CAMBODIA

 

After a great workshop in Vietnam, Dianne and I flew over to Siem Reap in Cambodia to see the Angkor temples and waterside villages on  Tonle Sap lake. The Cambodian people are happy and friendly. The country is 97% Buddhist and many of the children, from poorer families, go into the monasteries to take pressure off the families. 

We met Pau, who entered a monastery at eight years of age and is now in his early twenties. He enjoys the discipline of the monastery. He speaks good English and is studying education. His goal is to open a village school to improve the chances for young people to work and study.

© John Lovett 2017
Monastery accommodation is austere and simple.

© John Lovett 2017
Pau, happy with his life as a Monk.

© John Lovett 2017
Detail of intricate stone carving from Angkor Wat

© John Lovett 2017

Angkor Wat Temple

© John Lovett 2017

Stone gable carving Angkor Wat

© John Lovett 2017

Ta Phrom Temple – slowly being eaten by the jungle.

© John Lovett 2017

 

Thom Bayon Temple features large carved stone heads of Buddha and beautiful, intricate relief carvings of daily life back in the 11th and 12th centuries.

© John Lovett 2017

© John Lovett 2017 © John Lovett 2017 © John Lovett 2017  © John Lovett 2017

Temple monkey overcome with boredom

© John Lovett 2017

Temple monkey overcome with confusion

© John Lovett 2017

Temple monkey overcome with enlightenment.

 

© John Lovett 2017

Siem Reap petrol tanker – powered by a mechanical plough.

© John Lovett 2017

Fire pot vendor powered by a small motor scooter

© John Lovett 2017

Mattress vendor- powered by a small motorbike

 

© John Lovett 2017

With the luxury of a small truck, there is nothing you can’t carry.

 

From Siem Reap we travelled by tuk tuk down to Kampong Phluk – a village of stilt houses, some colorful, some old and thatched, built in the Tonle Sap Lake. It’s a fascinating village – life is lived entirely on the water. Kids grow up in boats and soon become skilled fishermen.

© John Lovett 2017 © John Lovett 2017 © John Lovett 2017 © John Lovett 2017© John Lovett 2017© John Lovett 2017 © John Lovett 2017   © John Lovett 2017 © John Lovett 2017 © John Lovett 2017 © John Lovett 2017 © John Lovett 2017 © John Lovett 2017 © John Lovett 2017 © John Lovett 2017

Advertisements

HOI AN

 

The old town of Hoi An stretches out along the Song Thu Bon River. A mixture of Chinese, French Colonial, Japanese and Vietnamese architecture give the ancient town an interesting character. The central markets run from before dawn till after dark. Every imaginable vegetable is available. Some weird cuts of meat, live ducks, chickens, fish, prawns and crabs are also for sale. Everything is fresh each day and the activity is mesmerising.Image © John Lovett 2015
Old Japanese Bridge

Image © John Lovett 2015
Fresh Fish

Image © John Lovett 2015
Meat and Cigarettes

Image © John Lovett 2015 Boat Lady

Image © John Lovett 2015
River Sunrise

Image © John Lovett 2015 Image © John Lovett 2015 Image © John Lovett 2015Vegie Market

Image © John Lovett 2015
For a few dollars this old lady will ferry you across the river.

Image © John Lovett 2015
Morning Fishermen

Image © John Lovett 2015
Boats along the River

Image © John Lovett 2015
Fresh Frogs

Image © John Lovett 2015
River Boatman (Hums Tom Waits Tunes)

Image © John Lovett 2015 Image © John Lovett 2015
Cast net Fisherman

Image © John Lovett 2015
Purple lanterns.

Image © John Lovett 2015
Cigarettes and Incense Image © John Lovett 2015
Purple Lanterns and Bougainvillea Image © John Lovett 2015
Fishing Fleet

Image © John Lovett 2015
Red Bridge cooking School where we cooked ourselves a feast and all became Vietnamese cooking experts.Image © John Lovett 2015
Lunar Festival Dinner

Image © John Lovett 2015
Lunar Festival Paper Lanterns

Image © John Lovett 2015
Lunar festival

Image © John Lovett 2015
Wooden boats

Image © John Lovett 2015
Afternoon Market

Image © John Lovett 2015Colored Lanterns.

VILLEFRANCHE SUR MER

Following our week in Annecy, we headed south by coach, via Avignon, to Villefranche Sur Mer, an historic town between Nice and Monaco on the Côte d’Azur

FRAN1956

FRAN1780Villefranche Sur Mer Sculpture by the sea

FRAN1709Enjoying the scenery – Annecy to Ville Franche sur mer

DSC06973Pondering history – a Kronenbourg, Exile on Main Street and Villa Nellcote straight across the Bay.

DSC06988A happy man with a half bottle of Chianti not so Classico

DSC06989Eleanor and a plate of Mediterranean delicacies.

DSC07005 DSC07015Our Hotel balcony was a hard place to leave.

DSC07089A quiet little square slowly transformed, by workmen and passing tour groups, to a place of confused chaos, but we pressed on with confidence and determination.

FRAN1698Pont d’Avignon

FRAN1752Pink Neon

FRAN1771Pathway to the water

DSC06942

FRAN1776

FRAN1786 Cocteau sculpture near the little church he decorated.

FRAN1787 Pink Chairs

FRAN1793 All of life’s luxuries packed into a spare plot of (very expensive) land.

FRAN1833 Vive la France

FRAN1850 Pink Roses

FRAN1853 Stacked market boxes

FRAN1860 Sweet, fresh and juicy

FRAN1918 Old Town, Nice

FRAN1919

FRAN1930Butcher shop mascot.

FRAN1971  Negresco, Nice – Where Isadora Duncan fell victim to a long scarf and a Bugatti in 1927.FRAN1991

FRAN1995Fantastic Paintings – no photos inside – see it if you are in Antibes

 

 

CORDOBA & GRANADA

Oops, Sorry, late post – forgot to hit the publish button

Heading south, the Spanish countryside becomes more densely packed with olive trees and much of the architecture has a strong islamic influence.

DSC05035

In Cordoba, horses are taught to dance…

DSC05055

…or transport visitors around the town

DSC05076

DSC05086

The Mezquita and the Cathedral of Cordoba is an amazing structure. After being blown away by the scale and beauty of the Mosque, you discover a huge Christian Cathedral right in the middle

DSC05094

 

 

mes

The decoration is mesmerising. The more you study it the more intricate it becomes.

DSC05134

DSC05136

Cordoba Cathedral

DSC05150

 

 

DSC05066

More Photos from Granada and the Alhambra.

DSC05356

DSC05384

 

 

DSC05689

 

 

DSC05490

DSC05485

DSC05493

DSC05494

DSC05501

DSC05554

DSC05572

 

pattern2

 

pattern1

DSC05618

boomerangs

DSC05716

DSC05738

DSC05744

DSC05756

DSC05760

DSC05782

BARCELONA

Everything is extreme in Barcelona – the food,  the fashion, the bars, the music and the architecture.

Antoni Gaudi’s amazing buildings dot the city and have become some of  the city’s major tourist attractions.

DSC04555

DSC04240

DSC04315

DSC04540

DSC04321

Sagrada Familia – still under construction after 120 years.

DSC04323

DSC04338

Barcelona balconies – making a medieval facade look like a Gaudi facade.

DSC04255

Some of the architecture prior to Gaudi was pretty wild and elaborate too.

DSC04607

9:30 at night and the city starts to come alive – bars and restaurants start to fill around 10 or 11 and crowds are heading home as the sun comes up.

DSC04347

Nail Polish pink Vesper.

DSC04232

Man with dog and sidecar.

The Barcelona Maritime Museum had an exhibition of giant puppets used for festival performances in the city. It’s a weird feeling standing next to these huge papier mâché figures, twice the height of an average human.

DSC04367

DSC04381

DSC04382

DSC04386

 

DSC04510

DSC04390

DSC04423

Sailing into Barcelona Harbour.

DSC04441

Tiring work selling candles.

DSC04466

Ham in Spain is an art form. Jamón de bellota, made from acorn-fed black-footed Spanish pigs fetches up around 200 Euro/kg for the best quality. The markets in Barcelona have hams ranging from thirty Euro/kg upwards and the vendors are happy to coax you into purchasing by slicing off tasty samples.

DSC04513

Barcelona’s Maritime museum is housed in beautiful old ship building warehouses near the waterfront.

DSC04398

This is a replica of the Royal Galley which was built in Barcelona in 1568 and was the dominant warship in the Mediterranean up until the 17th Century. The ship was 60 meters long and powered by 59 oarsmen.

DSC04517

Inside the galley is not near as impressive as outside.

DSC04548

Subtle Spanish sneakers.

DSC04613

Barcelona Beach architecture.

PRAGUE

The old city of Prague is an amazing collection of domes, turrets and spires. The ground is completely covered in cobble stones  and the Gothic architecture is fantastic – the only downside is that thermometers in Prague only need very small numbers.

St Vitas Church

Large Religious thing covered in gold, silver and angels – St. Vitas Church.

Inside St Nicholas Church – No man in red suit inside.

The Chapel of All Saints in the town of Kutna Hora, outside Prague, is completely decorated with human bones – the remnants of up to 17000 bodies killed by the plague in the 16th century.

 

PRAG1063

Kutna Hora – a quaint little town with some weird signs on the shop windows

Big gun in central Prague

The Palace Guards do a much better job of standing still and doing nothing than the white faced, sheet draped buskers standing on boxes around the city.

Buskers on Charles Bridge

Prague has very few old cars, in fact late model Porsche’s are such a common site that, to stand out in the crowd, the owners must go to ridiculous lengths.

These tiny blue cars are police vehicles.

Lost in translation

Like many bridges throughout Europe, Prague has it’s share of Lovers Padlocks. The idea is you take your sweetheart down to the bridge, pledge your undying love, attach the lock then throw the key in the river.

This guy must have had commitment issues and opted for a combination lock! (names were written in pencil too)

The ultimate extreme sport – a balloon ride over the spikiest city in the world.

OLD CORK STATION

About 120 km south of Winton, on the Diamantina River, are the ruins of Old Cork Station. It was first established in the 1870’s and served as the mail distribution point for the region before the town of Winton existed. It’s a sad sight to see what must have been an impressive sandstone building in such a remote area, slowly crumble into the dust. Unfortunately talk of saving and stablising the building have amounted to nothing. White ants, souvenir gatherers, government inertia and the weather have put an end to saving an impressive  piece of our history

Old Cork Waterhole is part of the Diamantina River. Supposedly full of Yellow Belly.

Scattered around the area are remnants of  old station life – broken plates and bottles, buttons,  nails, wire, even unused bullets.

If you remember the Redgum song, Diamantina Drover listen to this version by Christy Moore