Weekly Photo Challenge, Opposites

Hey WordPress guys, could you come up with an easy prompt once in a while please? Only joking,  know it’s a challenge.

Opposites. Well Exmouth, my closest beach, is opposite the nature reserve across the estuary at Dawlish Warren. Here is the nature reserve at low tide, in winter when its a rest stop for migrating birds, as well as a permanent home to a variety of birds.

warren2Now, the depth of field makes this look different from the reality. The grassy sand dunes are on the south west of the Exe, while the yellow apartment blocks are on the north east, with a mile of water in between.

warren1Does this second photo help or hinder? I promise you that nature and manmade are definitely opposites here!

Pimm's o'Clock
Pimm’s o’clock

Looking down from the balcony of my favourite Pimm’s hostelry, the sand spit on the opposite side of the estuary is Dawlish Warren nature reserve.

 

Connected to East Devon

and Exeter!

The verb “connect” is among the most versatile ones in contemporary usage. We turn to it to describe an emotional click with another person, but also to talk about the status of our (ever-proliferating) gadgets.The verb “connect” is among the most versatile ones in contemporary usage. We turn to it to describe an emotional click with another person, but also to talk about the status of our (ever-proliferating) gadgets.

Like many people I thought about my gadgets and photographed the connecting ones, including my last five years of mobile phones, just for fun. connectedThen I started thinking about what connected really means to me, family and friends goes without saying, I’ve posted a few personal photos here on my blog, but that isn’t what Lucid Gypsy is about.

If you’ve followed me for a while you’ll know that I absolutely love where I live. I like to travel whenever I can afford it, going out into the world, meeting people and having interesting experiences is wonderful, but to live in my little part of the world is incredible lucky. So here are some random photos of my local area, a place that I feel a deep connection to. First of all, Woodbury, a little village five miles from Exeter where I lived for a few weeks just after I was born.

The nearest beach Exmouth, is the one that most east of the Exe people choose, especially if they grew up in the days before mass car ownership. I’ve already posted lots of photos of Exmouth, and other places along the Exe and the estuary.

Just a mile from the centre of Exeter is my area, Heavitree, it has its not so wonderful bits, like too many takeaways in the main street, but it’s full of history and very friendly.

We’re right in the city now. There is evidence that Exeter dates back to 250bc. It was also the most south westerly Roman settlement in Britain.

It may not be grand, except for the Cathedral, but Exeter, east Devon and a little village in Nigeria, there’s a photo here, are the places I feel connected to.

The Exe Trail

I read about construction of a connecting section of the  Exe trail  some time ago and when I learnt that it had opened recently, I dragged the family out at Christmas to check it out. The trail covers about twenty six miles from Dawlish on the west of the Exe to Exmouth on the east and is part of National Cycle Route 2. Way back when I’ve cycled the west side, but now walking, camera in hand, on the east side is more my thing. I’ve shown you many photos of Topsham before and the new link begins at Bowling Green Marsh, from there it crosses the River Clyst via a new 120 metre bridge, which was floated down the Exe on barges. The bridge goes across the RSPB Goosemoor Nature Reserve, providing stunning views of the area that have never before been accessible.

The photos above are all on the original partof the walk.

Over time the bridge and boardwalk will blend in. To be honest I’m disappointed that the sides are quite so high and there are just peepholes to look through, but of course the wildlife has to be protected.

It was a freezing cold day at the end of December but I’ll start at the bridge next time and head further east. It’s definitely a wonderful cycle route!

CBBH Photo Challenge: Reflection

Marianne at East of Malaga says ‘It’s that time of year when many of us reflect over the past year and begin to look forward to whatever the coming year will bring’ and challenges us to post our reflection images for the CBBH Blog Hop

We also get to highlight two blogs that we have visited and enjoyed, so that others can hop over too.

My first is Celestine whose blog, Reading Pleasure has a wealth of poetry and Haiku. She writes prolifically of romance and passion. A real treat.

Next is Marina a very talented artist. Her work is vibrant, I’ve never seen such bright watercolours. Check out her Christmas trees, Dreamscapes, and Marwax, the most beautiful candles.

 

Butts Ferry and Exeter quay

It was a gorgeous afternoon for a stroll so I took the border terrorists and the camera down to the quay. The two don’t go together too well so the photos aren’t the best but you’ll get the idea. I did a circle down to the weir, across the suspension bridge – the dogs don’t like it because it bounces – then back over the blue bridge to where I began.

If you don’t want to walk up to the bridge, or if you just want a minute on the water, you can catch the ferry. If you do though you might just miss Fifi! I saw her gliding along with the gang, the odd one out of course, but looking good. In fact not only is she well, she’s getting rather stroppy, putting a much larger Mute in its place. Not too worry,by the time they emerged on the other side of the bridge it was peaceful again and off they went in search of the next bread throwing child.

Sunday Post: Favourite Spot

It shouldn’t take too many guesses to work out that my favourite spot is the river Exe! From north of Exeter, through the city and anywhere down to the estuary at Exmouth, I love it. 

http://jakesprinters.wordpress.com/2012/09/29/sunday-post-favorite-spot/ for worldwide favourite spots and Jake’s brilliant animations 🙂

Weekly Photo Challenge: Solitary

I knew exactly what I would share with you when I saw the theme this morning. This solitary black swan has been around the river for a year or so,  and Fifi as she is known, hit the local newspaper this week because she is lonely. There are lots of mute swans on the Exe and the canal, but of course black swans are native to Australia, not Britain. When I saw her last year, I assumed she had made her way up river from Dawlish, where there has been a colony for decades. Apparently not though, she is not ringed and it’s thought that she may have escaped from a private garden. She has been nest building but has no mate, the local birds have attacked her and she is probably feeling terribly rejected. The Dawlish swan herd says that she should be taken there, but that it would be costly to capture and move her and so far no one has offered to pay. I hope the newspaper article prompts a donation from a wealthy bird lover! Here she is. There are lots more interpretations of solitary over at The Daily Post