Tag Archive | France

Weekly Photo Challenge – Foreshadow

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When we arrived in Paris the sky was blue. It was the perfect summer day. By mid-afternoon the clouds were looking ominous and in the early evening a mighty storm passed through. We sheltered in a shop doorway on the Avenue des Champs Élysée – if we had to hide from a storm what a marvellous place to do it. This foreshadowed an amazing week enjoying all things Parisian.

Weekly Photo Challenge – Curves

On 6 June 1944, at 6.30 in the morning, 50 000 troops from 1st Infantry Division and 29th Infantry Division landed on Omaha Beach as part of the Allied invasion of Normandy. By the end of D-Day more than 5000 American soldiers had become casualties.

On 5 June 2004 this sculpture, Statue des Braves, was unveiled as part of the commemorations of the 60th anniversary of the invasion. The three parts of the sculpture represent Wings of Hope; Rise, Freedom! and Wings of Fraternity.

Lest We Forget.

 

 

 

Weekly Photo Challenge – From Above

I am fascinated each time I view a city from on high. I like to seek out the well known places we’ve visited and follow the roads we’ve taken. Looking straight down adds another perspective – it’s always much higher up there than it looks from the ground.

The London Eye

The London Eye

The Eiffel Tower

The Eiffel Tower

 

 

Now I Lay Me Down To Sleep

“Sleep” is the theme of this week’s A Word a Week Challenge at A Word in Your Ear

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The Sun King Louis XIV slept here when he was in residence at the Palace of Versailles, in France.

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Queen Caroline’s bedroom at Schloss Nymphenburg in Munich, Germany. On 25 August, 1845 the child destined to become King Ludwig II was born here.

quilt, Hardy's cottage

This bed with its beautiful patchwork quilt is in a tiny cob and thatch cottage in Dorset. The cottage was the birthplace of the author Thomas Hardy, and where his early novels were written. Perhaps he slept here.

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In September the city of Toowoomba, in Queensland Australia, hosts the annual Carnival of Flowers. This “garden bed” is purely ornamental – maybe a bird slept here.

At the Safari Desert Camp, in the Wahiba Sands in Oman, is a collection of traditional Bedouin tents complete with beautifully decorated furniture. I slept here!

 

Bienvenue à Akaroa!

At a distance of more than 18 000 km New Zealand and France are almost as far apart as it is possible to be. Visit the little town of Akaroa on the South Island of New Zealand however and you could be forgiven for thinking you’ve somehow ended up in France.

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On the drive south from Christchurch to the Banks Peninsula your first view of Akaroa and its harbour is breathtaking. The harbour was formed 9 million years ago in a volcanic eruption and is one of the world’s best examples of an eroded crater.

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Maori people were the first to settle on the Banks Peninsula about 700 years ago. In 1769, Captain James Cook and the crew of The Endeavour were the first Europeans to sight land here although they continued on their voyage without stopping. They were followed by European whalers in the 1830s. In 1838 Captain Jean François Langlois persuaded the local Maori to sell most of the peninsula to him for 1000 francs. He returned to France and established a company with the purpose of setting up a French colony on the peninsula. By January 1840 the ship Comte-de-Paris set sail from Rochefort with 53 French and German colonists on board. A naval warship L’Aube, under Captain Charles François Lavaud, sailed from Brest to provide protection for the settlers.

The colonists arrived in Akaroa on 17 August 1840 only to find that their plans for a French settlement had been thwarted by the English, who had claimed the South Island of New Zealand as a British colony under the Treaty of Waitangi. Captain Owen Stanley of the Britomart had raised the Union Jack at Green’s Point just six days before.

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The colonists were undeterred and decided to stay, and Akaroa became the only town in New Zealand to be settled by the French. Today their influence is evident in the names of the streets and businesses in the town.

The old French burial ground on L’Aube Hill is marked by a plaque which acknowledges these pioneers and their contribution to the town.

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So as you wander along Rue Lavaud munching on your freshly baked baguette, or sip a coffee at one of the many cafés, close your eyes and for a moment you might just be transported to a tiny village in the heart of France.

Weekly Photo Challenge – Lost in the Details

Visitors to Paris spend much of their time looking up or looking down, gazing in wonder at the fine details to be seen in every building and on every street. Each of these photos was taken at a famous Parisian landmark.

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How many of these places do you know or can guess? Hover over each photo to reveal the answer.

Weekly Photo Challenge – Beyond

 

The Villers-Bretonneux Military Cemetery contains the graves of 2142 soldiers from Australia, Canada, the United Kingdom and New Zealand who died on the battlefields of France and Flanders in the First World War.

Beyond the cemetery is the Australian National Memorial which commemorates all Australians who served in France and Belgium. Its walls are engraved with the names of nearly 11 000 Australian soldiers whose final resting places are unknown. The scale of loss, from one field of war and from one nation alone, is beyond imagination.

The Memorial Tower stands at the centre of the memorial. The inscription on each side of the door, to the left in English and to the right in French, reads “TO THE GLORY OF GOD AND IN MEMORY OF THE AUSTRALIAN FORCE IN FRANCE AND FLANDERS 1916-1918 AND OF ELEVEN THOUSAND WHO FELL IN FRANCE AND HAVE NO KNOWN GRAVE”. Above the door is The Rising Sun badge, the official insignia of the Australian Army. The view from inside the tower takes in the cemetery and  beyond to the surrounding countryside, once a battlefield but now at peace.

 

 

Weekly Photo Challenge – Reflections

The French Impressionist Claude Monet painted scenes of his water garden for more than twenty years, and the pond and the Japanese bridge are instantly recognisable. He particularly liked capturing the reflections on the water in all seasons of the year. This photo was taken in early Summer when the greenery was lush and the pond was humming with insects.

DSC04647 at its best.