Daily Prompt: Clouds I Have Seen

Today’s Daily Prompt ‘Clouds’ reminded me of this Joni Mitchell song from the 1960’s, one of my all-time favourites.

Bows and flows of  angel hair
And ice cream castles in the air
And feather canyons everywhere
I’ve looked at clouds that way

But now they only block the sun
They rain and snow on everyone
So many things I would have done
But clouds got in my way

I’ve looked at clouds from both sides now
From up and down, and still somehow
It’s cloud illusions I recall
I really don’t know clouds at all.

Here are some clouds I’ve been privileged to see on my travels around this beautiful world. I thought it might be fun to show some photos where the clouds, although quite prominent, weren’t the real focus for the shot; like this one taken through the window of our tour bus in Ecuador.

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Here’s the relaxing view from our hotel in Myrtle Beach SC.

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Mount Vesuvius looks down on the ruins of Pompeii.

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Instantly recognisable beneath the clouds, are the ancient ruins of Machu Picchu.

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The Sri Mariamman temple, rising up to the clouds, is the oldest Hindu temple in Singapore.

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This monster Toucan and his friend Mr. Parrot sit under a cloudy sky in a Costa Rica  waterside park.

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Here under the lowering clouds in Lakota lies the eerie scene of the Battle of the Little Bighorn,  commonly known as ”Custer’s Last Stand’.

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This shot of Mount Rushmore taken from the side, shows just the profile of George Washington, one of the four past presidents who are featured in this massive sculpture.

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Clouds hovered over La Paz in Bolivia, as we drove down from El Alto  airport at an altitude of almost 12,000 feet.

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Looking down over  Cape Town from Table Mountain,  3,558 feet above Table Bay.

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Clouds over a beach of soft white sand in Punta Cana. Absolute paradise on earth.

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I don’t know about you, but just looking at all these photos has given me itchy feet. Time to travel again.  I think  I’ll just go and tell  hubby to hurry up with the house renovations.

Hope you’re all having a great Thursday.

 

 

 

 

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Travel Theme: Friendship

“The only way to have a friend, is to be one.” ~ Ralph Waldo Emerson

This week’s Travel Theme’ invites us to celebrate ‘Friendship’ in all its different guises.

My mom is on my mind a lot this weekend. Here is a photo of her with Marge who was her best friend for many decades. Mom once told me that they were even closer than sisters and shared all their secrets. They were so comfortable in each others’ company and were really happy to grow old together.

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Here’s me with my best friend. Hubby and I are so rarely apart, that we’re like one another’s shadows.

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George and I? No, we’re just acquaintances. 🙂

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Here’s my son and his family making friends with Mickey and Minnie.

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I loved seeing this man and his best friend going for an early morning paddle together in Manuel Antonio.

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To see more friendship photos, visit Ailsa’s travel blog.

 

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Floral Friday Fotos: One Day Orchid

This ‘One Day Orchid’ was peeping out at me on a rainy day hike in Costa Rica to see the elusive Arenal Volcano. The volcano wasn’t visible through the thick mist, but the beautiful orchid was reward enough for my efforts and my soaking wet hair. I was so happy that the orchid had chosen that day to flower and that I was there to see it.

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Wishing you all a very happy weekend. I can’t believe it’s come around again so soon.

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Bench Series#18: A rough bench in Manuel Antonio

I shouldn’t really be sitting here on my computer, but I just had to post this pic for Jude’s Bench Series, whilst she’s still looking for ‘Benches on the beach’. I found this bench in the Manuel Antonio National Park, Costa Rica. We’d been for a hike through the park, and came down onto this deserted stretch of beach, which as you can see is rather wild and unkempt. Not a sunbathing type of beach, or an ice cream vendor’s paradise.

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Right, now that’s done, I must get back to my packing. It’s really difficult deciding which shoes to take and which to leave behind. Decisions, decisions.

 

 

Five Photos, Five stories #4: A Palm Tree Sunset

Elaine of  ‘I used to be indecisive’ blog, has nominated me to do the ‘5 Photos, 5 Stories’ challenge. Today I’m sharing a spectacular sunset sky viewed last year from our hotel in Manuel Antonio, Costa Rica.

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We had good news last night when we checked our status regarding the ‘Green Cards’. They were mailed yesterday! Looks like we’re going to be able to make it to South Africa for Mom’s 90th. Thanks for all your positive vibes sent my way. Those of you who’ve been crossing fingers, eyes and other body parts can now relax a little.  🙂

Today, I am nominating Nia of ‘PhotographyofNia’ blog to do the challenge, which is quite simply to “post a photo each day for five consecutive days and attach a story to the photo. It can be fiction or non-fiction, a poem or a short paragraph and each day nominate another blogger for the challenge”. Of course there’s no obligation to do the challenge; only if you would like to join in.

Cee’s Odd Ball Challenge: Does your chewing gum lose its flavour?

On our trip to Costa Rica last year, we stayed for a few nights at the Hotel San Bada in the beach resort of Manuel Antonio. In the grounds, we came upon this rather odd concrete sculpture. It looked in need of some finishing touches, and someone else had obviously been of the same opinion, because they’d stuck pink chewing gum in its nostrils.

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I think this qualifies for Cee’s Odd Ball Photo Challenge, don’t you? To join in the fun, just click on the badge below and submit your own ‘Odd Ball’ pics.

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If you don’t get my title, you’re probably too young to remember ‘The King of Skiffle’, Lonnie Donegan, who had a big hit on the 1950’s with this song. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=x6bFTVi0hHs&feature=kp, “Does your chewing gum lose its flavour on the bedpost overnight.”

Ailsa’s Travel Theme: Unexpected

On my travels around the world, I’ve often happened upon unexpected sights. These always add to the enjoyment and excitement of a trip, don’t you agree? Here are just a few for Ailsa’s Travel Theme this week.

A cashier in Walgreen's Pharmacy was wearing this amazing hat. She obligingly bent her head so I could take a pic.

A cashier in Walgreen’s Pharmacy was wearing this amazing hat. She obligingly bent her head so I could take a pic.

A rather dilapidated Discotheque in a Costa Rican village.

A rather dilapidated Discotheque in a Costa Rican village.

A beautifully decorated oxcart, complete with ox, unexpectedly appeared, when we were visiting a coffee farm in Costa Rica.

A beautifully decorated oxcart, complete with ox, unexpectedly appeared, when we were visiting a coffee farm in Costa Rica.

An unexpected Bull's-Eye at a resort in the Bahamas.

An unexpected Bull’s-Eye at a resort in the Bahamas.

Hubby got an unexpected visitor at the Kuranda Bird World in Cairns.

Hubby got an unexpected visitor at the Kuranda Bird World in Cairns.

A most unwelcome surprise when hubby went out to pack up the car, to leave our son's house in New Jersey,last Christmas.

A most unwelcome surprise when hubby went out to pack up the car, to leave our son’s house in New Jersey,last Christmas.

This satellite dish was a rather unexpected sight in Peru.

This satellite dish was a rather unexpected sight in Peru.

Last but not least, this Belizean woman's nail do was an unexpected sight on a plane ride from Lamanai to Belize City, I thought I'd just pop this one in especially for my friend Gunta. I know it will make her day. ;)

Last but not least, this Belizean woman’s nail do was an unexpected sight on a plane ride from Lamanai to Belize City, I thought I’d just pop this one in especially for my friend Gunta. I know it will make her day. 😉

I hope you’ve enjoyed my unexpected pics from around the world. To see more entries for Ailsa’s Travel Theme, just click here.

Thursday’s Windows #22: The Pink and Blue Church in Costa Rica.

Every Thursday, Dawn of ‘The Day After’ blog, hosts the  ‘Lingering Look at Windows’ challenge. As I posted about the beautiful topiary gardens in Zarcero a few days ago, I decided to show you the windows of the pretty little Iglesia de San Rafael church, which stands just above the Parque Francisco Alvarado. The outside of the church looks to be of brick construction, but is actually made from metal siding.

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It was built in 1895, and the stunningly beautiful interior, was painted by Misael Solis, a local, self-taught artist.

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The stately columns which line the inside of the church, are painted to look like marble.

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The many stained glass windows are so colourful and truly lovely.

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Unlike most European churches, these windows are quite plain, with no pictures on them, just gorgeous, luminous coloured glass.

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It was a sheer delight to wander around this exquisitely decorated place of worship.

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I hope you’ve enjoyed my Thursday’s windows. To see more entries, just pop over to Dawn’s blog.