Preamble: Every once in a while, I like to play a little game; I get four friends to supply four random, single digit numbers. And then I cull from my (current) collection of about 500 Gb of travel photos (dating from 2001), find the photos with those four numbers (in order) as part of their file name, and tell their story.
Today’s numbers are…
Thera, October 2014 (Caldera View from Boutari Winery)
We wandered Santorini for, among other things, wine. And we found some. Unfortunately, Greek wine doesn’t (how do I say this delicately?) taste good. But who cares, when the views are like this. Mid autumn, off season is the best time to visit, but it gets windy (Boutari provides the blankets to keep warm).
Paris, June 2015 (Le Claque-Fromage, our local cheese shop in Pigalle)
You don’t know what you don’t know until you see what’s normal, somewhere else in the world. Downstairs from our seventh floor apartment in Pigalle, in the 9th… dozens of varieties of soft cheese. Next door to that, a boulangerie, where reside the baguettes. The perfect companion to cheese.
LakenhalleYpres, July 2018 (Looking through the Menin Gate)
We spent a couple of days driving to the different monuments and battlefields commemorating the First World War in Belgium. Places everyone’s heard about like Ypres, and others – just as famous – that we hadn’t, like Tyne Cot. At the end of our second day, we came across the Menin Gate of Ypres. The tall belfry in the background belongs to the Lakenhalle – the monumental 13th century Cloth Hall, which was largely destroyed by German bombing during that war, and since rebuilt, as you can see.
Kyoto, April 2019 (Fushimi Inari Temple)
Fushimi Inari is probably the most famous of the Shinto Temples of Kyoto, best known for it’s brilliant red torii (look it up, they’re cool!) Among other things, the spirits (kami ) of foxes are venerated here, and those are no doubt what Elliotte is pointing at. Elliotte, not Tina (look closely).
Aquaba, May 2019 (Al Madaen Market)
In the land of Aladin, on the shore of the Red Sea, there is a market. Nuts, fruits, and spices of every sort. Hot Sale, too!
Wadi Rum, May 2019 (In the land of Laurence)
To call this “the land of Laurence” is unfair. This is really the land of Arabia, and there’s a tonne of history to distangle here, to *really* understand it. But it is one of the most truly magnificent landscapes I have every visited, or expect to visit.