211 / & trees

Huge old Plane trees are often leaning
near Istanbul's wonderful stone walls

penned by the same hand, so to speak

& looked after in a similar way, over many years

Then the inscriptions: so elegant, with the feel of
sunlight on water.


210 / stone stories

Every time I walked past these walls in Istanbul,
& now when I look at the photos, I saw them
as masterworks

Depending on the light, the stones glowed  


more like jewels

not just here, in many areas,
the masons clearly loved what they did

& those who repaired, also

I saw many walls where there was a deep respect for
their predecessor's work, even when matching stones or bricks
weren't available

at least those are the stories the walls spoke to me

there might not be too many 
as interested as I was/am

so this is just one area near our hotel, I took hundreds..
theres an extra dimension, being there, of course.
I love how photographs can put one back there, as if its real


209 / Nemrut Dagh

We reached the site of Nemrut Dagh quite late in the day,
with a walk to the top of the hill where Antiochus I had erected
statues of himself & the old gods, 
as well as a large hill/tumulus of fist sized stones,
which surely must have been broken up in situ..
maybe this kind of rock will shatter like that

He was the ruler of Commagene from 70 to 38 BC,
it lay between the Roman & Parthian empires
so he'd have been a clever negotiator

a wide view from the 7000 ft hill

& a lovely glow at sunset

Posed here in 1883, Osman Hamdi Bey,
was a painter & had a lot to do with setting up the
marvellous Archeological museum in Istanbul.
(I picked up some time-tripping tourists on the glass case)

& again, on site.


208 / water

Hasankeyf was another beautiful place; here the ruined bridge, & 
in the distance some of the numerous caves, reputed to have been
occupied since earliest times. The zigzag in cliff must be access
to many more

Thankfully, a planned dam has not yet happened: there's been insufficient 
exploration of the archeology, the place where the towns people
were to relocate has not been built, & so on.
Otherwise it would all be under water.
(Byron Bay is currently getting a lot of rain from a northern cyclone)


207 / out east

Have been viewing my many photos from a trip to Turkey in 2010,
not just the ones in the slideshow; seeing them put me right back there,
I loved the country, the countless signs of ages past, 
including the Ishak Pasha Palace


the builder was also the tax collector for the silk road traffic,
he became very rich, & really knew how to live in style,
so far from the capital

outside every window, that formidable landscape

with its many reminders of past battles
& kingdoms 

or more recent endeavours.


206 / wildlife 2

a water dragon.
Sad to say another surfer has been killed by a shark
at a beach about 20 minutes drive from Byron Bay.

carpet snake 
it was at least 5 metres long

forest person 
have been watching a vine make him
since its been raining again - beyond my back fence.
( I didn't alter the photo )


205 / wildlife

Theres a kind of cuckoo, a Coucal,
 that live around here, 
it was panicked by a neighbours dog, today

too fast for me

they are quite large & usually unafraid,
especially when hiding in a tree 

here's an echidna, haven't seen it for many months,
perhaps because of a dry spell after last winter

& the Terns are seasonal
- or here in Byron only some of the year.


204 / slow fade..

In San Miguel de Allende, I stayed 2 summers in 
this beautiful hotel, the Posada Carmina.
A wonderful old Spanish lady ran it. I had a room with this outlook,
& also a corner room overlooking the street.
I was in my room a lot, painting, & came to love the building,
& Carmina

There was a restaurant below, & a cantina next door.
There is a place named Hotel Posada Carmina,
am doubtful it could still be her; it has been 'upgraded',
unfortunately. It was over 30 years ago..

So was the trip down the Yangtze. The print has been a pinkish brown
all that time (dirty chemicals I suppose) so even photos
reflect the unreliability of memory.

I also enjoy to make changes in memory:
more recently, for the 2nd edition of A Recipe for Dreaming,
I used this as part of one illustration.
click to enlarge


203 / the west/southwest

New Mexico /Arizona area

if only I'd been more organised..
I'd have memory prompts from notes,
or something

this one could be in northern Mexico.

It is enough to have been there, & carry an echo
of the experience, internally.
Photos really anchor that, no?