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

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You know your back in Australia

Adventure, Australia, Motorbikes, photography, Poetry, travel

An Aussie beach northern NSW

The emblamtic difference between Europe and Australia is the long white sandy beach

With little or no trace of humans

It really can only happen in Australia

And on a warm spring day the whales can be seen off shore breaching and blowing

Smashing their huge trident tails into the water as swim south to Antarctica for summer.

Sunset mid west NSW

The space is overwhelming

Riding nearly 1000 km in a day, on small back roads with little traffic.

The big purple sunset across the open paddocks

But the cherry blossom at Young in the southern highlands a reminder that there is so much of Europe transported here.

Reflecting on Ireland and the Irish

Adventure, Europe, history, Ireland, Motorbikes, photography

May the road rise up to meet you

May the wind blow always at your back

May the sun shine warm upon your face

And the rains fall soft upon your fields

Until we meet again

So goes the old Irish Blessing.

Glendalough

Ireland, the soft green place of damp air, great learning, amazing friendliness and intense struggle

Monument to Irish immigrants

The Irish diaspora spread all around the world

The contrasts of Ireland so stark

From the halls of Trinity College

To the murals that are are a record of the troubles found in Derry

And of course the contrast is an actual divide

The north and the south, the Republic and the British

Can this divide be overcome?

People of good will can achieve anything

Peace statue Derry

And on the border of Derry and Donegal bikers from both of the border come together to raise funds for a lifeboat in a little village in the Republic

Riding the Wild Atlantic Way – Ireland

Adventure, Europe, history, Ireland, Motorbikes, photography, travel

Mizen Head is the most southern most point of mainland Ireland

As good as place as any to start the Wild Atlantic Way

They even give you a starting line

The route winds up the west coast

Through foggy Irish mist

Bantry Bay

Mizen Head

Over mountains with wonderous views

Mountains where Irish legends such as Finn Mc Cool sat.

A coast where there are fishing villages both small

And big

With cliffs towering out of the sea

Relics of stone age and Celtic history dating back 5000 years

Quintessential Irish pubs

Sandy beaches

And then at the end

After 6 days of challenging riding

At Malin Head the most northern point of mainland Ireland

They provide a finish line

Brittany – Last stops on the continent for 2018

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

Jutting out into the Atlantic

Brittany has much in common with the Celtic cousins in Cornwall and Ireland

The quaint seaside ports also along the coastline

Reflecting the Brittany’s place as Frances finisterre (lands end)

Brest it’s major city

With its ancient citadel apon the hill

A long maritime history

And beautiful beaches

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

Ahhh Switzerland

Adventure, Europe, Motorbikes, photography, Switzerland, travel

What is it about Switzerland that takes my breath away

The amazing vistas across the lakes

Amazing mountain passes like the old San Gotthard pass with its cobblestone surface

And party atmosphere at the top

Or village of Gletch where the Furka, Grimsel and Nufenen passes all converge

Maybe it’s the white Glacier topped mountains

Or is is the amazing biker culture that see riders of all types out enjoying the Alps

The goulash soup at the resturaunt at the top of Nufenen pass comes close

But maybe it’s the subtle heartfelt welcome that is so Swiss that makes one say ahhh

Sud Tyrol

Adventure, Europe, Italy, photography, travel

The rich sediments

The rich culture washed down

From the high alps

On Sud Tyrol

Looking back to the Stelvio Pass on Sud Tyrol

A high plateau

Sitting between the Alps of Switzerland, Italy and Austria

Rich agricultural land

Its part of Italy

The main language in German

The houses look as is transplanted from Switzerland

And of course through it is the Reschen passage

The heat and glory of Lago Maggoria

Adventure, Europe, Italy, Motorbikes, photography, Poetry

The beautiful big expanse of water

Baked hot in the mid July sun

It spans the border I to Switzerland

But it’s so Italian

The colour

The richness

The food

The unexpected

James Bonds amphibious car

The exuberance of the Italian language

Talking with the hands

The language almost a song.

On a hot day in July on Lago Maggoria