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Gone for Passover!

Gone for Passover!

I will be away for the week of Passover.

passover-matzah

 

This year, Passover starts Monday evening April 14.

I will return Wednesday April 23.

Have a happy Passover!

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Saw these photos yesterday and had to share them with you.

First this…

moon-kisses-sea(Moon kissing the ocean horizon)

Then this..

Moon-Poseidon-Temple-Sounio-Greece(Moon over the Temple of Poseidon, Sounio, Greece)

Just because a full moon low in the sky is just so awesome

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Sorry I’ve not been around as regularly as I usually am. I just finished editing my first novel, and am a month away from finishing and editing my second novel,  volumes one and two in “The Great Dead North” series. Hopefully, they’ll be published soon and will be available as e-books and publish on demand (for those who love paperbacks). I thought I’d post a photo of this little guy from Australia… leadbeaters-possum A Leadbeater’s Possum (aka Fairy Possum). Too cute for words. A friend of mine told me, “ In Arkansas, this thing would be in a stew so fast, it’d make yer head spin!” I miss The South. aa-battle-flag-1s I’ll be back, inflicting my random scribblings on an unsuspecting public as soon as I can. aa-kendo-kanji-red

Into The Wild Wood

Words & Images by Duncan George

(Duncan George Photography)

If you close your eyes and imagine a wood in a dark fairy tale, what do you see, smell and hear?

wistmans-wood-1(Image credit: Duncan George)

In your minds eye do twisted and sinister trees thick with moss and lichens form anthropomorphic shapes in billowing fog? Underfoot do you struggle for grip on treacherous granite boulders? Perhaps a far off stream provides an aural accompaniment with the the odd and inexplicable crack of a twig sounding ominously close. Does a dank earthy smell pervade the air?

wistmans-wood-2(Image credit: Duncan George)

Just to bring you back to reality, such woods do actually exist and not (just) in Transylvania or some far flung part of Asia but in the UK. On Dartmoor there are three remote high moorland copses of stunted oaks. I think there may be more in Cumbria. The one I have visited on Dartmoor many times is the best known, Wistman’s Wood. The name Wistman’s is thought to derive from wisht-man meaning haunted or pixie-led. The site is believed to have a human involvement dating back to Druid times. When seen in thick fog, in the half light of dawn or dusk it’s easy to see why much folklore and tales of the supernatural surrounds the place.

wistmans-wood-3(Image credit: Duncan George)

It is a fantastic location for art and photography. One of the aspects I like about it is, off-season when I tend to visit, it feels so remote. All the shots in this blog post were taken on Friday morning last week (Nov 2012) and the only other person I saw there (which is unusual in itself, normally I don’t see anyone) was an artist taking photographs to act as as a sketchbook.

wistmans-wood-5(Image credit: Duncan George)

Although Wistman’s isn’t hard to get to in the way that remote Scottish mountains are for example it’s still a challenging drive and hike on Dartmoor in thick fog. Twice out on the moor with visibility down to 2 metres or so I’ve lost my bearings completely and had to use a compass to reorient myself (not something I ever had to do in my previous career in media!). Normally one could rely on the sound of the West Dart River as a guide but fog deadens sound. It’s easy to understand how people can get into trouble in an environment which can quickly switch from benign to malevolent.

wistmans-wood-4(Image credit: Duncan George)

What draws me to the wood is the magical feel of the place. The trees whilst quite small in comparison to normal oaks are fantastically contorted with a myriad of branches, each one being completely unique. Of course every tree is unique but here whilst they share the same genealogy each looks as though penned by a different artist . Furthermore they don’t resemble those in ‘normal’ and more uniform woods and forests.  Wistman’s is located on a hillside strewn with boulders and both trees and granite are coated in a carpet of moss. Some of the trees are draped in lichens as though dressed for Christmas. I’ve never seen lichens so resplendent in any other location. It used to be said that it was alive with adders although thankfully I haven’t seen any. It would be unfortunate to say the least if I set my camera down on a nest.

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All text and photos copyright Duncan George.

To see more of this gentleman’s amazing photography, I urge you to go check out his website. You will not be disappointed!

Saw this photo at TheFeaturedCreature.com and had to share!

clown-spider-2(Photo Credit: Igor Ryabov)

This ‘scary clown’ spider is actually a species of crab spider in the family Thomisidae. Ukrainian photographer Igor Ryabov, 44, a full time engineer, has been experimenting with macro photography for the past three years and spotted the crab spider near to his house.

Tell me this thing doesn’t remind you of Pennywise the Clown from Stephen King’s “It!”

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Equinox on a Spinning Earth 

Explanation: When does the line between day and night become vertical? Tomorrow. Tomorrow is an equinox on planet Earth, a time of year when day and night are most nearly equal. At an equinox, the Earth’s terminator – the dividing line between day and night — becomes vertical and connects the north and south poles. The above time-lapse video demonstrates this by displaying an entire year on planet Earth in twelve seconds. From geosynchronous orbit, the Meteosat satellite recorded these infrared images of the Earth every day at the same local time.

Image: NASAMeteosatRobert Simmon

The video started at the September 2010 equinox with the terminator line being vertical. As the Earth revolved around the Sun, the terminator was seen to tilt in a way that provides less daily sunlight to the northern hemisphere, causing winter in the north. As the year progressed, the March 2011 equinox arrived halfway through the video, followed by the terminator tilting the other way, causing winter in the southern hemisphere — and summer in the north. The captured year ends again with the September equinox, concluding another of billions of trips the Earth has taken — and will take — around the Sun.

Equinox-Earth-1

Thanks, as always, to NASA’s Astronomy Picture of the Day.

Wake up and smell the bacon!

You know it was just a matter of time before Oscar Meyer would come up with an app for this!

wake-up-smell-bacon

As we say down in Arkansas, “Yew just cain’t make this stuff up!

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