isla de soto

our task must be to free ourselves from this prison by widening our circle of compassion to embrace all living creatures and the whole of nature in its beauty”

― albert einstein

misty ambiguity

twist

reedy

exhausted

haven

hoopoe, youpoe, weallpoe

crossed

fallen

if you’ve got it, flaunt it

nesting

setting goals

black redstart

bs

who am i?

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la españa vacía

only the sunset knows my blind desire for the fleeting
only the moon understands the beauty of love
when held by a hand like the aura of nostalgia

Nostalgia, Emily Barker and The Red Clay Halo


Inspirado en parte por la españa vacía, el libro escrito por sergio del molino

cerrada

mordaz

vacía

retorcido

camino

bloqueado

ironía

mordido

presionado

acerbo

después

abatimiento

refugio

desolado

centinela


*imágenes realizadas con olympus om10, objetivo de 135mm f/3.5, película de blanco y negro de ilford, sin editar*

lunes de agua

I wonder, would it be true and fair to describe Spain as the home of ‘fiestas’?

Each town, each community, often has more than one day set aside each year to celebrate one thing, or another.

Perhaps none has a celebration quite as distinctive as that held in Salamanca each year. Hot on the heels of the solemn processions and religous observance over Easter comes Lunes de Agua.

Literally ‘water Monday’, the (half) day fiesta which begins in the middle of the afternoon, on the Monday which follows Easter Monday, brings everyone in the family (young and old) together to celebrate the day on which, by long-standing tradition (dating back to the reign of Felipe II) the prostitutes of this ancient University city, banished during Semana Santa from its beautiful streets and plazas, were repatriated (with pomp and circumstance) from the far side of the river Tormes by boat. The option of simply walking back across the Roman bridge which lies in the shadow of the cathedrals apparently deemed inappropriate due to the nature and terms of their employment also described as ‘living in sin’.

The students of the city did not miss this opportunity to hold a wine soaked riverside party as they took to their oars to return the banished to their place of work.

To this day students of all ages are released from their studies to celebrate this liberation, friends and family across the city seize the moment to come together and celebrate.

A slightly less salacious aspect of the day is the tradition of eating hornazo, a delicious savoury pastry that (in my view at least) is best consumed after a long walk and accompanied by a decent bottle of red.

Which brings me to my photos, taken during a walk with friends at Ganadería Herederos Angel Sánchez Sánchez in the beautiful provincial countryside just a few km outside the city.

And yes, with thanks to our kind hosts and friends, hornazo and decent red were consumed.


*all photos shot with fujifilm x100f with fixed 23mm lens (35mm full frame equivalent) developed in lightroom cc with fujifilm ‘provia’ simulation applied*

Montemayor del rio


I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence:
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I—
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.
– The Road not taken, Robert Frost


An expedition along the Ruta de la Plata which traces the path of a still visible Roman road known as the Via de la plata.

Along the road which winds its way from Mérida to Astorga, we had a close encounter with a frisky bull and a less than adequate fence, (two) group(s) of brightly clad bikers, a couple of donkeys, some bees and some very friendly locals in a bar in Peñacaballera.

The incident with the bull involved a degree of clear, present and imminent danger and I felt stopping to take a portrait shot would perhaps have been inadvisable. The bull which features below was of a much calmer disposition, much less exciting than its cousin back along the way.

And of course there were photographs. There will probably also be blisters, aches and assorted pains.

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farewell wordpress wpc

Like many people, I suspect, I am saddened to see the unannounced demise of the WordPress weekly photo challenge. In the early days of salamancastreets the weekly prompts from the WordPress team often offered a much needed spur to action, created a platform and built a community.

The WordPress team, and their occasional guests, created a cherished sense of community. They will be missed.

How to choose a favourite? Not exactly Sophie’s Choice I know, but hey guys, you may be ripping out the soul from your blogging platform. Why not at least have issued some kind of warning, canvassed opinion, or even sought out those willing to carry the torch?

So, I publish again my very first photo for this esteemed challenge.

See also my posts on belgradestreets, andytownend and belgianstreets……

lloviendo

i woke to the sound of rain
― sylvia plath, the bell jar

see me

the face

in the rain

see me

the fingers

on the pane

see me

before

i am

wiped

away


*one of a series of shots made in salamanca with my ancient olympus om10, with zuiko 50mm f/1.8 lens, and loaded with ilford xp2 super ISO 400 film*

plaza

“Look at the rain long enough, with no thoughts in your head, and you gradually feel your body falling loose, shaking free of the world of reality. Rain has the power to hypnotize.”
― Haruki Murakami, South of the Border, West of the Sun


We often spend time wondering who, where, or perhaps what we are.

What we’d rather be.

Maybe, our lives would be better if we simply accepted who we are, where we are.

And what we have.

Let the rain wash over us, cleanse us.

Make us whole again.

And maybe then, we’d rather not need to be anything that we are not.

Already.


A thoughtful piece for this week’s WordPress Weekly Photo challenge which posed the rhetorical question ‘I’d rather be’

And, in an odd way, the fact that each of these shots was captured, in Salamanca’s Plaza Mayor, with a 35 year old Olympus OM 10 with a battered Zuiko 50mm f/1.8 lens and a fresh roll of Ilford XP2 Super ISO400, and posted here edit free, says something about where I’d rather be too.

Perhaps.