Thursday, April 26, 2012

Today I bought a new camera.
So, soon I shall be blogging again.

It is a grogeous spring in Montana.
I wish I could somehow capture the smell of the spring air and share that with you!

Tuesday, April 17, 2012


I assume that most of you that visit this blog do so for the fotos; since I typically don't write much and because the fotos are the overall theme of the blog. I started this to share the images of my days and some bits of inspiration I find along my path.
I have become aware since I embarked my Europe adventure that more people are looking, following along.
That realization is a wee bit intimidating and fun by the same token. It is humbling to become aware that so many people are interested.

I have had many inquiries and worried e-mails since I have been absent.

Here is the scoop on the absence: Mike and I flew to Barcelona and I was promptly liberated of my handbag full of the comforts of home for me, in essence, my security blanket. My travel essentials. My ipad, camera, wallet, passport, journals, knitting, all sorts of things that kept me occupied.
The items that helped pass the time on busses, trains, planes, evenings in hostesl, hotels, guestrooms and ALL the images gathered from the trip.

This event happened Easter weekend, which is a huge holiday in Spain, so everything was shut down and we had to wait till Tuesday for the consulate to open so that I could get a passport to travel home.
Thankfully my friend, Randy, prompted me to scan all my documents and I promted Mike to do so as well, so that was covered. I had copies of everything and that made the experience much better.
That didn't alleviate the feeling that we were hostages in Barcelona, a city we hadn't intended to spend much, if any, time in.  Now we know it well. We may have canvased the entire thing! Well, we didn't visit the Olympic Park, but I think that is it! We are thoroughly informed of our completely inadequate Spanish skills!

I got a temp. passport and the trip home was happily uneventful.
I mourn the loss of the bag and its contents, but have even mostly moved past that now too.

I hadn't checked e-mails since we got home to Montana, and I got an opportunity to do so today.
There were two e-mails from the Barcelona Police, in spanish. I translated them using google AND, they have my bag and my passport!!! They didn't mention anything other than that.
So tonight I stay up late and call the police and the consulate and facilitate the return of my stolen bag!
Seems like a miracle to me!
Send out those good vibes that I get everything back! Some people think I am crazy to even HOPE, but I think HOPE is powerful! The fact that they even have my bag is amazing!

So standby for all the gorgeous Holland fotos! (Alas, there are no fotos of Barcelona, and it was a fotographers dream!)

Tuesday, April 3, 2012


Today we embark on a 4 day cycling adventure.
Cycling by day, sleeping on a barge by night.
I am unsure as to whether we will have internet on the barge.
I suppose we could seek it out in cafe's, or we could just drop off the radar for a few days.

Mike is booking our Spain flight as I type.
I think he would have preferred that I had done that in advance, but I was wanting spontaneity.
What if something better came along?

So, we're off!

Bikes of interest

These carts ( not sure what they are called) seem to be mostly for hauling children, they have benches in them. They are most usually wooden, brown, but this one is special! I love to see them filled with children and groceries!

This one below shows the basic construction without the vessel, you see a lot of them with crates in them. Obviously, this one is front of a cheese shop. (the cheese is fake! I checked because I wanted to see how heavy that much cheese would be).

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Canal Shots

Each side of the bridge.

We have been fascinated by these boats. They are so big and the canals small in comparison. Here was a particularly narrow channel.

This is difficult to really see by the foto, but this building is built on an apparent bend in the channel.

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More random art

It was getting dark when I found this guy coming from out of a cement abutment on a drawbridge tower.

This is a bridge upright near a fire station.

This is a little playground in a grassy meridian.

Some great building art.

Rembrandt statue in Rembrandt Square.

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Bike Man!

For a city with reportedly more bikes than people, we noted that there were very few bike shops for sales or repairs. So we were delighted to find this fun place tucked down a narrow alley.

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Amsterdam after dark

We wandered far and wide yesterday. We had a nice Thai dinner and were headed back to our temporary dwelling and must have been talking and taking in the sights and not paying attention, as we got WAY off track and had to backtrack probably a mile and head off in another direction! Ooops!
the night scenes were great! I must admit, I was really happy to take my shoes off at the end of the day!

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Monday, April 2, 2012


Walking down the road from the castle, these were some sights.
I didn't go into the castle, it took me awhile to navigate and settle in and get rid of my luggage, by then I didn't have tons of time for that kind of thing so I just wandered in awe.

The Grassmarket. This is a bustling hub of activity! There as several hostels and I thought I might stay in one, I had made a connection in Ireland to meet at the backpackers hostel, but I guess I am getting too old! Everyone was quite full and was hoisting some kind of electro-jam in their adjacent bar and I would have been rooming with at least 5 others. With a 6 am departure time, it just wasn't realistic!

So I am in a B&B in a quieter neighborhood. It is quite nice and there are some pubs down the street.

Blog Assistance

A hearty thank-you to my cousin, Meaghan, for making the blog fotos bigger each time I post.
Posting from the ipad through blogpress doesn't allow me to manipulate the fotos and a few other small things that I can normally do, so Meaghan has taken this on for me stateside and I really appreciate it.

Right now we are staying at this uber modern hotel in Amsterdam that has a wonderful space filled with mac computers where we are booking our flight to Barcelona for when we get out of the saddle after our 4 day bike/barge adventure. Look up the citizenM hotels! It has been quite the lodging experience!

We are not sure what we are up to today. Getting a late start heading out. But, Hey! we are on holiday!
The weather is waffling between sun and light clouds and we haven't stepped out to see how chilly it is, but the wind here, even if it it light, cuts to the bone. We found ourselves standing near buildings in the sunlight to rewarm yesterday. Some of those streets are like a canyon in the wind, our routes became dependant on the sunny sides of streets and which way the breeze was coming from!

Sunday, April 1, 2012


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Mike noticed a tractor pulling a trailer down the street and pointed it out to me. We were in an area under construction, so just assumed it was related, but the farm tractor was strange. Turns out the trailer was full of potatoes, they pulled it into a big square and were giving them away to a crowd of people.

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More Street Art

This fun sculpture was outside the aquatic center, when I came out a man was sitting on the outstretched leg talking on the phone.

These two images are from a fence and gate to the north-ish entrance to Volderpark.

some random fun street art.

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Greenhouses along the canal.


Barges full of bikes across from the greenhouse barges.

Street art

Art on bridges and buildings around Amsterdam.

Below is a river otter on a bridge.

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The artist for this sculpture, Jan Fabre, was inspired by the book,"Utopia" written in1516 by English statesman Thomas Moore. The book described an imaginary island with an ideal political system.
Fabre depicts himself riding a huge tortoise, looking out to sea from the island Utopia. by choosing a tortoise as his steed he is saying that the desired destination should be reached at a leisurely pace rather than in rush.

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