Sunday 29th September 2019, 1.10pm (day 2,957)
More rain. The river is high, although I’ve seen it higher. Shelter seemed a sensible option this afternoon.
Another day for spring foliage to fill up the bandwidth. 2,803 days in and there are still some corners of the home town worth depicting. The bridge has been here since 1510, or thereabouts, and seems good for a while yet. Whether the same is true of the photographer, who knows…?
We didn’t just visit Scotland for a melancholy afternoon at Raith Rovers. On the second day of three, we drove both ways across this fine transportation architecture. The new Forth Bridge was built after the old one started pinging apart a few years ago. Like the other two monumental bridges — now, one rail, two road, and one from each of the 19th, 20th and 21st centuries — it is an elegant structure, worth crossing just for the hell of it.
The story of how I ended up spending this afternoon in Amsterdam is a long one, and to spare you the details I will say only, ask Air France (more specifically their trade union). But I guess there are worse places to be laid over for a few hours, particularly when it was a pleasant, sunny day. Ample excuse to feature it on the blog for the first time since January 2012, thus, 6.3 years ago more or less. Time I came back here for a proper visit.
The parking meter waits patiently for custom, all unknowing that it sits just by the very oldest part of this city. Across the road here are the scanty remains of the Roman village of Manucium. Could those guys have foreseen parking meters I wonder? Not to mention digital photography and bloggers. But then again they did build a decent transport system, which is arguably more than we have at the moment.
Back home — for a few days anyway, before my next trip out. I have said it before, and doubtless will say it again, that I like both travelling and coming home; being at home, and travelling. May this pattern of life continue. The structure in the background is the bridge built around 1510 that gives this town its name. The man is paying tribute to the ducks, I think, with offerings of food. The girl is just chilling out.
Last day in Lisbon, and this was the last thing seen in it, in the first few moments of the plane’s ascent away from the airport. The Vasco da Gama bridge crosses that wide bit of the Tagus estuary that I mentioned yesterday, and at 7.8 miles (12.3km) it is the longest bridge in Europe. Barely a quarter of its length, at a guess, is seen in this shot.
Farewell to Portugal — coming back here has reminded me why I used to like it so much. A fine country, with a lot of characteristics that some more self-important places could learn from (but refuse to).
The weekend’s tour of noted tourist spots in West Wales continues. But sometimes one just has to admit one is a tourist. Devil’s Bridge was first named for the lowest of these three structures, built in the 11th century, and named for the Devil because people simply did not believe that the precipitous gorge that it spans could have been tamed by human hand alone. Anyway, just think what it must have meant for an 11th-century peasant to trust their lives to this new-fangled engineering stuff. The middle bridge was built in 1753, and the current, topmost one in 1901.
Left Dundee this morning after an enjoyable stay. Anyone travelling south from there by rail will begin their journey with a crossing of the Tay Bridge, scene of one of Britain’s worst rail disasters when the original, and poorly-built, version of the bridge collapsed in high winds in 1879, taking a train and 75 people with it. (The only survivor was the locomotive, which was salvaged and remained in service for another 50 years.) Fortunately for us all, the replacement bridge was built rather more durably.
I know this photo teeters on the brink of being deliberately bad but hey, I’m feeling experimental. The rain was sheeting down outside the windows as I crossed on the 0924 Dundee – Edinburgh service, so this is the best I could do. And, of course, this photo is taken from the rail bridge — but it’s a photo of the newer road bridge (completed 1967), with the still-extant shipyard behind.