Monday, 26 October 2015

Autumn in Cadsonbury Woods

A close-up of the photo above shows Amber, fitting in very well with her colouring.

Zac happily greeting some friends:

The obligatory "Zac in the water" photo!

Thursday, 22 October 2015

Dirty dogs!

My friends and I decided to walk our dogs in Seaton Country Park; it was mild, dry and seemed a better destination than Bodmin Moor (quite bleak and windy) or Colliford Lake (windswept and quite muddy underfoot in parts). We were very happy to amble along the level pathway that meanders through the lush greenery . . . . . .

BUT . . . . we came upon one of the ponds where several men in canoes were clearing the excess of Waterlilies that had spread all across the surface - and all three dogs decided that needed investigating.

Thank goodness the men were just getting out of their canoes and climbing on to dry land so that when our three intrepid explorers leapt into the pond, they didn't overturn the canoes and give the men a dunking! Despite calling (yelling), our beloved animals managed to get thoroughly wet and muddy in the churned up water.

This is 'Goldie' - the other two ran out of camera range.

On the way back, all three were encouraged into the river (some needed a gentle push with a shoe-toe) in order to get cleaned up.  They emerged refreshed, wet but clean!

So we continued on to enjoy our lunch in a (very) quiet restaurant -

A pint of Doom Bar, a cappuccino and a white coffee went down very well indeed.

A Colourful Day

A pretty, colourful picture to head this post, especially if you are a cat-lover.
Me - I'm a dog-lover (though I do confess to a soft spot for my son's little cat who always comes running to greet me when I visit). But this collection of cat-inspired gifts arrived along with a letter from Cats Protection, asking for donations.  There are 3 x blank, glossy photo-cards with envelopes, a notebook, a pen, a reflective bookmark, a circular magnet . . . . . and a thank you note from a cat!
I was not happy to receive them; I give to specific charities chosen because they are personal to me and I refuse to be guilted into giving more than I can afford to charities - and Cats Protection is by no means the only one - who send unsolicited gifts.  Grrrrr!

I'm not an artist;  I just like to paint and recently I joined a local Art Group.  There is no teacher, just a group of people who like to produce paintings/art using all different kinds of media and methods. This was my first attempt, which started out much bigger;  I wasn't very happy with it but when I brought it home and tried cropping it, it looked better.

You can learn a lot merely by looking and listening - and occasionally we have an artist come to spend time with us and teach us.  This week it was Ian Pethers . . . . . . . .

and he showed us a whole new way of producing a really good picture, using black ink and watercolour paints.  Each of these large boards took about 30-45 minutes.

These were two paintings from an earlier demonstration - aren't they fantastic?
I've been practising but mine don't come close to any of Mr Pethers'!!

I took this photo on a recent walk on the Lanhydrock Estate; I wonder if I can translate it into a painting in Ian Pethers' style?  Watch this space!

Of course, while I attend the Art Group meeting, I have to leave Zac at home.
Do you get the impression he wasn't happy with me?  Lol, lol.

Enjoy a few more nice days before the weather changes; in 4 days British Summertime ends.  :(

Wednesday, 14 October 2015

The Royal William Yard in Plymouth

I had a lovely day out with friends today; we're half way through 
October and having the 3rd week of an Indian Summer - 
sunshine all the way, very little rain and just a chill in the air 
when out of the sunshine to remind us that Winter is fast 
approaching.  You just have to make the most of these days, don't you?
I couldn't stop in the road outside, so I had to take this photo 
of the imposing statue of King William IV atop the gateway from 
inside the Yard.

Look left - and you see a couple of large white cows in a quiet
relaxation area surrounded by flower beds.

After finding a parking space, we headed for one of the eateries (of which there are several, all offering a variety of food) for some lunch and much-needed coffee. We sat at an outside table, soaking up the wonderful sunshine as we admired the boats moored in the harbour.

We wandered around the Yard but unfortunately, being out-of-season, there wasn't much else to see, but it was a pleasant wander nevertheless; eventually we sauntered to the car and climbed aboard.  The car parking charges are calculated from the moment you enter the Yard (camera record of your number plate)  until you put your registration number into one of the pay-machines. And THAT was when I wished we'd done less sauntering . . . . instead of paying £2 for 2 hours, we jumped to the £5 day charge BY 2 MINUTES!!!!! Aaaaarrrggghhhh!!!!! Really annoying as it took more than 2 minutes to use the parking machine  -  enter your registration letters; press the photo of your car; confirm that this is your vehicle; press either 'cash', debit card or credit card; press to view the charge; finally insert the coins.
So we headed out of the city and followed the Cornish coastline, enjoying the beautiful sea views, finally reaching Cremyll, across the water from the Royal William Yard but having driven in a huge circle around the land. A table in the sunshine, at the edge of the water, plus cappuccinos all round = perfection. Once again, lots to see, even at low tide -

That's the ferry boat, the Edgcumbe Belle, on the left; the incoming tide is causing it to swing around and power into the current before it reaches its destination.

 Made it and the passengers can disembark.

A large ship in dock for service or repair.

And while we sat there, another one entered the approach to the dock, a Type 23 Frigate, HMS Somerset.

 . . . . . followed by one of the smallest crafts, Patrol boat (P280)  HMS Dasher.

This man and his little dog sat on the shingle and shared a sandwich and a drink of water, the boat was wiped all over before they both climbed aboard and off they sailed. 

Finally, I loved this old ornate clock on the Cremyll Ferry office building, especially the wise words,