Enjoy!!!

Enjoy!!!

Tuesday, February 16, 2016

The noisy koel bird

The noisy koel bird is annoying me!!!! Every year around this time (February) I blog about the noisy koel, see this blog as well as others listed under 'koel'.

This year, 2016 I got back to KL from overseas in mid Feb and the koel was calling loudly. One was in the trees around my condo and I could just about hear another replying from some distance away. The most irritating thing is when the bird starts calling around 6.30 am when it is still dark and it sounds as if it is in a tree very near my open window.

Hopefully it will soon be leaving and going off overseas and leaving me in peace!!!

Monday, February 8, 2016

Battersea power station, London

As a child, I clearly remember Battersea power station being a prominent landmark. The large building with the four tall chimneys was visible from afar as it was the tallest building and surrounded by empty land, the railway line and the river.

This is taken from the Battersea power station website :
"Battersea Power Station is one of London’s most iconic landmarks and an unforgettable presence on the capital’s skyline. The building is a twentieth-century feat of architecture and engineering and a favourite icon of popular culture – it featured in the 2012 Olympic closing ceremony and was visited by over 38,000 people as part of London’s recent Open House weekend.

Battersea Power Station was first Watch listed by World Monuments Fund in 2004. Ten years on, it is still a building at risk. No substantive repair works have been carried out since 1983, and in 2007 the power station was upgraded to Grade II* status on account of its powerful architectural and historic significance and the degree of loss the building has suffered.

WMF will keep the spotlight on current redevelopment plans for the power station site and the impact existing proposals will have on the future of this heritage asset. The rebuilding of Battersea’s iconic chimneys has been the focus of much media attention. With demolition and subsequent reconstruction plans scheduled to start on the chimneys in 2014, WMF’s renewed focus on the site supports the campaign to ensure that these icons are rebuilt and the famous South London skyline is reinstated as soon as possible."

So it was interesting to learn that the power station was bought by Sime Derby in 2012. Sime Derby is one of the largest companies in Malaysia and is heavily involved with plantations, mainly oil palm. Due to this they have received lots of negative news about destruction of the rain forest and carrying out illegal logging in the rainforests of Malaysia and Indonesia, endangering protected species such as the orangutan.



According to Wikipedia, the station is the fourth largest brick building in Europe and is notable for its original, lavish Art Deco interior fittings and decor.

I knew the place was being developed for luxury housing as well as shops and offices and that Sime Derby had an obligation to preserve the station's Grade II listed four iconic chimneys and wash towers.

So when I was in London I went to have a look. I approached from Chelsea Bridge Road that runs alongside Battersea Park, as that is the view I remember most clearly from my childhood. I was shocked to find there was no view of the power station, as it was obscured by large buildings of luxury apartments. 

So I walked over the bridge to the north side and then walked along the Embankment until I could get a view. Unfortunately the sun was right behind the power station which wasn't good for taking photos. 




There is certainly an abundance of cranes

Ironically Battersea Dogs & Cats Home is located next to the power station. This the UK's oldest and most famous animal rescue centre. 

Some Google Earth images of Battersea power station over the years -
1999

2002
 Note the new apartments to the left of the railway line by 2010 -
2010
2015
 In the London Evening Standard on 3 Feb there was an article on how there could be a crash of property prices in Battersea and there was a wonderful cartoon

© Liz Price 
No reproduction without permission

Saturday, February 6, 2016

Sal procession to remember slavery, Cape Verde

Every Sunday there is a 'procession' of Cape Verdeans on Sal, to remember the days of slavery. I've found nothing about it on the internet so don't know details. The locals cover themselves in black and parade through Santa Maria. Some wear chains. They are accompanied by a group of drums.





For three centuries from 1456 the Cape Verde islands were a setting for the transatlantic slave trade. But even in the 19th century, the slaves led very different lives from those in the Americas. On Cape Verde, families developed from the “free” people and slaves who lived together peacefully. After an uprising of the slaves in 1853, which was suppressed with much bloodshed, slavery was finally abolished on Cape Verde in 1878. From that time on, cultivation of the land was operated in the sharecropping system, which still is typical for the agricultural of Cape Verde.










**
See my other Cape Verde blogs :

Salt from Sal

Vila Verde and Santa Maria pier and fish

Santa Maria town and people

Scenery in southern Sal

Scenery in northern Sal

Flora & fauna of Sal

**

© Liz Price
No reproduction without permission

Flora & fauna of Sal, Cape Verde

Flora and fauna.............. There is little of either on Sal! The only fauna I saw were birds such as the lago sparrows and cattle egrets, and one house lizard. There are no big mammals.


Flora is scarce as well. The island is dry most of the year and is very sandy so little grows. The capital of the island is Espargos.  Espargos means "asparagus" and refers to the wild vegetable grass stalk with its bright yellow flowers which grows in sandy areas around the island.

These flowers are abundant in the hotel grounds where they get watered.


There were quite a lot of these yellow flowers in the sandy areas around the beach of Ponta Preta



Also in this sandy area -


These palms are planted -


In the desert area of Terra Boa -


**

See my other blogs on Sal -

Salt from Sal

Vila Verde and Santa Maria pier and fish

Santa Maria town and people

Scenery in southern Sal

Scenery in northern Sal

Sal procession to remember slavery

**

© Liz Price
No reproduction without permission

Scenery in northern Sal, Cape Verde

Following on from my blog of scenery in southern Sal, Cape Verde, this one covers the north part of the island. The capital town of Espargos was covered in the previous blog.


To the west is the main port of Palmeira. A small fishing port is also located here. This fontenario means fountain and is where the locals get their water. There is no fresh water on the island, it all comes from desalinated sea water.

As tourists come to this town, the African traders are also here trying to sell souvenirs. They mostly come from Senegal & The Gambia -
The town is small and quiet




The boat yard


The fishing port -








The next destination was Buracona where the Blue Eye is situated. There were lots of tourists there, as the tour buses all follow the same itinerary at more or less the same time.




This natural pool is popular for swimming. But note in the following 3 photos how the sea comes rushing in, so swimmers have to be careful not to get washed over the edge!



This is the Blue Eye. For safety reasons, only 6 tourists, plus guide, are allowed to view at one time


 The ubiquitous cairns!!!

From Buracona we crossed the Terra Boa, a desert like landscape with a couple of high hills





We then went on to Pedro de Lume salt mine.

See my other blogs on Sal :

Vila Verde and Santa Maria pier

Santa Maria

Scenery in southern Sal

Flora & fauna of Sal

Sal procession to remember slavery, Cape Verde

***
© Liz Price
No reproduction without permission