We left Amsterdam almost three weeks ago, where does the time go!
While we were there we spent a couple of evening wandering around the Amsterdam has a light festival. This year the light festival celebrates life in the city. The “Bright City” has been on since every night since November 27, 2014 and will shine brightly until January 18, 2015, bringing light during the darkest days of the year.
The featured display, “On the Wings of Freedom” by Aether & Hemera is a cloud of butterflies, hundreds hover above the ground, the colour of the lights ever-changing, and the paper wings fluttering in the evening breeze the display was quite magical.
We have arrived in Malaga Spain expecting a the celebratory holiday season to be over, only to find out that here is Spain most children get their gifts on January 6th, and on January 5th there is a big parade in town. It is the day the children write letters to the magic kings and three people dress in costumes and ride around on horses, followed by decorated floats, giving sweets and small presents to the crowds of children. One blog post that I read promised 11 tones of sweet treats will be given out during the parade!
As you can see from the images above the streets are decorated with lots of beautiful lights, everything looks magical. This and the warm weather has made this a wonderful stop on our Christmas tour that began with our first Christmas Market in Vienna Austria Nov 15, 2014 almost 8 weeks ago!
I have never seen a King before, so I am off to the parade to see if I can catch a glimpse of the Three Kings and maybe a little candy!
Amsterdam celebrates light during the darkest days of the year, The Bright City is the theme of this year’s festival. The spherical buoys float along the water’s surface and are illuminated in a rainbow of colours, just one of the many exhibits along the waterways and canals of Amsterdam.
We will be visiting more of the exhibits over the next few days.
Bill and I spend a couple of days in Vienna, visiting the Christmas Markets, this one in the Rathausplaz is the largest one we walked through. With small wooden shops and trees all decorated for the season, the smell or candied nuts and mulled wine and the sounds of Christmas Carols and children laughing it is an enchanted place to be.
This is just the beginning of the Christmas market season and as we wandered the streets of Vienna we found other smaller markets were being set up in other squares and plaza’s.
Great places to practise my night-time and low light photography, lucky for me Bill doesn’t mind carrying the tripod!
Sunday night at the Calgary Stampede, chuckwagon races. Each night the chuckwagons race there are 9 races, 36 wagons each with a professional driver, and a team of 4 outrider.
At the sound of a horn, four outriders fly into action. In what looks like total chaos, one outrider holds the horses while others hurl items representing a stove and other cooking implements into the back of the wagon. Once loaded, each wagon completes a figure eight around a set of barrels, and then charges out onto the track at breakneck speed. The outriders have to cover a prescribed distance on foot, then jump on their horses and catch up. Their teams lose points if they don’t finish the course within 150 feet of their wagons. Penalties are also imposed for interference, loss of “cooking equipment” and or tipping over one of the barrels. The track is 5/8 of a mile long, and the wagons can run in it just over a minute.
One of the most exciting events at the Calgary Stampede.
For many in Calgary it might be a little early to start planning their Stampede activities, but for the many volunteers the work on this year’s stampede started last September. The schedule of events that will take place down at the grounds is jam-packed with activities. The midway will be filled with rides, this is one of my favourite places to visit.
This year the parade will be exiting, Astronaut Chis Hadfield will be Parade Marshall, and parade morning is always exciting. about 350,000 people line the parade route, and the parade is two hours long, one of my favourite days of the year! So with all this thought about Stampede I am exploring some of the old images taken in previous years and planning my visit to the stampede this year!
Don Ross and Brooke Miller performed at two events in Calgary this last weekend. the first, Friday night, was a house concert, in a friend’s home. Dean gathered a small group of friends for this wonderful evening. During the first part of the evening the sun was streaming in the window, putting the faces of the two performers in the shadows, then during the 2nd half of the show, we had two living room lights to light the room. Needless to say both lighting situations had their challenges for photography, and the reason for black and white images.
One Billion Rising, a world-wide even to end violence against women. In Calgary we danced at the TD Square downtown. Check out their website. Get involved to stop the violence against women.
I have posted this image as part of Jakesprinter’s Sunday Post. His word this week is “Unforgettable” I am hope the worldwide “One Billion Rising” event will become an unforgettable annual event, and that violence against women and children can be stopped. For more unforgettable images check out Jakesprinter’s blog.