Saturday, 25 June 2011

Midsummer

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On Midsummer Eve, going out to my dad’s old place, I got off the bus close to this old stone circle – not among the most impressive in Sweden, but still around 2000 years old. It was hard to get a good photo view of it on a grey summer day. It is quite close to the road and there are also modern buildings close by. In this photo I managed to edit out an electrical cabinet in the background. The flowers in the foreground are Lupines; very common around here at Midsummer.

… … …

Below is a frosty autumn photo from the same place for comparison.
I probably spent an hour finding it on the computer, convinced it must have been back in 2009 I took it. Turned out however that it was as recently as in November 2010 – only 7½ months ago.

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The stone circles of the Iron Age (ca. 500 BC – ca. 400 AD) were a characteristic burial custom of southern Scandinavia, especially on Gotland and in Götaland during the Pre-Roman Iron Age and the Roman Iron Age. In Sweden, they are called Domarringar (judge circles). The circles are usually round, or elongated ellipses. The stones may be very large and they are usually between 9 and 12. Sometimes there are as few as 6–8. Excavations have shown burnt coal in the centre of the circles and they are nowadays considered to be incineration graves. There is also a widespread tradition that the circles were used for so-called “things”, or general assemblies.
(Source: Wikipedia)

Saturday, 18 June 2011

Friday My Town: Fishing Day

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Hey, there’s a fish in my bathtub!

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More than one, actually.

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One Saturday a few weeks ago we could see these fish in a big tub in the Town Square in connection with an environment theme day. They were bred at a fish-farm to be put out in a lake or river.

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I will be taking a break from the Picture Book blog for a while. Explanation to be found at my other blog Beyond the Lone Islands. In the next few weeks I’m more likely to turn up on that blog than here. I had this post half-prepared though, having “saved” these pictures especially for the fishy FMTSO theme… ;)

Wednesday, 15 June 2011

Watery Wednesday: Mallards

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Can you tell whether I’m real or just a garden ornament?

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Oh I like this flower-bed! The colours suit me, don’t you think?

Tuesday, 14 June 2011

Ruby Tuesday

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Not sure what kind of flower this is. But it’s red!

… for Ruby Tuesday

Monday, 13 June 2011

Mosaic Monday: Dawn

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I’m rarely up at dawn – which is really early here this time of year – but one night I happened to be out of bed just before 4 a.m.; only half awake, but as I glanced out of the window, these colours met my eye; and I grabbed the camera that was sitting on my kitchen table…

One of the four photos in this collage was ‘mirrored’ in Paint Shop to get a better balance in the total picture.

But even without such tricks, it is exciting to zoom in silhouettes against an early morning sky… Looking at the same views in the daylight, these photos still seem to half belong to a “dreamland” existing only in that magic moment when I took them!

/Monica/

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See more Monday Mosaics at Mary’s Little Red House.

Saturday, 11 June 2011

Saturday Surprise: Rhododendron Dream

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The Rhododendron in our Town Park are at their
most beautiful just now. Come take a walk with me!

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Entering from the South-East

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Past the magic lamp-post… ;)

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Into the centre of the rhododendron grove

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Panorama view

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Looking along the river towards the town centre

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Exit North-West

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Turning round, looking back

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▲ Close-Up and Macro ▼

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Rhododendron means Rose Tree. 
Ancient Greek rhódon "rose", and déndron "tree”

All the photos in this post are straight from the camera.

Friday, 10 June 2011

Friday My Town: Flag Day

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For once I’m lucky and the theme of an American celebration actually coincides (more or less) with the Swedish equivalent.

In Sweden we celebrate Flag Day on 6th June. In 1983 the day was promoted to National Day, but no one paid much attention to that until 2005 when it was also made a proper holiday.

I think most of us still hardly know exactly what it is we’re supposed to be celebrating. But hey, give us a day off and add a bit of sunshine and we don’t mind waving a few flags and listening to music and a speech in the town park.

It’s not that we’re not proud of our nation; it’s more a question of not having a specific date for its beginning.

6th June is the day when king Gustav Vasa or Gustav I of Sweden was crowned back in 1523. But the list of kings who ruled both Svealand/ ‘Sweden’ and Götaland/ ‘Gothia’ goes back to around 970. And before that, those two as separate nations go back even further.

Blue and yellow have been used as the colours of _Sweden at least since 1275.

According to legend, a 12th century Swedish king Eric the Holy saw a golden cross in the sky as he landed in Finland during the First Swedish Crusade in 1157. Seeing this as a sign from God he adopted the golden cross against a blue background as his banner. There are however no contemporary sources about the crusade, and no pictures or descriptions of the flag until the mid 16th century (i.e. the reign of king Gustav I mentioned above).

Anyway – the flag as well as the nation is quite old!

 

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Some standard bearers have a dress code, others apparently do not.

 

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Swedish national costume. This is a sort of “compromise” costume developed from a wide variety of traditional folk costumes.

Not a lot of people were wearing folk costumes on this day. Even the few who might have one in their wardrobe may have hesitated to put it on, since it was an unusually hot day (30°C/86°F in the shadow and foreboding thunder).

 

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That was Monday. Since then there has been thunder and rain, and now we’re back to 13°C/55°F (and rain). That’s Swedish summer in a nutshell – you never know! Since today is graduation day for a lot of students, I feel a bit sorry for them. 

Wednesday, 8 June 2011

Watery Wednesday: A Swim in the River

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Some more pictures from the swimming part of the Triathlon (swimming+cycling+running) that took part in my town last Saturday. (See more of the event in my Shadow Shot Sunday post.)

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The temperature in the water was said to be 14,5°C

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Any style of swimming was allowed.

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Watery Wednesday

Tuesday, 7 June 2011

Ruby Tuesday: Market Day

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Continuing the theme from yesterday’s Funfair mosaic,
here are some more pictures from the Spring Market.

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Balloons

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Candy

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Toys

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Clothes

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Postcards

Monday, 6 June 2011

Mosaic Monday: Funfair

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With the annual Spring Market comes the Funfair. I never really was one for going round and round and upside down myself, even as child… But now I enjoy the opportunity to play with my new camera!

 

See more Monday Mosaics at Mary’s Little Red House.

Sunday, 5 June 2011

Shadow Shot Sunday: One, Two, Three – Go!

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Hey, there must be something extra going on in town today.
Hardly likely that all these people took their bikes into
the city
just because it happens to be a sunny day!

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And what is everyone standing in line for?
1-2-3… Obviously a competition of some kind.

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Involving wetsuits AND bikes?!
Yep. It’s our very own Triathlon.

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Starting with swimming 200 m in the river.

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Then quickly out of the water…

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… drop the wetsuit, and grab the bike…

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… for a race around town …

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On a day like this, not too boring for the audience
to have to wait in the park until they come back.

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Ah, here they come again, on foot this time…
Trying to outrun their own shadows!

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Thirsty work on a hot day!

(Sorry not to have a photo of the winners -
I have to confess I didn’t wait around for that.)

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Linking to Hey Harriet’s Shadow Shot Sunday

Welcome to also visit my main blog: Beyond the Lone Islands