RSS Feed

Tag Archives: photography

Xi’an Through a Tattered Lens

Leaving Beijing, we flew to Xi’an, gateway to the AMAZING Terra Cotta Warriors, perhaps the thing I was most looking forward to seeing in China.

One of the first things we noticed as we flew in was how “lit up” the city was. This area has much more electricity available than they do in Beijing, and they use it to light up the night sky like Las Vegas!

We really had a diverse tour here, from meeting with a professor of comparative religions at the University, to a dance performance, to museums, to the warriors. The warriors offered the best fodder for photos, but I found others as well.

xian1-w

 

xian2-w

 

xian4-w

 

xian3-w

 

xian11-w

 

xian10-w

 

xian12-w

 

xian13-w

 

xian17-w

 

xian15-w

 

xian16-w

 

xian6-w

 

xian7-w

 

xian8-w

 

xian9-w

 

 

xian14-w

 

xian18-w

 

xian19-w

 

xian20-w

 

xian21-w

 

 

 

xian22-w

 

xian23-w

 

xian24-w

 

xian25-w

 

xian26-w

 

xian27-w

 

xian28-w

 

xian29-w

 

xian30-w

 

xian31-w

 

xian32-w

 

xian33-w

 

xian34-w

 

xian35-w

 

xian36-w

 

xian37-w

 

xian38-w

 

xian39-w

 

xian40-w

 

xian41-w

 

xian42-w

 

xian43-w

 

xian44-w

 

xian47-w

 

xian48-w

 

xian49-w

 

xian50-w

 

WOW! Even just reliving this through photographs blows me away. What a treasure.

 

 

 

 

 

Beijing Through a Tattered Lens

Our latest big trip was to China. Mr. Tattered and I were both slightly nervous, given the tremendous language barrier and that it is a Communist country, and we weren’t sure how we would be received.

But, it was our 7th continent, and a biggie on our bucket list.

Truth be told, it was more like something to check off our list, than it was a place we were super excited about visiting. That made how much we enjoyed it all the more special. We both came home feeling like it had been our best trip EVER!

And now, how to show you the majesty of China in a few posts, is a challenge. I don’t want to bore you to death, but I DO want to show you what an incredible and diverse place it is.

I’ve decided that rather than break it down day by day, I’ll go with area by area (pretty much city, by city, although some of the photos will be from outlying areas rather than right in the city.)

By way of background, let me say we were welcomed by the people with pretty much open arms. In China, their elders are respected and well loved. We felt similarly elevated.   Even with language such an issue, we were encouraged to join in with locals as they went about their activities. Never did we feel like we were intruding or unwelcome. Our clumsy attempts at speaking a few words in their language were met with big smiles.

Often our group was photographed by Chinese tourists, and many times we were asked to be in selfies with them! I felt like a movie star. Children, especially, seemed drawn to my silver hair.

So, on to our experience in Beijing.

beijing1-w

Our first view of the Great Wall as we flew in.

beijing2-w

The local beer and wine were surprisingly good.

beijing3-w

On our first day there, before connecting with our group, we went out exploring on our own. I fell in love with the statues in the shopping area. A clothing shop had one of a tailor, a bakery had a baker out front…very fun.

beijing4-w

My biggest goal was to avoid using a squatie potty. Although I probably SHOULD have tried, I was afraid I’d pee all over my clothes! As it turned out, there were western style toilets almost everywhere.

beijing6-w

 

beijing5-w

 

beijing7-w

Watching one of the opera performers put on his makeup was interesting…

beijing8-w

 

beijing9-w

Who knew I’d fall in love with Fu Dogs (the statues that guard buildings.)

beijing10-w

 

beijing11-w

The air was much as we expected it would be…so sad. We wore our masks whenever we thought we’d be exerting ourselves.

 

beijing13-w

 

beijing12-w

 

beijing14-w

 

beijing15-w

 

beijing16-w

 

beijing17-w

 

beijing18-w

 

beijing19-w

 

beijing20-w

 

beijing21-w

 

beijing22-w

 

beijing23-w

 

 

 

beijing25-w

 

beijing24-w

Our tour took us to a less busy section of the Great Wall, a little more difficult to get to, and a higher entrance fee, but well worth it. We were very surprised to NOT see wall to wall people!

beijing26-w

 

beijing28-w

 

beijing27-w

 

beijing30-w

 

beijing31-w

 

beijing32-w

Off to a spectacular start!

 

St. Malo and Montmarin Through a Tattered Lens

St. Malo is the port you go to to see Mont St. Michel, but since we’d been there just a few weeks before, we opted to explore St. Malo itself, and the historic Chateau Du Montmarin.

First up was the Chateau, the perfect example of the crisis many old properties in France are going through. Maintaining them is grotesquely expensive, and the old families are struggling to hold onto their estates. There HAS to be an income stream, and they are hard to come by. Opening them up to the public is one way to add income.

This Chateau, although beautiful, was showing the beginning signs of decay which is characteristic of a struggling property. We met the grandson who was technically “in charge,” but having trouble getting buy in from the older generations on the changes that were going to be necessary for their survival. One of his ideas was to open the house up as a “bed and breakfast,” a move his parents and grandparents were resisting. We had a very interesting conversation with him, then were turned loose to explore the property.

stmalo1-w

 

stmalo2-w

 

stmalo3-w

 

stmalo4-w

 

stmalo5-w

 

stmalo6-w

 

stmalo7-w

 

stmalo8-w

 

stmalo9-w

 

stmalo10-w

 

From the Chateau we headed for St. Malo. After a brief tour, we were cut loose to explore on our own.

stmalo11-w

 

stmalo12-w

 

stmalo13-w

 

stmalo14-w

 

stmalo15-w

 

stmalo16-w

 

stmalo17-w

 

stmalo18-w

 

stmalo19-w

 

I had such a lovely afternoon. After walking all around town, I decided to stop at a creperie for a little snack before returning to the ship. I sat outside on the patio, sipping a glass of wine, filling out post cards and eating my crepe. It was heavenly!

La Maison des Megaliths de Carnac and St. Guston Through a Tattered Lens

Our next stop was the “Stonehenge” of France, an area where there are Stonehenge-like rocks that appear to be ceremonial in nature. It was so odd, because, unlike in England where they are in the middle of a vast field, in France, cottages were built right up to them. It was an amazing sight!

megalithe1-w

 

megalithe2-w

 

megalithe3-w

 

megalithe4-w

 

megalithe5-w

 

megalithe6-w

 

megalithe7-w

 

megalithe8-w

 

megalithe9-w

 

megalithe10-w

 

megalithe11-w

 

megalithe12-w

 

megalithe13-w

 

From there we took the coach to St. Guston, the historic village where Benjamin Franklin stayed when he went to France to attempt to get their aid for the Revolutionary War. Cute place!

megalithe14-w

 

megalithe15-w

 

megalithe16-w

 

megalithe17-w

 

megalithe18-w

This shop is available. Hmmm. My Favorite Things in France, and we’ll live in the Chateau at La Tour?

 

megalithe19-w

 

megalithe20-w

 

megalithe21-w

On to our next stop!

La Tour Carnet Chateau, Bordeaux – Through a Tattered Lens

Drove through Bordeaux enroute to La Tour Carnet Chateau/Winery. What’s not to love about a city that has so many red doors!?

bordeaux1-w

 

bordeaux2-w

 

bordeaux3-w

As we’ve driven through the countryside in France, I’ve been trying to decide which Chateau I’d like to purchase. This one will do the trick. Moving soon.

bordeaux6-w

 

bordeaux7-w

 

bordeaux8-w

 

bordeaux9-w

 

bordeaux10-w

 

bordeaux11-w

 

bordeaux12-w

 

bordeaux14-w

 

bordeaux13-w

 

bordeaux15-w

 

bordeaux16-w

 

bordeaux17-w

 

bordeaux18-w

 

bordeaux19-w

After we left the vineyard, we headed back to town.

bordeaux20-w

This shot was taken from the coach, and is a little blurry, as you can see. But I LOVE it anyway, so included it.

bordeaux21-w

Thanks for visiting Bordeaux with me!

 

St. Emilion Through a Tattered Lens

St. Emilion Through a Tattered Lens

Back in France again, this time docked in Bordeaux, a fabulous area for wineries. We had an overnight stay here, with a day trip each day, each with wine tasting at a different winery.

Our first day was spent in St. Emilion, a World Heritage site (we love those!) My camera was so very happy.

Because we were staying overnight, after dinner we went back on shore to wander through Bordeaux, where I fell in love with the Monument aux Girondins Fountain. Be still my heart!

st.emilion1-w

 

st.emilion2-w

 

st.emilion3-w

 

st.emilion4-w

 

st.emilion5-wjpg

 

st.emilion6-w

 

st.emilion7-w

 

st.emilion8-w

 

st.emilion9-w

 

st.emilion11-

 

st.emilion11-w

 

st.emilion12-w

 

st.emilion13-w

 

st.emilion14-w

 

st.emilion15-w

 

st.emilion16-w

 

st.emilion17-w

Notice anything different about this photo? For the very first time, 2 red wines, instead of a red and a white. I told you the trip to Porto was life-changing!

 

st.emilion18-w

Monument aux Girondins – lots of different views

st.emilion19-w

 

st.emilion20-w

 

st.emilion21-w

 

st.emilion22-w

 

st.emilion23-w

 

st.emilion24-w

I’m pretty much infatuated.

st.emilion25-w

A gorgeous end to an amazing day.

La Coruna and Bilbao Through a Tattered Lens

We were back in Spain for two more stops, La Coruna and Bilbao, and I’m going to combine the two for this post.

La Coruna had the most darling public square – lots of picture taking happening there!

Bilbao was not one of my favorite stops on the trip, and we had a lot of rain, but we  made the best of it.

Apparently the Guggenheim Museum is the top draw to the city. The architecture was really different but not really my favorite style. None the less, some interesting shots.

In spite of the challenges, I ended up with a feast for the eyes (at least for mine!) I hope you’ll agree!

bilbao1-w

 

bilbao2-w

 

bilbao3-w

 

bilbao4-w

 

bilbao5-w

 

bilbao6-w

 

bilbao7-w

 

bilbao8-w

 

bilbao9-w

 

bilbao10-w

 

bilbao11-w

 

bilbao12-w

 

bilbao13-w

 

bilbao14-w

 

bilbao15-w

 

bilbao16-w

 

bilbao17-w

 

bilbao18-w

 

bilbao19-w

 

bilbao20-w

 

bilbao24-w

 

bilbao23-w

 

bilbao21-w

 

bilbao22-w

 

%d bloggers like this: