Sunday, 30 October 2011

2nd Marsh -- October 23rd, 2011

These are from a week ago. Fall marches on. I haven't been lucky enough to capture any birds or animals for quite a while but the Chickadees are back to eating out of your hand (after pretty much ignoring people for the summer) so maybe I'll try for them on my next visit.

Today turned out to be a fungus day... lots of them.

Turkey Tails are very common in our part of the world.

I don't know the names of many of them. There are just too many.

There are always some geese at the marsh.

The trees at the marsh have lost most of their leaves. I assume it's the lake-effect since the marsh borders Lake Ontario. The trees closer to home still have lots of leaves.

The boardwalk in Ghost Road bush.

The bees don't have many wildflowers to visit now.

More Turkey Tails.

These almost look like berries.

This was a surprise to me. I saw a few Monarchs. They may have waited too long I think to leave for Mexico.

I've seen this fungus in a couple spots this year.

A red berry has found a snug home in this one.

The tiniest fungus I've come across... the top is about the size of a pea.

Gold is gorgeous, especially in bunches like this.

These have to be the last of the Himalayan Balsam at the marsh.

Moss on a jet-black log, along with some black fungus, that I've noticed is common on fallen Birch trees.

You have to look closely to spot any green at the Beaver Pond.

The Wild Cucumber seed pods are back, complete with curlicues.

Yet more fungi... but they do have a certain appeal don't you think?

I don't remember seeing this type of bee before but have noticed quite a few of them at the marsh this year. 

Notice the little green guy peeking over the top edge of the blossom, as though he's checking out the bee's attitude before he ventures further. The "bee" on the left blossom is a Bee Mimic, the one on the right blossom is a Micro Bee. Thanks John.

Fall is my favourite season. I only wish it lasted longer.

The Friends of Second Marsh web site...

A direct link to a map of the paths/trails in the marsh...

A link to a page that has my past posts re the marsh, in one place rather than scattered throughout this blog...

- fini -


Thursday, 27 October 2011

France # 2 of 5 -- Paris to Deauville -- October 2011

Paris --> Giverny -->Rouen --> Honfleur --> Deauville
Giverny is about an hour north of Paris. It's the town where Monet spent a good part of his life. He painted his famous Water Lily series here.

The boat isn't just for looks... this worker was skimming off the algae, as it's said Monet had someone do while he lived here.

His home was spacious, with flowers everywhere around it, as the curator has tried to recreate. The mixed flower beds are gorgeous.

The town of Giverny has that small town charm that enchants.

The Gothic cathedrals of Europe... there are 100s of them. This one is in Rouen. Ian (one of our tour-mates) quipped when we left Giverny, that we were "on the road to Ruin". :-)

No matter how many I see, I can't get over the beauty & intricacy of their exteriors. The craftsmanship on all of them is stunning.

The interiors are impressive too, but not nearly as much so as the exteriors in my eyes.   

As our tour guide brought to mind: Imagine a poor, illiterate peasant from the period coming into the cathedral after leaving his dirt-floor hovel. The towering, vaulted ceilings and the intricate carvings... I could imagine them thinking that they were in God's presence.

Another view of the exterior.

The town of Rouen.


Rouen itself is another charmer. The "blue bunch" in this shot are from an upscale tour group I'm guessing... rain gear provided.

The cathedral is in the background.

A cross was erected near this building where Joan of Arc was burnt at the stake. I question the accuracy of such monuments but it was in Rouen at least.

But her story is an incredible one. Leading an army at the age of 17... my God, I think I was capable of leading a dog around the block at that age, but not a lot more. She was burned at 19.

A brief timeline if you're interested...

Our next stop was the seaside town of Honfleur, on the English Channel.

As we walked towards the harbour, the first thing we saw was what was the harbour master's house in earlier times.

Slip in with your yacht, tie it up and have a glass of wine or whatever other poison you may prefer.

Narrow buildings are common in France. Even many of the hotels are about the same width as those in this shot. Our first hotel in Paris had an elevator that held Jane & I and one bag. The guy at reception sent the other bag up by itself. But you manage easy enough.

Some young girls in the harbour, obviously having a good time.

A stroll through town...

Sweet shops are made to look way too inviting.

Another shop window I couldn't pass without a few shots. Do any of these appeal to you? What's your taste? Fun?



The steeple of an old church in Honfleur.

A small church down by the harbour...

I was impressed in a few of the smaller French towns how they made even parking lots a little less obtrusive to the eye. Trees around some; trees within others. They almost blend into the town, instead of looking like they're just taking up valuable space.

Deauville was our next stop and where we were to spend the night. It's on the Channel too. We were dropped off here where we could wander down to the beach.


As a prairie boy, I'm fascinated by seashells. The brown bands on the beach here are 1000s of seashells with some seaweed mixed in.

Get Jane near a lake, the ocean, or in this case the English Channel, and it's shoes off and into the water. Sometimes I join her but more often than not I take pictures of her instead.

I think she'll probably come back as a duck in her next life.

Deauville seemed to me a town that was trying to be charming but the charm was overpowered by glitz. First impressions only so maybe it's a misread.

The Deauville casino. We didn't lose money at this one because we didn't go in. We waited 'til our next overnight to donate to the local economy.

Louis Vuitton... hold onto your wallets.

Our hotel in Deauville.

If you're interested, here's the link for France #3 of 5:

- fini -



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