Monday, 27 June 2011
Dave and I had dinner near Picadilly Circus, but wandered over after to M & M world, which had just opened last week. It is 4 floors of super fun things, bright colours and lots of statues! I found out that there were 5 different M and M statues around, and got my photo with all of them. It was a bit like Disney, someone dressed up as a Peanut M & M - hence the cute photo because those are my favourite!
Kew has an entire section dedicated to Japan. It's quite a trek from the main entrance, but it is lovely out there. We grabbed a nice San Pelegrino Orange and set out on our walk. There is a great giant pagota and a lovely Zen garden. I really liked it there, and I'm going to be seeing a lot more of this type of thing in the near future! By this time it was a lovely sunny day, really getting warm. It would have been a lovely day to have been at Wimbeldon, but we had an equally good time at Kew!
I'm really proud of these! I never take time to set up a shot, and I captured these quite quick and they just happened to turn out. One is this cute little babbling brook which was off the beaten path in Kew, and the other is a really interesting tile water feature. I think it would have been cooler with a nifty 50 lens, but still, super like!
In the bottom of one of the greenhouses, there were some small aquariums, which were to demonstrate the different types of sea plants that Kew grows. They had a little aquarium, which appeared to not hold much at first, but actually held these little tiny sea eels. They were really cute and stuck their heads out of the sand!
Right behind the main greenhouse, is a smaller greenhouse, which just houses waterlillies, in a lovely pond. They really were huge, and lots of them. I really liked it in there, it smelt really good too! It was very serene and lovely, and had lots of ivy growing up on the wall. I think a chair in there, and I could have spent all day there!
The greenhouses at Kew date from the Victorian era, some are as old as the 1800's. They have been added to, and many have different wings and such, but they are incredible massive structures of glass and iron. The iron work is quite elaborate, and was painted all white, so I snapped a photo of one of the leaves up on the balcony. It was an awesome view from up there too!
I think I read in the paper that Kew Gardens has one of the world's largest collection of plants and flowers. I think that still only covers like 10% of all the species and such from around the world. They have lots of greenhouses, I think 3 major ones, and some other smaller ones, but these photos are from all over the gardens. It took us several hours to get around it, there were so many pretty things to look at and see.
Dave and I weren't far from Kew Gardens, so after deciding Wimbeldon was a no-go, we took the train over there. Kew is the most amazing place! We started in the first main greenhouse, which was full of these AMAZINGLY huge palms. Dave and I were very impressed. It was like the rainforest, lovely and warm!
After the bus tour, we went to dinner at Cantina Loredo, where we met Leon and Dave. Dave and I had a crazy idea to go and try and get Wimbeldon tickets. In the morning, we got all the way out to Wimbedon by 8am. It was so early, and there were already over 9000 people there! There wasn't any way we were going to get the first 6000 ground passes, so we queued for another 3 hours untill we finally decided we weren't going to get in that day. This man, which Dave snapped a photo of, was having a nap in the queue!
After getting my Uni results, and emptying my house in Bristol, I went home, had an evening with Shelby and then caught a very early train bound for London. I met Mummy, Daddy, Bart and Ruth at the hotel we usually stay at, The Trafalgar, which is right on the square. They were up at the hotel bar on the roof, which was 7 floors up. You could see over the square, Big Ben, and the Eye from the roof. It was really cool from up there! I did catch this photo as we were leaving to go take the bus tour. I'm quite proud of it!
I have good friends in Physics, Rich and Will, who had a final year project which involved working on the roof. Bristol has I think 2 telescopes on the roof, but the big one outside is the biggest and you can see it from really far away. The boys only had the keys for one final week, so I got to go up and see the whole of Bristol from the highest building in the whole city. I could see the Union, the Cathedrals, the Downs, Cabot Circus and so much more! I really enjoyed getting to be up there, and I snapped lots of photos, but this was the best!
Sunday, 19 June 2011
On Sunday, before we drove home, we had a walk down Prince's street in the main town centre. I really struggled with taking good photos of grey buildings against a grey sky, so I got just this one of a railing outside a church. I would have loved to have gone inside, but there was a service and we weren't allowed!
We drove some more to the little town of Pitlockery, where Scotland's smallest distillery, the Erdadour distillery is. We got a little tour, and quite a lot of tasters of the whiskey, before we got to go in and buy some! I took these photos in the store itself, which probably wasn't the best thing to do, but I loved all the different coloured casks that the whiskey bottles were presented in!
I love highland cows. Kind of like I love sheep, but even better because highland cows have so much hair and are really cute with their little horns. We had seen many cute little stuffed cows, and even cow slippers, but the best was this hat that we found in the castle gift shop. I loved it! It was fuzzy, warm AND cute! Shame I never would wear it out in public, but it was super adorable! The castle tour was really good, but it was a shame it was raining so bad. There are apparently really good views all the way round the castle, but it was so foggy we couldn't see a thing! The hat was a cute cheer up to end the trip!
Most of the rooms within the palace at Stirling Castle are unfurnished, and so there wasn't much to take photos of, but there was a pretty impressive fireplace with some really cool iron safety net, with these very cool little knight figurines. They were actually quite big. I loved how detailed they were, and although it took me like a million attempts to get this photo, I loved how it turned out! There were tons of people in the palace because of the rain, which never seemed to end. It seemed quite crowded, and I felt a bit rude taking photos instead of listening to the tour guide, but I can multitask!
We drove past Falkirk to Stirling Castle, which is a very important castle in terms of the monarchy and such. It was pouring with rain, but we made it in time to catch the guided tour, which ran on the hour. We got taken to the great hall, which has been completely restored, complete with these lovely stained glass windows. The coats of arms represent important people at the time, maybe earls, or people with money in the area. I loved how dark the room was, and the wrought iron candlesticks looked against the bright glass!
This is an amazing feat of Engineering, which is a wheel which lifts a boat from the canal up to another one much high up, removing the need for lots and lots of canal locks. We were lucky that we got there in time to see it, it was great! All these photos are in monochrome, because it was so grey and murky outside anyway, I thought I might as well experiment with greys!
We got up Saturday and drove to Falkirk, and it was just so so rainy and grey. Not nice at all! I had read in the pamphlet that there were going to be these two MASSIVE horses which were being put in a field somewhere there, but sadly they wouldn't be complete untill 2012. At the Wheel museum, they had two replicas, so I was pleased as punch, and had my mum snap a photo!
So I found a new thing I love to photograph, along with benches, and lampposts and many other things - valves. HMS Britannia has a tour which takes you through all the lovely Royal quarters, but also below deck, where all the sailors worked. I loved these photos, they arent terribly exciting, but I thought they really represented the type of work they did there!
We drove up to Edinburgh on Friday and because we got there in the afternoon, we did a mad dash across the city to see the HMS Britannia before it closed. It was the royal ship before it was decommisioned, and the Royal Family used to bring it up to Scotland a lot and explore the outer parts of the islands there. It was really beautiful, and had lovely sitting rooms and such, lots of gold and lovely bedrooms. It was really good to see!
I found these flowers on the way back from the beach, and I just loved them. They are SO bright and perfect, but it was very windy, so I had to work at not taking a photo of my hand while I was trying to get the shot! I took so many, and this one was the least blurry, so I was quite pleased!
Down near the beach, there are some gates which are blue - more of a seafoam blue and they were so impressive! I loved how blue they were! It reminded me of Shelby's room at home! I found it quite hard to take photos in Portmerion, and get the whole feel of the place, but I loved this photo especially!
Saturday, 18 June 2011
On Wednesday I drove up to see Mummy, Bart and Ruth who were in Portmerion, in Wales, to see the cute little village. After 4 and a half hours of driving, I arrived and it was so lovely to see, it is based on an Italian village, and is full of bright colours and lovely landscaping! It is also along the beach there, and so we got to explore down by the lighthouse there too. We joked that Bart and Ruth could tell people that we jetted off to Italy for a few days, while they were here, and that was the village that we lived in! Hehe! I liked how bright the place was, all the buildings were yellow, or pink or blue, but it seemed a bit empty, but that may have been because it was closing soon!
Tim and I went out to cheer me up, and decided to traipse around the downs, essentially looking for the lunar eclipse, but knowing Bristol, it was cloudy, and so we couldn't see anything! We walked around, down all these little paths which I never knew existed, and took some photos of the bridge!
Friday, 17 June 2011
When we were on our walk, there was a lovely horsey there, running around in the fields! I was so happy to get a photo because I love how happy he looked! When we were having lunch, there was a caterpillar on a blade of grass which was so cute! I dont think I have seen one in ages, so I needed a photo!
Russ and I went on a walk, to find somewhere to eat our packed lunch. If you go past the bridge and keep walking, there is a lovely little bridge which leads off to a path, which goes off into the countryside. It was so nice to be out in the fresh air and it was sooooo green there! There are also some woods there, which if I had had the right shoes on, would have been great fun to explore!
There is also a graveyard (and a church) in Castle Coombe, with lots of very interesting burials, from realllly old to very recent, and the ivy is growing all over the stones giving it a very pretty photo. The sun was shining and so it made it look very bright and cheery, which isn't common for a graveyard!
Castle Coombe is basically just a little road, a single track road, with houses either side, and a large hotel/manor house thing at the bottom of the street, and a little bridge. The bridge is adorable, and is cute, and there are benches there to sit and look at all the scenery.