Tuesday Photo Challenge – Round Up 186

Built against the slope of the hill

Welcome to the 186th round up of the Tuesday Photo Challenge!

There was no shortage of interesting Slope to your posts! I found some truly surprising takes on the theme and, as always, was delighted by the great photography and great poems and tales that were in your posts! I especially learned that cats can be taskmasters, and that slope appears in unusual locales!

It was a lot of fun to view and read all of your posts; thank you for a great set of contributions!

Here is another slope…

Looking over Volterra

In another image from Tuscany, we look over the rooftops of the town of Volterra, as the houses sit on the slope of the hill. The contrast between the old construction and satellite dishes stood out to me, so I decided to leave them in the image as a reminder that technology is everywhere!

Please enjoy the following blog posts:

  1. This week gets kicked off with a wonderful post in The Jesh Studio, which enjoys autumn and brings us a wonderful slope!
  2. Kasauli, Himachal Pradesh, India, is a wonderful location, and Smruti captured it beautifully in F2.8_iso100; go check it out!
  3. Jackie shares a magnificent location in Ireland in her post in Junkboat Travels, which very spot my wife and I happened to visit this year during our vacation!
  4. Maria takes us to the wonderful Faroe Islands in her post in Kamerapromenader; great photo and wonderful location!
  5. TiongHan is accurate that it is difficult to find slopes in the flat lands of the Netherlands; nevertheless his photos in TiongHan’s Blog are stunning!
  6. Tatiana brings us something that surely could only happen in Vegas in her post in Vegas Great Attractions; it looks like a great warm place for a party and some ski slope fun!
  7. Jase shares the sense of footprints in the snow in a wonderful post in Proscenium; you’ve got to check this out!
  8. Maria finds some truly interesting places in her blog Sagittarius Viking; I can imagine that the area is amazing to explore!
  9. Cath captures the slope of the land in a great post in Cath’s Camera; which one of those images is your favorite?
  10. The south of France has some stunning villages, such as Saint Cirq Lapopie near the town of Cahors, featured in theOnlyD800intheHameau! Stunning photo!
  11. Irene has us visiting Indiana Dunes National in her post in Heaven’s Sunshine; definitely a fantastic area to enjoy!
  12. Nicole catches a slope of a different kind, as surf’s up in her amazing photo in her post in Une Photo, Un Poéme; looks like a fantastic day!
  13. Bren has a gorgeous waterfall coming down the slope near Loch Leven in Bren & Ashley Ryan Photography; great location!
  14. David has another amazing photo in his post in David M’s Photoblog: the mist across Colpoy’s Bay is just stunning!
  15. Shelley proves that cats can be real taskmasters in a fantastic post in Quaint Revival; one cannot help but appreciate those cats!
  16. Eivor and Pearl love the gentle hills during their stroll in whippetwisdom; what gorgeous images! Xenia also has a wonderful post in Tranature that brings us to the wonderful slopes of farms!
  17. Diane not only brings us an amazing slope her post in pensivity101, but we also get to see robot mowers performing a ballet!
  18. Shakespeare has found a new home in the Underground in Debbie’s wonderful post in Travel with Intent; a really cool idea!
  19. The ski slope looks like a great place to be in Geriatri’X’ Fotogallery, as we can clearly see!
  20. Marie takes us to the slopes of Zermatt, where we get to see dawn on Christmas morning in The New 3Rs: Retire, Recharge, Reconnect; gorgeous photo!
  21. Eric shows us some of the beautiful sloping trails in Eden Prairie, MN< in From the Lens; looks like a great place to go hiking!
  22. Teressa brings us some math for good measure of the slope images in her post in Another LQQK; Neumann Ranch looks like a great place to visit!
  23. Sandy shares a stunning image of a rocky slope in her post in Out of my Write Mind; the monochrome really makes it effective!
  24. Cee features some beautiful images of slopes in Oregon in Cee’s Photo Challenges; each looks amazing in its own way!
  25. Skye is shown of in the most gorgeous manner in Land of Images, as the rustic beauties are simply amazing!
  26. Nandini shares a great set of slope-themed haikus and great photos in her post in queennandini; awesome rainbows too!
  27. Russell has a fantastic image in Beautiful Photographs, as the horses get to amble along the slopes.
  28. Amy shows us how she edited her photo of the Fontana dell’Acqua Paolo in a great post in Photography Journal Blog; you’ll enjoy the process!
  29. After last week’s snow, we get a lovely fountain in a pond down the slope in a great post in One Letter Up – Diary 2.0; love this post!
  30. Woolly put together a wonderfully appropriate post for this time of year in Woolly Muses: seeing the beauty of the slopes and remembering what took place there in World War I.
  31. The slopes of the hills along the shores of the Danube make a wonderful location for vineyards in Musin’ with Susan! Also, please check out Susan’s week in review in Musin’ with Susan; see which image catches your eye!
  32. Chris explores the natural slopes in architecture in a great post in What’s (in) the Picture? The cross-section of architecture and Nature make an interesting image!
  33. In another lovely post in A Day in the Life, we get to enjoy a wonderful variety of slopes; great photos!

Please let all of these great bloggers know your thoughts about their posts!

Time for a Peek!

A peek back in history

The WordPress Weekly Photo Challenge has the theme of Peek.  A bit of an interesting theme, as it allows us to take it into many directions.

The image that I decided on for this post is one from last weekend’s outing to Oxbow For my first image in a series for this week (yes, I thought of several already 🙂 ), we’re taking a peek down a quintessential street in the lovely town of Volterra in the province of Tuscany in Italy.  The added bonus in this image is the gentleman in the lower right of the image, who is also taking a peek down the street.

Take a breath of the atmosphere in Volterra…

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Streets of Volterra

As you see, these streets are just filled with old World charm, taking us back through the centuries and leaving us to imagine all that has occurred here.

Hope you enjoyed this look back and have a wonderful day!

Roman Theater in Volterra

Surprising finds in Volterra

Yesterday, I shared with you a view of the wonderful Tuscan hill town of Volterra, looking over the roofs toward the valley.  Another wonder from this city is the Roman theater that sits just outside the old town walls.

This theater was not discovered until the 1950s, when local economist Enrico Fiumi gained permission to perform a test dig near the soccer field, where he theorized the existence of a Roman theater.  With the help of patients of the local psychiatric hospital that he directed, he excavated a small section to find fragments of columns and a young head of Augustus

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Roman theater in Volterra

It took another 10 years to gain permission for the rest of the excavation, which resulted in a beautiful example of a theater, including the scaenae frons, which is the backwall behind what would have been a wooden stage.

This is a great location to visit, and it should be noted that the ticket also gives you admission to the Etruscan excavation on the other side of town (a 5-10 minute walk).

Technical Details

This image series was captured with my Fujifilm X-T1 using a Fujifilm XF18-135mm f/3.5-5.6 LM OIS WR lens.  Exposure settings for the series of images were at 1/150-1/600 second, f/9 at 800 ISO.  They were processed using Photomatix Pro.

Looking over Volterra

Beautiful vistas and rich history

Volterra is a walled mountaintop town in the Tuscany region of Italy of which its history dates to before the 7th century BC and has substantial structures from the Etruscan, Roman, and Medieval periods.

Volterra, known to the ancient Etruscans as Velathri or Vlathri and to the Romans as Volaterrae, is a town and comune in the Tuscany region of Italy. The town was a Bronze Age settlement of the Villanovan culture, and an important Etruscan center (Velàthre, Velathri or Felathri in Etruscan, Volaterrae in Latin language), one of the “twelve cities” of the Etruscan League.

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Looking over Volterra

The site is believed to have been continuously inhabited as a city since at least the end of the 8th century BC. It became a municipium allied to Rome at the end of the 3rd century BC. The city was a bishop’s residence in the 5th century, and its episcopal power was affirmed during the 12th century. With the decline of the episcopate, Volterra became a place of interest of the Florentines, whose forces conquered Volterra. Florentine rule was not always popular, and opposition occasionally broke into rebellion. These rebellions were put down by Florence.

When the Florentine Republic fell in 1530, Volterra came under the control of the Medici family and later followed the history of the Grand Duchy of Tuscany.

In recent history, Volterra was the residence of the Volturi, a coven of rich, regal, powerful ancient vampires, who essentially act as the rulers of the world’s vampire population; of course, this was fiction, as part of Stephwnie Meyer’s Twilight series.

Technical Details

This image series was captured with my Fujifilm X-T1 using a Fujifilm XF18-135mm f/3.5-5.6 LM OIS WR lens.  Exposure settings for the series of images were at 1/350-1/1500 second, f/9 at 1000 ISO.  They were processed using Photomatix Pro.

A Day in Volterra

A quintessential hill town

During our vacation in Italy, one of our driving goals is to get some time to relax and not hurry from location to location in an effort to get as much viewed as possible.  Rather, spending some quality time in a smaller number of locations, which gives us a better feel for what these places are really like (and were like).  As we’re focusing on hill towns in Tuscany, that means we have to make some decisions about which ones we want to visit; one of these choices was between San Gimignano and Volterra, both of which are well known towns.


Volterra became our first choice, as it is eminently walkable in relaxed fashion and has a great variety of points of interest.  We parked in the free lot (#3), which does require a considerable number of steps to be ascended in order to get into town.  In town, there are lots of quaint little streets, each with their own character and occasional vehicular traffic (locals only!).

The Basilica on the main square is beautiful in its construction of alternating rows of black and white marble, and impressive to see form the inside.  It’s located next to the town hall, which is a rather lively piazza with lots of places to have an espresso or shop for alabaster ware.

After a delicious meal at Torre del Porcellino (I enjoyed my wild boar!), we sauntered over to visit the Etruscan excavation, which is an active archaeological site.  Pay to enter and you also will get access to the Roman amphitheater at the other side of town.  The excavation is of a site with several temples and surrounding houses, and also includes a descent (8 m) into a cistern from Roman times.

The Roman amphitheater is also very impressive, as it leans back against the old town walls and well worth the visit.

The atmosphere in Volterra was very relaxed and provided lots of great shopping for leather and alabaster carvings.  The gelato at Isola del Gusto was fantastic!