Local Heart, Global Soul

September 21, 2019

The Quality Of The Water…

There are several information boards along the beach. This one is all about the water quality and gives swimming information. The text is in Dutch, English and German and reads:

“This beach is officially designated as a swimming location. The water quality is checked during the swimming season. The average water quality is shown with the number of stars below. Swimming season and water quality checks from 1 May to September”

“If there is anything wrong with the swimming water, this will be indicated here. The listed water quality classification refers to the water‘s quality over a period of several years a rather than any current hazards.”

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

There are people walking out on the sand, just tiny dots from this distance…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

I zoom in on them…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

May 3, 2018

Into Cook Straight…

Filed under: Interisland Ferry,NEW ZEALAND,PHOTOGRAPHY — kiwidutch @ 1:00 am
Tags: ,

Family Kiwidutch are travelling from the South Island to the North Island of New Zealand via one of the Cook Straight ferry’s. The Arapawa Island headlands at the exit of Queen Charlotte Sound is one of the “exits” of the Marlborough Sounds and the shortest route for the Interisland Ferry’s to exit into Cook Straight. From here it is the open seas of the Straight until we get into Wellington Harbour. It can be very rough in these unsheltered waters but on this trip we were lucky.

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

With the headland  (above) of Arapawa Island on our right, the view to our left on full zoom of the camera (below) becomes the receding East coast coastline. The Southern Alps have their tops wrapped a cloud, a phenomenon which earned New Zealand it’s Maori name: “Aotearoa“, (Land of the Long White Cloud).

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

The “normal” camera view…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

Dusk falls on Arapawa Island…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

We are now in the Cook Straight, one of the roughest pieces of sea in the world due to the “funnel” effect of having the expanses of the Tasman Sea on one side and the Pacific Ocean on the other. Today the weather is playing nice and our journey is smooth.

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

Arapawa Island is the darker part on the right, the long arm of  the Tory Channel is the lighter part to the left. “Tōtaranui” (Queen Charlotte Sound) is the waterway we have just travelled which runs between the two.

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

Arapawa Island, (large headland to the left, with Raukawa Rock in the distance. (Full zoom, the camera is struggling, especially since daylight is fading fast)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

Arapawa

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

Arapawa Island, shades of light and texture.

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

The sun goes down…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

Then with a last blaze of glory for the day…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

It’s almost completely dark by the time I took these, the interior lights of the ship have me the necessary light to see the lighthouse on the Heads of Wellington Harbour.

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

December 27, 2014

Bring Out Your Inner Pirate… And Prepare For A Soaking Me Hearties…!

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

It might have been October of 2013 when we visited Legoland Germany, but we were fortunate because the weather was decently and even unseasonably warm.

One of the days in particular was over 25 degrees centigrade and sunny, another was 21 degrees but with bursts of intermittent rain.

It’s certain that some attractions would be packed full during the hot summer months and one fun way to cool off  would be with a good old fashioned water fight.

But remember: this is Legoland Germany, so this isn’t just any water fight.

We around yet another corner to discover a pirate themed area, first there is a large pirate playground, then there is the pirate boat ride that Himself and the kids enjoyed a ride on, and then to top it off, there is a large pirate boat ride, where not only can the passengers of the “galleons”  work together to wind cranks that pump water cannon onto  landlubbers around the attraction, but the landlubbers can go up on a raised platform and onto small jettys where they too can wind cranks and pump water into their water cannons to squirt back.

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

Obviously there are areas to go to if you are keen on joining in the watery fight, and there are dry areas to stand if you just want to watch and enjoy the show.

I avoided the slippery boards of the wet jettys and opted for the safety of the dry areas and set to work capturing some of the water fights.

Himself, Little Mr and Kiwi Daughter first took to the landlubber jetty’s and quirted water with great glee at the passing galleons,  all the while shrieking with delight as the retaliatory streams of water found their mark, in their faces, down their necks and saturating their clothes.

Then they boarded one of the big boats and the roles were reversed, and I got to observe that my husband took considerable enjoyment in manning the pumps with as much effort as possible, to the watery depriment of a father now on  one of the jettys with his two sons.

The water barrage got the better of the landlubbers and they were forced to retreat out of range, but the shouts of encouragement and squeals of excitement from both sides showed that much enjoyment was involved in the soaking. I’m sure that in the height of summer there would be long queues here, since even at this time of year, the whole attraction bought out the inner pirate in young and old.

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

December 26, 2014

The Wall Of Water Is Impressive…

Filed under: GERMANY,Legoland Germany,PHOTOGRAPHY — kiwidutch @ 1:00 am
Tags: , ,
(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

Whilst those who celebrate Christmas are recovering and enjoying a “light”  lunch of leftover roast veggies, meat and Christmas Pudding , here is another Kiwidutch retrospective post from our autumn trip to Legoland Germany last year.

I was surprised to see quite a few rides around the park and in since the place is so enormous, it was day three before we got to this section and discovered more rides to amaze us.

I of course kept well out of trouble and viewed from a distance, Himself and the kids either jumped in excitedly or bailed as the viewings of the attractions progressed.

Little Mr for instance, at first sight rather liked the idea of a boat ride, but after seeing that the boat in question takes a big slide down and produces a huge wall of water around it he quickly reversed his decision and frequently repeated the phrase “noooo way!”.

Kiwi Daughter opted out as soon as she saw the drop from the “cliff”, which amused me because on some of the other rides she appeared to enjoy the stomach churning  turns.

Himself however was not so reticent and declared that this was one ride he really would love to do. The close-ups of his face as he hurtles towards the bottom of the slide are rather funny, but sadly not for posting due to reasons of internet privacy.

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

The looks on my children’s faces as they watched their father hurtle towards the bottom of the slide were also rather priceless, so our private family album is richer for the experience.

Himself stood in the queue and once his turn to board came around, he waved and he and his boat departed around the back of the “cliff” on which the waterslide stands.

Little did I know, but the ride itself is quite long and very exciting: there are even a few surprises (which I won’t mention here as not to spoil the fun if anyone ends up going on the ride after reading this).

I spent quite a while waiting for Himself’s boat to appear at the top of the “cliff” and used the time to photograph other boats, since the wave made at the bottom is particularly impressive.

Himself went around several times in all, and loved it… as usual the attention to Lego detail is on hand,  Lego flamingo’s,  gulls and pelicans don’t at all mind getting wet by this ride.

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

November 30, 2014

The Water We Play With And Then Throw Away…

Filed under: PHOTOGRAPHY,THE NETHERLANDS,Traditionally Dutch — kiwidutch @ 1:00 am
Tags: , , ,
(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

Today’s post is a yet another illustration of something else very typically Dutch: the aqueduct.

The national stereotype  of a country filled with canals is there for a reason, because the country is filled almost end to end with canals and waterways of all shapes and sizes.

Most people of course know about the famous Dutch sea defences, that’s lesser known is that in a country that is largely below sea level and thus with a water table that’s higher than the surrounding land, that it’s necessary to continually pump water off the land twenty four hours a day, three hundred and sixty five days of the year. And the extra day in Leap years.

There’s an entire Government department dedicated to water management. During storms, cloud bursts and long periods of rain, teams of experts monitor water levels around the country.

If it rains hard in the upper reaches of the Rhine River in Germany and flooding starts, all that water has to go somewhere, and that somewhere is going to to be further down-stream in The Netherlands. Every single Low tide, water that has been pumped off the land is emptied into the sea.

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

The Netherlands is like a little boat with a slow leak that’s always requires bailing.  That’s why  twice a year we have a problem with the high Spring and Autumn tides. If these occur at the same time as large storms the sea level will be so high a low tide that the pumping out of the stored land water can not take place.

Many of the Dutch waterways are also used as commercial and recreational highways.  I’ve lost count of the amount of times in the last twenty years I’ve sat at a car at red light with the roadway in front of me tilted up to allow sailing vessels to go by. Sometimes though, when the road concerned is a motorway, a better solution than a tilting bridge has to be found, and this alternative is the aqueduct. This is basically where the canal goes over the road, ( or the road goes under the canal, take your pick) not a drinking water canal as per aqueducts of Roman times, but to carry  boat traffic. The one in my photographs is in Gouda (Yes, where the famous cheese comes from).

Make no mistake though, these canals are also very expensive feats of engineering and are not just there to benefit the whims of recreational boaties, the water in them is also very conveniently some of the water extracted from the land and is on it’s way to the sea to be pumped out when the next low tide comes around.

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

 

September 12, 2014

Instant Artworks, … Just Add Water!

Filed under: ART,GREECE,PELION PENINSULAR,PHOTOGRAPHY,PLATANIA — kiwidutch @ 1:00 am
Tags: , ,
(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

At our dinner at Spiros’s  restaurant in Platania Greece, back when we visited in 2012, I mentioned that our party were offered extra Ouzo on the house after our meal and we made a slow walk back to our accommodation so that Himself could partake for once without worrying about driving us back.

I needed to have a few little rests along the way so took my time and attempted a little night-time photography.

I’m certainly no professional photographer and previous attempts have been rather hit and miss to say the least.

It’s not to say that this wasn’t any easier: I took roughly one hundred photos and got only about a quarter of them in focus (the biggest reason digital photography is brilliant).

Tomorrow evening we will be busy packing and getting ready to go to the airport, so tonight is my opportunity to try and catch the lights on the water from the fishing boats and from the built up are around the bay. I like that although the lights look white at first glance, their reflections in the water come out multi-hued.  Instant artworks: just add water!

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

July 20, 2014

Phone Up The Skipper And Ask Him To Come Over…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

Following yesterday’s post that details our October 2012 visit to Greece and our day-trip exploring the very tip of the Pelion Peninsular, we have come to the end of the road.

Rather literally the road ends at the waters edge and if we had stumbled upon this place without any local knowledge then chances are that Little Mr. would have played on the beach and paddled in the sea for a little while and then we would have turned the car around and driven  on.

(We’ve left Kiwi Daughter with our in-laws, playing with older cousin her age) Luckily we had been instructed on what to do when we got here by our  in-laws who have learned Greek due to their many years of holidaying here.

There’s a little concrete pier here but no scheduled ferry service. Instead there’s a sign with a telephone number and the idea is that if you want to get to the island then you  just ring the number and the ferryman will pop over and get you. We duly ring the number on the sign and luckily the  man who answers speaks English, is friendly and assures us he will be there shortly. Some ten  minutes or so later we see him rounding the point at the edge of the bay and soon the skipper is bringing the boat / water taxi up to the little dock. We board and are off.

The journey only takes around ten, maybe fifteen minutes, in next to no time we are pulling up at a concrete pier on the island, the buildings are right on the waterfront so we walk in front of them until we come to a little side street (actually it’s more of an alley) and passing between the houses we emerge in what might be described as the “main street”. Time to look around and see what we want to do next…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

The dock on the mainland…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

Approaching the Island…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

April 6, 2013

Big Houses, Cramped Houses and Feathered Homes in the Smallest of Nooks and Crannies…

Filed under: PHOTOGRAPHY,THE NETHERLANDS,UTRECHT (Province) — kiwidutch @ 1:00 am
Tags: , , ,
(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

I’m taking you on a retroactive tour of Utrecht’s canals… we did this trip with one of my New Zealand cousins and his family a few years back and it’s taken me until now to sort through the photos and tell you about our adventures . We’ve left the inner city canals with their distinctive upper and lower “streets/ quays”  behind, and have now branched out to where the smaller waterways join larger ones.

The houses around the canals here are generally far bigger, the exception being the smaller rows of alms houses built by the rich for the poor, widows and the like (first two photographs).

They sit in the shadow of their rich owner dwellings, small in comparison and first I thought “nice to get a house if you were poor and in desperate need”…  except it wasn’t actually a house the poor would get… it was just one single room and no matter how big the family of the widow or poor person was, all had to be squeezed into their one room.

I supposed that in the centuries before welfare benefits and social housing, these cramped conditions would have been most welcome since the alternative would have been the street… but all the same,  it can’t have been comfortable or easy living for people who were already at the bottom of the heap.

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

Just a low and unassuming bridge marks the junction of “Nieuwegracht” (New Canal) and “Oudegracht” (Old Canal), much of the New Canal having been dug by hand.

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

There’s a lock that marks the main waterway connection with Amsterdam, as well as many smaller waterways that connect to various nearby districts.

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

This bridge is  called ” The Ladies Bridge”…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

Back in the city centre, we learn that a large building on the upper street level is the ancient  “Kastel Utrecht” (Castle Utrecht)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

A multitude of bird-life inhabit the canals too, we saw many riverbank nests on the more open and grassy parts of the canal, but also a next of chicks tucked neatly into a crevice deep under a bridge, and a crow who was being a tad fussy about the position he needed to be in, in order to drink from one of the rain water drainage pipes that  empty water from the street above, into the canal below.

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

Everything we saw from the water gave us a new perspective of how the water transport system used to work here, and since we also learned that some of the larger refuse collections are still made using barges on the canals,  evidence that the water transport system is still effective indeed.

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

September 9, 2012

Studies of Water and Waves…

Filed under: LIFE,Miscellaneous,PHOTOGRAPHY — kiwidutch @ 1:00 am
Tags: , ,

Today’s post is a photographic post… you know I’ve mentioned that I’m trying to get back into drawing again…OK, it’s not actually happening at the rate  I would like (too many other things happening at the moment with work and family) but I like to dream and plan a little for a future that has a bit more spare time.  As I take photos over the side of the Ferry of the surrounding landscape, I also notice interesting wave patterns in the water below me as the ship cuts through the water. I point my lens downwards and take some shots that may come in useful at a later date if I want to do a study of water movement…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

July 11, 2012

Fire and Water Dreams…

Whilst in the “Dreams”shop in Maungaturoto, I spied a really interesting water feature and candle holder. I’m not sure how the candles would hold up if the wall it was hung onto was in a windy position but I just like the idea, all rustic, rough and unpolished.

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

 

 

Next Page »

Blog at WordPress.com.