Niffling

The fans of Harry Potter would know the magical creature – Niffler. The one which just gets pulled towards anything shiny. For me, that niffly characteristic comes to the surface upon seeing nicely done street art and quirky shop windows. The prettier, the wittier, the better. Then I forget where I was headed to and get busy collecting the “shiny stuff” (in my camera). Here is a glimpse of a few of those things. Enjoy :-).

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The lady with the mask..
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Alien Dinosaur?
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Danger ahead!
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That should start the day right…

For checking out what distracts other people, check out this page.

Elements of nature

It’s amazing how the same setting can evoke different emotions inside us. See for yourself.

The photo below was captured at night when the wind was howling, skies were overcast with clouds but the moon was able to peek out briefly. Makes you think of ghosts and werewolves I guess.

Night

And the picture below was taken the next morning when the sun was out, winds had calmed down and the skies had cleared a bit. Makes you think of serenity – doesn’t it?

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For getting some more visuals of elemental forces, you can go here.

 

Satisfaction

In our day to day lives, most of us are so busy just getting through each day that we forget what is it that really gives us satisfaction and thus, happiness. I don’t know if someone gets satisfaction out of getting up each morning after snoozing the alarm five times, sometimes getting breakfast and sometimes having to forego for fear of getting late, getting through traffic to reach the place of work, managing the work through the day, coming back exhausted, eating, sleeping and then starting all over again. Then add to it the responsibilities of the family and you won’t know where the day went. The things we accumulate in this process – are they satisfying us?

What gives each one of us satisfaction is very subjective.

For me, satisfaction comes out of creation. It could be the solution to a problem, an artwork, a piece of writing, a nice meal, and best of all, seeing the creation of mother nature.

For instance, after planting the seeds, watering the plants, protecting them from the pests, isn’t it extremely satisfying to see the flowers turning to fruits?

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So take a break, sit back and think..what gives You satisfaction? Then what’s stopping you from doing it?

For some more interpretations of satisfaction, check the posts here.

Out of the ordinary

Most days we just go by life and everything else, on a kind of auto-pilot mode. Wake up, get ready, go to wherever you are supposed to go, come back, sleep and start all over again the next day (breathing, eating and drinking – that’s kind of necessary).

But some times, while you are on autopilot, something just jumps out from background to foreground, making you take notice. Those are moments which make you think a little, before you again go on with your routine.

Sometimes, I get to capture those moments when I have the camera, at other times not. For the former, it’s great because I can show the object of my surprise also to others. The latter ones are nice, and leave behind this longing to see it once again (happens often when the night sky has interesting positions of moon, planets and stars and I don’t have the right gear to shoot those scenes)!

Here are some of those moments that I found unusual and also managed to take a photo of, of course.

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Have you seen a sleeping bird? I’d never seen one before this dude..
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The swan that turned into a pumpkin! Could it be a curse of the magician that the swan was bothering?
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The houses of this village had eyes! Some had one and some three..spooky

If you enjoyed this and want to see some more, then you can find other photographic interpretations of “unusual” here.

The Bridges

Bridges are fascinating. I wonder when was the first time humans created a bridge. But I’m sure that it must have been the day when the course of human history took a big turn. Humans were suddenly able to cross rivers and lakes for going from one place to another and returning back, thus making trading possible for everyone and not just the adventurous sailors! Bridges meant possibilities..

There is a reference to the construction of a bridge of stones in the Hindu epic – Ramayana – which is a story of around 12000 years ago! According to the legend, the bridge was made by the monkeys, to help Ram and the monkey army get across the sea to Lanka from the Southernmost tip of India to rescue his wife Sita who was abducted by Ravan, the king of Lanka. Believe it or not, in the satellite images, the remains of such a bridge can still be seen (immersed now), named Adam’s Bridge in English. You can read more details of the scientific analysis being done to determine the timelines here. So far, I didn’t have the chance to go there yet, but who knows, may be one day I will be there.

So coming back to the present, I’ve had the chance to see so many wonderful bridges. Some of them are world-famous and some are just serving the purpose – helping people get across from one point to the other.

Enjoy.

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A bridge connecting two villages in Switzerland
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An interesting road bridge in Eastern Germany
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A wooden bridge in Switzerland
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A brick bridge in Belgium
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The longest suspension bridge for pedestrians in the world, in Austria

For more interpretations and pictures of wonderful bridges, explore here.

Viennese Waltz – Routine 2

Starting now with the second part of my impressions of Vienna. Hope you enjoyed the first routine. I was very tired after the walking through the city on the first day. So decided to call it an early day.

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Decoration in a Window

The next morning, the skies looked ominous and tried to put the idiomatic damper on my spirits. But I just borrowed an umbrella from the Pension and decided to make a trip to the famous Schoenbrunn Palace. It was a little far from the city center and so, I had to take a train. While waiting, I often find myself looking at advertisements at the underground stations when I am visiting a city and try to get an idea about what’s new.  I don’t know if the locals ever pay any attention to the posters!

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Metro Station Karlsplatz

Finally on reaching the palace, I found an Easter Market set up in the grounds despite the overcast skies.

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Easter at Schoenbrunn Palace

The Schoenbrunn Palace looked quite impressive in yellow color and as it was drizzling a bit, I decided to take a tour of the rooms inside the palace first instead of looking at the gardens.

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Schoennbrunn Palace

The rooms were interesting and as the rest of Vienna, had most stories about Maria Theresa and Sisi. Interesting to know was how much effort Sisi put in maintaining her figure (exercises and dieting) and ankle length hair (a full day every week dedicated to cleaning and conditioning the tresses).

After coming out, I wandered a bit into the gardens which looked quite pretty to stroll in but it was drizzling and the wind was too strong to keep the umbrella open. So I decided to move on.

Now, I was getting hungry and I had heard about the Naschmarkt. So I headed towards it. By the time I got out of the train at the stop nearest to the market, it was pouring. I managed to reach there and looked through the shops and restaurants but didn’t find anything that I could eat. So I searched for an Indian restaurant around as that is usually a safe bet if one is looking for a warm, vegetarian and gluten-free meal. And as luck would have it, I found myself at a restaurant whose owners were from the same part of India as I am! On the menu were two delicacies that I love but haven’t had in a really long time and so quite naturally, I asked for those two items. It was serendipity at work again :-).  I was not disappointed. The owner and I chatted away for some time about life back home and abroad. Looking out of the window, I found that it was hailing. So I stayed for some more time before venturing out again.

I went to the central railway station to get myself the tickets for the next day and then proceeded towards the Opera. Walking towards the Opera, I came across a beautiful church – Karlskirche. It was not possible to get inside as it was getting ready for a concert.

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Karlskirche

Moving on, upon reaching the Opera, I found an impressive 19th century building. Initially it was the place for royalty but then in 1920, after the removal of the Hofburg dynasty, it was named the State Opera. I wasn’t particularly interested in watching the performance (it was Parsifal by Wagner that evening). But I had read that one could get a chance to stand and watch for as little as 3 Euros. So I tried my luck but even the standing tickets were sold out. The lady at the counter told me that I could try again for a ticket post break and the break was at after 90 minutes. Since I was tired anyway of all the walking, I went to the adjoining Opera Cafe and ordered myself a coffee.

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Vienna State Opera

When I came out to try getting the ticket, I found that it was again sold out! So much for the waiting. Then I came out of another exit. And what do I see there? A big screen showing the performance from inside! There were also chairs. Why didn’t I come out earlier?

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Big Screen outside the Opera

Anyway, I didn’t find it engaging so I moved on. It was getting darker and the square was lit up.

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Haas Building

It was much more interesting to listen to the street musicians than watching the Opera. After spending some time listening to them and then having some dinner, I decided to call it a day.

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Street Musicians at Stephansplatz

 

Focal Point

I often am fascinated by the human body – what a marvelous work of engineering! Today am admiring the wonderful sense of sight – the eyes. It’s raining out here and I am just looking out at the scene through the glass window with a cup of coffee. With my eyes, I can see everything so clearly even outside but the camera can focus only on what’s closest to it. 

In this photo, you can see my coffee in focus and the chaos outside, even if it’s blurred. So I am very thankful for the camera because that’s possibly the only way I can capture and share the moments that I like, visually, with everyone, for lack of that kind of artistic talent which also requires time and effort to master. 

Coffee on a rainy day

For more photos about interpreting Focus, you can look here

And here is the photo of the same place after it has stopped raining.