Vacation Retrospective

Confessions of a traveler!

As I selected Retrospective for this week’s TPC theme, I thought it would be nice to look back at countries visited during the 2010s! So here it goes!


Love atop the Stephanskirche!

Looking down from the shorter tower of the Stephanskirche provides an incredible view across all of Vienna!


Walking among the treetops!

In Vancouver, BC, I got to walk among the treetops, high up above the canyon floor (below…)


Skye is simply stunning!

On the Isle of Skye, I got to see some of the most incredible landscapes, such as here, where I’m a ways up in the Quiraing range. I could sit here forever and watch the clouds change the landscape!


Apollonia National Park

I got some time in Israel to explore the Apollonia National Park in Herzliya; this amazing Roman settlement was a wonder to behold!


Looking across Massa Maritima

Our Italian trip was filled with amazing towns (idea for some posts…), such as Massa Maritima; the hill towns in Tuscany are just stunning! And the food was awesome too!


Centraal Station, Rotterdam

As can be expected, there have been numerous trips to the Netherlands, and Rotterdam is still among my favorite cities in this world!


The Herring Era

Iceland is filled with amazing vistas, and I spent way too little time there (4 days) to scratch the surface. One of my discoveries was the Herring Era museum in Siglufjördur! It brought one back to a different time!

Czech Republic

Looking up in Prague!

Sometimes, travel doesn’t go as planned, and you get to spend an additional 24 hours in a location. This happened in Prague, which is not a bad place to find yourself in!


A view in Kharkiv

My visit to Ukraine was fantastic, as the hospitality was amazing and I got to see some of the sights, such as the view here!


Albert Docks at Night

Liverpool, England, was an impromptu visit that gave me the opportunity to see my favorite Premier League team play at Anfield, their home ground! A fantastic city too!

In less than 2 weeks, I will be in India, so the adventure continues!!

Tuesday Photo Challenge – Overhead

What is green and gold?

Welcome to week 172 of the Tuesday Photo Challenge! Please note that last week’s Round Up will be published later tonight (EDT)

Clearly, I need to spend more time going back through all of my travel photography, as there are so many images that I have never had the time to process. The inspiration for this week’s theme came from there… As I often take the time to look at things around me from a different angle, I thought that Overhead might make a good theme. Of course, you can feel free to interpret the theme in any direction that you may wish, as the word has multiple meanings in the English language!

So, I hope that your overhead will be minimal in looking at what lies overhead this week, as you come up with some creative views and interpretations of the world around you! Have fun with this theme and definitely think out of the box!

Here’s what I saw, when I looked overhead in Israel 3 years ago…

The Canopy is Rich!

As I finished up my exploration of the wonderful site of Apollonia, just north of Herzliyah, in Israel, I walked under these gorgeous trees and looked up. And, there it was, playing among the leaves: a strong Sun making its presence felt!

The full rules of this challenge are in TPC Guidelines, but here’s the tl;dr:

  • Write a post with an image for this week’s topic
  • Please tag your post with fpj-photo-challenge (if you’re not sure about how tags work, please check out this WordPress article about tagging posts)
  • Create a pingback link to this post, so that I can create a post showing all of the submissions over the week (note: pingbacks may not appear immediately, as my site is set up to require approval for linking to it; helps against previous bad experiences with spamming)
  • Have fun creating something new (or sharing something old)!!

Don’t look straight into the Sun (even with your camera)! Looking forward to all of your great images!

Good to be Home!

Home is where the heart is!

After a great 10 days of work in Israel, which were highly successful in building a connection with my new team, it is great to be home again!  It’s great to be able to hug my wife, sleep in the bed that my body recognizes as home, a sleep in late with the dogs.

That said, I’m looking forward to getting some more time in the future to explore Israel beyond what I have seen thus far; I’ve seen some pretty sights, but haven’t had the time yet to take a trip to Jerusalem and absorb some of the antiquity  and spiritual richness of that city.  Of course, there’s the Dead Sea and plenty of other sights to visit.

Mediterranean Beauty
Mediterranean Beauty

Here’s another look at the beach in Herzliyah, which is just a stunning view of the Mediterranean Sea.

It’s a great place to visit, but there’s no place like home!

Moon Over Herzliyah

Dark towers at night…

As walks along the beach have been an excellent fixture of my time here in Herzliyah, I thought it might be interesting to share a night view from this week with you.

As the beach here has a promenade, it also provides wonderful access for all to the beach.  One of the access points is a pair of towers that has elevators to facilitate access…

Herzliyah Beach Access
Moon over Herzliyah

Seen at night, the moon provided a nice bit of interest in this image.

A Taste of Dutch

Echte Boter in Israel

One of the fun things of traveling is that you get these unexpected, little moments of joy all over the place.  I’m sure you’re familiar with those small moments that put a smile on your face for whatever reason…

As I sat down for a breakfast/lunch on my first day in Israel, one of these occurred in my travels…

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Real Butter!

Here’s the explanation: I’m sitting in a great 24×7 breakfast restaurant named Benedict in Herzliyah, Israel.  They serve wonderful bread with their breakfast and I grab the little package of butter to find out… It’s Dutch!  It even says Real Butter in Dutch on the wrapper.  Yes, I smiled when I noticed that 🙂

Long walks on the Beach in Herzliyah

Sleepwalking in the sand!

Compared to New England, the weather has been outstanding here in Israel.  Lots of people are still wearing their heavy coats (it’s only 65F and windy), but without having had time to adjust to these milder temperatures, it’s T-shirt weather for me.

One of my strategies to counteract my jet-lagged brain/body’s tendency to not allow me to fall asleep at a reasonable hour is to get lots of fresh air.  With a hotel that is right on the beach that means going for long walks along the beach.  While the strategy hasn’t worked thus far, I’m at least getting my miles in 🙂

Mediterranean Evening

And the views aren’t too bad either!  In addition, there’s evidence of friendly companions…

Evidence of Dog

Dogs definitely love the beach!

Surf’s Up in Herzliyah

National pastime?

As my body is still fighting against the time zone difference (translation: sleep deprivation), I decided to go for a long walk along the beach this morning to at least show my brain that there’s daylight at this hour.  By my standards, the weather is wonderful, as it’s a rather humid 67F (appr. 19C), which is a far cry from the light snow that is falling at home…

As the wind is in-land and the surf’s not too shabby, there are 100s of people out in the water surfing along the beach.  If there were a bigger surf and bright sunshine, this might look like California!

Planning the Surf

The vantage point is between a set of concrete barriers in a stormdrain that empties into the beach.

Incidental Tourist

It’s a trip!

What a joy to see the word Tourist come up as the Daily Prompt!  It doesn’t get much more wide open than that, as on the best of days, we are all tourists and enjoying the trip that we’re on in our daily lives.

As many of you are aware, I recently had the pleasure of doing a wee bit of touristing during my work trip to Israel, so for this wonderful Wednesday, I’m sharing a moment from that trip…

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Golden Hour

Life’s a beach when you get to watch the sun set over the Mediterranean while having a great meal!

Please enjoy responsibly!!


Departure – Israel

Sun sets, until morning

After a wonderful of meeting many of the team here in Israel, with whom I will interact as we achieve great things together, it is time to return back to Massachusetts.  I’m sure that my first visit to Israel won’t be my last, as, at the very least, I want to have some more time for photography during my next visit (meetings from 9 to 8 are not helpful in this regard 🙂 ).

As I leave, I want to leave you with a view from Herzliya beach, where I had dinner last night.

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Herzliya Sunset

This beach is absolutely beautiful with a quiet view of the Mediterranean.  There are numerous restaurants, of which I found my favorite, Yam 7, right down the stairs to the beach from my hotel, the Dan Accadia.

Nothing is cheap in Israel, so bring money, but the food and service are well worth it!

Until next time!

Technical Details

This image was captured with an iPhone 6S using the standard Camera app in HDR mode.

Wednesday Wonderment – pt 18

Tall and statuesque

This week appears to have been overtaken by clouds, as a central theme.  Yesterday’s Tuesday Photo Challenge is about clouds, Monday’s response to dreams included a cloud as a central character, and now today.

As I am in Israel this week and lucky enough to be staying at a hotel right at the beach, I have been able to observe some interesting cloud formations develop during the evening.  While I am certainly not an expert on clouds, the particular cloud in the image that I captured the other event made me curious enough to look for more detail.

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Clouds off the Beach

The cloud in the image is recognized by most of us as a cumulonimbus cloud, or a rain cloud, as we have seen enough of them.  What made me curious is the updrafts that were forming to create the top of this cloud, which led me to find out that there are several distinct types of cumulonimbus clouds.

Cumulonimbus calvus is a moderately tall cumulonimbus cloud which is capable of precipitation, but has not yet reached the tropopause, which is the height of stratospheric stability where it forms into a cumulonimbus capillatus (fibrous-top) or cumulonimbus incus (anvil-top). Cumulonimbus calvus clouds develop from cumulus congestus, and its further development under auspicious conditions will result in cumulonimbus incus.

This cloud consists mainly of water droplets. By definition of cumulonimbus cloud, at its top water droplets are transformed into ice crystals, but for cumulonimbus calvus content of ice crystals is small and freezing is in early stage, so cloud top still looks round and puffy.

Cumulonimbus calvus is characterized by distinctive (between other types of cumulonimbus cloud) rounded shape and relatively sharp edges of its top area, unlike cumulonimbus incus or cumulonimbus capillatus, which have cirriform tops. Developing cumulonimbus calvus loses sharp outlines of the top as more water droplets transform into ice crystals. Strong updrafts may form pileus or thin vertical stripes protruding upwards out of the cloud. When upper part of the cloud freezes to greater extent and clearly visible cirriforms appears, cumulonimbus calvus turns into another species of cumulonimbus.

Hope this was interesting to you!

Technical Details

This image was captured at the beach in Herzliya, Israel, using an iPhone 6S with the standard Camera app.

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