Saturday, April 30, 2011

All Squared Up

This week's photohunt theme is square.

The Plaza Mayor in Madrid is my favorite city square in Spain.

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Put The Pedal To The Metal

This week's PhotoHunt theme is road.

The 2793 km drive from Perth to Adelaide includes traveling along the country's longest straight road. 

Saturday, April 9, 2011

An Australian Native

This week's PhotoHunt theme is trees.

The classic Australian tree would have to be the Eucalyptus. There are over 700 species of the tree and they can found across the entire continent. Eucalyptus trees are evergreens, but many species shed their bark--like the tree showcased this week. 

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Dancing With Mother Nature

On one of our long outback journeys we listened to Breath by Australian novelist Tim Winton. As we drove across the barren countryside with oases shimmering in the distance the  story transported us to a coastline thousands of kilometers away. The words made me hear the roar of the sea and feel the spray of the ocean water on my face. However, I was unable to visualize what Winton described as a ballet  featuring man and water. It wasn't graceful and eloquent movements that came to mind as I tried to picture the surfers in the story. Instead, my thoughts turned to Bondi Beach and its hoards of men and their boards. I reflected on an afternoon I spent watching the surfers and a choreographed dance is not how I would chose to describe the interaction between the agile athletes and mother nature. Instead, I would have to say it was an activity driven by testosterone. Each wave provided the surfers an opportunity to dominate the water. It was as though they wanted to conquer the the free flowing liquid in the same way that civilization has conquered the surrounding landscape by filling the horizon with concrete.
This past weekend I was able to walk the coast where Winton's story took place. Unlike Bondi, the land here remains in its natural state. The coast and the waters are wild, and there is no one attempting to conquer either. As we walked along the coastal trail, I was mesmerized by the crystal clear blue water. Each movement--up, down, forward and backward--blend into the contours of the earth, crashing then receding in a free flowing dance. Suddenly, as though a curtain, has been drawn open, a second element joins the scene. No, it is not humans, but several dolphins riding the surf. As I watch them swimming, jumping and riding the waves I reflect back to Tim Wilton's words. I am now able to visualize the surf's ballet where dolphins are the performers, water is the dance scape,  and the pounding surf is the orchestra.

Saturday, April 2, 2011

Tennis Anyone?

This week's PhotoHunt theme is closed.

Cook is an outback town that was built in 1917 to help support the Trans-Australian Railway from Adelaide to Perth. The small community included a tennis club, golf course and swimming pool for the local  residents. In 1997 when the railways were privatized the new owners decided they no longer needed a support town in the middle of the Nullarbor and the town was essentially closed down. Today, Cook is said to have a population of four, and is essentially a ghost town.