Parallel Vapour Trails red Arrows Blackpool airshow aeroplanes

Those Magnificent Men in their Flying Machines – at Blackpool Air Show

Blackpool Air Show Blackpool Air Show is held every year but not always in such good weather conditions. This August day was perfect: blue sky, warm, no wind. We’d never been to an air show before, so had no idea what lenses to take, if a tripod would be needed, what shutter speed to use…… ………but just trusted to luck.  After all, when these things are zooming towards you at considerable speed, there isn’t much time to ponder on what you read in a magazine some time ago about how to take photographs at an air show. We got there early enough to bag a good space on the steps on the seafront promenade, where we sat back to enjoy the show along with many thousands of others. These magnificent men( AND WOMEN) in their flying machines certainly wowed the crowd.         After a good couple of hours of entertainment The Red Arrows left us with the most beautiful vapour trails over the sea:   To find out what bloggers from around the world saw when they looked up, why not head over to: Cee’s Fun Foto Challenge: Looking Up at Things  

Sagrada Familia: Colours of Light

Cee’s Fun Foto Challenge this week is to post images showing Big and Small. I’ve seldom felt as small as when I visited Barcelona’s Sagrada Familia. It is the biggest building I’ve ever been inside and what an experience it was. I was in Wonderland, The Hall of the Mountain King, The Greatest Wonder of the Modern World.  I was in the basilica that the Catalan architect Antoni Gaudi designed for his city and which has been under construction since 1883. Rumour has it that it may be finished in the mid-2020’s. Whilst my tourist snapshots don’t do it justice at all, they do serve to remind me of its beauty and its grandeur. It is quite simply breath-taking. (If you want to see some professional pictures of it they are here on the Sagrada Familia Website. Or better still book yourself a trip to Barcelona and enjoy it all first hand. Travel Tip: skip breakfast, get there early and have a pre-booked timed-entry ticket. Once you’re inside you can stay as long as you like). By getting there early and being in no hurry to leave, we were able to follow the light as the sun shone at different angles, highlighting […]

Miró, Miró on the Roof

I was planning a post with the title “Miró, Miró on the Wall”  to show some of the fabulous tapestries and wall-hangings we saw at the  Fundació Joan Miró  last year in Barcelona. But since this is an  OddBall post, I’ve chosen these instead. After a good look around the spacious museum/gallery we went up on the roof where we found these delights. I think my favourite is the lady with red legs and a tap on her head. Because of her headgear and her pose, I like to call her The Tap-Dancer.  Her “official” name is Jeune Fille s’Évadant which translates as Girl Escaping . (I dont suppose Tap-dancer would be a pun in translation)     Anyone have any ideas for a name for this one ?……….   or for these ?………     If we go back there again on our next trip to Barcelona I must find out all their proper names. ***STOP PRESS*** Thank you Charles at for a name for the second picture. Charles suggests Clown with a Heart. I like it! Charles has some great posts on his blog.  Click here to visit.     To see more OddBall posts for Cee’s Challenge from bloggers around the world, please […]

A Very Musical Chair

This Very Musical Chair was, and probably still is, in the oldest surviving Music Hall IN THE WORLD.     I discovered  Glasgow’s Britannia Panopticon Music Hall a couple of years before I left Glasgow. It is being painstakingly restored by enthusiasts who also put on regular Saturday afternoon shows in true Music Hall tradition to raise funds. They provide a unique entertainment experience.   The history of the Panopticon makes fascinating reading. If you have 5 minutes to spare then I would recommend clicking on this link. But if you are very,very busy, then here’s a short extract: …..This was an audience that had for generations cut its teeth on the barbarous practice of public punishments and executions, which in Glasgow had been the only form of legitimate entertainment from the 1550s to the 1750s. Consequently the Glasgow audience evolved over the generations into a merciless mob who literally left no turn un-stoned. In Britannia Music Hall the turns (acts) could find themselves pelted with shipyard rivets, nails, rancid turnips and horse manure, whilst urine might rain down on them from the balcony. However, if the turn appealed to the Britannia’s audience, they would be rewarded with thunderous applause and […]

The Dragon’s Rooftop

The Dragon’s Rooftop is unique…and amazing …and mythical…and beautiful…..and FUN…so what could be better for Cee’s Fun Foto Challenge this week on the topic of ROOFS . Back to Barcelona today (only on my laptop, not in person unfortunately) for some pictures from our visit to Casa Batllo. The house was designed by Catalan architect Antoni Gaudi and built between 1904 and 1906.  To describe it as a “house” doesn’t do it justice, although it was at one time a family home. It is more usually described as “an architectural masterpiece” or “more than just a building. more of a modern artistic myth“. To start on the ground floor and take your time (along with all the other tourists) making your way up to the top floor and onto the roof  is a magical experience. I have loads more photographs for another blog or two showing the interior, but for now here’s some of the Roof Terrace with its mythical Chimneys (girded by the backbone of the famous dragon, slain by Saint Jordi (St. George)             And just to prove that I had the full tourist experience, here I am complete with headphones for translated commentary:   […]

Going Green in Barca

Going Green in Barca I think these legs are probably green enough for Cee’s Fun Foto Challenge:Light Greens. Let me know if you don’t think they are and I’ll just have to nip back to Barcelona to see if I can find anything greener……..YES PLEASE!!     Why not click on the link and see what other green delights are to be found……

The Colour Purple

There’s a challenge for every photo and a photo for every challenge. (Well, almost all of the time) When I saw this week’s Fun Foto Challenge from Cee:Purples, I remembered these photos of Hotspur House in Manchester’s Northern Quarter. Manchester’s most characterful, independent district is a jumbled network of streets to one side of Piccadilly Gardens – once home to busy textiles warehouses and even the occasional umbrella factory. Now, the red brick buildings with their New York-style fire escapes are regularly used in film sets, and the streets are bursting with independent cafés, shops, bars, and cultural hotspots. The Northern Quarter has become a destination in its own right, with the laid-back, bohemian vibe during the day transforming at night into teeming pavements of people in search of good food, craft beer, pop-up events and live music. – Creative Tourist      

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