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Swanage Serenity

Still Waters at Swanage Pier

Swanage Serenity

When the bustle of activity around the dive centre on Swanage Pier has finished for the day, all that remains is the calm stillness of the waters and a wonderful feeling of accomplishment, now that Simon and I are fully qualified PADI Open Water Divers! This is my entry for this week’s Fotospeed Challenge. It’s from a four second long-exposure of the old pier struts, next to where the dive boats moor during the day. Despite the overcast skies I didn’t have enough filters to get a longer exposure! I will have to get some Lee Big Stoppers before our next dive there.

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Blue Monday and Weekly Photo Challenge: Happy Place – Messing About In Boats

Port of Newhaven Lighthouse

Blue Monday and Weekly Photo Challenge: Happy Place – Messing About On Boats

The WPC theme Happy Place is such a broad one for me that I thought I would keep everyone’s week brightened with a Happy-Place-A-Day! As Sally, who hosts Blue Monday, will agree, blue is definitely a happy colour, and I have plenty of it for you all to start the week off with.

“Nice? It’s the only thing,” said the Water Rat solemnly as he leant forward for his stroke. “Believe me, my young friend, there is nothing—absolute nothing—half so much worth doing as simply messing about in boats. Simply messing,” he went on dreamily: “messing—about—in—boats”

I’ve always loved the water, whether it be pond, lake, stream, river or the open sea! A few weeks ago Simon and I joined our friends for the day as they moved their boat, from its mooring at Newhaven, to the marina at Brighton. It was such a perfect day for it! Just enough wind, calm waters, blue skies and fluffy clouds, warm autumn sunshine and the tranquility that comes with switching off the motor and raising the sails. What truly made this a Happy Place for me was being able to spend quality time with Simon, to see him happy and rested!

Simon at the helmThere was so much photographic inspiration on our journey! I’m holding a few back but thought I’d share some views of the coastline and out to sea. I very nearly posted some of these for last week’s WPC Boundary theme. They’re accompanied by a simple haiku.

Horizon

Between sky and sea
The boundary line is set
At infinity

I thought that I’d also add a small gallery of photographs, taken on our day out, that I’ve shared over the last couple of weeks, to put them into context. I’ve loved all the comments that they’ve received! It’s clear from what you’ve all said that these scenes have brought you all a sense of peace and joy that we certainly enjoyed while out on the boat. Thank you Sarah and Bruce, it was an absolute treat 🙂

Follow the link below to find out more about Blue Monday!

Smiling Sally

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Travel Theme: Inviting

St Paul's Bay, Rhodes

Travel Theme: Inviting

The warm Mediterranean Sea is one of the most inviting things I know! I remember childhood holidays in Malta, swimming, exploring rock-pools and the delightful boat trips through the Blue Lagoon. The Greek Islands remind me of those holidays and I can never wait to get into the sea! This year we went to Rhodes after spending time in Kos. Simon had spent his childhood holidays here and these photos are of Saint Paul’s Bay next to the historic town of Lindos.

Panorama of St Pauls Bay

You can just see the Acropolis and Temple of Athena in the background. When Simon was there as a child there was no beach area on the far side and the main beach was much less built up without a proper pathway or the car park! It’s still very picturesque and thoroughly inviting. We also took a boat from nearby Pefkos around to the old town of Lindos and I made this video with my phone. Hope you like it!

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Travel Theme: Horizons

Horizons

Travel Theme: Horizons

A place, a landscape, a picture has many different tales to tell! I love the view from Kamari Beach, in Kos, across the Bay of Kefalos to the volcanic island, Nisyros. It’s a magical sight upon the horizon filled with myth and mystery. A view that has inspired this poem.

Upon The Horizon

The sun sets unseen
Dipping the eastern horizon
Into hues born of inks and oil
A short-lived canvas
A new artwork each night
Painted fresh before
The viewers’ eyes
Hear the ancient myths
Cry softly from the mist
Where upon the boundary
Of sea and sky
Rests the rock
Once hurled tumultuously
By the hand of Poseidon
To fell foul giants
That grumble still
Beneath the mountain
Spitting fury through
Volcanic vents and fumaroles
Tread softly lest
They awaken and arise
Wreathed in flame
And sulphurous smoke
The old gods watch
Through cats eyes
Sentinels of the streets
Wise and whiskered they wait
For the tremors of discontent
To raise alarm and call
Upon their ancient cohorts
Willing the master of waters
To rise with the waves
And rain down upon
The giant’s wrath
To quench his thirsts
For revenge and ruin
But not tonight for
All is calm and quiet
As night descends
Leaving naught but
Shadows and stars
At the very limit
Of our vision

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Monochrome Madness: Shoreline Of Sheppey

Shoreline of Sheppey

Monochrome Madness: Shoreline Of Sheppey

There are a few other moody landscapes alongside mine in Monochrome Madness: Week 23, hosted by the brilliant Leanne Cole and ably assisted by Laura Macky.

The storm clouds converging on the Isle of Sheppey, as we picnicked on the beach, a few weeks ago were a wonderful sight. If I’d had my wet weather gear I could have happily stayed there to watch the full show! I suspect I would have lost my ride though 😉

This second, colour image is from the same spot looking across the Medway and the Thames Estuary toward Southend. We were clearly able see the shoreline and the town itself just five minutes before the clouds devoured it from out sight. There’s nothing quite like a good Summer storm!

Summer Storm

Both of these images were processed in Lightroom with the Nik Software plugin, using Silver Efex Pro and Colour Efex Pro.

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Views From Mount Zini

Today is my partner, Simon’s, birthday. This is the first time he’s been away for his birthday so I left today’s activities up to him.

We’d spotted a place on the map, on the side of Mount Zini, that we felt would give us some great views across The Gulf of Kefalos.

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We stopped at several points on route to get photos of a few of our favourite views that we discovered last year.

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The volcanic island of Nisiros, which we’ll be visiting next Saturday, was an ethereal site, wreathed in mist.

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On the map the road leading around the mountain to Panaghia is marked as a “surfaced road”. More like a dirt track that possibly becomes a river in winter! Somehow our little Suzuki Alto made it through and the view really is incredible 🙂

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