Feathered Friends

These are ducks living in the park nearby. ¬†I like to watch them. They look happy and live their lives without worries. They even seem to be living in harmony with each other like good feathered friends (I am sure they do fight sometimes ūüėČ ).

Feathered Friends

This one gives me a handsome look.

The Three Company of Feathered Friends

“The three company”

Stay off from others

Need a dry time.

Tagging along

Tagging along

A good bye look.

A goodbye look.

Hope you enjoy these happy feathered friends.

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Peek-a-boo Skink

Skinks are lizards. The kinds around here (NC, US) are colorful.  I often see them in shiny blue color or in orange color.  They are fast and seem to be shy. They will scurry away quickly when they see you. I think they are kind of cute.  I found this one a bit more brave or was curious of me. I had a little chance to take pictures of it. This was a rare case for me.

Peek-a-boo Skink

Hase-Dera Temple (Kamakura)

When I visited Japan a few years back, I had a chance to go to Kamakura. Kamakura is about an hour on a train ride from Tokyo.  Hase-Dera temple is one of the Buddhist temples in Kamakura. The temple sits on the mountain hill surrounded by gardens and especially is  famous place for Hydrangeas.  I was lucky to be there at the time of the year that these lovely flowers are blooming. I have not seen so many Hydrangeas in one place.  There are so many kinds of Hydrangea (I believe over dozen kinds).

The entrance to the Hase-Dera Temple in Kamakura. There were quite a number of visitors on that there.  There were many young children on that day. It could be the off school season at the time as well.

Hase-Dera Kamakura - Front

The Japanese style garden at the ground level of the temple. I felt relax and at peace from the well arranged garden.

Hase-Dera Temple Kamakura - Garden

I was lucky to visit the temple when all flowers were in the blooming season.

Hase-Dera Temple Kamakura - Flowers

I believe it is a Japanese tradition to wash or clean off oneself before entering a temple.

Hase-Dera Temple Kamkura - People washing

The visitors are walking up from ground level to the temple level.

Hase-Dera Temple Kamakura - Visitors walking to temple.

Before reaching the temple level is small intermediate level.  I believe the small statues are placed by parents morning their offsprings lost to miscarriage, stillbirth, or abortion.

Hase-Dera Temple Kamakura - second level.

Seeing these small smiling statues make me feel happy.

Hase-Dera Temple Kamakura - 3 Smiling Statues

The day was very silver over casting sky. That helped shielding the heat of the sun quite a bit.

Hase-Dera Temple Kamakura - Temple

Visitors paid respect by burning candlesticks in front of the temple. Children and grown-up were so cheerful.

Hase-Dera Temple Kamakura - Burning candlesticks

A young lady gracefully paid homage to Buddha stature inside. I really like the design and the craftsmanship of the donation box. It is a beautiful piece of work.

Hase-Dera Temple Kamamura - Donation box

Visitors walking up from temple level to mountain view. You can see Hydrangeas were blooming along the path.  It was a long line.

Hase-Dera Temple Kamamura - Walking up to the mountain.

I like this Hydrangea that I spot along the path. Its flowers formed in a very nice shape.

Hase-Dera Temple Kamakura - Hydrangea 1

Another lovely Hydrangea.

Hase-Dera Temple Kamakura - Hydrangea 2

A view of the temple from the higher level.

Hase-Dera Temple - Kamakura - View over the temple.

OK, one more picture of Hydrangeas a long the walking path. You can also see people in line down below. It was a busy day.

Hase-Dera Temple Kamamura - Hydrangea 3

I spotted this statue on the way back down to the temple level again. The statue looks a bit funny with the Hydrangea.

Hase-Dera Temple Kamakura - Statue with Hydrangea

Very beautiful temple’s roof structure.

Hase-Dera Temple Kamakura - Temple's roof.

I think I was back to the ground level now. This is another view of the garden.

Hase-Dera Temple Kamakura - Garden

Hase-Dera temple also have an underground level.  These statues were placed in the underground tunnel.

Hase-Dera Temple Kamakura - Statues Underground

These candles were in the underground tunnel. I do not know the meaning of them.

Hase-Dera Temple Kamakura - Candles

As usual, I hope you enjoy the tour of the place. They just bring good memory to me.

Sky, Sea, Waves and Sand

This weekend is a memorial day weekend in the US. It is a three day weekend. That is nice. It is also a mark of summer time is coming soon. Traditionally people around here go to  the beach on this holiday. I am not one of them but I feel like  I also need to feel the bright open sky, the wind, the sea and the sand on the beach.  If you feel the same then I hope this picture helps a little.

Sky, Sea, Waves and Sand

Sky, Sea, Waves and Sand – Indialantic, Fl.

Silom Village Trade Center

This was a visit to Silom Village Trade Center in BKK a few years back. The Silom Village is a small shopping area on Silom Rd. The place has an out door (open) restaurant with live Thai music playing. The dinning tables are arranged in the middle of the village and surrounded by many small shops selling Thai crafts, services or Thai desserts. It seems like a nice place to visit just to see things if you just happen to be near by. The night time or after dark is probably the right time to go.  I do not think the place is for local people to hang out but rather targeted for foreigners or tourists.

The front entrance on Silom Rd.

Silom Village - Entrance

The buildings inside follow old style wealthy house from about 50 or 60 years ago, I believe.  They create atmosphere of BKK around that era.

Silom Village - Buildings

The upper floor window. I like the design and  the pink curtains of this window.

Silom Village - Window

It was not crowded at the time or on that day.  That was nice.

Silom Village - tourists

This is one of the food stands there attended by very friendly personnel.

Silom Village - food stand

A dessert stand – sweet.

Silom Village - sweet stand

This is one of the craft stores there. This store is selling Thai small dolls or statues.

Silom Village - craft store

Such a pleasant looking statue or doll.

Silom Village - smiling statue

Beautiful crafts

Silom Village - Buddha and Monks

This lady was showing her soap (I think) carving skill.

Silom Village - soap carving.

Her beautiful works.

Silom Village - soap works

This nice little man made waterfall and greens created cool refreshing feeling around the area. A nice idea especially for the most warm climate there.

Silom Village - waterfall

Time to say good bye.

Silom Village - exiting

I hope you enjoy a little virtual tour of the place and worth your mouse scrolling efforts. Thank you.

The Three Tulips

These three tulips grew up together in the same pot.  They seemed to to be keeping up with each other. What the other did, the rests seemed to be doing the same. They were about the same height. They bloomed about the same time.  They  cherished  the morning sun together.  They just seemed like good loving sisters.

The Three Tulips

A Busy Snow Day (Weekend)

I thought this year there wasn’t any snow day. ¬†Well, there was one that came during the night before but there was not really that much to be seen in the morning. I did not count that one. Today, it finally snowed for about a couple inches. That was about right to keep the tradition of the winter around here going (no more than this please). Despite the pouring snow, people were busy as usual or even busier …

Snow and Busy Weekend

It snowed!

Snow and Busy Day  2

The parking of the local supper market was packed.

Small_IMG-3644

The ground temperature was warm. The snow melted away quickly. I think that was a good thing.  I fear accumulations that turn into thick ice later.

Snow and Busy Weekend 4

Seemed like Christmas again.

Snow and Busy Weekend 5

Time to get inside.

Hama-Rikyu Gardens

Hama-Rikyu gardens is a public park in Tokyo.  But as I stepped into the park, I was not sure that I was still in Tokyo as one of the biggest and busiest city in the world. It was just a few minutes ago that I was just was surrounded by tall buildings, busy streets and walking through crowd of people.  Only the sight of the buildings at the perimeter reminded me that I was still in the city.  I was touched by serenity and the well blended between nature and the Japanese culture from the park.

These are few bits of the Hama-Rikyu park.

Hama-Rikyu Garden, 1

The welcome sign at the front of the park.

Hama-Rikyu, 2

Japanese pines grow on the low cut grass lawn. The tall builds remind you that you are still part of the city.

Hama-Rikyu, 3

This is an interesting object. It was hung from the roof as part of rain gutter. I guess it was used to catch the rain drops and to prevent the water damage to the ground blow. I am guessing here.

Hama-Rikyu, 4.

I met a park resident.  I could not resist to make friend with him.

Hama-Rikyu, 5

The park is also located at the mount of Sumida river.

Hama-Rikyu, 6

I was wondering how these great trees survived on their own.

Hama-Rikyu, 7

I just like the shape of the trees. It made me wonder whether human had anything to do with it or not.

Hama-Rikyu, 8

An artful way of giving  nature a hand. The supports are like the tree limbs that just grew downward.

Hama-Rikyu, 9 Tea shop.

I believe this is a tea shop – A very good idea.

Hama-Rikyu, 10

I am not sure what this is.

Hama-Rikyu, 11

Hydrangea… ¬†they can be found in the park too. I just love them.

Hama-Rikyu, 12

Long reaching vines for a good bye.

Winter Kisses

So far the winter has been very mild to the area. ¬†There were very few cold days and many¬†nonseasonal warm days.¬†It is quite unusual for this time of the year. ¬†In a way, I am pleased with it. ¬†It is better than heavy snow and ice. ¬†Only sign of cold winter is frosty leaves on the ground in the morning … which soon (frost) melt by the warmth of the morning sun. ¬†Hope it stays this way for the rest of the winter this year.

Frosty Leaves

Some Nice Cars

Expensive (or even antique/collectible) cars always draw good attentions. I am no exception to this. They are such eye candies and dreams. These cars were on show at Central World and at Central Chidlom car dealer store in BKK. You do not normally get a chance to see them close unless you are in a big city. They are cool (just to look at).

By the way, I have seen Ferraris on BKK road a few times now. This last trip there, I also got a chance to get ahead a Ferrari. For a moment, I had a one car length ahead – of course with traffic helped ūüôā

Some Nice Cars - The show

The show

Porsche - "There is no substitute".

“Porsche No substitute”

Lamborghini

White Lamborghini – So sleek!

Yes, it is a real Lamborghini.

It is a real Lamborghini.

Central World

Central World shoppers

Audi

A gorgeous Audi

Audi's mucsle.

I feel the power.

Mercedes Benz

This one is my favorite.

Flowers from A Fast Food Restaurant

These flowers were decorating pieces of a local fast food chain restaurant. The restaurant placed small vases and flowers on every table.  They made the place a little bit special.  I just like the idea.

 Today is also a Thanksgiving day in the US.  I know not everyone celebrates Thanksgiving day.  That does not  matter. Happy Thanksgiving to you all.

Yates Mill County Park NC

The Yates Mill County Park in NC is off to the south of Raleigh, the capital of NC. The park is full of natural beauty that draws many photographers ranging from family to serious wild life photography.

The Park features the only remaining gristmill in Wake County. The old mill on Steep Hill Creek that we today call Yates Mill has stood on its foundation since the 1750s, despite disasters including floods, hurricanes, war and neglect. Today the mill is fully restored and operable.

Fall season brings even more colors to the park.

Bush of weeds or grass grow around the packing area of the park.

There are old gears, wheels etc. laid around the  I guess they are old part of the mill.

A small creek leads to the wood near the mill.

The Mill.

The mill sits near the lake which is the center of the park.

Trees over the mirror like lake surface.

The lake at the center of the park.

Wooden area around the park.

Lotus grow under the tree shade.

Chickadees

These are Chickadees (I think they are “Black-capped”). They are so cute little creature. I am not a birder (with lots of patience) but these chickadees enjoyed the feast so much that ¬†they seemed to forget someone was being close and shooting them away. They enjoyed their feast and I enjoyed taking ’em pictures. A nice eco system ūüėČ

Relax and enjoy

With a piece to go

A curious look at me

Touch of Rain

I like the refresh feeling after a good rain. The one that gives good soaking wet every where. Of course, I do not mean the scary big stormy ones or non stop damaging rains.

This was a morning after a night long rain. The rain was a good one.  It not only gave an extra freshness feeling to the next morning but also gave me beautiful looks of that morning.

Though it was not the kind of rain that caused any real damage, it was hard enough for those fragile ones.

With that night long rain, this watering pot wouldn’t be missed for a few days. That was good thing.

Another harsh result of that night rain.

Fun of an Air Traveling

I normally do not like to fly on a small plane. This trip was not an exception. It was not so much fun during the flight. The flight was full and the cabin was small. You got squeezed every where.

The situation changed when I stepped out to change plane.  Instead of getting off the plane via a typical jet way, all passengers had to get on the ground and walked to the terminal.  With my camera ready in my bag,  it was such an opportunity to get some close range shots of the plane from the outside.

It turned out to be an air traveling fun at the end.

Keep your camera ready!

Catching Butterflies

Butterflies seem to fly slow. I normally see them quite relaxing. They slowly fly around, hang on one flower for a while and then move on.  They suddenly became quite fast when I wanted to take pictures of them.  By the time I got ready to shoot,  they decide to fly away.  I managed to catch some (take pictures) of these beautiful creatures eventually.

I was so lucky to catch this one with quite smooth background.

This one seems to have a tough life. Its wings are torn.

This one looks like a different kind than most. It has a nice wing pattern.

These two were dancing around and found a good place together.

Page-Walker Arts & History Center

The “Page-Walker Arts & History Center” is about 5 minutes from my house. It sits right next to downtown Cary. The center looks like a mansion stands next to the rail road tracks that cut through downtown Cary NC.

Here is a bit of the history of the center.

“The Page-Walker Arts & History Center was built as a hotel in 1868 by Town of Cary founder Allison Francis Page. In 1979, the Page-Walker Hotel was listed on the National Register for Historic Places. In 1985, a citizens’ group, Friends of the Page-Walker Hotel, joined with the Town of Cary to save the deteriorating building and restore it as an arts and history center. Today, the center is alive with classes, events, performances, meetings and receptions and the gallery exhibitions feature works of local and regional artists.”

The center is an old style mansion brick structure.

This little tool shack is part of a garden behind the main center. The wood construction of the shack  nicely blends in with the garden.

A nice hidden corner behind the center.

The view of the center from the west.