Islandmomma

Exploring the Stories of the Islands and the Freedoms of Third Age


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Capture the Color Competition Entry

I’d read about TravelSupermarket’s Capture the Color travel photo competition, but I really felt to shy to send in anything, with some really prestigious travel photographers and bloggers entering,   I didn’t want to make a fool of myself! But, then, Elaine from RunawayBrit nominated me, and I thought, “Well, why not. Nothing ventured, nothing gained,” and it sounded like fun.

The idea is that there are five categories, each one being a color – red, blue, white, yellow and green, and each category has its own judge, and each category winner will receive an iPad3, and the overall winner will receive £2,000 to be spent on travel……not bad, eh?

Entries are due by the end of this month, and I was tempted to wait & see if I can do better, but then I’d probably just procrastinate until it was too late (who? me? oh, yeah!), so I’ve just spent a very pleasant few hours travelling a bit down memory lane via my photos. It’s been a jolly nice trip, so I should thank TravelSupermarket and RunawayBrit for that too. I have to write a little about each photo so you can come down memory lane with me.

Er …. I think that’s it, so here are my photos:

Red

In photos you usually see of surfers, the sea is incredibly blue, but Canary Island locals  go out early, before the tourists get out of bed. Before the day has warmed up, the sea can appear quite grey. My son, Guy, had just returned to the island after years of living in the US, and we walked down to the beach as dawn was breaking. It was a treat for me, not only because Guy was back home after his US adventures,  but also because back when my sons were in their teens the last thing they wanted was mom hanging around when they were surfing! Hence I didn’t actually have any photos of them on the water. There was little surf this day, as it turned out, but this was my favorite picture, taken with my little point & shoot too. Guy’s board was the only point of color at this time of day.

Blue

My friend, Cristina, was showing us around her family’s home in the hills just above Icod de los Vinos (one of my favorite parts of Tenerife), the house is set in the forest, surrounded by aromatic pine and rich chestnut trees. It was cool and tranquil, and so very different from the south of the island. We wandered around the land surrounding the house and came across this beautifully decrepit old door, just by the orchard. I’m a sucker for peeling paintwork, especially if it’s blue. The hydrangea were past their best too. It was October, but blue is kind of an everlasting color……

White

Coincidentally, my “white” pictures comes from that same stroll with my friends when we saw the blue door. I really didn’t think this wee butterfly would stay still long enough, but I got a two or three shots before he moved on. It wasn’t until after I saw in on screen that it struck me how very white he was. Although the Canary Island is often called “The Land of Eternal Spring”  seasons do exist here, especially in these woodlands of the north, where tourists rarely roam. It was late October, the chestnut trees were heavy with their spiky fruit, and there was the scent of woodsmoke in the air as neighboring houses lit fires and barbeques, and this fellow seemed almost like a ghost of the failing summer.

Green

It’s a common misconception among visitors to Tenerife, those who stray no further than their sun-lounger on a beach on the south coast, that the island has no greenery. They couldn’t be further from the truth, the peaks and slopes of the north (and the south higher up) are home to mainly pine forests, and the north east tip of the island is lush variegated forest. However, when I thought about green I thought about cacti, oddly, perhaps.  Cacti grow just about everywhere n the Canary Islands, so much so that we take them for granted, but often they are the only hint of color in a harsh landscape. I have loads of pictures of cacti, but this task made me realize that most are pre-digital and I need to get out there & take some more. However, here is one of my favorites.

Yellow

I racked my brains over yellow, because I couldn’t remember nor find a photograph which I thought of as “yellow.” Then I remembered going up to Granadilla de Abona at the beginning of May to see the traditional floral crosses made for the Day of the Holy Cross (El Día de la Cruz), and how there was a lonely sunflower in one of the small crosses by someone’s door. The Day of the Holy Cross celebrates the finding of the original cross by Helena, mother of Roman Emperor Constantine, and any town, village, island or city in the Latino world with the word cruz in its name celebrates the day. The main festivities in Tenerife are in capital city, Santa Cruz, but since the name of the entire province is Santa Cruz de Tenerife, communities all over the province display these beautiful floral tributes. Outside the churches they are huge and abundant, but private houses like this one often display them too.

Nominations

Now to nominate five other travel bloggers to participate in the competition if they want. The problem is now that this has been around for a few weeks, and I really don’t know who has or has not already been nominated, but here we go:

Katrina from Tourabsurd.com  ……. who should have no problem with the “green” part since she just arrived in Ireland! And I have to wonder (if she has time to do this!) if some of her colors might involve food – since there have been some mouth-watering photos on her blog in recent months!

Marianne from EastofMalaga who has some gorgeous photos of Andalucia on her blog which express a deep love of her adopted home.

Jack from BuzzTrips  because I LOVE his photos and because he must have some stunners for the “blue” category having been in Morocco not too long ago!

Barbara from HoleintheDonut  Barbara’s photos are breathtaking, recently returned from Nepal, they just pulse with local color, both real and metaphorical.

Mariana from TravelThirst   …..whose photos totally succeed in her desire to stimulate our senses! Beautiful, virtual travel :=)

It might well be that some, or all, of you guys have already been nominated, and apologies if so, or if this nomination catches you in a moment when you are too busy or traveling too fast to do it!

 

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Of Blue Doors & Butterflies: A Short Stroll in the Countryside

The year is rapidly running out. Stupid, in a way, to move house on the cusp of the festive season, but it’s the way leases work here, and, of course, needs must, the pension being on hold for now I needed to downsize some more. The natural inclination is to get this new apartment straight for the new year, and so there isn’t much to report so far as day to day life goes. It’s unpacking, Christmas shopping and planning (albeit everything will be late this year!), and my other goal is to edit and archive all my photos from the year too. New beginnings – I love ’em!

So, naturally, in the course of sorting the photos there are masses I’ve never used, and I thought I’d do a few photo essays by way of keeping in touch and using the photos. Expect to see more photos next year, but more of intentions and resolutions for 2012 a bit later, at the appropriate time.

For now, this set of photos comes from a short stroll I took with Pilar & Cristina in October, when, as you can see, the chestnuts were still on the trees and not in the braziers! We were visiting Cristina’s sister, (who was about to depart for pastures new on the other side of the world – jealous, not much!) in the woodland just above Icod de los Vinos, and it was one of those cool and clear Autumn days when you wonder at the perfection of the natural world.  In the land around the family home there is an orchard and buildings now abandoned, which I lapped up!

There are very few places on this island where you can’t catch at least a glimpse of the ocean, even here in the pine forest.

In the early days of the island’s conquest by Spain the main crop around here was sugar cane, and you still find remnants.