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Saturday, 26 April 2014

My orchids again


As I said in a previous post, this has been an amazing year for my orchids;  practically all of them flowered at the same time, and had dozens of flowers each.  In fact they are mostly still in flower.

But the special treat has been the flowering of my miniature orchid - for want of a better name - which I bought in Wells market about four years ago.  It had one spindly flower then, and once that one went, it  has not flowered again - until this year.  Now it has six flowers, on two stems - and several more buds.  They are really small, each flower is barely bigger than an inch.




You have to be patient with orchids - don't throw the plant away unless it has completely dried out.  This miniature orchid plant has been very healthy throughout the fallow four years, growing beautiful, small, glossy green leaves.  So I knew one day it would flower again!

Another orchid that only flowers occasionally - probably every two years - is a another relatively small one, although not as small as the miniature one.  The plant is small, with thin, long, light green leaves, but the flower is quite a big bigger than the mini one.  It has two colours, a variegated hot pink, and an amazing dark wine colour, velvety and soft looking.  It has two flowers only, on the one stem.




I don't know what their names, species, or whatever, are - I only know that they are not Phaleonopsis, which is the type of orchid that is commonly sold in supermarkets, because they are easy to look after and they flower at least a couple of times a year.  Don't get me wrong - they are beautiful - and I have several of those.  But the ones that are different really appeal to me.  Not easy to find - I have promised myself that one day I will go to a specialist orchid nursery and buy some unusual ones - those that need a lot of nurturing to actually flower! 

And this is my favourite photo of the wine-red orchid:




Good night!

Alicia


Thursday, 17 April 2014

Portsmouth


Last week I spent four days in Portsmouth attending the AGM of The Quilters' Guild of Great Britain.  I taught my new workshop on "Creating Work in Series", which was a success, and gave my new digital presentation on "Colour, Shakespeare and Maps".  I attended the Gala Dinner which was great fun, met a number of old and new friends, stayed in a very comfortable hotel, and had some delicious meals.

I also visited one of Portsmouth's attractions - Gunwharf Quays, with its tall Spinnaker Tower, in the shape of a sail.




There was a bit of blue sky then, but in general it was a grey day.  Portsmouth is, or was, a naval city and port, so there is a lot to see along the coast - from just watching the boats go past, to visiting the Mary Rose Museum (which unfortunately we never got round to....)

Below is a view of part of Portsmouth harbour from the top of the Spinnaker Tower.  The glass in the viewing platforms is somehow tinted, to protect visitors from the sun - but that day there was no sun, it was grey and overcast - so the photos from up there turned out rather green.  Nothing I could do about it....  I could Photoshop them onto blue I suppose, but I decided to leave them as they are - it's the colour both me and my camera were seeing from the top.




Closer-up, you can see lots of different small boats 'parked' in the harbour.




There are naval ships and sailing boats.




The stellae left by the motorised boats make nice patterns.




From high above, people look like ants.




You can zoom into the people eating in the cafe below.




On the viewing platform there is an area of glass from where you look below down the tower - strange feeling, like walking on air.




You have to take your shoes off to walk on the glass. Quite a drop!




When we got down, neither the sea nor the sky looked as green as from up on the tower!







Gunwharf Quays are also a big shopping centre - but I didn't take photos of the shops! nor bought anything.  But we did have a nice lunch in Jamie's Italian restaurant.

Good night!

Alicia

Friday, 4 April 2014

Views of Sitges


Here are some other views of Sitges.

Bagpipe player on the beach, late afternoon.



Strange branch on the way to the Marina.



The white church (daytime).



The blue church (night-time).



Eating out in the evening.



Red reflections.



Good night!

Alicia

Thursday, 3 April 2014

My exhibition in Sitges


And here are some pictures of my exhibition, taken when it was just set up.










And here is one when visitors were in.



Good night!

Alicia

Wednesday, 2 April 2014

Sitges town


There are many aspects of Sitges I like. The old town had a myriad of little streets, where it was easy to get lost at the beginning.




This  beautiful house in white and blue was very near the exhibition venues.



This house shined golden in the sun - it was near the Marina.



And yes, of course there is a Marina, full of beautiful boats.



And beautiful sandy beaches!



And there was one grey day, when it rained - well, more like a couple of hours in the afternoon....but it turned everything into a different reality, with the low clouds over the hills around the town.



Good night!

Alicia



Tuesday, 1 April 2014

Skies and seas of Sitges


The skies could be amazing!  And depending on the angle of view, and the camera angle, the same sky could look very different.

These are what I call the 'long clouds' - here in white, yellow and orange, on a blue sky and with a silver sea.



A little later, and from another angle, the clouds turned pink and light yellow.



A bit later, with the sunset, the sky became darker and the clouds looked stormy.



And at night, when the sky and the sea were very dark, reflections of the lights of the town turned the sea gold, silver, blue, green....



Good night!

Alicia