Looking at this photo, I can understand if you think it was probably taken the first time I visited London. But… no. This was my fourth time in the great city, after first having fallen for its charms 10 years ago on my first trip there. However, the novelty of London never seems to wear off for me (is anyone who doesn’t live there tired of London?!), as evidenced by this photo (and my super cheesy expression). Much to PJD’s chagrin (in many instances), I am also the first one to suggest posing in a typical tourist spot, and quickly hamming it up for the camera. These phone boxes certainly fit the bill (added bonus of Big Ben towering in the background!), and I dashed in there before PJD could protest. If nothing else, it makes travelling just that little more entertaining and fun, even he will admit that.
So what about you? What’s your tourist-style – eager to take a memorable photo home of you in a typical landmark, or happy to just stroll on by?! I’m keen to know if I am an odd one among travellers here, so let us know on the comments…
Photo by PJD, trying to look inconspicuous taking a photo of CIA looking highly conspicuous, London, United Kingdom, September 2012.
I’m very much in the midst of adjusting to a brand new job. This week, I’m working from my original home-town of Auckland. This evening, I made sure I could leave work on time, to meet my Mum for a walk in one of the city’s beautiful parks. This one is somewhat hidden, but it’s worth finding, especially on a spring evening like this one.
The interplay between light and dark, shadows and sunshine, and the silhouettes created, meant I just had to take a few pictures. The big open space in the middle of the city, with a canopy of fresh green leaves above our heads with the light shining through, was the perfect way to wind down from a busy day stuck in the CBD.
In an attempt to catch up, here’s the photo challenge we missed. Initially, then I saw “Mine”, I thought mining. Like this:
From: Merriam Webster Visual Dictionary online
And then I thought, hey, let’s google “Mine”. Which brought me to Taylor Swift’s song of that name.
Which then made me think of this clip, which is much better than the song, at the very least, it’s much funnier:
But none of this really refers to the challenge. And so, here is a view that’s mine (or, rather “ours”). This is at dusk, using my tripod that’s now out of storage at long last (leaving me to wonder why I ever put it there), and is the view from our balcony, across Wellington, towards the University. Home is ours, the view is ours, but the photo is mine.
Photos by PJD, this week, missing the feeling of hitting the “Publish” button.
The transition from living in Leiden, back to New Zealand, is going slowly but surely. We’re still to get hooked up to the internet, which means posting on foldedcranes is a little tricky these days. But we are looking forward to getting back into our daily writing routine soon, soon. Today though, here are a few photos captured on our second to last day in Leiden. The sun shone, the canals sparkled, and the sight of the windmill became more important in my mind, knowing that where I was heading, 30 hours flight away, there’d be no windmills – well, none like this one, at least.
Molen de Valk standing proudly over Leiden
The ambitious narrative structure is what first caught me with David Mitchell’s Cloud Atlas. As I was pulled deeper into each part of the novel’s Russian doll-style story, it was the characters and their complex, interwoven state which sucker-punched me, and I as hooked. It appealed to my nature as a reader — the novel wove the stories of the characters together in a clever way, and Mitchell’s skill at pastiche* is exploited to its fullest extent.
Nevertheless, Cloud Atlas divides people. The London Review of Books, for example, suggested that perhaps Mitchell’s novel lacked a solid core, and that the novel itself, by working to demonstrate how small the world was (with the interwoven nature of past, present and future) worked towards a very conservative world view. On the other hand, writing for the Guardian, A.S. Byatt could not have been more glowing in her praise of the novel.
Regardless of the mixed critical reception, I loved the novel. I still do.
When the intended adaptation to film was mentioned to me by CIA some time ago, I pushed the thought far out of my mind: “you cannot possibly turn this book into a film; it’ll be awful!”. A year later, in the middle of a Reykjavík living room, we talked about the extended trailer, which my friends had seen, but I had not…
As we walked across the square in front (to the side?) of the Royal Library of Belgium, I spotted this cosy reading spot. I liked how nonchalant the reader seemed to be, the pose one of studied relaxation.
Is she really as relaxed as she looked? The angle of her legs seems a little uncomfortable, the breeze a little cold. But there she remained, calm as you like. And there is no question, she is as solitary as one can be in the middle of a busy square in a busy city.
Photo by PJD, of a complete stranger, Brussels, August 2011. Apologies to the stranger for this opportunistic picture. I hope you don’t mind too much.
Photos by PJD, Koi Pond, Changi Airport, Singapore
It won’t be our garden for very much longer, and we will miss it so much. But these shots show how spectacular it can look at night-time.
The Hofje by Night.
The quiet of the garden belies the chaos of the packing inside the hofje
Eerily Awesome Atmosphere
Everything’s so green
Photos by PJD, September 2012. Captions by CIA. Late night packing still in progress. (Help?)
As PJD wrote yesterday, the pace of everyday life is fairly fast. So much so, that sometimes we (you, me, us) don’t really stop to catch those little moments (momentjes) in time which are hidden, not immediately apparent and which take a little more time to notice. A few weeks ago, I was reminded of this, as we slowed the pace of life down and meandered, somewhat aimlessly, enjoying the sunshine, through the cobbled streets of Amsterdam. It seemed like the whole city was out that day, enjoying the beautiful warmth, and we were just three friends, among many, our chatter and laughter melding into that around us of strangers, as the minutes, hours passed lazily by. Somewhere along the way, we caught a glimpse of this beautiful doorway out of the corner of our eyes. We’d already walked past, even though our pace was slow, yet it was so lovely in the dappled mid-afternoon light, that we just had to turn back and take another look. We all had smiles on our faces, as we walked away again. Little moments in time, spent with special people really are life’s simplest joys. As we look towards embarking on a new adventure together, it’s comforting to know that so many splendid memories will be carried with us, and as we go, remembering to relish the little moments in time, wherever we may be.
Photo by CIA, Amsterdam, August 2012.