This rock was my subject. Not that interesting? If you go closer you may reconsider.
When I was shooting that rock people were looking at me a little weird. It was located in front of the shopping mall Central in Bratislava, so you can imagine that there were a lot of people passing through. At one point, a man approached me and tried to see what I was shooting at with so much interest and passion. After a moment of concentration and study he told me that it looked like a meteorite.
Close up photography is very fascinating and creative. By moving in closer you see the subject from a different perspective. The subject is isolated, the background is out of focus, new details appear and the result is magical and unique.
Capturing a close up shot from the plants on the rock above was a great and rewarding result.
The turning of the season is always a great opportunity to capture the change of the surroundings.
Autumn marks the transition from summer to winter. One of its main features is the shedding of leaves from deciduous trees and plants. The leaves are changing colors and become yellow, orange, red and brown.
Red, yellow, orange and brown leaves are blending all together and create a colorful veil, which is embracing the earth and transforms the surroundings into a spectacular view.
All you have to do is find the word that connects the pictures – a common word!
Did you find it? What is the word?
Pairs! That’s correct.
This is nothing more than a long-term project of mine in photography. I set a goal to find and shoot anything in pairs and make an archive. It is not easy finding objects that are in a pair, so I always keep that in mind whenever I go out with my camera.
Yes you read right! Everyone who visited or lives in Cyprus knows that we don’t have railways or we won’t have in the future. So the only thing left is the past!
And yes indeed, we did have railways in the past, a part of our history, that even most Cypriots don’t know, especially young people.
When we visited Kakopetria village, a place that we really like and visit often, we decided to explore the villages close to Kokopetria, in case they had something interesting to see. On our way to Evrychou village, a sign about Evrychou Railway Station, caught our attention.
So we followed the road signs and we arrived at the Cyprus Railways Museum.
What we learned in our visit:
The Cyprus Government Railway (C.G.R.), as it was officially known, ran from 1905 until 1951 when it closed down due to financial constraints.
The first section heading from Ammochostos to Lefkosia (Nicosia -the capital city of Cyprus) was 57km long, and officially opened for public transport on October 1905. By December 1907, a further 38km had been added, from Lefkosia to Morfou. And by June 1915 a third, 23km long extension from Morfou to Evrychou had been added. With this section the line of C.G.R. was completed.
The Cyprus Government Railway was used in a number of ways and served both the colonial authorities and the local population.
The railway was an important conveyor of mail to and from Ammochostos harbour and carried mail overseas. It was also used for the distribution of mail throughout the island.
During World War II and post war years, the Cyprus Railways played a significant role as a prime mover of troops, stores and ammunitions from Ammochostos harbour to the Royal Air Force airfield in Lefkosia.
With time, road transport developed at the expense of the railway. So the British Government announced the closure of the C.G.R. on December 1951.
An extension of the railway which was built to serve the Cyprus Mines Corporation operated until 1974.
It would be very nice if we still had railways in Cyprus!
Every time I am visiting Slovakia or Czech Republic, I always buy these handmade traditional corn husk dolls. Not just for me, but I give them as small gifts to friends and family. I like them very much. They are cute, interesting, small and very light-weighted, so its easy to carry them with you home. You can use them as a home decoration and a small souvenir to remember the country you had visited.
A little bit of the background
I didn’t find much information. Just that during the second half of 20th century, the production of corn husk dolls had developed and turned into a traditional industry in former Czechoslovakia. As the name implies corn dolls, are made of dried corn husks which are joined together with thread – all made by hand. Some of them even carry small objects like flowers, basket, bread – made with real dough e.t.c. Slovak rural life was a big inspiration when creating the dolls, so it became the main theme. They are sold in souvenirs and folklore shops.
My mum has a lot of corn husk dolls. She created a small miniature village with corn people on a shelf in her living room! These photos are from her collection.
I don’t have space in my apartment to place them – as small as they might be – so I keep them in a drawer. I know, not a good place to keep them. They should be in plain view. Some day I will find them a place! But I have a corn lady bookmark that I use when I am reading a book.
When I was walking around Bratislava, I passed through a small pedestrian bridge – before the entrance of the old town at Michael’s gate. On the railings I saw a lot of lockers with some initials and hearts on them. I saw the same thing on a platform near the river Danube. So I took some pictures and as soon as I got home, I searched for information about that habit.
And here’s what I found
A love lock or love padlock is a padlock which couples lock to a bridge, fence or a gate to symbolize their love. Usually the names or initials of the couple are written on the padlock, and its key is thrown away to symbolize unbreakable and everlasting love.
The history behind that tradition comes from a sad tale located in Serbia at least 100 years ago, and it refers to the Bridge of Love (Most Ljubavi) in the town of Vrnjačka Banja.
And the story goes like this:
Nada, a local schoolmistress, fell in love with a Serbian officer named Relja. After they committed to each other, he went to war in Greece (World War I), where he fell in love with a local woman from Corfu. As a consequence, they broke off their engagement. Nada never recovered from that devastating blow and after some time she died due to a heartbreak from her unfortunate love.
So young women from Vrnjačka Banja who wanted to protect their own love, started writing their names together with the names of their loved ones on padlocks and place them to the railings of the bridge where Nada and Relja used to meet. The keys are thrown into the river below, so they cannot be found ever again. And evidently the bridge acquired the name Bridge of Love.
In the rest of Europe, love padlocks started appearing in the early 2000s.