giliell, all rights reserved

The building to the left is not part of Park Güell but an older one.

©Giliell, all rights reserved

©Giliell, all rights reserved

This area is underneath the “balconies” we saw yesterday.

©Giliell, all rights reserved

It’s hard to see in the pic’s, but none of the columns goes up straight.

©Giliell, all rights reserved

Jack’s Walk

Early morning at the park ©voyager, all rights reserved

Our virtual vacation is over and Jack and I are ready to get back into our usual routines… sort of. My mother is approaching the end of her life and I’ve been spending my days at her nursing home which doesn’t leave me much time to take Jack out to his favourite trails. We’ve been managing by taking shorter walks around the neighbourhood in the early morning and late evening and Jack is just so happy to spend time with me that he hasn’t even complained. Poor Bubba is used to hanging out with me all day and he is not happy about me being gone so much. When I’m home he sticks to me like a lollipop on a cat, afraid that I’ll sneak out when his isn’t looking. This morning I made a point of taking some extra time to take him to our local park and it was such a joy to watch him splash and frolic that I’m going to try to do that every day. It’s good for both of us to have a small bit of normal in the form of fresh air and exercise. The blog is a good bit of normal for me, too.

There’s no wifi in my mom’s care home so that’s a bit of a challenge, but we’ll try to be here every day as usual.

Holidays: Park Güell

I think we had some of it already last year, and I noticed I didn’t take too many pics this year, but it’s still lovely, every single time. If you ever visit Barcelona and need some “Gateway Gaudí”, this is where you go. It#s reasonably priced, since this years there’s a shuttle bus from the underground station and you get all the quirky loveliness that characterises Catalan “Modernisme”.

©Giliell, all rights reserved   You get the best panoramic view of the city

©Giliell, all rights reserved

©Giliell, all rights reserved

©Giliell, all rights reserved

Part of it is under restauration, so you can see it without all the other people visiting.