Monday, May 31, 2010

Luton carnival


been there for the first time ever today. I must say I was really impressed. it maybe not as big and famous as Notting Hill carnival, but on the plus side - neither is it so crowded. In Notting Hill I could see exactly nothing at all, and my understanding is that this is a rule, rather then exception. Here you really can see the parade from not far

Interestingly, I only noticed the heavy-duty straps (on the first pic on lady's shouder(, for example) that are needed to hold the costumes when I started to look through the pictures.

Weather wasn't great, but well, you can't have everything






Sunday, May 30, 2010

those eyes


battling with enormous energy dip, went shopping. it helps, yes.

They had birds of prey charity display at scotsdales garden center, as they often do on weekends. This owl was sitting on a glove of the handler. When confronted with the eye of the camera, it got agitated and tried to fly away - unsuccessfully, of course.

I think he was bothered that somebody (or something) had even bigger eyes than himself

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Pottery in Haria

We drove to Haria, which I think the guide described as "the prettiest village on Lanzarote", via road from Teguise. That experience (driving that is) I don't recommend to anybody - there are a few hairpin bends on the way down to the village, with very very limited visibility, and the road is narrow. Fortunately, there is another, much gentler road, coming from eastern side of the island, so you do have a choice.
The village is quite pretty and relatively green, but it's not as pretty as I somehow expected. What I really liked there was the pottery workshop, belonging to Aquilino A. Rodríguez Santana - would be cool to find him on facebook, but he's not there, apparently.


Those little pots are rather charming. We bought a couple of small ones (keeping in mind the luggage restrictions). I would like a bigger one, but maybe I will have a chance to buy when we move to the Canaries.


That's the owner of the workshop. The black inclusions in the clay he uses are particles of volcanic sand, as far as I understood (between his not very fluent english and my extremely limited spanish)



some of his sculptural work. I like the female figure the best.


While we were there, a young woman, his friend and colleague, walked in. She was not from Lanzarote, but from mainland Spain, on holidays, and she was also very curious to look around, pick things up and examine them

This ant helmet-mask she is wearing is made of papier-mache. It's quite scary. He tried to explain to us what it is for, and as far as I understood (see note of language barrier above) it goes as follows : he wears it when he stage protests against their beautiful island being taken over by hotels, which encroach on the land as ants.

Lanzarote pics on shutterstock

Monday, May 24, 2010

first real strawberries


on the way back home yesterday we bought a bunch of asparagus and these strawberries from a roadside trailer. they must still be from a greenhouse, but they are local (from Norfolk, that is) and nicely combined good taste with being extremely photogenic - large and shiny and nice even color - it rarely happens.

now their pics are already selling nicely on shutterstock - I am curious if I can get back the price I paid the first day of selling. So far not, but then us picture buyers didn't have their say yet

Sunday, May 23, 2010



went to Cromer today. seaside places in hot weather are real time holes - you park the car, go down to the beach, spread the blanket and next time you look at the watch an hour gone by.

I am still a bit worried about Timur's bump on the head (he slipped in the changing room of the swimming pool on Friday), but he seems to be doing fine. He discovered that hardened sand explodes into particles really nicely under little pressure

Saturday, May 22, 2010



this allium proved to be a brave little soldier, battling against the pretty much unstoppable advance of garden mint and, if not succeeding, at least not giving in. It was one bulb that was planted, and there are four flower-heads we had this year. The photo is composite image, I cut just one stem, leaving the rest of them in peace

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

sunset at world's end


Verdens Ende

I just read that it has panoramic views of the Skagerrak - a geographical name that I though was fictional up to last year, when we went to Denmark. Now it follows me around, or so it feels.


Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Hepatica nobilis


pretty plant with unattractive name.

I mean - "liverwort" - why on earth? apparently the leaves look similar to liver - weeeelll. I don't know. I won't say so, but then, our ancestors had pretty vivid imagination in any case - look at the constellation names. Ursa Minor? how do you figure that, huh? Dipper - yes, I'll grant you that. Little Bear - not really

Monday, May 10, 2010

wobbly spring Norway


wobble wabble.

there were ripples on this lake and there was no decent reflections to speak of when we got to the far end. there were some in the middle though

Thursday, May 06, 2010

Fuerteventura - around Montana Roja


one of the main roads on Fuerteventura, FV-1 from Puerto del Rosario to Corralejo, passes through the most spectacular it of scenery. First you go through rather lifeless lava fields before coming up to Montana Roja, and then you come into a different bit altogether - white sand dunes of Corralejo. Beaches by the dunes are amazingly beautiful. Some of them are more or less taken over by kite-surfers, but it doesn't really matter because you won't want to swim when wind is strong enough for them, and when it's not, there is no kite in sight. Well, maybe one or two.

Montana Roja seems to be an epicenter of roaming goats. They mostly stay in the lava area, but those guys above came into the dunes for a bit

Two very short videos on driving there first, coming up to Montana Roja

second, past the mountain, through the dunes. Lanzarote is visible in the background

Wednesday, May 05, 2010



originally, we booked Parque tropical apartment for a week. There was no problem at all with the apartment itself and ground/pool maintenance, and staff was perfectly friendly and very understanding when ash cloud closed the airspace and we couldn't fly back home when we were supposed to (so we stayed one more night there). But, if you are used to relatively quiet place, this could pose a bit of a problem - the apartments really *are* in the center of Puerto del Carmen, which means that if one of your windows is facing the street, there is going to be cars and people going past well into small hours. It's quite noisy. If you are from town somewhere, no problem, but for us, village dwellers, it is.

So, for the rest of our unexpected second week at Lanzarote, we went back where we were over Christmas - Hyde Park Lane. It is a bit out of the way (which means quiet nights and fine if your are renting a car). The only real drawback there is that the little bungalows are semi-detached (duplexes), and the sound insulation between two parts is practically non-existent. We didn't notice that over Christmas, because the second half was empty. This time somebody lived next door. Luckily for us, they were really really quiet not so young couple, so we had nice relaxing second week.

When we walked up to the reception to find out if we can just turn up or need to book ahead (turn up is fine), this beautiful cat appeared from somewhere and sat on the low stone wall surrounding the apartments. We admired it, and I am pretty sure kids were looking forward to getting to know him better. Sadly, he never shown up again

Tuesday, May 04, 2010

Teguise market


Every Sunday, there is a market in Teguise, in approximate center of Lanzarote. The is quite a variety of stuff for sale - from foods, via inevitable aloe vera products and lava jewelry to clothes and musical instruments. You won't necessarily want to buy something there, but it's a pretty village, and very lively on Sundays, well worth a visit just to look around.

The girl in the picture above was a very friendly jewelry-seller there. She was happy for her display to be photographed and posed herself. I asked if she had a facebook or email account to pass the pictures (if any f them were good). Unfortunately, she didn't have either. I am thinking - won't it be great if one of the people who see this picture know her of somebody who knows her? I know the chances are slim, but still - if there is anybody on Lanzarote you know, show them this pic. I will be very happy to send her a file in good resolution

Below are guys who entertained shoppers at some point, they were great too