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Down By The River – Brazil

Thought for the day…” If the sky is the limit, then what is space, over the limit?”

”  Do coffins have lifetime guarantees?”

Another two photos from Brazil, and from the southern part around Florianapolis.   Florianapolis is based around one main island, and has a population of around 420 000 people.  I.T and tourism (including surfing) are the main occupations here, and the area has been voted as the best area of Brazil to live in.   Some villages still rely on fishing, but officials are attempting to make the area the ‘silicon valley’ of Brazil.   Long, white sandy beaches and small bays make it a popular tourist destination, including increasing numbers of international tourists.   It also hosts annual surfing and paddle board competitions.   The photos below come from the Barra De Lagoa area, where a small channel connects the lake to the sea.

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And a portrait of a local, complete with 2 mobile phones…….

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Paraguayian pair – two from Paraguay

Thought for the day…”Failure is the foundation of success, and the means by which it is achieved”.

” If you do not have a dream, then how can your dreams come true?”   (Jimmy Cricket)

Two photos today from Paraguay, and both taken with the Fuji X-E1 camera.    The camera was ready, because photos like these have to be grabbed fast.    In both cases, it was only seconds before the scene changed, and the moment was lost, so there was no chance to frame or plan the photos.  But the results are great, and the new Fuji camera has done a great job with the exposure and colours.   Both pictures come from the capital of Paraguay, Asuncion and from the city centre.   Not an exciting place for tourists, and the sight of shanty towns built in the city centre will surprise you, as will the broken pavements, abandoned buildings and general decay.

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Variations on a Theme. Same same but different

Thought for the day….” Same, same, but different”.

“It is fine to celebrate success, but it is more important to heed the lessons of failure”  (Bill Gates)

Off to Paraguay for the photos today, and to the capital Asuncion.  This landlocked South American country was once a Spanish colony until 1811.  The money is called the Guarani and the capital, Asuncion is home to about 500 000 people.   Despite being the capital, Asuncion is not a fun place for tourists, as it has few great sights but does have a lot of broken houses, decay and abandoned buildings.    Paraguay is a poor country, and it certainly shows in the capital.   Paraguay has the honour of holding the world record for the largest barbeque, when 30 000 diners attended the record-breaking attempt.

Those who have travelled in Vietnam will no doubt have seen and heard the phrase “Same, Same but different”.   Today’s photos, actually the same photo, started out as one photo, but was given the photoshop treatment.    The first photo was the original colour photo, almost as it came out of the camera…..

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But then changed in Photoshop into a black & white photo, then converted to sepia to give it an old fashioned look, before editing it so that just the yellow chair and box remained in their original colours.   Finally, add the frame and bob’s your uncle…..

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Same, same but different,  as they say.

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Change of continents and 8 flights

Thought for the day…”The pessimist complains about the wind, the optimist expects it to change, the realist adjusts the sails”

” You cannot live a positive life with a negative mind”.

Eight flights and a lot of airports separate the photos in the last post from the photos today.   A change of continents, or rather regions, from the Seychelles to Brazil.  Having flown from Seychelles via Abu Dhabi, Berlin, Oslo, and Sao Paulo (plus some domestic flights) then Oslo airport (code OSL) rates as the worst.   It is a disgrace for a Scandinavian capital city airport.   But leaving all that behind, some photos from Brazil….Brazil is the largest country in South America and the largest Portuguese-speaking country in the world.  It was named after the Pau Brasil tree, and now has a population of around 202 million.   It has won the football world cup more times than any other nation.  Although Brasilia is the capital, Sao Paulo is the largest city, with a population of around 18 million.

The photos are of the waterfalls at Iguazu, on the corner of Brazil, Argentina and Paraguay.   Depending on the season, the falls can be up to 2.7km long, and up to 82m deep.   The photos were taken from a helicopter, but if you visit Iguazu be very careful NOT to book on the larger 7 seat helicopters, as several passengers who have to sit on the inside seats will have very restricted views.  No problem from the smaller 4 seat helicopters though, as the photos below show.

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Sitting on the dock of the bay……

Thought for the day….” Vision is the art of seeing the invisible”        “Failures are stepping stones to success”

Another couple of photos from the Seychelles.    The Seychelles are the sort of place where you take photos, and take lots of them.  So many beautiful bays and beaches, and scenes like the ones below are so easy to find.     And for those people lucky enough to have waterproof cameras, the coral reefs, diving and tropical fish are amazing.    Sadly I have no photos from the diving, but hundreds of photos from dry land.    Next time I must take an underwater camera.   High standards of accommodation, relatively few tourists (so often the beaches are empty or almost empty) and around 155 islands to explore.  What a holiday paradise!!     I just hope that it does not become like some of the islands in Thailand, where tourism has taken away the very charm that made them popular in the first place.  But for now, Seychelles are still paradise.

PS.  Sitting on the Dock of the Bay    was sung by Otis Reading

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and another photo from the Seychelles.  This photo started as a normal colour photo, but was first converted to black & white, then converted to sepia to give it an old look.  See what you think…..

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More photos from a paradise holiday destination – Seychelles

Thought for the day….”It is the road that you take that decides your destiny, not your destiny which decides which road that you take”.

” You are not wealthy until you have something that money cannot buy”.

Situated just south of the Equator and in the Indian Ocean, the Seychelles are made up of 155 islands which were controlled by both Britain and  France until independence in 1976.   About 92 000 people live there (lucky them!), with many of them being employed in the main industry-tourism.     Unlike the Maldvives, the Seychelles have some wonderful inland scenery too, ranging from deep valleys to tropical rain forest, which makes the Seychelles a far more interesting holiday destination.  The beaches (some of which are said to be the best in the world) are uncrowded and extremely beautiful, the sea temperature perfect for swimming and diving (especially around the many coral reefs) and when you tire of sitting on the beach under a palm tree, the tropical rain forests are quite beautiful.  Add to that some fantastic quality hotels and they are really a perfect holiday destination.

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and another from the same area…..

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Holidays which do live up to expectations…..Seychelles

Thought for the day….”  A journey of a thousand miles starts with a single cash advance? “

” Problems are not stop signs, they are only guidelines”.

So often a holiday destination does not live up to the promises.   So often the views once you arrive do not live up to the pictures in the brochures or online.    But sometimes they do.     The latest holiday was one of those trips where the actual views were even better than the brochures had promised.  The beaches were more fantastic and the sea even more perfect.   The new camera has been VERY busy…..more than 16 GB of photos and videos……it really is beautiful…….

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and another from the same group of islands…the colours really are that incredible…

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Wonderful colours, wonderful beaches and some superb scenery…..what a fantastic holiday destination…..Seychelles.   Photos taken with the Fuji X-E1

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Scandinavian duo – Stockholm & Helsinki

Thought for the day…” A star needs darkness to shine ”          ” Beauty might bring happiness, but happiness always brings beauty”.

It you take around 51 000 steps, and run them in around 2 hours and 2 minutes, and cover a distance of 42.195 km then you will have run the famous marathon, and in a record time too !!   It is said to have started when a Greek messenger called Pheidippides ran from Marathon to Athens with news of the Greek victory over the Persians.  The sad fact is that having run the marathon with the exciting news, that he collapsed and died.    An extra 182 m was added to the distance in 1908 during the Olympics in London, so that the finish line would be in front of the royal box, and since then the marathon has remained at 42.195 km.   Annette Fredskov from Denmark holds the dubious honour of having run 366 marathons in a single year.   In Canada the 101 year old  Fauja Singh completed a marathon in Toronto during 2011 in a time of 8 hours 11 minutes.    Around 21 000 runners compete in the annual Stockholm marathon, from where today’s photo comes.   Judging by the number of runners in the photo, then it was certainly crowded over the first few kilometres.

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And another photo from the archives……snowmobile jumping in the Finnish capital of Helsinki….

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South to North…..Africa to Spitsbergen

Thought for the day….”  It costs nothing to dream, but are you prepared to pay the price to make it a reality?”

”  We learn the ropes of life by untying its knots”.

A photo of the largest land mammal for the photo today, and a scene from South Africa.   Elephants often live in herds of 20 or more, led by a dominant female called a matriarch.    They can live for up to 70 years, and curiously, cannot jump.    When they are born, they are blind, so rely totally on their mothers.  Adults will spend up to 16 hours a day feeding and need around 20 litres of water daily.   They sleep for only about 3 hours a day, and have 6 or 7 sets of teeth, unlike only 2 for humans.

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And another photo from the archives…..a storm approaches Longyearbyen, Spitsbergen

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It’s There Somewhere…..but can you find it?

Thought for the day…” Do coffins have lifetime guarantees? ”        ”   Do fish every get thirsty ?”     ” Did Noah keep his bees in archives? “

Did you now that in Arabic, that the Arabic name for ‘Morocco’ means extreme west, or that Morocco is only 13km from Europe at its nearest point?   And if you have visited Morocco then you will have experienced the national drink, Moroccan mint tea, which is green tea with lots of mint leaves and an even greater amount of sugar.   Also, in Morocco the liver, and not the heart, is considered a sign of love.   And in the seaside town of Essouria, the inventor of the first pedestrian crossing light, Leslie Hore-Belisha is buried.   Tourists are surprised to learn that Morocco gets snow, as its highest point is Jebel Toubkal at 4165m in the Atlas mountains.   Although Casablanca is the largest city, it is Rabat which is the capital city.     The photo today is typical of the kasbahs (walled fortified cities) in Morocco, and as usual, a crowded market street.

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And another photo from the archives….keeping watch in Ethiopia…..

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