Yoda

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I can’t believe it has been almost a year since I published a new blog post! Been spending too much time on facebook… Here is a brand new image from this weekend. I was out at the end of Crowe’s Pasture, looking for a snowy owl that I have photographed there a few times. No owl this time, but I saw some fascinating forms in the sand left by the retreating tide. After downloading and sorting the images, I chose one to work on. I loved the flowing pattern, but decided to have some fun in Photoshop. I took the image, copied and flipped it, and attached it to itself. Then I added contrast and darkened the edges. I stepped away to get some tea, and as I approached the computer screen, I saw the total image instead of the elements that I had been concentrating on. I saw a face of sorts, and remembered the sand worms from Frank Herbert’s sci-fi novels.

After posting the photograph on facebook, a friend commented that it looked like Yoda from Star Wars. She was right!

TROPICAL GLASS

Wildly colorful glass block window
Wildly colorful glass block window

Diane and I are back from two weeks in Puerto Rico.  We stayed at Palmas Del Mar, a resort in Humacao, on the eastern, Caribbean side of the island.  We went on a side-trip to the island of Culebra.  We had reservations at Mamacita’s Guest House, a short walk from the ferry terminal. When checking in, I saw this glass block window and was amazed at the colors!  When I stepped outside, I saw that the window was on a narrow alley painted in bright, tropical hues.

Diane relaxing at the outdoor cafe at Mamacita's Cafe.
Diane relaxing at the outdoor cafe at Mamacita’s Cafe.

The alley led to the rear of Mamacita’s, where there was the bar to one side, and a fine waterfront restaunant on the other. You can see all the colors that ended up showing through the distortion of the glass blocks. Another feature- a large iguana considered the deck area his own.

Bayonne, Saint Jean Pied de Port, Pau

During the middle portion of our trip to France, Diane and I travelled by train to southwest France. Our first stop was in Bayonne. We walked the old part of town, where one section of the outer walls was built by the Romans, visited the gothic cathedral and the Basque museum, before having dinner along the riverfront.

An interior view of the  Cathedral de Sainte-Marie in Bayonne.
An interior view of the Cathedral de Sainte-Marie in Bayonne.
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There are many choices for riverfront dining along the Nive River in Bayonne.

The next day another train took us up into the Pyrenees Mountains to the town of Saint Jean Pied de Port. This is where many people start the El Camino de Santiago, also called the way of Saint James. It is an ancient pilgrimage route that crosses 500 miles of northern Spain. Diane wanted to check it out, as she wants to hike it next year. There are many things to see in town, including the Bishop’s Prison Museum, a Roman bridge, and the citadel on the hill, to name a few. We even found a potter’s studio to visit. Lunch by the river, followed by a shuttle van ride to our next stop.

A pilgrim preparing to start the El Camino takes a photograph from the Citadel overlooking Saint Jean Pied de Port.  The scallop shell on his pack is the traditional sign of a pilgrim.
A pilgrim preparing to start the El Camino takes a photograph from the Citadel overlooking Saint Jean Pied de Port. The scallop shell on his pack is the traditional sign of a pilgrim.
A potter's studio in Saint Jean Pied de Port.
A potter’s studio in Saint Jean Pied de Port.

We spent the next two nights in Pau. The walled old city overlooks the nearby Pyrenees. The chateau where Henry IV was born is the prime place to visit, parts of which go back to Roman times. Plenty of places to shop and dine.

Tapestries and carved wood decorate a royal bedroom in the Château de Pau.
Tapestries and carved wood decorate a royal bedroom in the Château de Pau.

FRANCE!

This fall, Diane and I spent ten days in France.  We were visiting our friends Richard and Robert, who live in Paris.  After a few days in the city, we went on a train trip with them to southwest France- Basque territory in the Pyrenees.  We spent a night in Bayonne, took another train up into the mountains to the small town of Saint Jean-Pied-de-Port, then a van ride to Pau, where we spent two nights.  Another train ride brought us back to Paris for a few more nights.

Paris

During the days in Paris, we spent a lot of time walking, and on two of the days, I explored on my own.  Not speaking french was challenging, but not really that bad.  With maps and Metro tickets I got to see much of the central city.

Flower-filled planters cover most of the front steps of the Church of St. Mary Magdalene in Paris.
Flower-filled planters cover most of the front steps of the Church of St. Mary Magdalene in Paris.
Autumn leaves fill the water of the Medici Fountain, next to the Luxembourg Palace in Paris.
Autumn leaves fill the water of the Medici Fountain, next to the Luxembourg Palace in Paris.
One of the four statues topping pillars at the ends of the Pont Alexandre III.
One of the four statues topping pillars at the ends of the Pont Alexandre III.

WILD TURKEY

While I was at my son’s house this weekend, the neighborhood turkeys stopped by.  Not shy at all.  As I photographed one of them, it became agressive, loud, started pecking at the lens shade of my telephoto lens.  I backed up slowly, and reached in my truck for a piece of pipe.  No- I didn’t hit it, I am a nature photographer.  But it did take the hint and rejoined the rest.  This image is of one of the others, and as you can see it wasn’t bothered by the action going on around it.

Resting up before the Thanksgiving Dash!

FOXES!

A fox kit nuzzles up to its mother.

One of my father’s neighbors called to let me know that a family of foxes was living under his toolshed. After a  couple of days of watching and slowly building trust with the foxes, I was able to see that there are five kits.  These pictures were taken from an open kichen window.

FLORIDA WILDLIFE

Just back from a trip to Florida and a few days in Puerto Rico.  The tropical warmth and sunny weather were fantastic.  While in southern Florida for six days, I was amazed at the ease of photographing wildlife.  Before I reached the highway when leaving the airport in Fort Myers, I had already seen turkey vultures and two deer.  And it just got better.  From the man-made pond in our friends’ back yard, to the Venice waterfront, Ding Darling wildlife refuge and the beach at Sanibel, and a couple of state parks, the images of birds, reptiles, insects and dolphins just kept coming.  It makes working on wildlife photography here on Cape Cod feel very frustrating!An adult brown pelican works to swallow a fish.

 

To see the rest of my Florida wildlife photos, click here-  http://preuphoto.photoshelter.com/gallery/Florida-Wildlife/G0000HTTvDZNG4jk

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