Saturday, 11 August 2012


Todays post is part of Shimelle's 10 THINGS ON THE TENTH.  I like to have a theme or a focus, so this monthly round up is an opportunity to share 10 things.  On this occasion, 10 photos: 

We recently took our camper to Chatham to have some modifications carried out.  I had done a Google search to see what was in the area as we were told the work would take about 5 hours.  There was the historical Dockyard but we have been there recently, so asked one of the engineers on our arrival.  'There's a childrens ball pool and a Tesco down the road', he suggested.  Not quite what I'd hoped for!  And so we turned to my son's phone for ideas and used it as a sat nav, heading for a 'fort'.  We had no idea what this would be like.  A grass area with a sign saying 'This was the site' came to mind, but hey, it was a destination and the weather was good.  So we set off and decided to take a short cut through what looked like a park.  

And that's where our day turned into something of a surprise and excitement.  Because we were greeted with this path.

Now.  We had already walked a good way down the path before I took this photo and came across an information board.  And that's when I learnt that this area is known as 'The Chiltern Lines' and that they form part of the country's best preserved defence for the 18th century dockyard.  A Dutch Raid in 1667 showed their navy could sail up the river unimpeded and to stop this happening again the river and its approaches became heavily fortified.  In order to do this, local farmers and residents were cleared from the land, so that the area allowed good range for firing cannons.  Of course, locals were upset about no longer having access to this land and there were some uprisings, and even today there are strict regulations about what the land can be used for.  It is now a Heritage Park.

Further on we came to an amazing naval monument dedicated to those who lost their lives at sea during the 2 world wars.  Names were written not only on the monument but around all the walls inside.  It's position and record of so many people left a lasting impression and it can not be captured in a photo.  

But there was still more to come!  Because when we reached our destination we discovered this too was Britian's largest Nepoleonic Fort!  How has this escaped us?  We enjoy travel books and programmes, visiting places of interest and local history.  OK, Chatham is not exactly local to us, but we have visited the area in the past and we research before we go.  But not knowing, actually, was all the more special because we had surprise upon surprise:


You can go for underground tours in the fort, which we left for another time, and amongst the old there was the new. At Chatham marina this block of flats looked eye catching with its face of blue glass. 

And the colour of these blackberries also made me stop.   A sign that fruit is ripening in the hedgerow and that it is the season for harvesting.  

Some of the photos I took on the day will be included in Rinda's Scavenger Hunt.   And some opportunities were lost.  There were people playing ball in the Chatham Lines Heritage Park, and piers along the river.  I just didn't think of taking these photos at the time.  But not to worry.  They provide a reason to go out again and I don't need much of an excuse!  
And I love it all the more when the day brings unexpected  surprises.....

Sunday, 5 August 2012


I am a member of Bookcrossing and recently decided I would become more active and involved. I have too many books so it is a good opportunity to pass some on, and I have been 'releasing' books in places such as tea rooms, and an antique centre.... just leaving a book on a table, so that someone else can find and enjoy it.  

And I thought a book about flower arranging would be great to leave in a garden centre, so while no one was looking I popped it among a display.   

There are some official Bookcrossing 'Zones'.  These are recognised places where people release or find books and I made a recent visit to one within a local tea room.  Now, I already said that my plan is to reduce my book collection, so I hadn't reckoned on bringing as many home as I left!  But one was by my favourite author (Elizabeth Berg) and the other two are good summer reading.  Oh well, these can go back in my pile one day, as books to hide somewhere for someone else to find. 

I love quirky things, and so imagine my excitement when I discovered another official 'zone' is a village phone box, you know the kind, the lovely red traditional box that once decorated our streets.  It seems the local council asked the villagers if they would like to make use of this one when it became redundant.  It is now the place where people post local events, and there is a shelf for books.  As you can imagine, it is on my list of  places to visit this summer, and I am putting a bag of books together to take with me.

Meanwhile, on holiday, my granddaughters joined in the fun.  We left books on the campsite and in a play area.  But the mouth of a  crocodile was the perfect place to sneak a children's book or two....

And what fun to leave a book in a Police Box!

Or hanging from a tree!

And while the fun is leaving books for others to find, there is the additional fun and hope that someone will one day enter a books unique number into Bookcrossing and leave a short journal.  And imagine my joy when someone did that, this week.  And they also became a Bookcrossing member.  So who knows, they may release the book again after reading it and then we can both follow it's journey!  

On Tuesday I plan to meet with other members of the local group in a pub.  They have warmly welcomed me and told me to bring a large bag for any books I want to take home!  Looks like I shall be busy releasing books and looking for more interesting places to leave them, but what a fun way to spend summer!

This post is part of Sian's Storytelling Sunday.  You can read more here.  Sian suggested that we think of something involving love for this months story.  Well, my love of books is qualification!!

Saturday, 4 August 2012

Photo Scavenger Hunt 1.

I SO love taking photos!  My camera comes everywhere with me and I don't need much of an excuse to use it, so I was excited to sign up for this summers Photo Scavenger Hunt, organised by Rinda

I'm doing quite well with my list, and had an unexpected surprise recently.  After dropping off Summer,  my daughter phoned to say she'd just seen a horse drawn carriage at our village church.  Well, since my  granddaughter LOVES horses we just had to run across!  I thought Summer was going to burst with excitement as she dragged me down the road and not only did we see the horses, but also the bride.  Two on my list for my scavenger hunt!

In my excitement I forgot to take a photo of the church!  But not to worry, because 
in the next village there was also a statue of an angel.

Other ransom photos were also taken locally 

 and more photos added when we attended the 'Opera in the Orchard'.  

One of my favourite photos taken was of the orchestra, but while on holiday I took another photo of someone playing a musical instrument that I liked even more.  I added a trail, and on other days out there were more photos to tick off my list .

So!  Progress is being made and I am having great fun.  In putting this together I realise there have been missed opportunities, but time is on my side and my camera is ready to go!  Today Rinda is hosting a mid-summer link up party.  A great chance to catch up and to see what photos others have taken.  If you would like to do this too, here's the link.  And it may not be too late for you to join in, if you are not already doing so!

1. A pier
2. A clothesline
3. A border
4. A roadside stand selling something
5. A train
6. A historical landmark
7. A person playing a musical instrument8. A person dressed as an angel or a statue of an angel
9. A fountain
10. A horse
11. A shadow
12. A maze, labyrinth, or trail.
13. A library
14. A person playing with a ball.
15. Someone dancing.
16. A bride.
17. A church, chapel, cathedral, mosque or temple.
18. A movie poster
19. An outdoor stairway
20. A swing hanging from a tree (or a hammock)
21.  A picture of you standing with something that symbolizes your nation.

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