“I’m going to make everything around me beautiful - that will be my life.” — Elsie de Wolfe

Saturday, 27 August 2011

Same Place, Different Me . . .

"My future starts when I wake up every morning." - Miles Davis

I think that for those of us who moved away from the stomping grounds of our youth. Those local towns that formed the backdrop of our early years, are remembered in various ways. Some remember them with nostalgia, some with a relief at being away from them, and others with indifference.

Over the years I have felt all three. My family still live in the surrounding areas of what was once my local town, and although I visit often to see them, it has been years since I walked around the town centre. In fact the route I took last time I did, just reinforced my preconceptions of it being a little run down and somewhere I was glad I was away from.

Not so this week, when we needed to visit the old town.

In keeping with our new 'tourist days out' ethos, we took a walk around the scenic parts of the town centre and I can honestly say, I was totally wowed. Places I knew, but hadn't looked at for many years suddenly became clear in their splendour! - Especially the Guildhall . . .

It is an amazing building and these few photos don't do it full justice. Many years ago I actually worked in an office there and had the privilege to explore the place from the inside. I've searched for files in the basement and explored the corridors, but strangely it took me until now to truly appreciate and experience the magnificence of the place.

On with our walk. I was pleased to see that they had kept the old phone boxes. So many places have got rid of them these days. I think they are wonderful. They bought back memories of all of the times I stood in them ringing for a taxi.

On to the market square and the new water feature, something I hadn't seen before.

If it had been there in my day, I am sure my lunch breaks would have been spent sitting on the benches watching the water sparkle and listening to it splash!

Do you see the animal profile beginning to appear in this water jet?

Then something I had glimpsed from a distance, but really wanted to see close up. . .

The steel sculpture called Discovery commemorates the life of Francis Crick, (a local man and one of the scientists who discovered the double helix structure of DNA.)

I loved it! Seeing those figures soaring up into the blue sky was wonderful.

So, I came away feeling so glad that I had seen the old place with new eyes, and that like me the place had evolved. Keeping hold of the good old things that gave it structure - but adding a little sparkling water and those joyous figures playing up there in the clouds!

A question for you. - Do you still live in the place you grew up? Do you visit it now? How do you feel about your home town? Nostalgic? or are you glad to be away?

Thought of the week
"Until we can understand the assumptions in which we are drenched
we cannot know ourselves." - Adrienne Rich

So, what did you see this week? Please come and join us and leave a link to one of your blog posts at I Saw Sunday! Click HERE to visit - We will make you very welcome, I promise. :-)

I am linking this post to week 50 of I Saw Sunday

The place is Northampton and all images are by me - Susannah Bec.

Saturday, 20 August 2011

Walking Around the Lake in the Park . . .

"And gentle winds and waters near, make music to the lonely ear." - Byron

This week I felt that subtle chill to the air as night fell. Looking at the clock confirmed that darkness had arrived earlier, it seemed that summer was having her last dance and I could sense that autumn was beginning its slow walk across the land.

We have taken on board the need to take time to explore, to be visitors, sightseers in our daily activities. No more rushing to the supermarket and straight back home. We are making the effort to be mindful, to take the moments to explore.

Joe having a new camera has helped. As now I am not alone at looking at things through a lens!

We live equidistant between two towns and this week we needed to visit the other, quieter of the two.

I suggested that we take our camera's with us and take a walk around the lake in the park there.

So this is what we did, and this is what we saw. . .

Ducks had left behind soft downy feathers. . .

As we walked, despite the sunshine - I saw my first glimpse of autumn. . .

"Shadows shifting. Soft grass splashed with sunlight. Shimmering leaves
throw down their yellow gold beauty like blessings bestowed.

The green velvet ground at my feet is laden with jewels."

"You never know when you're making a memory."
- Rickie Lee Jones

In the field adjoining we came across these wonderful creatures! - Three Alpacas.

Below: See the funky hairdo! and the 'heart' on his throat?

This handsome fellow stood and posed for a photo after I informed him
that he would be featured on my post for this weeks I Sunday Sunday. :-)

A walk around the lake in the park, but no photos of the lake?
There were too many other things seen on the way round, so the rest of the walk will have to wait until mid week. Please pop in if you are out and about in cyberspace as I'd love to share the rest of the photos with you. :-)

I hope you all had a wonderful week!

If you haven't already seen it, why not pop in and see my mid week post
where I posted more narrowboat photos as promised. . .
Tourist day out continued - Boats, Boats, Boats

Thought of the week

“There are no old roads to new directions.” - anon

So, what did you see this week? Please come and join us and leave a link to one of your blog posts at I Saw Sunday! Click HERE to visit - We will make you very welcome, I promise. :-)

I am linking this post to week 49 of I Saw Sunday

All images and words - Susannah Bec

Wednesday, 17 August 2011

Tourist Day Out Continued - Boats, Boats, Boats

"Thoughts come clearly while one walks." - Thomas Mann

In my last post I promised you more pictures!
So without further ado, I give you boats, boats, boats!

This is the covered bridge (below) I mentioned in the previous post.
We had to cross it to visit the museum and the hologram exhibition.

This boat (below) was really nice, and had a contempory feel with chrome fittings instead of the usual brass, though it was still sporting the traditional 'roses and castles' painting on the doors.

Before turning back and going into the town, we walked a little way further,
away from the paved walkways and onto the grass bordered track. . .

If you missed the first part of this day out, scroll back to the previous post. Or you can click -
Boats, Bridges and Beautiful Light - to read it. :-)

**I have just added a few links to posts of mine
on a now defunct blog, on which I used to document our days out in the campervan that Joe converted from an old minibus. These posts below feature more narrowboats and of course lots of photos! . . .

This one has lots of lovely photos of a pretty village and lots more narrowboats. . .

Another trip with pictures, and my thoughts about what in must be like to live on the water. . .

Third is Banburys annual canal day celebration 2009. Lots of photos here. . .

I hope you enjoy the photos!

I have just added a link in my sidebar to the blog mentioned above - just in case any of you fancy joining us on one of the other days out I documented. A virtual mini break awaits you. - Susannah x

Sunday, 14 August 2011

Boats, Bridges and Beautiful Light . . .

"The light through the trees is beautiful.
Low golden sun touching the remnants of this dark day.
Oozing from the edges of leaves and falling into liquid amber pools,
its soft fingers spread honey on the cold hard ground. "
Thursday - my name is zing

Earlier this week, Joe and I decided that instead of just nipping into our nearest town (Banbury) for the weekly shopping, we would be tourists for a couple of hours. So we parked down by the canal. . .

Notice the flowers? Banbury always has the most lovely flowers decorating the town every year, with different colour schemes. It looks like this year it is red and yellow.

There were lots of boats moored on the water, plus the holiday makers chugging though on their boats. We walked along as far as the bridge. . .

Then up the steps! I stopped to snap a photo of the lines and shadows.

And on to the bridge. We are heading in the direction of the big Q so that we can cut through the shopping centre.

From the bridge, looking back in the other direction.

And down the other side. . .
The sun is out and lots of people are milling about, both on the water and off.

A last look at the boats.

And then into the shopping centre.
Where I am once again taken with the light and shadow.

And I loved being able to look up and see the sky and clouds!

While we were inside the centre, we visited the museum which has a wonderful exhibition of Holograms on at the moment. They were really stunning! as was the view from the glass sided covered walkway over the canal we walked across to reach the museum.

"One way to get the most out of life is to look upon it as an adventure." - William Feather

Then back out the other side of the shopping centre and into the sunshine.

The fancy brickwork on this building caught my eye.

Strolling through the side streets. . .

Until the weather began to change and the dark clouds rolled in!

I love these, they hang over side alleyways and I think denote what shops used to operate there.
They are very beautiful, even when backed by that angry looking sky!

There were lots more photos of the day, but I didn't want to make this blog post too long! So I may post more photos mid week.

By the way, did you see the photos of the 'Tree People' that I post earlier this week?
If not you can see them by clicking HERE

I'd like to thank all those that wished me a happy birthday for yesterday. I had a lovely day surrounded by family, good food and much laughter. Thanks again for your good wishes. - Susannah x

Thought of the week
"Lighthouses don’t go running all over an island looking
for boats to save; they just stand there shining."
- A Lamott

So, what did you see this week? Please come and join us and leave a link to one of your blog posts at I Saw Sunday! Click HERE to visit - We will make you very welcome, I promise. :-)

I am linking this post to week 48 of I Saw Sunday

All images and words - Susannah Bec


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