Thursday Thoughts – Bunratty?

The name Bunratty, Bun Raite (or possibly, Bun na Raite) in Irish, means ”river basin” of the ‘Ratty’ river. This river, alongside the Bunratty Castle, flows into the nearby Shannon Estuary. We visited for some hours and really enjoyed its genuin feel.

 

Bunratty Castle Plaque in Irish and in English

The first recorded settlement at the site may have been a Norsemen settlement/trading camp reported in the Annals of the Four Masters. in 977. But several castles were built – and lost – here.

The fourth castle, the present structure, was built around 1425. In 1956, the castle was purchased and restored by the 7th Viscount Gort, with assistance from the Office of Public Works. He reroofed the castle and saved it from ruin. The castle was opened to the public in 1960, and with its genuin 16th-17th century furniture, tapestries and works of art it has become a great tourist attraction.

 

 

 

 

 

Thursday Thoughts – A Kindred Soul

In Dublin there are many capturing buildings, but never did I imagine myself trying to photograph shopping centres…and with such relish.

St Stephen’s Green felt like a rather newly built, modern place, with all the light and all the windows I could dream of.

So, we went inside to explore. And I truly found a dream of white and green – the same fresh green colour dominating many of the interior decorations we saw in Ireland.

Quite the cake! We walked through the whole building and found the architecture fresh and matching in every detail.

Then we walked up to one of Dublin’s oldest shopping centres, Powerscourt. I wanted to see the old mahogany staircase – original from the 18th century.

Live piano music filled the air with dreams from another century…

…and the open court was an old style dream – filled with lovely tea drinkers chatting away…

But nowhere was the mahogany staircase to be found. We marvelled at old hat shops and new hat shops, colourful furniture, jewellery stores and old, wooden floors. Where was the staircase? When we had given up trying – we finally found it on our way out, at the back of the store.

I first saw it in the mirror, and was so taken in by it, that I found myself in the mirror as well…

In the 18th century…the wood carvers were very skilled. The smooth feeling of the wood, the beauty of colour and shine, the intricate patterns… I wonder how long it took them to finish this magnificent staircase.

I guess I loved both shopping centres – but only in one of them had a kindred soul.

Thursday Thoughts – El Capricho

Why do I love Antonio Gaudí? Maybe because of his love for nature’s wonders – starting when he was only a small child. His way of using nature’s forms and designs in everything he created. Making the pillars in Sagráda Família with scars like the tree trunks get when they have lost a branch, making lamps look like flowers and light spill out like waves in the sea…

In every detail he was …mirroring nature.

In Comillas, on the north coast of Spain, you will find this ”folly” – El Capricho – by Gaudí, built for Máximo Díaz de Quijano (a relative of the marquis of Comillas) in the 1880´s. You immediately recognize his style using iron structures, glazed pottery and stained glass.

Come, let’s take a ”folly” walk …

In my dreams, a dinner with Antonio Gaudí would be optional… to get the opportunity to listen to his ideas and maybe discuss nature’s impact on humans – body and soul. I would have had many, many questions…

I was lucky enough to meet him in his garden, sitting there admiring his work. I tried to get some answers, but mostly we sat quietly contemplating…me admiringly of course. But, I am so thankful for having finally met him – my favourite architect.

Warsaw – A Miracle of Old and New – Stroll II

Den första kvinnan att få Nobelpriset var Maria Skodlowska – Marie Curie. Hon föddes här i Warszawa och vi gick förbi hennes födelsehus.

Marie Curie fick priset tillsammans med sin man och Henri Becquerel för sin forskning på radioaktivitet. Senare vann Marie priset också i kemi sedan hon upptäckt två nya grundämnen – radium och polonium (namn efter hemlandet Polen). Hon fick även ett grundämne döpt efter sig själv, curium.

Curie dog av aplastisk anemi efter att ha utsatts för radioaktivitet under många år. Hennes anteckningar måste förvaras i blyboxar, på grund av radioaktiv smitta.

Marie Curie är Polens mest framstående vetenskapskvinna och ligger begravd i Pantheon i Paris.

From Warsaw came the first woman ever to win the Nobel Prize – Maria Sklodlowska or Marie Curie. She recieved it together with her husband, Pierre Curie, and Henri Becquerel for their research on radioactivity. Later she also won the Nobel Prize for chemistry. She discovered radium and polonium (named after her home country, Poland).

Marie Curie even gave her own name to an element – curium. She died from aplastic anaemia after being exposed to radiation for many years. They say that even today you should not touch her notes, and they are now stored in leaden boxes.

Poland´s greatest scientist is buried in the Pantheon in Paris. This picture shows the house where she was born.

Praga heter den del av Warszawa som hyste arbetarkvarteren. Vi letade upp den gamla vodkafabriken, Koneser, som en gång var Polens mest moderna och producerade 1/4 miljon flaskor per dag och hade 400 arbetare.

Praga is the part of Warsaw where the working class used to live. Here we visited the old Vodka factory – Koneser. Not in use anymore, but the buildings are still standing as a monument of days gone by. New Gothic style and still beautiful in their own way.

Fabriken är nu nerlagd, men är under restaurering och ska användas till konst, kultur och underhållning.

Once this was the most modern factory in Poland, and produced 1/4 miljon bottles a day and had 400 workers.

Today the buildings are being restored and used for art, culture and entertainment.

Praga Koneser Center is its new name.

The entrance in Zabrowska Street.

Tillbaka i Gamla Staden igen, gick vi genom vackert målade gränder ner till Gnojna Góra, som kan översättas ungefär ”Dynghögen”. Här kastades allt avfall, och man trodde även sig kunna bota syfilis genom att gräva ner den smittade upp till hakan i dynga. Historien förtäljer inte hur väl detta slog ut…

Back in the Old City again, we went down to Gnojna Góra, which should be translated as ”Dung Heap”. Through very picturesque and colourful arcs and rows of houses, we reached the place where people were supposed to get healed from syfilis. The method meant being buried up to their necks in the dung…No records of the effects though…

Från tidningsförsäljare ute på gatan till glitter och glamour inomhus.

From outdoor newspaper salesmen to indoor glory.

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Eftersom Finlands president var på besök denna dag hade vi bråttom för att se Den Okände soldatens Grav.

As the president of Finland was visiting this day, we had to hurry to see the Unknown Soldier´s grave.

Frederic Chopin föddes strax utanför Warszawa, men flyttade utomlands som 19-åring och kom aldrig tillbaka. För att betyga fosterlandet sin kärlek lät han begrava sitt hjärta i Warszawa.

Frederic Chopin was born just outside the city of Warsaw, but left as a 19-year old and was never to return to his home country.

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Tillbaka på hotellet innebar en resa från det gamla till det nya igen. Det här är utsikten från vår balkong.

Back to our hotel again meant back from the old to the new. This is our view from the balcony.

# 34 Bur – Cage (74/365)

På språng inför vecka 8, då jag alltid sätter om alla mina inomhusblommor (171 st). Plantskolan har utökat sin arsenal av roliga accessoarer för ett hem. En bur i naturlig storlek…intressant är att då blir engelskans cage much more fitting. För så kan man benämna en bröstkorg.

This cage is a cage in more than one way – a life-size cage. Found in the store where I today bought everything needed for the care of my pot plants. Week 8 is when I always groom all of them and give them new soil. I have 171 indoor plants.

 

# 237 På sniskan – (a tad) askew (36/365)

Vi hade en trevlig dag i Malmö, men det är bara bilden som var/är på sniskan…

We had a glorious day in Malmoe, but it was only the picture that ended up a tad askew…

More style…and tasty things

More style – food!

Clothes and accessories

Art, toys and peculiarities

Necessary beauties…

Old remedies…

Travel theme: Meeting Places

Ailsa’s Meeting Places is a real treat – now we can find places to meet in reality – and virtually – all over the world!