Its Friday : Let’s go on a Trip someplace!

West Cork

West Cork Model Railway Village

West Cork Model Railway Village

Wordless Wednesday : Anticipation!

Vienna Guide book

Guide to Vienna

Thursday Doors : Visiting Germany

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The metal and glass doors belong to St Bartholemew’s Cathedral in Frankfurt, also known as the Frankfurter Dom, and the original church on this site was constructed many years ago, in the 14th and 15th centuries.

Russian Orthodox Church

These very ornate doors are from the Russian Orthodox Church in Weisbaden, also in Germany.    The church itself is also very highly decorated, with golden turrets on top, which sparkle in the sunlight.

To check out more interesting doors, head on over to Norm’s place.

Blog Awards Ireland 2015 : Please Vote!

Hi, I am delighted to let all my friends and followers know that I have been shortlisted for the Blog Awards Ireland 2015, in the category of Best Travel Blog.

This is a great achievement and I would be really happy if you could all vote for me, I have seen the other wonderful blogs in this category, and believe you me, I need all the help I can get.

Displaying Vote for Us Buttons 300x2503.jpg

The public vote is open until 21st September, and comprises 30 percent of the vote, the rest is up to the judges, so as the politicians say –

‘Vote Early and Vote Often’

Seriously though, I would be very happy to get your vote, here is the link, just click on my blog (Retirement and Beyond) to vote.

Thanks to everyone that follows, likes and comments on my posts, I really enjoy being part of the blogging community. Now let’s have some hot chocolate and vote!

hot chocolate with meringue.

hot chocolate with meringue.

Wordless Wednesday : A Room With A View

Sky Garden, Fenchurch Street, London City

Sky Garden, Fenchurch Street, London City

Cee’s Fun Foto Challenge : Pick a Topic

This week Cee has given us a choice of subject, and asks us to pick a topic from her photo.    I recently visited one of the higher buildings in the City of London, and the extra special attraction of this building, apart from the amazing views, is the SkyGarden, which is on floors 34 to 36  (luckily there are plenty high speed lifts to get to the top quickly!)  The garden has a restaurant, plenty places to sit and chat, and the covered gardens are full of exotic tropical plants to soothe the stressed mind.

Hope you enjoy the views of my lines and shapes!

Cee’s Which Way Challenge : Week 11

How far would you like to go?

How far would you like to go?

I was  in Zimbabwe at Christmas time, and on our way back from Lake Kariba, we came across this very informative sign…we could go to Mount Kilimanjaro (2772 km), or in the other direction, Port Louis in Mauritius (2772 km), or even to the Pyramids in Egypt!   Then again, we weren’t feeling too adventurous that day, so Clouds End Hotel (And Cold Beer) at 163 meters was just about right!!

Linked to Cee’s Which Way Challenge

Travel Theme : Tilted

Ailsa’s travel theme this week is Tilted, and this is my entry –


This picture was taken near Camps Bay, when we were on the Open Top Bus Tour in Cape Town,  The winds coming off the Indian Ocean at this point are so strong that the trees are all tilted  – welcome relief  when the summer sun is beating down on the parked cars, and I am sure it is a prized spot at times.

A Hiking Holiday in Italy. Part One

Last week about 50 of us from our hill-walking club went on a hiking holiday in the Dolomites in Italy, and what a week it was, hiking uphill and down, taking the cable car to the top and then hiking down (a much better option), laughing, singing, (the hills really were alive with the sound of the ‘Fields of Athenry’  on more than one occasion) relaxing, eating lovely Italian food and ice cream, and drinking wine and cocktails, and then getting up at 7 a.m. next morning and doing it all again!

The Dolomites

The Dolomites

We were staying in a hotel in a ski resort, which was about 1600m above sea level, and as you can see, there was still snow on the top of the mountains.

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Our Italian guide, Maurizio,  was very knowledgeable about the  environment we were walking through, and one day we came across a tree that had been visited by a woodpecker, the birds tap away at the bark and  make holes so that they can eat the termites that live in the trees.  They can tell by the sound that their tapping makes whether there are termites inside or not, that is why you sometimes see a few smaller holes on the tree, that may have been abandoned.   Once the bird is satisfied with the size of the hole, he sticks his very long tongue into the hole and the termites stick to the surface of the tongue, and make a nice meal for him.    We didn’t see any woodpeckers, but we did come across a golden eagle, and our guide told us that there are about 8 breeding pairs in that forest.

Everywhere along the trails through the mountains, we came across little huts called Rifugios, but they are quite well equipped ‘huts’, most have accommodation, and serve delicious food and wine, and we usually bought our lunch in one of these rifugios, rather than bringing soggy sandwiches and a drink from the hotel.  There were plenty tables and benches where we could eat outside in the sunshine, and most of them supplied deck chairs so that we could linger awhile and rest our weary feet.   I wonder are other countries in Europe so well equipped to look after hikers in the mountains, Ireland has a long way to go in that respect.

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There was so much beauty everywhere we went, I will post more photos of hiking in the snow, and our visit to an old city called Bolzana, a winery, and Lake Garda.    It was a very busy week, I would say an activity packed week!



Weekly Photo Challenge : The Sign Says

Signs. Funny, poignant, symbolic, incorrect, informative, foreshadowing…there are so many signs in the world. 

I would like to show you some signs I have come across on my travels,that made me smile, and some others that are interesting and informative.

The first photo was taken on a golf course in South Africa, though it’s a well travelled sign, as I have seen similar ones in other places.


Accurate weather prediction?

There was a rock hanging from the sign, which I may not have captured in the photo, but you get the idea.


waiting for the topless bus.

The very colourful sign above, is at one of the bus stops for the open top bus that travels around Cape Town, also known as the ‘topless bus’- not that I came across anyone topless on it, maybe it was the wrong time of year for that sort of thing!!

While travelling around New Zealand a few years ago, I came across some very amusing signs when driving through the small towns, such as the town that is famous for its fresh produce, imagine having to chop this up for your Irish Stew!


Famous local landmark!

And in a small town called Bulls, the townspeople have a sense of humour,and made the most of the name!


Mr and Mrs Bull (maiden name Cow)


Playgroup in Bulls town

There are a few postcards around the world of the following sign, taken at the northern most tip of the North Island,New Zealand

This sign is at the very northern tip of the North Island

This sign is at the very northern tip of the North Island

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