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Fountain Series: Animal or People (3) – Monterrey

This fountain in Monterrey, Mexico, has both animals AND people.

This fountain in Monterrey, Mexico, has both animals AND people.

The Fuente de la Vida (Fountain of Life), by the Spanish sculptor Luis Sanguino, is in the Gran Plaza of Monterrey, Mexico. It was erected in December 1984 and contains figures of Neptune, lions and other animals, in addition to these aquatic horses and women.

Don't they look joyous? I wonder what they're celebrating?

Don’t they look joyous? I wonder what they’re celebrating?

May’s Fountain Photo Challenge theme is “animal or people in it“.


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Fountain Series: Urban (3) – San Luis Potosí

A fountain in San Luis Potosí, Mexico

A fountain in San Luis Potosí, Mexico

This wonderfully burbly fountain is from a city in Mexico called San Luis Potosí. According to Wikipedia, “The city is named after Louis IX of France (also known in Mexico as San Luis Rey de Francia; Saint Louis, King of France), who is the city’s patron saint. Potosí was added in reference to the fabulously rich mines of Potosí, Bolivia, discovered some forty years before the city was founded, as the exploitation of silver and gold mines in Cerro de San Pedro near San Luis was the main reason for the founding of the city in 1592.” As you can see from the buildings behind the fountain, the city centre has a rich colonial heritage.

April’s Fountain Photo Challenge theme is Urban — fountains in a city or town setting.


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Colour Your World: Tan

A building in Nuevo Progreso, Mexico

A building in Nuevo Progreso, Mexico

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Nuevo Progreso is a small town just across the Rio Grande River from Texas. It thrives on the proximity to hundreds of thousands of “snowbirds” — retired Canadians and Americans who migrate south for the winter. Living in towns such as Brownsville, McAllen and Harlingen (in my parents’ case!), these Winter Texans walk across the bridge into Progreso for prescription medicines, souvenirs, dental work — and eating, drinking and dancing!
(Color Your World Challenge: Tan)


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Random Fridays: The 12 grapes of New Year’s Eve

New Year's Eve and the 12 grapes of luck.

New Year’s Eve and the 12 grapes of luck.

Two years ago, my parents and I saw in the New Year at the Gran Hotel Ancira, in Monterrey, Mexico. It was a sit-down dinner event with a live band and dancing. We were puzzled by the grapes on the table — each place had a wine glass with 12 grapes. Our Mexican table mates explained that it was a tradition to eat the grapes at midnight, and for each grape you had to make a wish. In Spanish, it’s called Las doce uvas de la suerte, “The twelve grapes of luck”. I’ve read that you are meant to eat one grape on each stroke of midnight, but these grapes were huge! We’d have choked trying to eat them so quickly.

Happy 2016 to everyone! May your own 12 wishes be granted.


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One carving, three angles

Stone carving - top

Stone carving – top

I bought this carving at the Teotihuacan site in Mexico in 1996, and it has moved with me from country to country since. I think it’s obsidian, or maybe onyx. (If any reader knows, please tell me.) It’s only a tourist souvenir, but I like it, and I’m fascinated by how very different it appears when viewed from every angle. It also reminds of a good holiday, and of the extraordinary site of Teotihuacan and the culture that built the city and the society.

This post is also part of the Travel Trinket and Memories Challenge, which I was invited to join by leannenz whose challenge it is. If you have a momento of your own travels, why not take part?

Rainy days and Mondays

Do you know that song with the line “Rainy days and Mondays always get me down“? Well, today’s a Monday, and it’s raining, which means a double dose of the blues. 😦 So I thought I’d share some rainy photos with you.

Even drenched in rain, nothing smells as heavenly as a frangipani (plumeria) flower.

Even drenched in rain, nothing smells as heavenly as a frangipani (plumeria) flower.

Raindrops on my window.

Raindrops on my window.

Sunrise caught in raindrops on the rail, 'Lord Nelson' in the Indian Ocean.

Sunrise caught in raindrops on the rail, ‘Lord Nelson’ in the Indian Ocean.

Sunny Bali.

Sunny Bali.

No one sitting on these park benches in Monterrey, Mexico.

No one sitting on these park benches in Monterrey, Mexico.

Behind the scenes: unknown to me, my mother snapped a photo of me shooting the raindrops on the park bench. That's my father with the umbrella!

Behind the scenes: unknown to me, my mother snapped a photo of me shooting the raindrops on the park bench. That’s my father with the umbrella!

Reflections 1

We all have eyes; we all see. Yet what we see is filtered by our minds, our experiences, our expectations. Sometimes, a reflected vision offers a new way of seeing. A world is on offer; go see it.

Venice Italy mask bridge reflection

Venice, Italy: Possibly my favourite ‘Reflections’ photo. I love the arched stairs and balustrade of the bridge behind me reflected in the window, the enigmatic stare of the largest mask, and the way the ones along the bottom seem to be gossiping among themselves.

Zahara de los Atunes Spain sunset reflection

Zahara de los Atunes, Spain: Sunset reflected in a copper urn (me, too, if you look closely!).

San Luis de Potosi Mexico sunrise reflection

San Luis de Potosi, Mexico: Sunrise in the window of my hotel room.

The Entrance Australia reflection

The Entrance, Australia: An infinity of bridge pylons at dusk — and one duck.

Bondi Beach Australia reflection

Bondi Beach, Australia: Winter sunset reflected in the sand at low tide.

Vejer de la Frontera Spain reflection

Vejer de la Frontera, Spain: White stucco walls reflected in the window of a shop selling fans.

Adelaide Botanic Gardens Australia reflection

Adelaide Botanic Gardens, Australia: The gardens reflected in the sculpture, and the sculpture reflected in the pond.

Bolivia rail bridge reflection

An overland journey from Brazil to Equador, somewhere in Bolivia: Our driver and tour guide, reflected in the rear view mirror of the truck (“No es un bus! Es un camion!”) just before she drove across the railway bridge.