Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Nethy Bridge

Nethy Bridge lies in the heart of Strathspey between Aviemore and Grantown in Scotland. Built in 1820, the bridge is a classic Telford design, is in the heart of the village and spans the lower reaches of the River Nethy a mile before it reaches the River Spey, one of Scotland's foremost salmon rivers. It had to be repaired after the August 1829 Moray (N.E. Scotland) Flood when part of it was washed away.

Originally called Abernethy, Nethy Bridge was renamed when the railways came this far north in the 1860's. The Great North of Scotland Railway already had a village called Abernethy on its line further south, so renamed this one Nethy Bridge to differentiate the two. The place name Abernethy is still frequently used around here - Abernethy Highland Games, Abernethy Forest etc.

Monday, March 29, 2010

Kuala Lumpur - A Different Perspective

North west of Kuala Lumpur city centre lies a unique rock ridge known as Klang Gates Quartz Ridge and from the summit you can obtain some beautiful and different views of the city skyline. The ridge is rather special geologically as it stretches for over 22 kilometers, is only about 200 meters wide and is made up almost purely of quartz. The walk although strenuous is not too difficult and the scramble to the summit can be done in 2 hours or less. As you climb there are panoramic views all around over the tropical jungle and the water reservoirs and you can also note ecosystem changes if you look carefully at the flora and fauna.

Sunday, March 28, 2010


The Lennon Wall is a wall in Prague, Czech Republic which was once a normal wall but since the 1980's has been filled with John Lennon inspired graffiti and pieces of lyrics from Beatles songs. 
In 1988, the wall was a source of irritation for the then communist regime of Gustav Husak. Young Czechswould write grievances on the wall and in a report of the time this led to a clash between hundreds of students and security police on the nearby Charles Bridge. The movement these students followed was described ironically as "Lennonism" and Czech authorities described these people variously as alcoholics, mentally deranged, sociopathic, and agents of Western capitalism.
The wall continuously undergoes change and the original portrait of Lennon is long lost under layers of new paint. Even when the wall was repainted by some authorities, on the second day it was again full of poems and flowers. Today, the wall represents a symbol of youth ideals such as love and peace.
The wall is owned by the Knights of the Maltese Cross, who allowed the graffiti to continue on the wall, and is located at Velkopřerovské náměstí (Grand Priory Square), Malá Strana.

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Island of Trees

Outside of Dubai there is vast area of desert and although generally barren there are sometimes little islands of vegetation and trees such as this on. These areas make a welcome shady area to rest and have a break or even camp overnight.

The Hidden Garden

During a walk I took many years ago through the backstreets of Florence, Italy I came across this gate in the wall leading into a private garden or orchard.

The Cursed Coffin Shop

When I die I am not worried how I go .... just take me to the f*%&#@ Coffin Shop!

Friday, March 19, 2010

Supervolcanic Lake

Lake Toba is the largest lake in South east Asia and is also the largest volcanic lake in the world, 100km long, 30km wide and 505 m at its deepest point. It is located in the northern part of Sumatra, Indonesia and was formed after a supervolcanic eruption 69,000 to 77,000 years ago. This eruption is believed to have been the largest eruption anywhere on Earth in the last 25 million years. According to some anthropologists and archeologists it had global consequences, killing most humans and creating a population bottleneck in Central Eastern Africa and India that affected the genetic inheritance of all humans today.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Sacre Coeur

The Basilica of the Sacred Heart of Jesus of Paris, commonly known as Sacré-Coeur Basilica is a Roman Catholic church and minor basilica, dedicated to theSacred Heart of Jesus, in Paris, France. A popular landmark, the basilica is located at the summit of the butte Montmartre, the highest point in the city.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Glass Pyramid in the Forest

The clever use of glass on the frontage of this office building in Houston makes it almost disappear into the trees. It is certainly encouraging to see architectural design blending modern building needs with the natural environment in this unique fashion.

The Pink Sage

Tucked away in Jalan Dang Wangi, Kuala Lumpur is a new style hawker food outlet called "The Pink Sage" which calls itself a diner and pantry. Breakfast here is special with apparently the best pancakes in town - the main star being the stack of three thick, fluffy pancakes served up with corn and boysenberry syrup. Or you can choose the artery-blocking Greasy Breakfast with corned beef, hash browns, beef bacon, eggs and tomatoes. The homemade burgers are what customers come back for and the American Classic Cheeseburger being voted one of the best. The restaurant has a simple but appealing design and the clever use of glass makes it spacious and airy. Check it out.

Thursday, March 04, 2010

Church of the Good Shepherd

Situated on the shores of Lake Tekapo, New Zealand is the Church of the Good Shepherd, which, in 1935, was the first church built in the Mackenzie Basin to the glory of God and as a memorial to the pioneers of the Mackenzie Country. The church at Lake Tekapo was designed by Christchurch architect R.S.D. Harman, based on sketches by a local artist, Esther Hope. The church is arguably one of the most photographed in New Zealand, and features an altar window that frames stunning views of the lake and mountains.
Lake Tekapo is the second-largest of three roughly parallel lakes running north–south along the northern edge of the Mackenzie Basin in the South Island of New Zealand (the others are Lake Pukaki and Lake Ohau). It covers an area of 83 square kilometres (32 sq mi), and is at an altitude of 700 metres (2,300 ft) above sea level.