This week’s photo challenge is to turn the concrete and familiar into something new and mysterious.
I thought of this photo I’d taken last month. I was absolutely fascinated by the gnarled patterns in this big old tree trunk. I couldn’t help but wonder what had caused it to grow in such a way with lines and patterns etched into the wood.
Old tree trunk
P is for Perth, Western Australia, (sometimes referred to as Perthadise) where we’ve lived for the past eleven years. I don’t go into the city very often and when I do it’s usually a quick purposeful trip not for leisure and I don’t take my camera along or think to take many photos. Most of my photos of Perth have been taken from Kings Park and show the change in the city since we’ve moved here.
View of Perth in 2007, taken from Kings Park
View of Perth in 2012. The BHP Billiton building on the left had newly been built and development of Elizabeth Quay, in the foreground, had commenced
Perth at sunset (2012)
Perth with the Swan Bell Tower in the foreground to the left (2012)
Perth just after sunset (2012)
Australian flag and Swan Bell Tower in the background
Perth city view from Kings Park
Perth, taken from the newly finished Elizabeth Quay
Perth during the Night Noodle Markets
Panorama of Perth and Elizabeth Quay
View of Perth, the Swan river and Perth hills from Kings Park
Last year during the Perth International Arts Festival we went to see the Giants. Most of the streets in the CBD had been closed off and the people of Perth flocked there to watch this amazing show (I’ve used some of the photos in a previous photo challenge). I definitely had my camera with me that day!
People of Perth out to see The Giants
Parade during the Perth International Arts Festival 2015 (The Giants in the background)
Perth International Arts Festival with The Giants (the car to the left with the drummer sits on top of another car, to put the height in perspective)
Lots of people out to see The Giants in Perth
Perth International Arts Festival 2015
St George’s Terrace, Perth city
P is also for picnic, something the people of Perth love to do in this outdoor lifestyle.
K is for Kalahari, one of my favourite places. Even though the Kalahari is a large region, the part I refer to here is in Namibia, close to the border with Botswana. K is also for Kudu, an African antelope and Kameeldoring (the Camel Thorn Tree).
Windmill at sunset in the Kalahari with a storm brewing
Windmill at sunset in the Kalahari
Kudu bull and cow to the left. Not a great photo because it was taken from the back of a moving vehicle but we were very happy to see them.
K also stands for Kings Park and Botanical Garden, which is one of the world’s largest inner city parks. Situated on the bank of the Swan river it provides sweeping views of Perth, the Swan and Canning rivers and the Darling ranges (Perth hills).
View of Perth, the Swan river and Perth hills from Kings Park
Women’s Memorial in Kings Park
K is also for kangaroo and kalamata olives which I love and grow in our garden.
Kangaroo who was eyeing me suspiciously on my morning walk out to the boat ramp.
Some olives from our crop a few years ago
Home bottled kalamata olives
In this week’s photo challenge we’re asked to let the alphabet be our inspiration. I realised I have heaps of photos of writing, letters and/or signs in one form or another and got a bit carried away with my gallery. Please feel free to click on the images and read the captions.
A sign in recognition of the engineering feats of CY O’Connor who also designed and oversaw the construction of a 500km long pipeline from Perth to the eastern goldfields to ensure a water supply for the towns. Sadly he never witnessed the completion. He had been the subject of criticism and derision by people saying it would never work. It’s still in operation today. This sign is in New Zealand (South Island) where he worked before moving to Australia.
Words of encouragement at the Busselton Ironman triathlon (3.8km swim, 180km bike ride plus 42.2km run) which my husband has completed twice.
Names of Australian soldiers who fought gallantly during World War 2. Photo taken at the Australian War Memorial in Canberra.
Tropic of Capricorn sign in the Namib desert, Namibia.
Memorial for West Australian soldiers who have served in different wars. Kings Park, Perth.
Imperative to follow these instructions at Aus in Etosha National Park, Namibia.
Chapmans Peak Drive, Cape Town, South Africa
Cool crisp wine at a picnic at Boschendal wine farm (est. 1685) near Cape Town in South Africa.
Probably my husband’s favourite mug. Taken at Mount Trio bush camp, southwestern Australia.
An old stone bridge in Tasmania, Australia.
Finish of the Australian Three Peaks Race
Last running leg of the Australian Three Peaks Race which my husband and a friend did: up and back down Mount Wellington, completing 131km of running in three days (and 335 nautical miles of sailing).
Taken at Port Arthur, first penal colony in Australia.
Someone else had this sign up as encouragement for their dad at the finish line of the Two Oceans Marathon in Cape Town, South Africa. Taken while we were waiting for my husband to finish his 18th Two Oceans marathon.
Road train, a common sight on outback Australian roads. Taken at Minilya roadhouse, about 100km from Coral Bay in northwestern Australia.
Brandberg White Lady Lodge and bush camp, Namibia. Home of desert elephants and age old rock paintings.
“Lest We Forget”. Taken at the National ANZAC (Australia and New Zealand Army Corps) Centre in Albany, southwestern Australia. (The Anzacs departed from Albany in November 1914 and fought courageously at Gallipoli during 1915.)
Voyager Estate, southwestern Australia. It has special meaning for me as it was built in the Cape Dutch style, used extensively in South Africa by early Dutch and French immigrants. “Werf” means yard in Afrikaans.
The old York flour mill (in the wheatbelt east of Perth).
Kings Park & Botanic Garden overlooking the Swan river, Perth, Australia.
Kings Park & Botanic Garden, Perth, Australia.
Years ago when my husband and I hadn’t been dating for very long, he told me that he didn’t enjoy going to music concerts because sitting still for that length of time was impossible for him, having Restless Leg Syndrome. Bright-eyed me, on the other hand, found it very hard to imagine that someone couldn’t enjoy music concerts so I thought I’d give it a go anyway and bought us some tickets to see a classical music concert in the Endler Hall in Stellenbosch. Since we’d only very recently got engaged and he didn’t want to disappoint me Ironman went along not too enthusiastically but without too much protest. We settled down to enjoy the concert (well I planned on enjoying it) and about half way through I looked at my dear fiancé next to me to silently mouth to him: “See, this is fun”, only to find him fast asleep. Fail! Suffice to say that I was not impressed. (How does Restless Leg Syndrome make you sleepy anyway?) He was not the least bit fussed when he eventually woke up and realised what had happened though and all he (matter-of-factly) said was: “I told you I don’t enjoy going to music concerts”. Point taken. Lesson learnt.
I gave up on trying to instil some culture in my Ironman after that but fortunately it didn’t end up being the last concert we’ve been to and he’s managed to stay awake through a few over the years, not least of which was Les Misérables which, although at his own initiative, was still a feat of pure dogged tenacity of the same kind required to train for and finish an ultra-marathon or endurance event. (It didn’t go by unnoticed though, that this same dogged tenacity eluded him on the night of that first concert but I suppose we’re all guilty of persevering when we choose to.)
Much to his relief I’ve been to quite a few concerts without him, but we’ve also added some very memorable concerts to our (granted: relatively small) combined repertoire such as personal favourites Laurika Rauch and Katie Melua (the latter of whom performed in Perth about 6 months after we’d moved here and my husband heard about her concert and organised the tickets all without requiring any persuasion from me) but one that will stand out in my memory is Rodriguez in Kings Park last weekend. Ever since the documentary “Searching for Sugarman” was released and we’d gone to see it twice (and nobody fell asleep) and friends of ours had given my husband the CD of the soundtrack to the movie as a Christmas gift, it has become his preferred choice of music to listen to in the car nine times out of ten. The kids will get in the car, hear the music and complain: “Not that again” but it brings back so many childhood memories that he doesn’t relent and neither does he tire of it, so when we heard that Rodriguez was coming to town to perform in Kings Park my husband was quick to get us some tickets. It was an artist he likes and a venue where he could move around as much as he wanted to and the concert didn’t disappoint.
A beautiful afternoon in Kings Park waiting for the Rodriguez concert
Understanding Ironman’s restless leg predicament I volunteered to be dropped off early to save us some space on the grass and he returned later in time for Rodriguez’s gig. It was a perfect evening on the green in Kings Park with friends, music, a picnic and some wine. Knowing that Rodriguez is in his seventies and by no means a young man any more our expectations were adjusted accordingly and it was sufficient for us to see and hear him in person and the beautiful Kings Park added to the vibe. He was clearly much loved by the sell-out crowd at his final concert in Perth on this tour who didn’t want to let him go and kept asking for more and more music to which he cheekily replied at the end of the night: “Remember me as an ordinary…….. legend.” Yes Rodriguez, we will remember you.
Rodriguez in Kings Park 9 November 2014