31 March 2009


San Telmo / Buenos Aires, Argentina
Captured upon landing on this dirty sidewalk in the San Telmo neighborhood, this brown butterfly's wing pattern took looked exceptional beautiful.

30 March 2009

beautifully grotesque

Old Town / Warsaw, Poland
As opposed to a gargoyle which is a carved stone figure with a spout designed to convey water from a roof and away from the side of a building - this is a grotesque. In architectural terms, a grotesque is a sculpture (again, on the side of a building or roof line) that does not work as a waterspout and exists only for ornamental or artistic purposes. Odd, as I find her hardly grotesque - I think she's quite lovely.

29 March 2009

foot loose & fancy-free

Bulevardul Regina Maria / Bucharest, Romania
Go ahead - get yourself a pedicure in Bucharest. Your feet will appreciate it after walking the Old Town area where the architectural gems still standing justify the city's distinction as the "Paris of the East"..

28 March 2009

the coke side of life

Santa Marta, Colombia
Coca Cola - we all know it's not great for your health - but your life? For some years, there has been an ongoing Campaign to Stop Killer Coke with one of the main impetuses for the international campaign against Coke allegedly being the assassination and intimidation of members of the SINALTRAINAL union that several years ago had organized workers at Coke-controlled FEMSA bottling plants in Colombia, including this one in Santa Marta. Apparently, managers wanted to rid the plant of the union in order to boost their power over workers and their bottom line. Bang bang.

27 March 2009

spring is in the air

The Embankment / London, England
According to tradition, the birds and the bees is a metaphorical story sometimes told to children in an attempt to explain the mechanics and consequence of sexual intercourse through reference to easily observed natural events - such as these two frisky pigeons. Trust me - it got quite frantic with feathers a'flyin - these two were not playing leap frog.

26 March 2009

somewhere ..over the rainbow

Lake Wakatipu / Queenstown, New Zealand
Lake Wakatipu is New Zealand's longest lake and its third largest, lying at the southern end of the Southern Alps. The Remarkables (what an awesome name - and so fitting) mountain range lies along its southeastern edge. The chance of a rainbow only added to the natural beauty of the area.

25 March 2009

alkohole urgently needed

Jewish Quarter / Krakow, Poland
Work seems neverending - I need alkohole. Enough said.

24 March 2009


Biosphere 2 / Oracle, Arizona
Biosphere 2 is a 3.15-acre structure originally built to be an encapsulated, man-made, closed ecological system. At a size comparable to two and a half football fields, it was the largest fully-enclosed system ever created. The sealed nature of the structure allowed scientists to monitor the ever-changing chemistry of the air, water and soil contained within - and the impacts that human life have upon the ecosystem - and vice versa. The first mission lasted two years - the second a mere seven months. The site has recently been sold to a land developer but University of Arizona has made an eleventh hour rescue - for the short term.

23 March 2009

light on the horizon

Regents Park / London, England
Although it wasn't a particularly nice day, the opening in the clouds on the horizon presented itself nicely with the pathway and landscaping. Symmetry and balance is a reoccurring theme in the Avenue Gardens section of Regents Park and it all seemed to line up.

22 March 2009

capitalism gone wild

Bulevardul Unirii / Bucharest, Romania
Dominated by the colossal Palace of Parliament, the Bulevardul Unirii was designed with intentions of rivalling the Champs Elysees but is mostly interesting for its old fashioned Communist architecture. Unfortunately, the enormous billboards on the apartment blocks around the square cloak any meaningful view of the buildings - another testimony to the final victory of capitalism in the Romanian capital.

21 March 2009

the apostles twelve

Church of St. Peters and St. Pauls / Krakow, Poland
Located on Z. Grodska, the Church of Sts. Peter and Paul is a Baroque Jesuit church known best for the statues of the 12 disciples lining the fence at the front. The stone statues of the Apostles, looming larger than life-size, are replicas of the 18th century late Baroque originals. If you venture into the side courtyard, you can view the originals, now more protected from the wear and tear of the elements.

20 March 2009

eye for an eye

London Eye / London, England
The London Eye (also known as the Millennium Wheel) is the biggest ferris wheel in Europe, and has become the most popular paid tourist attraction in the United Kingdom, visited by over 3 million people a year. I don't get it - these things became the rage over here in Europe with the coming of the new millennium, thus the name. So far I've been on the one in Belfast, Northern Ireland.

19 March 2009

colors of the caribbean

Kaya P. L. Brion / Karlendijk, Bonaire
The brilliant colors of the Caribbean - from the architecture to the flora to the aquamarine waters - are always stunning.

18 March 2009

big things in little boxes

Autoridad Portuaria de Cartagena / Cartagena, Colombia
Or is it lots of little things in big boxes.. Lots and lots of shipping containers at the Port of Cartagena.

17 March 2009

zig then zag then zig

Bratislava Castle / Bratislava, Slovakia
The steps leading up to Bratislava Castle are reflective of my morning drive into the office; it seems every road is under construction with one lane or the other closed. I decided last night to map out an alternate way in - google maps told me it would be about 15-20 minutes longer than my normal route but I figured I'd otherwise be sitting in traffic anyways. No sooner had I ventured past the point of no return on my alternate route when I came face to face with - road closed - with no detour direction. At that point I zigged and zagged through small little villages in the Black Country only to end up right at the major congestion point of my original route.

16 March 2009

spring is in the air

Morningside Park / New York, New York
It's looking to be a beautiful day in Brum today - forecasted highs of 15c (approaching 60f). Amazingly, I have not seen a raindrop since I arrived last week which certainly helps the disposition.

15 March 2009

a glimmer of the southern sun

Franz Josef Glacier / Franz Josef, New Zealand
Franz Josef is a 12 km long glacier located on the West Coast of New Zealand's South Island. It is unique place - not only in the fact that it descends from the Southern Alps to less than 300 metres above sea level amidst the greenery and lushness of an otherwise temperate rainforest, being one of only three glaciers in the world to come so close to a coastline. It was an amazing AND grueling day of glacier climbing - truly breathtaking in the literal sense.

14 March 2009

a glimpse of krakow

Floriańska / Krakow, Poland
Everyday life in Krakow looking down Floriańska after having just passed through the Floriańska Gate and the old city walls with a view towards the Market Square in Old Town. The square is said to be the largest medieval square in the world - and it is quite impressive. The church at the end is Kościół Mariacki (St. Marys Basilica), a brick gothic church built in the 14th century which dominates the main square.

13 March 2009

liq u

Christopher Street / New York, New York
The subliminal messaging here is somewhat appropriate for its West Village location - an area with an abundance of sex shops like Toys in Babeland, Leatherman, The Pleasure Chest, The Pink Pussycat, Lips...

12 March 2009

vintage edinburgh

High Street / Edinburgh, Scotland
An interesting view of Edinburgh looking across from the "Royal Mile" with Waverly Rail Station in the foreground. The coloring reminds me of a vintage postcard. What strikes me are the monotone values of the architecture - leading me to assume that a locally quarried stone was used for the majority of the city's historic Georgian-era architecture.

11 March 2009

birmingham cityscape

Broad Street / Birmingham, England
I landed back in Brum in the pre-dawn darkness of a clear but brisk morning. A quick stop at the apartment for a shower and then "hi ho, hi ho - off to work I go'd".

10 March 2009

britain calling

Abingdon Street / London, England
Big Ben is calling - and I best heed his call. I'll be flying across the pond this evening; spending the next month working in the UK. It will be a very busy month but I'm hopeful that I'll get a bit of time to put my new Nikon D90 to work, as well.

09 March 2009

madonna monday

Kuekenstratt / Willemstad, Curaçao
Just like the real thing, this store in Willemstad was bold and brassy Madonna. I have no idea what commercial business is conducted here - there were silver mannequins in various stages of haute couture undress scattered across the front window on the second floor. Just like the real thing.

08 March 2009

the older I get - the better I look

Solomon R Guggenheim Museum / New York, New York
Yesterday was one of those amazing NYC teaser days - where you know it is technically still Winter yet it is 68 degrees outside. I took the opportunity (even though by the time I got out it had started to grey over) and spent the afternoon walking the city from the Upper East Side to the West Village. My first stop was the newly renovated Guggenheim Museum on 5th Avenue at E. 89th. Designed by Frank Lloyd Wright and one of the 20th century's most important architectural landmarks, the structure recently completed an extensive three year renovation. The Museum, which opened in 1959, will celebrate its 50th anniversary this year - and looks better than ever.

07 March 2009

phalaeopsis aplenty

Highway 3B / Orchid World, Barbados
Located between St. Johns Church and Gun Hill, Orchid World is an orchid lovers paradise. The well-landscaped, meandering paths lead you on a self guided tour past waterfalls, through a coral grotto and eventually through a number of orchid houses. However, most of the exotic orchids are on display in a very natural environment, growing along the path edges. The six acres site was a former chicken and pig farm so the soil is well conditioned for spectacular blooms year round. It was a good way to kill an hour or two before heading to the airport for home.

06 March 2009

c'est gen fou anglaise

Les Sans Coulette East / New York, New York
Olive trees. Apple trees. Sausage trees. Excusez-moi?? Yes, last night we had dinner with out of town friends at Les Sans Coulette (which basically translates to No Pants) in Midtown East where the house appetizer is .. a sausage tree. French bread, mustard, paté, pickles, a crudité consisting of an entire basket of fresh whole raw vegetables - and a sausage tree. By the time we finished the appetizer, there was little room for dinner. Nevertheless, I managed to consume a perfectly edible chicken cordon bleu. C'est la vie!

05 March 2009

setting summer sun

8th St NW @ I St NW / Washington, DC
Walking along the fringes of Chinatown before dinner one evening, I caught the last vestiges of sun shining against this office building facade. There's something about the evening sun setting on a warm clear night - or perhaps it's just summer. I look forward to its return.

04 March 2009

carpathian cuddliness

Peleş Castle / Sinaia, Romania
Northwest of the town of Sinaia, nestled in the Carpathian Mountains is a complex of three monuments: Peleş Castle, Pelişor Chateau and Foisor Hunting Chateau. The most important of these is Peleş Castle which was built between 1873 and 1883 on an existing medieval route linking Transylvania and Wallachia. The castle was declared a national museum in 1953; however, during the last years of the communist regime (between 1975-1990), Ceauşescu closed the entire area off to visitors. According to some, this was due to Ceausescu's health phobias; he subsequently declared the building infested with dangerous fungus Serpula lacrymans. Fortunately, after the December 1989 Revolution, Peleş Castle was re-opened for tourism and it is indeed worth a stop. For us though, the highlight was a baby lion some guy was holding in his arms on the castle grounds - very cuddly.

03 March 2009


Central Park West / New York, New York
From where I live, you can look west in the evening and view a skyline dotted with the sillouttes of water towers. These wooden towers are a distinctive mark upon the New York City landscape; a rustic, turn of the century nod to practicality. In the 1800's, New York City required that all buildings higher than six stories be equipped with a rooftop water tower. This was necessary to prevent the need for excessively high pressures at lower elevations, which could burst pipes. In more modern times, the towers have become a Manhattan icon with many now protected from demolition. In a city full of skyscrapers, they are a gentle reminder of a more simple time.

02 March 2009

shake those tail feathers

Plaza Pierino Gallo / Cartagena, Colombia
It's a snowy monday morning - which makes it hard to get out of bed, shake my tail feathers and get moving. It's going to be a busy week and having to deal with snow (which means idiot drivers) first thing does not help.

01 March 2009

it's all about the hair

Thompson Street / New York, New York
Hair fashion. Sometimes it works; many times it doesn't.