Transylvania, legends, royalty and that Irish connection.

Adventure, Europe, history, Motorbikes, photography, Romania, travel

Bran Castle

Battling the crowds on the narrow road to Bran

Past Dracula signs

One thinks how did Irishman Bram Stoker imagine this place and create the legend Dracula

The narrow roads are thick with tourists inspired by the legend

The citadel at Sighisoara also claiming it’s part of the legend

Any where that Vlad the Impaler, (who Dracula is based on) stayed dines out on the legend

But the legend disguises the the true beauty of Transylvania

View from Bran Castle

The amazing country side of open pasture

And the old forests around Brasov

And some wonderful biking roads

Near Brasov

The Transfagarsan

And memorials that tell the tale of the fight for Romanian independendance. Achieved in 1918

Though the Habsburg empire still had influence in Romania till the Soviets exiled the remaining Duke in 1947.

Romania is a beautiful and varied country and I’ve still a week here

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A Day in Venice

Europe, Italy, travel

Its a three hour easy ride from Cortina d’Ampezzo south to Venezia.

Old Venezia with its labyrinth of walkways and waterways

Hot and humid at the end of a hot Europe July

And grand canals

Of course St Marks Square is the main attraction

But achitectural splendor is around every twist of a canal

Currently the Biennale is on which provides extra cultural stimulation

It was a hot and stricky day in busy Venice but well worth the visit.

Little discoveries in La Vendee, France

Adventure, art, Europe, France, history, Motorbikes, photography, travel

In travelling it’s the little discoveriesThe unexpected placesNot spectacular or plannedBut found by a sense of inquiery

These working windmills were one of these in La Vendee .Windmills were common in France but were destroyed during the Revolution as they sat on strategic hilltops

The grain ground here is organic and in the woodfired oven the perfect bread is baked.Pouzauges is a quaint village and its worth going up past the old castle and its panoramic view

To the mill

Even a donkey knows it’s a place to visit.My second was in MonoucantAnd its annual photographic exhibition each summer.

Primarily an outdoors exhibition with amazing images

I love the surprise these little discoveries while on the road

The Ancient Town of Rye

Adventure, England, Motorbikes, photography, travel

Rye which is a seaside town on the East Sussex, Kent borderA town with a long history of pirates, fishing, trade, and defence of the realmThe towns has beautiful tudor building with the top of the hill dominate by the church and old castleThe view from the church tower over looks the old castle and the Rother River that leads down to Rye HarbourThe hinterland offers scenic ridingAnd winneriesBreweriesAnd traditional pubs and beer gardensMaking sure you dont get thirsty or hungry.

And of course the ultimate.

A Moto Guzzi in the shed

Praia de Augas Santas, Galicia, Spain

Adventure, Europe, Personal, photography, Spain, travel

As I plan the next adventure

My head fills with images

Thoughts of last year

Special places

Unique in nature

That have left a lasting impression on me

One of nature’s sculptures

Carved by the wind and waves of the Bay of Biscay

The Praia de Augas Santas

The Bay of Cathedrals

Is certainly a natural masterpiece

A place of spiritual beauty and wonder.

Flag etiquette and Respect on Australia Day

Adventure, Australia, history, Sailing, Uncategorized, Victoria

Flags at Hobsons Bay Yacht Club

Flags are the traditional way of ship comminication

The flags tell a message of respect.

The club burgee at top of the mast says the ship is from Hobsons Bay Yacht Club

The Australian flag from the back stay identifies an Australian ship

The courtesy flag is a sign of respect to the country you are in.

The flying of the aboriginal flag from the cross trees says we are in aboriginal country.

Three flags can give a simple but true message.

Heavenly Goddess

Adventure, art, Australia, photography, Poetry, travel, Victoria
Taoist temple and Heavenly Goddess Statue, Footscray, Victoria, Australia

The heavenly goddess

Rising from the remnants of industrial decay

An old abattoir

Now parkland that were once holding pens for slaughter

Waterways once polluted now revived

Renewal

I had a teacher once

A boat builder

As I made mistakes when building a my clinker row boat

He would say

There is nothing that cant be fixed

Maybe the Heavenly Goddess is a symbol of renewal

That there is nothing that cant be fixed

There just needs to be the will for renewal

Clinker detail

Wine

Adventure, Australia, Motorbikes, photography, Poetry, travel, Victoria

A river of wine I saw

As I looked through the cellar door

Where’s my cup?

Where’s a straw?

Or should I lick it from the cellar floor!

Tahbilk winery in the Goulburn Valley region of Victoria is like stepping back in time.

One of Australia’s oldest wine producers.

A nice ride through the hills to get there.

Alone or in company.

Overwhelming beauty of nature

Adventure, Australia, Personal, photography, Poetry, Spain

Did you go to the Guggenheim in Bilbao?

And I had

The huge construction of of shiny titanium with its labyrinthine galleries

The best of humanities construction

And the oohing and aahing ensued

But only 80km away was the Picos de Europa

Vast canyons of granite

Ribbons of gorges

Crystalline glaciers

Shaped by the earth itself by nature the great creator.

I saw the Cathedral in Santiago de Compestella

With its imposing edifice

Its halls and alters adorned with gold and silver

The faithfuls tribute to God above

To his heavenly powers

But north of Santiago de Compestella

On the coast is the Praia das Catedrais

The marble buttresses carved by the sea and the wind

The halls and caves rich in the colors of nature, the sheen of the rock the soft green of the moss

Natures gift to us to treasure and enjoy

I find I have my faith now in nature

In the earth

Not in a belief, a god, a spirit, an omnipotent by non existent creation of a prophets mind

But in the earth and the land that we too often take for granted

The earth and the land that gives life

I met an Aboriginal Elder in Cape York – Willie Gordon

From the Guugu Yimithirr tribe

His descriptions of the relationship between the Aboriginal Australians and the land shifted my understanding of the land and nature

The life giving force of nature and the land

For we are of the land and at its end we return to the land

From Alsace to Finisterre – East to West across France

Adventure, Europe, France, photography, travel

From Riquewihr it’s into the mountains again

Heading west

Over the Col de la Schlucht

It was to be an eventful trip

Partly by truck

But all life is a learning

I take the by roads rather than the motorways

It has its risks but many rewards

Such as the entrance to the old city in Parthaney

The picturesque Vouvant

Or the amazing boulders at le Rocher Blanant

And onto the little coastal harbours of Brittany