Tuesday, 23 May 2017

MANCHESTER, ENGLAND

Manchester is a city and metropolitan borough in Greater Manchester, England, with a population of 514,414 as of 2013. It lies within the United Kingdom's second-most populous urban area, with a population of 2.55 million. Manchester is fringed by the Cheshire Plain to the south, the Pennines to the north and east and an arc of towns with which it forms a continuous conurbation. The local authority is Manchester City Council.

The recorded history of Manchester began with the civilian settlement associated with the Roman fort of Mamucium or Mancunium, which was established in about AD 79 on a sandstone bluff near the confluence of the rivers Medlock and Irwell. It was historically a part of Lancashire, although areas of Cheshire south of the River Mersey were incorporated in the 20th century.

Throughout the Middle Ages Manchester remained a manorial township but began to expand "at an astonishing rate" around the turn of the 19th century. Manchester's unplanned urbanisation was brought on by a boom in textile manufacture during the Industrial Revolution, and resulted in it becoming the world's first industrialised city. Manchester achieved city status in 1853.

The Manchester Ship Canal opened in 1894, creating the Port of Manchester and linking the city to sea, 36 miles (58 km) to the west. Its fortunes declined after the Second World War, owing to deindustrialisation, but the IRA bombing in 1996 led to extensive investment and regeneration. In 2014, the Globalisation and World Cities Research Network ranked Manchester as a beta world city, the highest-ranked British city apart from London.

Manchester is the third-most visited city in the UK. It is notable for its architecture, culture, musical exports, media links, scientific and engineering output, social impact, sports clubs and transport connections. Manchester Liverpool Road railway station was the world's first inter-city passenger railway station and in the city scientists first split the atom and developed the stored-program computer.

The Manchester Town Hall is a Victorian, Neo-gothic municipal building and is the ceremonial headquarters of Manchester City Council, housing a number of local government departments. The building faces Albert Square to the north, featuring the Albert Memorial and St Peter's Square to the south, home to The Cenotaph. Designed by architect Alfred Waterhouse, the town hall was completed in 1877.

The building contains offices and grand ceremonial rooms such as the Great Hall which is decorated with Ford Madox Brown's imposing Manchester Murals illustrating the history of the city. The entrance and Sculpture Hall contain busts and statues of influential figures including Dalton, Joule and Barbirolli. The exterior is dominated by the clock tower which rises to 280 feet (85 m) and houses Great Abel, the clock bell. In 1938, a detached Town Hall Extension was completed and is connected by two covered bridges over Lloyd Street. The town hall, which was granted Grade I listed building status on 25 February 1952, is regarded as one of the finest interpretations of Gothic revival architecture in the world.

This post is part of the  Our World Tuesday meme,
and also part of the Ruby Tuesday meme,
and also part of the Travel Tuesday meme,
and also part of the Wordless Wednesday meme.






At least 22 people, including children, have been killed and 59 injured in a suicide bombing at a crowded pop concert in Manchester, the most deadly attack in Britain in a decade. The horror unfolded at about 10.30pm on Monday, 23 May 2017, at the end of a concert by the American singer Ariana Grande, whose music is popular with children and teenagers. The attack, which took place in the foyer, left hundreds of people fleeing in terror, with young people at the concert separated from their parents in the chaos. It left carnage inside the concert venue, with medics describing treating wounds consistent with shrapnel injury.

“If we are to have peace on earth, our loyalties must become ecumenical rather than sectional. Our loyalties must transcend our race, our tribe, our class, and our nation; and this means we must develop a world perspective.” ― Martin Luther King Jr.

Monday, 22 May 2017

MUSHROOM TIME

A fungus (plural: fungi) is any member of the group of eukaryotic organisms that includes microorganisms such as yeasts and moulds, as well as the more familiar mushrooms. These organisms are classified as a kingdom, Fungi, which is separate from the other eukaryotic life kingdoms of plants and animals.

Abundant worldwide, most fungi are inconspicuous because of the small size of their structures, and their cryptic lifestyles in soil or on dead matter. Fungi include symbionts of plants, animals, or other fungi and also parasites. They may become noticeable when fruiting, either as mushrooms or as moulds. Fungi perform an essential role in the decomposition of organic matter and have fundamental roles in nutrient cycling and exchange in the environment.

They have long been used as a direct source of human food, in the form of mushrooms and truffles; as a leavening agent for bread; and in the fermentation of various food products, such as wine, beer, and soy sauce. Since the 1940s, fungi have been used for the production of antibiotics, and, more recently, various enzymes produced by fungi are used industrially and in detergents.

Fungi can break down manufactured materials and buildings, and become significant pathogens of humans and other animals. Losses of crops due to fungal diseases (e.g., rice blast disease) or food spoilage can have a large impact on human food supplies and local economies.

This post is part of the Mosaic Monday meme,
and also part of the Monday Mellow Yellows meme,
and also part of the Macro Monday meme,
and also part of the Through my Lens meme,
and also part of the Seasons meme.

Sunday, 21 May 2017

MY SUNDAY BEST MEME #15 - SMALL

Welcome to the meme, "My Sunday Best", which is a photographic and creative meme that allows you to showcase your talents in imaging. Every Sunday, you can post here showing an image you have created using your camera, (and/or) image processing software, and/or painting and drawing in the conventional way and have scanned in.

The rules are simple:
1) Create your image and post it up on your blog;
2) Put the "My Sunday Best" logo image link somewhere on your post so people can click and come by here;
3) Leave a comment here once you have posted;
4) Visit other posters' blogs and be amazed with their creativity!

Please do not use this meme to advertise your goods or services. This is a creative meme and any inappropriate links or comments shall be removed immediately!
This post is part of the My Sunday Photo meme,
and also part of the Photo Sunday meme,
and also part of the Saturday Critters meme.

Please leave your link below using the Mr Linky tool:

Thursday, 18 May 2017

CHRYSANTHEMUM

Although once referred to as Dendranthema, the florists chrysanthemum is now correctly known under its old name. There are about 40 species in the genus Chrysanthemum, mainly from East Asia. In China, where they have been cultivated for over 2,500 years, the chrysanthemum was used medicinally and for flavouring, as well as for ornament. The flower is also significant in Japan where it is a symbol of happiness and longevity, and the royal family has ruled for 2,600 years from the Chrysanthemum Throne.

The annual species are referred to Xanthophthalmum and are mainly used for summer bedding or as fillers in borders of perennial flowers. Most chrysanthemums are upright plants with lobed leaves that can be aromatic. The many showy flowerheads, carried at the tips of strong stems, begin to bloom as the days shorten. In the Southern Hemisphere, they bloom in May and are associated with Mother's Day.

Florists chrysanthemums (Chrysanthemum grandiflorum) are grouped according to form: Irregular incurved, reflexed, regular incurved, intermediate incurved, pompon, single and semi-double, anemone, spoon, quill, spider, brush or thistle, and unclassified, which is a catch-all group for blooms not yet classified or not falling into one of the existing groups.

Florists chrysanthemums prefer a heavier richer soil in a sunny position, though they like a spot that offers some afternoon shade. The plants require training and trimming to produce their best flowers. Pinch back when young and disbud to ensure the best flower show. Propagate by division when dormant or from half-hardened summer cuttings.

This post is part of the Floral Friday Fotos meme,
and also part of the Orange you Glad It's Friday meme.

Tuesday, 16 May 2017

DUBLIN, IRELAND

Dublin (Irish: Baile Átha Cliath) is the capital and largest city of Ireland. Dublin is in the province of Leinster on Ireland's east coast, at the mouth of the River Liffey. The city has an urban area population of 1,345,402. The population of the Greater Dublin Area, as of 2016, was 1,904,806 people.

Founded as a Viking settlement, the Kingdom of Dublin became Ireland's principal city following the Norman invasion. The city expanded rapidly from the 17th century and was briefly the second largest city in the British Empire before the Acts of Union in 1800. Following the partition of Ireland in 1922, Dublin became the capital of the Irish Free State, later renamed Ireland.

Dublin is administered by a City Council. The city is listed by the Globalisation and World Cities Research Network (GaWC) as a global city, with a ranking of “Alpha-“, which places it amongst the top thirty cities in the world. It is a historical and contemporary centre for education, the arts, administration, economy and industry.

This post is part of the Our World Tuesday meme,
and also part of the Ruby Tuesday meme,
and also part of the Travel Tuesday meme,
and also part of the Wordless Wednesday meme.

Monday, 15 May 2017

AUTUMN'S WEB

A foggy morning today in Melbourne and an early morning walk in the Parklands...

This post is part of the Mosaic Monday meme,
and also part of the Macro Monday meme,
and also part of the Through my Lens meme,
and also part of the Seasons meme.

Sunday, 14 May 2017

MY SUNDAY BEST MEME #14 - VERTICAL

Welcome to the meme, "My Sunday Best", which is a photographic and creative meme that allows you to showcase your talents in imaging. Every Sunday, you can post here showing an image you have created using your camera, (and/or) image processing software, and/or painting and drawing in the conventional way and have scanned in.

The rules are simple:
1) Create your image and post it up on your blog;
2) Put the "My Sunday Best" logo image link somewhere on your post so people can click and come by here;
3) Leave a comment here once you have posted;
4) Visit other posters' blogs and be amazed with their creativity!

Please do not use this meme to advertise your goods or services. This is a creative meme and any inappropriate links or comments shall be removed immediately!
This post is part of the My Sunday Photo meme,
and also part of the Photo Sunday meme.

Please leave your link below using the Mr Linky tool:

Saturday, 13 May 2017

CATNAP

This post is part of the Saturday Critters meme,
and also part of the Camera Critters meme.

Thursday, 11 May 2017

CHOISYA

Choisya is a small genus of aromatic evergreen shrubs in the rue family, Rutaceae. Members of the genus are commonly known as Mexican orange or mock orange due to the similarity of their flowers with those of the closely related orange, both in shape and scent. They are native to southern North America, from Arizona, New Mexico, Texas and south through most of Mexico. In the generic name Humboldt and Bonpland honoured Swiss botanist Jacques Denis Choisy (1799-1859).

The species grow to 1 to 3 m tall. The leaves are opposite, leathery, glossy, palmately compound with 3-13 leaflets, each leaflet 3–8 cm long and 0.5–3.5 cm broad. C. ternata (shown here) has three broad leaflets, while C. dumosa has up to 13 very narrow leaflets. The flowers are star-shaped, 3–5 cm diameter, with 4-7 white petals, 8-15 stamens and a green stigma; they are produced throughout the late spring and summer. The fruit is a leathery two to six sectioned capsule.

Choisya species are popular ornamental plants in areas with mild winters, grown primarily for their abundant and fragrant flowers. The foliage is also aromatic, smelling of rue when bruised or cut. The most commonly found cultivars in the horticultural trade are the species, C. ternata, the golden-leaved C. ternata 'Sundance', and the inter-specific hybrid C. 'Aztec Pearl' (C. arizonica x C. ternata). All three varieties have gained the Royal Horticultural Society's Award of Garden Merit. The flowers are also valued for honeybee forage, producing abundant nectar. This post is part of the Floral Friday Fotos meme, and also part of the Friday Greens meme.

This post is part of the Floral Friday Fotos meme.



Wednesday, 10 May 2017

Tuesday, 9 May 2017

NAFPLIO, GREECE

Nafplio (Modern Greek: Ναύπλιο) is a seaport town in the Peloponnese in Greece that has expanded up the hillsides near the north end of the Argolic Gulf. The town was an important seaport held under a succession of royal houses in the Middle Ages as part of the lordship of Argos and Nauplia, held initially by the de la Roche following the Fourth Crusade before coming under the Republic of Venice and, lastly, the Ottoman Empire.

The town was the capital of the First Hellenic Republic and of the Kingdom of Greece, from the start of the Greek Revolution in 1821 until 1834. Nafplio is now the capital of the regional unit of Argolis.

Tourism emerged slowly in the 1960s, but not to the same degree as some other Greek areas. Nevertheless, Nafplio tends to attract a number of tourists from Germany and the Scandinavian countries in particular. Nafplio enjoys a very sunny and mild climate, even by Greek standards, and as a consequence has become a popular day or weekend road-trip destination for Athenians in wintertime.

Nafplio is a port, with fishing and transport ongoing, although the primary source of local employment currently is tourism, with two beaches on the other side of the peninsula from the main body of the town and a large amount of local accommodation. The building of the National Bank of Greece is probably the only one in the world to have been built in the Mycenaean Revival architectural style.

Acronauplia is the oldest part of the city though a modern hotel has been built on it. Until the thirteenth century, it was a town on its own. The arrival of the Venetians and the Franks transformed it into part of the town fortifications. Other fortifications of the city include the Palamidi and Bourtzi, which is located in the middle of the harbour.

Nafplio maintains a traditional architectural style with many traditional-style colourful buildings and houses, partly influenced by the Venetians, because of the domination of 1338-1540. Also, modern-era neoclassical buildings are also preserved. Around the city can be found several sculptures and statues. They are related mostly with the modern history of Nafplio, such as the statues of Ioannis Kapodistrias, Otto of Greece and Theodoros Kolokotronis.

This post is part of the Our World Tuesday meme,
and also part of the Ruby Tuesday meme,
and also part of the Travel Tuesday meme.

Monday, 8 May 2017

AUSTRALIAN BIRDING

Just to give you an idea of the wide diversity of Australian birds!

This post is part of the Mosaic Monday meme,
and also part of the Monday Mellow Yellows meme,
and also part of the Through my Lens meme,
and also part of the Seasons meme.

Sunday, 7 May 2017

MY SUNDAY BEST MEME #13 - RAINY NIGHT

Welcome to the meme, "My Sunday Best", which is a photographic and creative meme that allows you to showcase your talents in imaging. Every Sunday, you can post here showing an image you have created using your camera, (and/or) image processing software, and/or painting and drawing in the conventional way and have scanned in.

The rules are simple:
1) Create your image and post it up on your blog;
2) Put the "My Sunday Best" logo image link somewhere on your post so people can click and come by here;
3) Leave a comment here once you have posted;
4) Visit other posters' blogs and be amazed with their creativity!

Please do not use this meme to advertise your goods or services. This is a creative meme and any inappropriate links or comments shall be removed immediately!
This post is part of the My Sunday Photo meme,
and also part of the Photo Sunday meme.
Please leave your link below using the Mr Linky tool:

Saturday, 6 May 2017

SUNRISE ON THE YARRA

Early risers in Melbourne can be treated by sights like this by the shores of the Yarra River, right in the CBD. Black swans (Cygnus atratus) are a common sight, as of course are the omnipresent seagulls.

This post is part of the Skywatch Friday meme,
and also part of the Weekend Reflections meme,
and also part of the Scenic Weekends meme,
and also part of the Saturday Critters meme.







Thursday, 4 May 2017

WHITE BOTTLEBRUSH

Callistemon is a genus of shrubs in the family Myrtaceae, first described as a genus in 1814. The entire genus is endemic to Australia but widely cultivated in many other regions and naturalised in scattered locations. Their status as a separate taxon is in doubt, some authorities accepting that the difference between callistemons and melaleucas is not sufficient for them to be grouped in a separate genus.

Callistemon species have commonly been referred to as bottlebrushes because of their cylindrical, brush like flowers resembling a traditional bottle brush. They are mostly found in the more temperate regions of Australia, especially along the east coast and typically favour moist conditions so when planted in gardens thrive on regular watering. However, two species are found in Tasmania and several others in the south-west of Western Australia. At least some species are drought-resistant and some are used in ornamental landscaping elsewhere in the world.

Melaleuca pallida, commonly known as lemon bottlebrush, is a plant in the myrtle family, Myrtaceae and is endemic to eastern Australia. (Some Australian state herbaria use the name Callistemon pallidus.) It is an upright shrub with thin, spreading branches, silvery new growth and pale yellow, sometimes pinkish bottlebrush flowers. Callistemon pallidus is a hardy plant, adaptable to many soils but needs full sun.

This post is part of the Floral Friday Fotos meme

Wednesday, 3 May 2017

DAREBIN CREEK

Darebin Creek is a creek that runs through the northern suburbs of Melbourne, Victoria, Australia. It is the main watercourse of the Darebin Valley and a major tributary of the Yarra River. For tens of thousands of years it was used as a food and tool source sustainably by the Wurundjeri people, Indigenous Australians of the Kulin nation alliance, who spoke variations of the Woiwurrung language group.

The creek rises on the northern urban fringe of Melbourne north of the suburb of Epping, following a general southerly route and meeting the Yarra at Alphington. The creek forms much of the municipal boundary between the City of Darebin and City of Banyule. Formerly an intermittent stream, increased stormwater runoff with urbanisation of the Darebin Creek catchment has resulted in permanent water flow.

The creek runs through Darebin Parklands, a large nature reserve one or two kilometres northwest of the junction at which the creek meets the Yarra. The Darebin Creek Trail runs along the banks in the lower reaches of the creek. This is the creek at the Darebin Parklands in Fairfield.

This post is part of the Wednesday Waters meme,
and also part of the Outdoor Wednesday meme,
and also part of the Wordless Wednesday meme.

Tuesday, 2 May 2017

DURBAN, SOUTH AFRICA

Durban (Zulu: eThekwini, from itheku meaning "bay/lagoon") is the largest city in the South African province of KwaZulu-Natal. Durban's metropolitan municipality ranks third among the most populous urban areas in South Africa after Johannesburg and Cape Town. It is also the second most important manufacturing hub in South Africa after Johannesburg. It forms part of the eThekwini Metropolitan Municipality.

Durban is famous for being the busiest port in South Africa. It is also seen as one of the major centres of tourism because of the city's warm subtropical climate and extensive beaches. The municipality, which includes neighbouring towns, has a population of almost 3.5 million, making the combined municipality one of the biggest cities on the Indian Ocean coast of the African continent.

It is the largest city in KwaZulu-Natal which is the 2nd most populous province in South Africa. It has the highest number of dollar millionaires added per year of any South African city with the number rising 200% between 2000 and 2014. In May 2015, Durban was officially recognised as one of the New7Wonders Cities together with Vigan, Doha, La Paz, Havana, Beirut, and Kuala Lumpur.

This post is part of the Our World Tuesday meme,
and also part of the Travel Tuesday meme,
and also part of the Wordless Wednesday meme.

Monday, 1 May 2017

THE YEAR PROGRESSES

And the wheel of the Zodiac turns as the seasons follow one another...

This post is part of the Mosaic Monday meme,
and also part of the Monday Mellow Yellows meme,
and also part of the Macro Monday meme,
and also part of the Seasons meme.