I made my annual trip to Daniel Stowe Botanical Garden to see the holiday lights last night. The night of my visit last year was uncharacteristically balmy. This year it was just plain hot-67 degrees at 6p.m. No fumbling for the camera through coats and mitten-encased fingers required.
The new light exhibit this year is called Blue Arches. Come enjoy the garden with me!
After 18 straight evenings of rain, the forecast called for a dry night on December 27th, and I made my annual trek to Daniel Stowe Botanical Garden to see the holiday lights.
Usually I pick the coldest night in December to do my wandering in the garden. But this December temperatures were in the mid-70’s, and the evening was balmy. The garden’s flowering crabapple trees and ornamental cherry trees and witch hazel were all in bloom. Lenten roses decided to be advent roses. A cold craft-brewed beer was more welcome than hot chocolate.
I beat the lines of evening crowds by arriving about 5 p.m., and then waited for sunset in the orchid house. This year the orchids stole the show from the light displays. I’ve never seen so many in bloom at one time. These were my favorites:
The light displays are more beautiful every year. I hope you enjoy this year’s slide show of Holiday Lights in the Garden.
For a look at previous years’ holiday lights, check out this post.
I wish you all a most magical and joyful New Year!
On the first day of my photography retreat in France, we drove through the winding roads and steep foothills of the Pyrenees to reach Rennes-les-Bains, a tiny Languedoc village perched on both sides of the river Sals. Artifacts discovered in the village indicate that Rennes-les-Bains was known for its hot and cold springs even before the Romans established colonies in the area.
I returned to Paris and Internet access last evening. Thanks to the Air France pilots’ strike, I had a very long train ride from Toulouse to Gare Montparnasse, and what was supposed to be another day of Paris sight-seeing was limited to what I could see out the windows of the #92 bus back to my apartment.
But this morning I was back in tourist mode. I headed to Montmartre with the hope that I could see all of Paris spread out before me. Alas, Paris is in the middle of a smog alert, and when I looked towards the city all I could see was a dingy gray haze. But all I had to do was turn around to see this carrousel.
Then I joined the throngs of tourists to ride the funicular to Sacré Cœur.
As soon as I left the funicular carriage, I heard harp music. Here’s my harp sighting on the plaza below Sacré Cœur.
This is Hugo and his Paraguayan harp. He’s played at Sacré Cœur for many years, and sells his CDs to people like me who are suckers for busking street musicians, and especially busking harpers. You can see and hear Hugo in this video posted in 2008.
I leave the City of Lights tomorrow morning, and will gratefully sleep in my own bed tomorrow night. I’ll share more photos of my France adventures once the jet lag abates a bit.
I am in rural southwest France, where internet connections are spotty and signal strength is quite weak. I am unable to upload many images at present. I’ll post more when the internet connection is better. With luck, here is one from Rennes Les Bains, altered with the waterlogue app.