Archive for the ‘Photos’ Category

Homemakers

Saturday, March 28th, 2015

Last weekend, we went up to Steamboat Springs to visit with Marion’s cousin Hal. It was a good weekend – the last hurrah for the ski season – and we had a good time. The highlight of the trip, though, was what we saw on the trip. We usually drive from Denver to Silverthorne, take state highway 9 north to Kremmling, then turn west to go through Rabbit Ears Pass to Steamboat.

We often see pronghorn antelope near Kremmling, and this trip was no exception. We also saw a few bighorn sheep grazing beside the highway, but the highlight was just on the northern edge of Silverthorne. Click for larger.

NestingEagles

Beautiful. This was the best photo I got of them. I did get this nice one of the male (I think) flying off.

FlyingEagle

Then yesterday evening, we went for a walk. I’d noticed on my commute to and from work that there seemed to be something nesting in a field by Standley Lake. The route we normally take doesn’t go too close to that field, but we detoured to see if I was correct about there being an active nest there.

I was.

NestingOwl

I took a large number of photos, but this is the best one that shows both the nesting parent and the fledgling. On the far side of the field, there was a couple sitting in their backyard. The woman got my attention and directed me to where I could see the male.

SingleOwl

I got a number of good photos of him, but I like this one the best, because of the way his horns are being blown by the wind. The lady also told me that the nest had been shared for several years between the owls and a pair of red-tailed hawks.

I presume the hawks nest later in the season. I’ll keep my eyes open for that.

My weekend could have been better

Monday, February 9th, 2015

Not that it was bad, but it could have been better. Yesterday, I made meatballs. Good meatballs. Made a spaghetti sauce and pasta to go with them. It was all good, then I decided to open a bottle of red wine to go with dinner. I pulled out a bottle that had belonged to my father, which didn’t have much of a label. I could read parts of a few words, and could tell that it was French wine, but that was it. Unfortunately, the wine was well past its prime – it was a weak, brownish red, and had a distinct vinegary flavor. So, I discarded it and opened a different bottle, which was still good.

Later, I did a search on the partial words I found on the label, and found that currently, recent vintages are going for $90/bottle. In 2003, the wine was $400/bottle. I’m not sure, but this may have been the bottle I bought for Dad’s 50th birthday. The wine was a couple years shy of 50 years old at the time, and I remember telling him, “Don’t wait for it to catch up.” If it is that bottle of wine, it was a vintage that was over 80 years old, and I’m not surprised that it had turned to vinegar.

Then today, Marion and I went to Barr Lake State Park and walked around the lake (a 9-mile walk). Barr Lake is a fairly reliable bald eagle nesting area, so we were hoping to see at least one. We saw a lot of seagulls, a lot of geese, a few hawks, a kestrel, at least one eagle which was either a golden eagle or a juvenile bald eagle, and I took a lot of pictures. Unfortunately, when I got home, it was brought to my attention that I had neglected to reset the resolution at which my camera took pictures.

Earlier this week, I’d been taking some product photos for work, to be uploaded to the web. However, resizing 18MB photos down to 130×150 pixels for thumbnails caused problems. Selecting 720×480 for photos in the camera solved the problem. However, I hadn’t realized that I was still taking photos at that resolution today.

I have several photos of an eagle’s nest that appear to show an eagle on the nest, but it’s not quite good enough to tell, and there’s no zoom available on the photos.

In other words, a good weekend with a good meal and good photos, but it could have been better.

UPDATE: I wrote and posted this late Sunday night, but it got noted as published just past midnight. Apparently, my ISP is on MST already, or is located in the Central Time Zone.

Eastern Europe, part 2: Sighisoara

Tuesday, October 14th, 2014

We left Budapest on an overnight train to Sighisoara, Romania. I did not sleep well on the train, because it was hot and muggy, and the bunk was too short for me. Sighisoara itself has a small “old city” on a hill, which is surrounded by the larger, more modern, main part of the city.

Sighisoara - Looking Up

We stayed at the Hotel Sighisoara in the old city.

Sighisoara - Hotel

One of the entrances to the old city is through a gate in the base of a clock tower. The clock has figures that are supposed to perform actions on the hour, but the clock has been broken for a long time.

Sighisoara - Clock Tower

One building had an interesting architectural feature. I have no idea what’s going on, other than I presume someone thought it was appropriate.

Sighisoara - Stag Building

Sighisoara is the birthplace of Vlad Dracula, also known as Vlad Tepes (Vlad the Impaler), a name he was given after his death. There is a picture of this bust of him in the Wikipedia article about him. The plaque reads (with a few Romanian letters I haven’t used):

Vlad Tepes
1431-1476
Domnitor al Tarii Romanesti
Intre Anni
1448;1456 – 1462;1476

It means, “Vlad Tepes, 1431-1476, Ruler of Romania during the years 1448-1456 and 1462-1476.”

Sighisoara - Tepes Statue

The name “Dracula” came from his father, who was a member of the chivalric Order of the Dragon (“dragon” being “dracul” in Romanian back then – we were told it has a meaning more like “devil” now). The house he was born in is now a restaurant, which we ate in the first night there.

Sighisoara - Dracula Restaurant

We took a day trip to see a few old villages and churches. The only photo I’m showing from that trip is of a window – you can see that there is a glass pane that’s been added, but the original window has a wooden block used to “close” it.

Old Window

The afternoon of our second day in Sighisoara, we took a bus to Brasov.

Eastern Europe, part 1: Budapest

Monday, September 29th, 2014

Our tour of eastern Europe started in Budapest. We got there two days early, which turned out to be a good thing – the night before the first day of the tour, the weather turned wet, so most of my good photos come from the time before the tour started.

I took about 500 photos in Budapest, so there’s a lot that I won’t be showing or talking about in this post. For those pictures I include, clicking on them will get you a larger version.

Budapest was originally two cities, separated by the Danube, with Buda on the western side, and Pest on the eastern side. We heard a number of references to “the Buda side” and “the Pest side” during our stay. Our hotel was on the Pest side, and we crossed the Danube several times, both on foot and on tour buses. We never did get around to taking a Danube cruise, though.

There were a number of beautiful and historic buildings in Budapest, including St. Stephen’s, the Doh├íny Street Synagogue (near which I had some wonderful honey-elderflower ice cream), and the Parliament building. Buda Castle was pointed out on the city tour we took, which was somewhat amusing, because it was destroyed during World War II. Some of its ruins are still visible near the Presidential Palace, which is the white building on the hilltop to the right of center in the photo below. The yellow building on its right is, IIRC, a music school, and the large building to its left with the green copper rooftops is a museum. My understanding is that Buda Castle covered that entire area (roughly from the center of the photo almost to the spire on the far right).

Buda Castle

Some of the older buildings had interesting architectural details, such as these satyrs on a hotel exterior:

Satyrs

There were some whimsical decorative touches as well, like the entry to a teahouse near our hotel:

Teahouse

Also whimsical, or at least strange, is the astroturf topiary that we saw in a few places.

Astro-Topiary

And who can doubt the whimsy of a statue of “Anonymous?” The tip of the pen appears polished because a legend has grown up around it that states that holding the tip of the pen will make you a better writer.

Anonymous

We enjoyed our time in Budapest. We had several very nice meals – we liked one restaurant enough we went back again – and we could have spent significantly longer seeing more of the city. Once the tour started, though, we had one day in Budapest with the group before we took an overnight train to Sighisoara, Romania.

Autumn Colors

Sunday, September 28th, 2014

We went up the Peak-to-Peak Highway to look at the aspen this afternoon. If this wasn’t the best weekend for it, then last weekend must have been, but probably not by all that much. We drove up Coal Creek Canyon to where it hits the Peak-to-Peak between Rawlinsville and Nederland. We should probably have gone through Boulder Canyon into Nederland, though – traffic into and through Nederland was horribly slow, but coming up through Boulder would have bypassed most of it.

People used to the wonderful autumn colors of the hardwood forests of the east won’t be terribly impressed, but aspen is what we have here, and it’s certainly pretty.

Aspen1

Aspen2

We stopped in Lyons for a late lunch. They’re still recovering from the flooding, but, as they say at the visitor’s center, “Any time or dime spent here helps the recovery.”

Seen on this evening’s walk

Thursday, August 14th, 2014

Three-Great-Horned

I wasn’t planning to go that way, anyway

Friday, November 5th, 2010

Say what?

Why, yes, my priorities are inappropriate

Friday, October 29th, 2010

Every year, I think I’ll carve an impressive Jack-o-Lantern. Most years, I don’t even try; I just carve a simple face at the last moment. A few times, I’ve worked up a pattern of my own and carved it.

This year, I downloaded a few patterns, then picked one that appealed to me and carved it. There are a number of people who do more impressive ones, but I like the way this one came out.

First, a photo with flash:

Dr. Horrible jack-o-lantern

Next, a photo taken without flash in a darkened room, showing the image better:

Dr. Horrible jack-o-lantern

I think it came out pretty nicely, and I expect my daughter to appreciate it.

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Saturday, October 23rd, 2010

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