Catch the wave

I love watching people surf. The good ones make it look effortless, so graceful and, well, fun; the not-so-good ones make me laugh. Living just a few minutes’ walk from some of Sydney’s best beaches, I have endless opportunities to watch all grades of surfers. Confession: Before I moved to Sydney for the first time, in 1999, I didn’t know that an ankle tether connected board to rider, and I was quite puzzled by the way riders’ boards popped up beside them when they spilled!

Umina Beach (the Central Coast, north of Sydney): a young surfer considers his approach.

Umina Beach (the Central Coast, north of Sydney): a young surfer considers his approach.

Tamarama Beach: a bodyboarder pops up for air.

Tamarama Beach: a bodyboarder pops up for air.

Tamarama Beach: a bodyboarder punches through a wave.

Tamarama Beach: a bodyboarder punches through a wave.

Riding the waves at Bondi Beach.

Riding the waves at Bondi Beach.

Riding the waves at Bondi Beach.

Riding the waves at Bondi Beach.

Riding the waves at Bondi Beach.

Riding the waves at Bondi Beach.

Riding the waves at Bondi Beach.

Riding the waves at Bondi Beach.

Riding the waves at Bondi.

Riding the waves at Bondi.

Bondi Beach: Posing? Who, me?

Bondi Beach: Posing? Who, me?

Fascinating, but ewww!

I took this photo a couple of weeks ago, with no intention of ever sharing it — who’d want to see it? So thank you, Ed, for the challenge of Creepy Things! I was both fascinated and repelled by the sight of hundreds of ants devouring a dead spider; it was like a nature documentary, right on my windowsill.

Ants devouring a dead spider on my windowsill.

Ants devouring a dead spider on my windowsill.

A Word a Week Challenge: Arch

This week the dictionary fell on the word Arch. I would like to offer a selection of arches from around the world.

Sicily: A single stone arch against a flawless sky.

Sicily: A single stone arch against a flawless sky.

Jaipur: the Amber Fort.

Jaipur: the Amber Fort.

Rome: St Peter's.

Rome: St Peter’s.

London: St Pancras train station.

London: St Pancras train station.

Agra: the Red Fort.

Agra: the Red Fort.

La Paz: Museo Nacional de Arte.

La Paz: Museo Nacional de Arte.

Budapest: Fishermen's Bastion.

Budapest: Fishermen’s Bastion.

And finally, some arches at home. Sydney: the old General Post Office.

And finally, some arches at home. Sydney: the old General Post Office.

Alone for eternity

I have two photographs for this week’s Black & White Challenge: Abandoned or Alone, both taken at Waverley Cemetery, Sydney. The cemetery, which opened in 1877, sprawls across cliff tops beside the ocean.

Someone has propped this fallen cherub on the grass beside the grave on which it was placed decades ago.

Someone has propped this fallen cherub on the grass beside the grave on which it was placed decades ago.

Toppled from the grave she once adorned, this marble girl lies abandoned on the ground, sinking slowly into the earth.

Toppled from the grave she once adorned, this marble girl lies abandoned on the ground, sinking slowly into the earth.

Sunday Stills: Watershots

I have two entries for this week’s Sunday Stills challenge:

The long, low surf of the ocean's water turned into molten gold at sunrise. (Durban, South Africa)

The long, low surf of the ocean’s water turned into molten gold at sunrise. (Durban, South Africa)

In this watershot, we see water in three states: liquid (the ocean), frozen (the iceberg) and vapour (the clouds). (Taken from a plane at 30,000+ feet between Sydney and Johannesburg.)

In this watershot, we see water in three states: liquid (the ocean), frozen (the iceberg) and vapour (the clouds). (Taken from a plane at 30,000+ feet between Sydney and Johannesburg.)

Weekly Photo Challenge: Sea

This challenge is a paradox for me in that it is easy, but hard! Easy, because to me, the sea means only thing: tall ship sailing. Hard, because I have so many sailing photos to choose from! A sea that is placid, reflective, azure against a cerulean sky; or a sea that is angry and threatening, invigorating yet terrifying at the same time? I’ve gone for somewhere between the two. We were in a Force 8 (ie, with winds of 40 knots and waves about 6 metres high) when I took this photo (it reached Force 10 a few hours later). Every time we rolled to leeward, water rushed onto the deck through the scuppers and over the rail. (The rail, by the way, is normally about 4 metres above the sea.)

Tenacious, mid-Atlantic, Force 8.

Tenacious, mid-Atlantic, Force 8.

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