A Photo a Week Challenge – Boats and Ships

Nancy Merrill Photography’s weekly challenge is all about craft that floats in water, boats, ships, tankers,etc.

Tower Bridge and HMS Belfast

Tower Bridge and HMS Belfast, London

Sagres (Brazil)

Tall Ship, Sagres from Brazil. Halifax harbour


Maid of the Mist

Maid of the Mist, Niagara Falls

Science Museum model ships

Boston Science museum, model ships

Venice, detail on a gondola

Gondola details, Venice


A Photo a Week : One

Nancy Merrill Photography asks us this week to show a photo with a single subject.. Here are a few I like from the archives.

One of Jack's?

On the old set of Coronation Street, Manchester.

Imperial War Museum North 002

Sculpture in the Imperial War Museum North, Manchester


Resident in the Trentham Monkey Forest, near Stoke-on-Trent, England, a sancturary for macaques. He looks a bit lonely.

A Word A Week – Companion

This week’s Word a Week challenge is Companion. What would we do without companions? We are social beings that live together in cities and towns and villages. We talk together, we hang out together. We spend time together. We may not be with someone else all the time but it’s nice to know there’s someone out there to connect with. It doesn’t even have to be another human. Animals and pets can be wonderful companions. They don’t judge, they listen, (we’re not sure they understand but I think animals can pick up on your mood regardless of their comprehension of what we’re saying).  Even animals need company. Very few animals or birds are singular, loners. That “Lone Wolf” is usually the exception to the rule. Here, then are some photos showing companionship from my archives.

A Manchester Terrior about to be put through his paces

A pair of very stern looking eagles. Nova Scotia Wildlife Park.

In the UK, Dogs are allowed in pubs. You see this commonly in smaller towns and country pubs like this one in Coniston, The Lake District

In another country pub in England, though these companions don’t seem to be enjoying each other’s company.

Kids hang out in packs.

And lastly, my own companion for life. In the Latin Quarter in Copenhagen a few years ago

A Word A Week – Recline

Relaxing on a Tall Ship prow

Adam Lambert, Queen’s Killer Queen!
Bell Centre, Montreal

 A Word A Week challenge

A Word a Week – Red

Sue’s weekly photo challenge, picking a random word, is Red this week. Red is one of my favourite colours. Here are a few photos from 2014 travels

Worsley Canal, Salford UK

Castleton, the Peak District, England

Beefeaters, Tower of London

Rue St. Paul, Old Montreal

Rue St. Catherine, nr. Place des Arts, Montreal

Brian May (Queen + Adam Lambert), Montreal

A Word A Week – Traditional

It’s that time of the week again when Sue at A Word in Your Ear posts a random word for a photo challenge. I can almost never pick just one photo and this is no different. This week’s challenge word is “Traditional”.

I’m lucky to live in a city with lots of history. We are a sea port and Halifax was founded as a military establishment originally. We have a citadel fort on a hill overlooking the city, the fourth structure on that spot since the city was founded in 1749 but it has never fired a gun in aggression or defence.

There is a tradition of firing the gun off at noon every day, though. You could set your watch by it! The fort also has a regiment of infantry foot, a reenactment group representing the original regiment stationed at the fort in 1869 – 1871. They are the 78th Highlanders and there is also a pipe and drum band for the 78th as well. If you visit the Citadel you can see the infantry drills and hear the music of the pipes and drums.

Another tradition that is still kept is a ceremony every summer in front of City Hall, on the spot that has long been a Grand Parade Square (though much smaller than it was when the city was founded). The 78th Highlanders are ceremonially given the Freedom of the City by proclamation of the Mayor. They march from the Citadel down the hill to the parade square for a public ceremony. That’s pretty interesting to watch, as well.

For a number of years, there were Highland Games held in Halifax though they haven’t been held for the last few years. Lack of funding, I fear. Highland Games are a very long standing tradition in Scotland and are also held other places around the world. In addition to the games themselves, you would see music, traditional folk dancing and see lots of booths and displays from the various clans. The town of Antigonish in Nova Scotia still does have a weekend long Highland Games festival and one of these years, I’m going to go.

Here are some photos of local Highland Games and the 78th Highlanders. There’s a video of them in drill formation here.  And there’s a video of one of the participants tossing a caber here. It’s quite something to see.

Freedom of the City for the 78th Highlanders

78th Highlander Drill Team

78th Highlander pipe and drum band

Highland Games – Hammer Toss

Getting ready to toss the caber, a long pole that has to be thrown end over end in a straight line

This is how long the caber is

Clan MacLeod with an impressive set of whiskers

Highland dancing competition

Happy – The word of the week

Place Jacques Cartier, Montreal

Sue’s weekly word challenge this week is Happy.

I’m happy. I hesitate to say it out loud sometimes because I fear I could jinx things. There’s also that old adage “Be careful what you wish for” that might come into play as well. But I am.

I like my job and it provides me the means to do some traveling and gives me financial stability and a pension.

I have a great family, both immediate and extended. We all get along and we all like each other as well as love each other. That’s not always that common. There’s never been any family feuds. That’s amazing! I’m really looking forward to my niece’s wedding in August.

I have great friends far and near. As one faraway friend said to me yesterday when we both confessed that we were not great in keeping in touch more often that we know our friendship doesn’t need daily feeding to be solid. So true.

I have a talented fiance who writes me a song every Christmas and draws awesome caricatures for my birthdays. We’re starting to put wedding plans together, too.

I really like where I get to live, near the ocean in a nice city that’s not too big and not too small.

This year’s Travel Happy includes a quick visit to Montreal to see my all time favourite band Queen and a road trip to New England in September.

A Word A Week Challenge – Orange

I don’t think I’ve participated in Sue’s challenges for a few weeks but this one was one I knew I could. I dug through the archives and came up with these pics. Orange you glad I did? (couldn’t help myself, there).  Mostly they are architecture with one or two others.

Touchdown. Outside St. Ives, Cornwall, UK

In the dairy at the Open Air Museum, Arnhem, The Netherlands

Roskilde, Denmark

Caernafon, Wales

Piazza Rotunda, Rome

A Word a Week challenge: Water

Sue’s weekly challenge this week is Water. Here are a few photos from my recent visit to Chatsworth House in England, nestled on 100 acres by the River Derwent

Chatsworth House, on the River Derwent

Medieval bridge crossing the Derwent, approaching Chatsworth

The Cascade, Chatsworth


A Word a Week Challenge – Frame

Framing a photograph is fairly important. It’s something that can give depth and perspective to a subject and makes it more interesting. No, you don’t frame every photo you take, but it’s something to keep your eye on. Traditional landscape framing tends to be capturing leaves and branches of trees to fill in over the top or sides of a photo, leading your eye into the rest of the picture.

National Assembly, Paris

Loch Caron, West Highlands, Scotland

Zebra enclosure, London Zoo

Other ideas include shooting through a window or door or other architectural feature, gap, or structure.

Rieveaulx Abbey, Yorkshire

Through an arch in Rome.

Louisbourg, Nova Scotia

But you can be creative too. Here the lights are framing the performer.  And in the next photo, the staircase does the job nicely.

Zak Wylde, Black Label Society

Fortnum and Mason, London

Sue’s Word a Week challenge is here for more great entries.